Three page ALS by William Physik Zuber, (1820-1913) who was the last surviving San Jacinto veteran. He is writing to fellow San Jacinto survivor John E. Lewis asking him for a brief sketch of his life and his service on behalf of the state of Texas.
The transcription of the letter is shown below. It long ago was gently bound between two covers in the style of a book to keep it safe.
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"Soldier, farmer, educator, last veteran of the Texas army. Although only fifteen at the outbreak of the Texas Revolution, he served in the Texas army, Fourth Company, Second Regiment. During the battle of San Jacinto, he was a member of the rear guard, which was stationed on the north bank of the Buffalo Bayou, opposite the Harrisburg settlement, to secure the army's baggage and attend the sick and wounded. For his services, he obtained a bounty land grant of 640 acres. He participated in campaigns against the Indians (1837-1840) on the Texas frontier and served in the Somervell expedition after the invasion of Mexican general Adrian Woll in 1842. During the Civil War (1862-1864) he enlisted in the Confederate Army, Company H, Twenty-first Texas Cavalry, and campaigned in Arkansas, Missouri, and Louisiana. After the war, he served as a school teacher and historian and was Justice of the Peace in Grimes County, Texas (1876-1878). Late in his life, Zuber began composing articles on the early Texas military conflicts and biographical sketches of Texas veterans; many of these were eventually published in various newspapers around the state. His account of the escape of Louis “Moses” Rose from the Alamo was published in the Texas Almanac for 1873. In 1906 he moved to Austin, Texas and found employment as a guide in the Senate chamber of the Capitol. In 1909 he was honored by the Texas legislature as the last surviving veteran of the Army of San Jacinto. Zuber was a Methodist and a Mason."
LEWIS, JOHN EDWARD (1808~1892) John Edward Lewis, Republic of Texas Veteran, was born on October 3, 1808, to Joseph and Mary Lewis, one of three children. Lewis arrived in Texas in March 1834, where he settled in Stephen F. Austin's fourth colony, present-day Fayette County. At some point, Lewis returned to New York, because he married his wife, Anna Scott, of Albany.
During Texas' fight for independence, Lewis fought with Captain William J. E. Heard's Company of Citizen Soldiers, where he participated in the Battle of San Jacinto. According to his service record, Lewis served in the army from February 28 to May 24, 1836.
After the war, Lewis received 320 acres of land for his service, which he later sold. He received another 640 acres for taking part in the Battle of San Jacinto.
In 1883, the Lewis family moved from Fayette County to Austin, where John, a member of the Texas Veterans Association, died on April 1, 1892. Anna died at age 84 on May 24, 1896. Together, John and Anna had 13 children: William, John, James, Jacob, Alfred, Lettie, Phebe, Emily, Mary, Annie, Nellie, Jesse, and Betty.
After their deaths, Emily, who was born a deaf-mute, had her parents' remains moved to the Texas State Cemetery, where the State of Texas erected a monument over their grave. Information taken from biography compiled by Louis W. Kemp, the San Jacinto Monument website, http://www.sanjacinto-museum.org/kemp/v851.html.