James Russell Burnett

Full Name: James Russell Burnett
Date of birth: June 20, 1843
Date of death: April 30, 1917

Terms of Service top

Chamber District Dates of Service Legislatures Party City/County Note Counties in District
S 16 Jan 14, 1879 - Oct 9, 1879 16th (1) (2) (3) (4) (5) (6) (7) (8)   Unaffiliated Huntsville / Walker   Grimes, Madison, Trinity, Walker
H 3 Feb 15, 1870 - Jan 11, 1871 12th (9) (10) (11) (12) (13) (14)   Republican Crockett / Houston   Cherokee, Houston

(1) Senatorial apportionment - Ordinance adopted by Constitutional Convention of the State of Texas, 1875. "Sixteenth District - Grimes, Madison, Walker and Trinity Counties shall elect one senator; Walker to be the returning county." University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History. Apportionment Laws of Texas, 1836-1950, 1950.
(2) Republican, from Walker County, 1/14/1879, p. 1. Galveston Daily News.
(3) John T. Buchanan, in special election 2/17/1880, succeeded James R. Burnett, resigned 10/9/1879. Members of the Texas Congress 1836-1845; Members of the Texas Legislature 1846-2004, 2005.
(4) Listed as member of 15th and 16th legislatures. Note under members of the 15th legislature: "Burnett, sworn in 16th Legislature, succeeded Tillman Smith, resigned November 19, 1876." Members of the Texas Congress 1836-1845; Members of the Texas Legislature 1846-2004, 2005.
(5) Listed as member of 16th legislature only. Members of the Texas Legislature, 1846-1962, 1962.
(6) J.R. Burnett of Walker listed in Republican State Convention, 1876, Committee on Platform and Resolutions. J.R. Burnett listed in Republican State Convention, 1892, Chairman of Committee on Platform and Resolutions. Platforms of Political Parties in Texas, 1916.
(7) 16th Legislature, Regular Session - Roll call of newly elected Senators, oath of office administered, 1/14/1879, p. 3. Senate Journal.
(8) Bio states Burnett, of Anderson, Grimes County, was elected to the Senate "as an independent candidate, endorsed by the Republican County Convention of the district, and the Greenbackers of Walker county." Roster lists party as Republican. Texas Legislative Manual, 1879-80, 1879.
(9) M. Priest of the Senate and L.W. Cooper and James R. Burnett of the House appointed to judgeships, 8/25/1870, p. 2. Galveston Daily News.
(10) Republican. "A Few Questions," 7/1/1870, p. 2. Galveston Daily News.
(11) "During the Twelfth Texas Legislature (1870-71), the citizens first elected James R. Burnett, former adjutant of the 13th Texas and brother of Col. John H. Burnett. When Burnett was forced to resign . . . J. Crockett English . . . replaced him." p. 185, Spartan Band: Burnett's 13th Texas Cavalry in the Civil War. Google Books.
(12) 12th Legislature, Provisional Session - Election contest resolved in Burnett's favor; qualified and took his seat, 2/15/1870, p. 31. House Journal.
(13) Joe R. Burnett, sworn 2/15/1870, succeeded A.D. Elam, member-elect, declared ineligible 2/14/1870. John C. English, sworn 1/11/1871, succeeded Joe R. Burnett, resigned. Frank Rainey, sworn 10/31/1871, succeeded John C. English, unseated in election contest 4/17/1871. Members of the Texas Congress 1836-1845; Members of the Texas Legislature 1846-2004, 2005.
(14) Joe R. Burnett. Members of the Texas Congress 1836-1845; Members of the Texas Legislature 1846-2004, 2005.

