Person:John Houston (15)

m. ABT 1685
  1. John Houston1689 - 1754
  2. daughter HoustonABT 1695 -
  3. William HoustonABT 1696 -
  4. Margaret HoustonABT 1700 - BEF 1761
m. ABT 1717
  1. James Houston1716 -
  2. Esther HoustonABT 1718 - 1798
  3. Robert Houston1720 - 1761
  4. John Houston, II1726 - 1798
  5. Rev. Samuel Houston1728 - 1797
  6. Matthew Houston1730 -
  7. Isabella HoustonBET 1733 AND 1737 - Bef 1787
Facts and Events
Name John Houston
Gender Male
Birth[4] 1689 Antrim, Ireland
Marriage ABT 1717 Antrim, Irelandto Margaret Cunningham
Death[3] 1754 Brownsburg, Augusta (now Rockbridge) County, VirginiaWill date

John Houston was one of the Early Settlers of Augusta County, Virginia


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Source:Houston, 1882
Source:White, 1902
Transcript:Will of John Houston, Augusta, April 1748/9
Register. Houstons in Old Augusta


Analysis. The Children of John Houston (15)
Analysis. DOB for John Houston (15)
General Sam Houston Lineage


From White, 1902, quoting a manuscript in the papers of the Rev. Samuel Rutherford Houston.[5]

"John Houston, my grandfather, came from Ireland with his family when my father was about nine years old, about 1735, bringing with him his mother and wife, who was a Miss Cunningham, and all of his children, excepting the oldest son, James, who died soon after the family left him. [6]

John Houston's family consisted of the following children :

Robert Houston +.
Isabella Houston.
Esther Houston.
John Houston +.
Samuel Houston.
Matthew Houston.

Grandfather John Houston remained in Pennsylvania until his three oldest children were married. He then removed to Virginia, and settled on 'Burden's Land,' and with his son-in-law (John Montgomery) , was a principal founder of the congregation of New Providence, to which he gave the name. In the cemetery of the same, his mother, aged ninety-seven, his wife and himself, with, several of his descendants, lie buried.

John Houston, my grandfather, was killed by a limb falling from a tree on fire, as he walked under it. My mother, her maiden name was Todd, died in 1795, and was buried near Maryville, Blount County. My father died in Kentucky, and was buried in a church yard near Whipperwill Creek, Logan County,.

(Signed) Samuel Houston."
May 30th, 1820.

Houston, 1882:10 continues:

His house stood near the place where "Old Providence Church" now stands. In its immediate vicinity the settlers erected a stockade fort, for their defense, in the case of invasion by the Indans. The father of the writer remembered having seen this fort when he was a boy (as early as 1760-1765), and having heard most thrilling accounts of the alarms and, not unfrequently (sic) of the curel massacres to which the early settlers were subjected from the inroads and assaults of the Indians.
John Houston was one of the first elders of the New Providence Church, and seems to have had a controlling influence over the people, as may be inferred from his success in removing the difficulties which attended the locating of their church edifice. Rev. Samuel Houston, a grandson, gives an account of this in a letter about the year 1820 to Rev. James Morrison, a former paster of the church.
Nothing...could be done in the way of building until the question of location should be settled. Several ineffectual meetngs were held. At last many became alarmed, lest it should end like the tower of Bable. Another meeting, however, was called, at which my grandfather attended, and he employed such conciliatory argument as brought the stiff to yield and to agree to the site where the church now stands. After agreement, it was propsed to give the church a name. My aged ancestor said: 'Neighbors, we have heretofore had unpleasant and fruitless meetings; but to-day, we have had an agreeable and successful one. We are indebted to Divine Providence for it. Let us call the Church Providence.' To this all assented.
(There is another origin of the name given by some, but the above seems to be the true one.)
John Houston's name stands first on the list of subscribers. He signed, also, a call for the services of their first pastor, in the year 1753 (seventeen hundred and fifty-three). The church had been organized in the year 1746 (seventeen hundred and forty-six)...The call is not only signed by John Houston "first", but by John Houston, Samuel Houston, Robert Houston, and Matthew Houston, who were, in all probability, the sons of John Houston, Sr., since these were the names of his four sons...The name of John Montgomery is among the names of the signers also, no doubt the son-in-law of John Houston...



