. . . . . . . . . . Veteran of the War of 1812 . . . . . . . . . . Elisha Roberts, Texas pioneer and public official, was born in 1774 at Watauga Settlement, near the Holston River in Hawkins County, Tennessee, the son of George and Rhoda (Payne, Paine) Roberts. He was married by 1800 in Kentucky to Martha Gill; they are known to have had nine children. The family moved in 1811 from Green County, Kentucky, to the northern part of St. Tammany Parish, Louisiana (later Washington Parish). During the War of 1812 Roberts served as lieutenant and quartermaster under Gen. Isaac Roberts' Brigade of West Tennessee Militia and lieutenant in Captain Bickham's company, Louisiana militia. In 1822 Roberts entered East Texas in pursuit of a runaway slave whose wife had been carried to Texas by another master. Roberts was attracted by the redland countryside east of Ayish Bayou. He returned to the site in 1823, when his slave ran away again, and found the land occupied by a Spaniard, to whom he traded a slave for the land and improvements. In January of 1824 he settled his family near the site of present San Augustine. In 1825 Roberts' thirty slaves dug out the branch springs on Tiger Creek, a tributary of Palo Gaucho Bayou that became known as the Old Brick Spring, and built a cotton gin, at that time one of four in the district. Roberts was elected alcalde of the Ayish Bayou district in 1831. He held court on the broad front gallery of his house; Sam Houston, James Bowie, David Crockett, William B. Travis, and Stephen F. Austin all boarded there. In 1833 Roberts was elected delegate to the convention in San Felipe. He was one on a committee of fifteen to select the townsite of San Augustine, which was built in 1834. He received a Mexican land grant on 7th November 1835. In 1835–36 he furnished provisions, lodging, and transportation for the revolutionary cause. In 1837 he became a member of the board of trustees of San Augustine University. On 3rd October 1844, Roberts died, and on 18th December 1845, his wife died; both were buried near their home. In 1936 a Texas Centennial marker was erected at the site if their home as well as at their burial location. From an article published at tshaonline.org. . . . . . . . . . .
Inscription: . . . . . . . . . . Elisha Roberts erected a cotton gin in San Augustine County, 1825 alcalde, 1831 delegate to second convention of Texas, 1833 born in Tennessee, 1774 died Oct. 3, 1844 his wife, Martha Gill Roberts, born 1781, died Dec. 18, 1845 . . . . . . . . . .
Note: The only child not linked above is William who died about 1832 while attending Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. His burial location is currently unknown.