Biographical Notes and Resources top

Biographical Sketches

  • Biographical sketch, Judge James Russell Burnett, pp. 135-136. Moved to Huntsville, Walker County, in 1870. Married Mollie McCollum, daughter of Hon. A.M. McCollum. Died at Kerrville on 4/30/1907 [sic]. The History of Houston County, Texas, 1943.
  • Biographical sketch of Hon. James R. Burnett of Houston County, included in "Sketches of the Convention," The Free Man's Press (Austin, Texas), 8/1/1868, p. 3, crediting Dolph Briscoe Center for American History. Relatives: James R. Burnett and Col. John H. Burnett - brothers. Portal to Texas History (University of North Texas Libraries).
  • Obituary and photo, James R. Burnett, "Noted Texas Jurist Dies at Kerrville," San Antonio Express, 5/2/1917, p. 3, crediting Abilene Library Consortium. "Judge Burnett served as adjutant of Burnett's Texas Regiment commanded by his elder brother, Colonel John Barnett, in the Civil War." District judge in the Huntsville district, State Senator, delegate to Constitutional Convention of 1868. Portal to Texas History (University of North Texas Libraries).
  • Biographical sketch, James Russell Burnett, p. 244. Burnett also "served in the first session of the House of Representatives in 1870." Texas Legislative Manual, 1879-80, 1879.
  • Biographical sketch, James Russell Burnett of Anderson, pp. 256-257. Moved to Huntsville in 1870. "In the 1878 elections Burnett ran as an independent and, benefiting from the endorsement of Republican county convention of the district and the support of Greenbackers of Waller County, defeated the Democratic candidate, William A. Leigh of Huntsville. . ." Died in 1907. The Texas Senate: Volume II, Civil War to the Eve of Reform, 1861-1889, 1999.

Military Service Notes

  • Confederate States Army, Private, 2nd Lieutenant, and Captain, Lafayette Guards (Arkansas), resigned August 1862; later served as Adjutant, 13th Texas Cavalry, organized by his brother, Col. J.H. Burnett. The History of Houston County, Texas, 1943.

Other Resources

  • Listed in "Men who have represented Grimes County in the House of Representatives/State Senate, 1846-1931," pp. 205-209. Includes Date, Legislatures, District, and Source of Data. Early History of Grimes County, 1930.
  • James Russell Burnett, birth date 6/20/1843 in Summerville, Georgia; death date 4/30/1917 in Kerrville, Kerr County, Texas; lawyer. FamilySearch Texas Deaths, 1890-1976.
  • James R. Burnett, birth date 6/20/1843, death date 4/30/1917, burial in Glen Rest Cemetery, Kerrville, Kerr County. Find a Grave.
  • Mentioned in WALKER COUNTY REBELLION. Handbook of Texas Online.
  • Included in list of "prominent Republicans who soldiered in the Confederate Army." Baggett, James Alex, "Origins of Early Texas Republican Party Leadership," The Journal of Southern History, Vol.40(3), August 1974, p. 452. Journal of Southern History.
  • Represented District 20, Houston and Trinity counties, in the Reconstruction Convention, p. 82. Texas Almanac for . . . and Emigrant's Guide to Texas.
  • Delegate to Constitutional Convention, 1868. Included in "List of Delegates to the Reconstruction Convention, As Announced in Special order No. 213, Dated Headquarters Fifth Military District, New Orleans, LA., April 13th, 1868." Journal of the Reconstruction Convention, Which Met at Austin, Texas, June 1, A.D., 1868 (1870), pp 533-534. Texas Constitutions Digitization Project (Tarlton Law Library, The University of Texas at Austin), 2009.
  • Member of Reconstruction Convention of 1868-1869, p. 91. Year Book for Texas, 1901, 1902.

Committee Information top

16th R.S. - 1879
Agricultural and Mechanical College, Consider Report of the Joint Committee Appointed to Visit  
Commerce and Manufactures  
Committee Rooms  
Educational Affairs  
Engrossed Bills  
Judiciary No. 2  
Private Land Claims  
Revision of Code  
Room for Court of Appeals  
12th 1st C.S. - 1870
Conduct of Comptroller A. Bledsoe, Select Committee  
House Member Conduct, Select (Chair) 
Judiciary (Chair) 
Town and City Corporations  

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