John Houston's land (Borden Tract/SW, 228 acres, 1748) as shown on the map meticulously drawn by J.R. Hildebrand, cartographer. This map is copyrighted©, used by permission of John Hildebrand, son of J.R. Hildebrand, April, 2009. The tract of John Houston is located in the Borden Tract, just across the line from the Beverley Patent. Note that land of John Montgomery, son-in-law of John Houston is adjoining land to the north, in the Beverley Patent.

Acquisition of Land from Chalkley's:

  • Page 500.—18th May, 1748. £7.10.0. Benj. Borden, &c., to John Huston (sold in testator's lifetime), 228 acres, part of 92,100 acres; corner to James Eikins and Richard Consard; corner to Consard and Samuel Dunlap. Teste: Robt. Davis, Jas. Caldwell, George Gardner. Acknowledged as above.


From "John and Esther Houston Montgomery", compiled and published by Beulah Henry Anderson, et al. pub. 1974 by Brazos Printing company, Maryville, Tennessee:

The Houston Family lines have been carefully traced; articles compiled by Professor S.G. Hwofield for the Monroe (North Carolina) Journal have been stidied along with "bold Legacy" by Cliburn Huston and other references. The parents of Esther Houston who married John Montgomery were John Houston (1) and Margaret Cunningham. John was born in Northern Ireland around 1690, came to the United States in 1730, having experienced a hectic encounter on the ship with piratical captain and crew. With him was his wife, Margaret Cunningham, four sons, two daughters and his widowed mother. The Elder Mrs. Houston must have been still spry, around 80 years of age; she died at age 97.

They landed at New Castle, Delaware, settled in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, about 100 miles inland from Philadelphia [7] John lived there for seventeen years but the urge of the pioneer was still in his blood, leading him to join the Scotch Irish settlers pushing southward and westward into western Virginia. This move of about 200 miles doubtless was made by wagon train across the Potomac and up the Shenandoah Rover. The reached Augusta County, Virginia, where the combined family (John plus son John, Samuel, Robert and Matthew) became the largest holders of land in Augusta County.

John Houston I helped to form the New Providence Church in the northern part of what is now Rockbridge County, Virginia, and later helped one of his sons and their neighbors to build Timber Ridge Church to the east of the New Providence where old Sam Houston was born. He also helped to fould Liberty (Augusta) Academy at Timber Ridge, which later became Washington and Lee University at Lexington, Virginia.


  1.   Genealogy of the Descendants of John Walker of Wigdon, Scotland, 588.
  2.   John and Esther Houston Montgomery, 1719-1973, compiled by Beulah Henry Anderson, et al., pub. 1974, by Brazos Printing Co., Maryville, Tennessee, p. 22.
  3. Transcript:Will of John Houston, Augusta, April 1748/9.
  4. See: Analysis. DOB for John Houston (15)
  5. Most likely this is a draft prepared for Source:Houston, 1882, the content of which is similar to this, but the wording is different. These two versions need to be checked for consistency.
  6. Source:Houston, 1882:18 gives this a bit differently: A seventh [child], James Houston, was left in Ireland having qualified himself in the gospel ministry.
  7. The history of this family prior to their appearance on Borden's Grant in 1748 is greatly confused. Much of this confusion is driven by assumptions in several early family histories which identified John with the John Huston who lived in the Gap in Lancaster County. That John Huston, is known to have died in Lancaster long after the present John Houston appeared on Borden's Grant. It is likely that John Houston (15) settled further west in Old Chester County, probably in either Cumberland or York Counties.

Source Materials

Augusta Co., Virginia Book of Records Vol. III Pg 34 Date: 24th April, 1748-49 John Huston's will- Wife (to act with advice of John Moore); sons, Samuel and Matthew(infant); rest of children; Mary Blair to have a share with the rest (of the children). Executors, wife and John Moore. Teste: James Eakin, Joseph Kennedy, Walter Eakin. Proved, 15th May, 1755, by the witnesses; wife Margaret and John Moore qualify, with sureties Matthew Lyle and Wm. Lockridge