Whitaker-Rainbolt Family Papers
Manuscript Collection: MC196
Madison G. Whitaker, Texas state senator and veteran of the Battle of San Jacinto, was born in 1811 in Lincoln County, Tennessee. Whitaker was the son of John and Nancy Whitaker. In 1835 he moved to Nacogdoches, Texas, to join his half-brother, William Whitaker. In 1836, he enlisted as a private in the Nacogdoches Volunteer Company. He fought at the Battle of San Jacinto and was discharged on June 6, 1836. Whitaker was elected senator of the Fifth and Sixth Texas legislatures, 1853-1856, representing District 13, Nacogdoches and Angelina counties. Whitaker was a longtime member of the board of trustees of Nacogdoches University where he served as treasurer, vice president and president.
Whitaker married Henrietta M. Fitts in 1841 and together they had eight children. Whitaker died on January 23, 1893, and was buried in Old North Church Cemetery north of Nacogdoches.
Edward Whitaker, son of Madison G. Whitaker and Henrietta Fitts, was born in 1883 in Nacogdoches. He was a Confederate veteran who served in Company A of the 17th Cavalry during the Civil War. He married Mary T. Kirk in 1867. Whitaker later married Laura Henryetta Rainbolt, daughter of William Harrison Rainbolt and Mary Smith, about 1878. Together they had six children: William Guess, Edward H., Charles B., Henry R., Newt, and Laura Bennie.
Correspondence, financial and legal documents, a printed material, creative works and a photograph document the Whitaker-Rainbolt family of Texas from the years 1849 to 1911. The correspondence series is divided by recipient and then chronologically. William H. Rainbolt correspondence received is comprised of an 1858 cover letter for transmittal of land papers and an 1867 letter from R. Osgood concerning shipping and sale of cotton. The Harrison Rainbolt letter was written in 1866 by his niece Mary E. Thomas. The 1911 letter to Ed Whitaker from R. D. Whitaker concerns their father’s estate.
Financial documents are divided by item alphabetically and then chronologically. Account documents for W. Rainbolt, Jr., include a record of his domestic purchases spanning from 1859 to 1861. Account documents for W. H. ＆ W. S. Rainbolt include two accounts with J. H. Mackleroy for clothing items. The 1858 bill of sale issued to William H. Rainbolt is for the purchase of two slaves: Martha, age 26, and her son Crockett, age 5. The deeds of land concerning William H. Rainbolt date from 1849 to 1868 and deal with purchases from Carroll Smith, Charles Askins, Osborn W. Randall, Arnold Thouvenin, Alfred Stevens, Samuel R. Smith, and Francis M. Rainbolt. There is also a deed of land from William H. Rainbolt to Asa Moore in 1861. There are also three documents pertaining to the sales of land dating from 1881 to 1904 by Edward Whitaker from N. E. Birdwell, E. A. Blount and S.W. Blount. Other deeds of land record an 1853 sale from John Colton to Samuel R. Smith with a later sale from J. Carroll Smith to F. M. Rainbolt and an 1887 transfer from N. E. Birdwell to G. C. Meroney.
Legal documents are divided by type alphabetically and then arranged chronologically within each type. There are two affidavits in these papers. The first is a 1904 affidavit of Susan A. Hamilton as to the children of Epps D. Payne. The second is a 1917 affidavit of Edward Whitaker regarding his eligibility for a pension. The 1868 court order is against Nancy E. Edmondson, executrix of the estate of Isaac Edmondson, to the benefit of N.C. Folger and Son. Deeds of land include the 1857 deed to Asa Yarborough and the deed from the estate of Madison G. Whitaker to Madison G. Whitaker, Jr. Included in these papers is a 1904 release of land title from Jack D. Payne to S. W. Blount and son. There is also a 1905 release of lien from W. G. Whitaker to Ed Whitaker and J. M. Williams. Also included are two powers of attorneys; one issued from Francis M. Rainbolt to Thomas A. Garrett in 1855 and the other from Alfred Stevens and America Stevens to Joshua Baker in 1863.
The printed material is an undated newspaper clipping featuring a short obituary of Ed Whitaker, of Fort Worth, Texas. Creative works is comprised of two items. The first is an undated and unsigned ballad, a variant of “Lord Lovel.” The second is a poem entitled “In the Morning by the Bright Light” backed by another poem “Ise Gwine Back to Dixie.” The provenance of the poems is unknown. The Surveyor’s Report series are the field notes and sketch of Luna League, Freestone County, Texas. The cabinet card photograph of Madison G. Walker is undated.
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[Identification of Item], Whitaker-Rainbolt Family Papers, MC196, San Jacinto Museum of History, Houston, Texas.
Rebecca Elston, July 2011.
Processed by Lisa M. Lomas, 2012.