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 Alfonso Steele

Alfonso Steele

Hardin County, Kentucky, USA
Death 8 Jul 1911 (aged 94)
Kosse, Limestone County, Texas, USA
Burial Mexia, Limestone County, Texas, USA
Memorial ID 31239983 · View Source
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Alfonso Steele was born on April 9, 1817, in Hardin County, Kentucky. He was the son of Stephen and Susan McCarthy Steele. They were a pioneering family and like most, life was not easy, and Alfonso left home at the young age of seventeen. In 1834, he traveled down the Mississippi by boat to lake Providence Louisiana. This is where he eventually joined Captain Daggett's volunteer company being organized to help secure independence in Texas. They were a little premature however, because when they arrived at Washington on the Brazos, (January, 1836) Texas had not yet declared its independence. The young Steele was not one to sit idle, and procured a job at a local gristmill, where he helped make the bread that fed the men who eventually signed the Texas Declaration of Independence.

Alfonso like many others in Texas at the time could not be satisfied with a regular run of the mill job, and as soon as he heard of a group of volunteers being organized by a Captain Joseph H. Bennett to aid the men in San Antonio, he signed on to fight. The men were soon saddened however, because at the Colorado River word reached them about the fall of the Alamo. From there, the company headed to Beason's Crossing where they were absorbed into the main army of Texas. On April 8, 1836, Alfonso ended up in the company of Captain James Gillaspie. They became the 6th Company, Texas Volunteers, 2nd Regiment, under the command of Major Sidney Sherman, and were in the thick of it on April 21, 1836, at the Battle of San Jacinto .

Private Steele was wounded almost immediately, in one of the first volleys of the battle, and his horse was reportedly one of three that General Houston rode during the action, and eventually being shot out from under the famous Commander. Alfonso may have been on foot but it did not stop him, as he continued to fight until the Texans won the day. Vice President of the Republic of Texas, Lorenzo De Zavala's home was across Buffalo Bayou from the battleground, and it was converted into a field hospital. Many of the wounded, including Alfonso Steele were transported there for medical care. Later he was moved with others to a small hospital on Perkin's Island and eventually he ended up in Montgomery County. He raised cattle and did a little farming while he regained his strength.

Miss. Mary Ann Powell, daughter of Archibald Powell was born in Tennessee on January 2, 1823, and moved to Texas in 1833. Mary Ann and Alfonso Steele became man and wife in Montgomery County on September 28, 1838. The Steele's moved to Robertson County and had several children. This part of Robertson County was later taken in by the organization of Limestone County, and the family resided there until 1903, when Mrs. Steele past away. Alfonso died near the small town of Kosse, Texas, on July 8, 1911, at the home of a grandson. He was buried in the Mexia City Cemetery, in Limestone, Texas.

Alfonso Steels' portrait hangs today at the state capital in Austin, Texas in honor of the last soldier to die, that fought in The Battle of San Jacinto.
The Last Hero
by Jake H. Harrison

All alone, we see him standing,
Like a sentry on the wall,
Knowing well that soon upon him
Hands of Death must surely fall;
Last of all the valiant heroes
Who at San Jacinto stood,
Like a grove of giant poplars
In some dark enchanted wood.
Stood for freedom, God and country,
Stood for liberty and right,
Fought with startling odds against the
Facing prospects black as night!
Prison, torture, death, awaited,
If their slender arms should fail,
Yet no hand was seen to tremble,
And no face was seen to pale!
Bravely went they to their duty,
Doing each a hero's part,
Bearing each a freeman's burden
With a brave unshrinking heart;
Till the battle shock was over,
And the foe was forc'd to yield,
Leaving God, and right, the victors,
On proud San Jacinto's field.
Broken was the dread invader
On the wheel of honest might,
Tyrant, insolent dictator,
Conquer'd, captur'd, in the fight!
Glory shone, like stars in heaven,
Liberty was seen to smile.
And the angels guarding Freedom
Chanted praises loud the while!
Then a Nation, proudly stepping
To the front, her flag unfurl'd,
Taking rank in hero annals
With the proudest of the world!
Gone are all those valiant heroes,
Held in such supreme regard;
Gone to him, who in his wisdom
Will their services reward;
Save the one lone figure standing,
Daring still the hand of Fate,
Solitary in his glory
One without a peer or mate!
Bare the head to him, ye freemen,
Worship is not fulsome praise!
Let us make a bed of roses
Out of his remaining days.
Robert Scott Patrick
Registrar General
San Jacinto Descendants

Family Members


  • Created by: Robert "Scott" Patrick
  • Added: 8 Nov 2008
  • Find A Grave Memorial 31239983
  • Bill J. from Austin
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Alfonso Steele (9 Apr 1817–8 Jul 1911), Find A Grave Memorial no. 31239983, citing Mexia City Cemetery, Mexia, Limestone County, Texas, USA ; Maintained by Robert "Scott" Patrick (contributor 46858998) .