Texas Archival Resources Online

TABLE OF CONTENTS


Descriptive Summary

Biographical Note

Scope and Contents

Restrictions

Index Terms

Administrative Information

Description of Series

Inventory

University of Texas, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History

A Guide to the John Coffee Hays Collection, 1817-1916



Descriptive Summary

Creator: Hays, John Coffee
Title: Hays John Coffee Collection
Dates: 1817-1916
Abstract: Correspondence, narratives, newspaper clippings, and narratives comprise the John Coffee Hays Collection, 1817-1916, which documents Hays’ career as a Texas Ranger.
Accession No.: 1932; 1933; 70-107; 73-054; 2013-297
Extent: 2 in.
Language: Materials are written in English.
Repository: Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, The University of Texas at Austin

Biographical Note

Texas Ranger and surveyor, John Coffee Hays (1817-1883), came to Texas in 1836, in time to participate in the Texas Revolution. At Sam Houston’s suggestion, Hays joined the Texas Rangers under Erastus “Deaf” Smith. He served in the rangers until 1846, reaching the rank of colonel, and participated in many skirmishes and engagements with Mexican and Indian forces, including the battles of Plum Creek, Salado Creek, Walker’s Creek, and Monterrey. Hays formed the 1st Texas Mounted Volunteers Regiment at the start the Mexican War. His exploits during the Republic period in Texas and the Mexican War helped earn the Texas Rangers their legendary reputation as soldiers.

Following the conclusion of the war, Hays moved to California and became surveyor general for California, an Indian agent, and sheriff of San Francisco County. In addition, he helped found the city of Oakland, established a successful real estate business, and attended the 1876 Democratic National Convention. Hays died in 1883 in California. Hays County, Texas, was named after him.

Source: Handbook of Texas Online, s.v. “Hays, John Coffee,” http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/HH/fhabq.html (accessed July 16, 2010).

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Scope and Contents

Correspondence, narratives, newspaper clippings, and narratives comprise the John Coffee Hays Collection, 1817-1916, which documents Hays’ career as a Texas Ranger. The collection includes correspondence and reports relating to engagements with Comanches near San Antonio and his service with the 1st Texas Mounted Volunteers Regiment during the Mexican War. In addition, the collection includes a biographical sketch of Hays and several narratives describing his exploits.

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Restrictions

Access Restrictions

This collection is open for research use.

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Index Terms

Subjects (Persons)
Hays, John Coffee, 1817-1883.
Smith, Erastus, 1787-1837
Bell, Peter Hansbrough, 1812-1898
Ford, John Salmon.
Karnes, Henry Wax, 1812-1840
Subjects (Organizations)
United States. Army. Texas Mounted Volunteers. Regiment, 1st.
Texas Rangers.
Subjects
Plum Creek, Battle of, Tex., 1840.
Monterrey, Battle of, Monterrey, Mexico, 1846.
Walker Creek, Battle of, Tex., 1844.
Salado Creek, Battle of, Tex., 1842.
Places
Monterrey (Mexico)
San Antonio (Tex.)

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Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

John Coffee Hays Collection, 1817-1916, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, The University of Texas at Austin.

Processing Information

Basic processing and cataloging of this collection was supported with funds from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC) for the Briscoe Center’s “History Revealed: Bringing Collections to Light project,” 2009-2011.

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Detailed Description of the Papers

 

Inventory

box
3F176 Narratives:
"A. D. Hays (a cousin of Captain Hays) came to San Antonio, 1839"
"Jack Hays Fight on the Guadalupe, 1840"
"Jack Hays's Expedition to El Paso and California, 1849"
"Jack Hays Visit to Washington, Texas," by John W. Lockhart, Lockhart News, May 14, 1893
"Indian Raid-Pursuit and Fight," by J. T. DeShields, Belton, Texas, May 10, 1910
With the Border Ruffians, R. H. Williams
Correspondence:
Deaf Smith's report to Honorable W. S. Fisher, March 27, 1837, from Telegraph and Texas Register, April 11, 1837
Honorable Sam Houston's letter to Colonel H. K. Karnes, March 31, 1837, from San Antonio Daily Express, March 3, 1907
Karnes's letter to Honorable Sam Houston, July 4, 1837, from San Antonio Daily Express, March 10, 1910
Sam Houston's letter to H. W. Karnes, July 14, 1837, from the San Antonio Daily Express, March 3, 1907
John C. Hays's letter to Honorable B. T. Archer, July 1, 1841, from the Austin City Gazette, July 7, 1841
W. A. Mickel's letter to D. Moore, December 14, 1842, printed in The Telegraph, December 21, 1842
Thomas D. Johnston's letter to James T. DeShield, March 14, 1888
R. J. Brigg's letter to J. D. Affleck, September 29, 1916
Newspaper clipping, "Battle of Bandera Pass," by A. J. Sowell
box
3C145 Letter to John Caperton concerning the Mexican War, September, 1847
Letter from H. W. Monroe, February 5, 1849
box
2R35 Sketch of John C. Hays, Texas Ranger

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