Author Archives: 6thgeneration

About 6thgeneration

Hi there. I am a sixth generation descendant of Elijah Stapp and Nancy Shannon. Elijah was one of the 59 signers of the Texas Declaration of Independence. Nancy was the mother of 10 of Elijah's 14 children and the mother of my ancestor Achilles Stapp. I wish I knew more about Nancy and Elijah and Achilles. Hopefully we can all learn more about our ancestors here with each other's help.

Recent Passing of 3rd Gen Descendant of Hugh Shannon

I recently received an email from Steve Bennett with this scanned obit that his sister Cathy had happened upon while visiting in-laws in the San Angelo area.

Cathy’s daughter, Tracy, traced Katherine Stapp Massie’s line to Elijah Stapp:

Lafayette W. Stapp (1901-1976)

Charles Allen Stapp (1855-1939)

Hugh Shannon Stapp (1820-1890)

Elijah Stapp (1783-1842)

Recent Passing of 3rd Gen Descendant of Hugh Shannon


Posted by on June 23, 2013 in Uncategorized



Cara Stapp & William Samuel Glass

Merry Christmas everyone and a big thanks to Anthony Buckalew for providing these photo and document scans and the following information about his ancestors:

Attached are scans of studio photographs that have been handed down in our family, ultimately, to me. One is of Cara Stapp Glass, daughter of William Preston Stapp and granddaughter of Elijah Stapp.

Cara Stapp Glass

The other is of William Samuel Glass, her husband, and my great-great-grandfather. The studio that made the photographs was in Gatesville, Texas, which is ultimately where they settled after they married in 1879.

William Samuel Glass

Unfortunately, I do not know when the photographs were made – there is no date noted on either.
I have also attached a scan of the county clerk’s entry, noting their marriage:
The State of Texas
County of Victoria
This is to certify that I joined in marriage as husband and wife Wm S. Glass and Cara B Stapp on the 13th day of May AD 1879
Jos Ferra (?)
Rector of St Marys
Filed May 16th 1879
J C J (?) Moody clerk
Respectfully submitted,
Anthony Buckalew,
7th Generation Texan

Posted by on December 26, 2011 in Genealogy, Uncategorized


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A Poem by Elijah & Nancy’s Daughter Rebecca Margaret Stapp Stukes

Inspired by a fellow Stapp descendant’s recent discovery of the blog and her introduction in her comment to an earlier post, I google searched on Elijah and Nancy’s oldest daughter, Rebecca Margaret Stapp and came across the first part of a poem she wrote in 1882. In the opening lines of the poem she describes the difficulties of the Runaway Scrape and the battle for independence. The poem was published by the Texas State Historical Association in Oct. 1985 in The Southwestern Historical Quarterly. I could not access the entire poem, but maybe one of her descendants will come across this and share it with us in its entirety.

The publication adds this about Rebecca Stapp Stukes:

“Mrs. Rebecca Stukes was born in Palmyra, Missouri, the daughter of Nancy Shannon Stapp and Elijah Stapp, later a signer of the Texas Declaration of Independence. In 1830 Rebecca came to Texas with her parents. At age eight she was caught up in the Runaway Scrape and was a witness to the aftermath of the battle of San Jacinto. She married Captain Nat. M. Stukes in Victoria County, Texas, May 31, 1849. In about 1882 she wrote this untitled poem so that her descendents would know of her remarkable childhood experiences and the price in suffering that was paid for the independence of Texas. The poem clearly reflects the passionate feelings of someone who has experienced war. It also reveals nineteenth-century attitudes and stereotypes regarding the conflict and its participants. Rebecca Stukes died November 12, 1899, in Colorado City, Texas. The poem and portrait were made available to us through the generosity of Mrs. Stuke’s great-granddaughter, Mrs. Glen E. Harkins of El Paso.”

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Posted by on September 6, 2011 in Descendant's Stories, Family History


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Stapp origins in England



Mapping the Stepp-Stapp Surname in England





Posted by on April 4, 2011 in Uncategorized


Elijah’s Brother, Milton Stapp

Milton Stapp, fifth son of Achillis and Margaret Vawter Stapp, was born in 1792 in Kentucky and later settled in Indiana. He was a brigadier general, lawyer, state senator, lieutenant governor, newspaper editor, mayor. Indian fighter, he bore a scar from a musket ball wound as a badge of honor.

He moved to Texas when he was 67. At first he lived in Texas temporarily. After the Civil War he returned to Texas and became an IRS collector in Galveston, where he died at the age of 76 following an illness which resulted from spending the night in a tree while trying to escape flooding.

Read a sketch written about him in 1883 here. And more detail here, which includes information from his memoirs.

Elsewhere, from Elijah’s first son William Preston Stapp’s book, The Prisoners of Perote, we learn that William Preston credits his uncle General Milton Stapp with gaining his release from Mexican prison. William Preston Stapp dedicates his book to his uncle:

Letter from William Preston Stapp to his uncle General Milton Stapp

This is from the end of Prisoners of Perote, page 163:

General Milton Stapp, pt.2


Posted by on March 30, 2011 in Family History


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Remember Goliad–175 Years Ago Today

I am not aware of a specific Stapp connection related to the massacre at Goliad, although I imagine that all Texans of the time (and since) were deeply impacted. I wanted to post this in recognition of the anniversary of historic events of this day. In addition to the description below, I was deeply moved by these letters written to family back home by one of the men executed at Goliad.

From Presidio La Bahia, a brief description of the massacre of 342 men at Goliad:

Around 6:00 a.m. on Palm Sunday, March 27, 1836, after being held captive for one week, Fannin’s men were told to gather up their things. They thought that they were going to the Port of Copano and then on to New Orleans. They were happy and singing. They knew that Colonel Fannin had returned from the Port of Copano the previous day. What they didn’t know was that at 7:00 p.m. the pervious evening, Colonel Portilla had received word directly from General Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna to execute the men. About an hour after Portilla received the execution order from Santa Anna, he received another order from General Urrea to “Treat the prisoners with consideration, particularly their leader, Fannin, and to employ them in rebuilding Goliad.”

It was a foggy morning at sunrise. The able bodied men were formed into three groups, and under very heavy guard taken out of the fort. The Mexican troops were lined up on each side of the line of prisoners. One group was taken out on the San Antonio road, another on the Victoria road, and the other on the Copano road. The prisoners had little suspicion of their fate, because each group had been given a different story as to where they were going. One group was told that they were going to gather wood, another to drive up cattle, and the other group was told that they were going to the port of Copano. At selected spots on each of the three roads from one half to three-fourths of a mile from the fort, the groups were halted. After they halted, the guards on one side stepped through the ranks so that all the guards were on one side, they turned and fired at very close range. Those men that where not killed ran and were pursued by the cavalry.

The soldiers then returned to the fort and executed the wounded that were in the chapel. The wounded were taken out and laid in front of the chapel doors. There were about forty of them. They were then shot as they laid on the ground. Colonel Fannin was saved until last. (Note: Fannin’s room was in the south extension of the chapel. The room was separated from the main chapel by a wall. A door from the room opened into the Quadrangle. Fannin’s room is now known as the Flag Room. Today, the doorway has been sealed, but you can see the outline of the doorway.) Fannin was taken outside the chapel, blind folded and seated in a chair next to a trench by the watergate. He made three requests, not to be shot in the face, his personal possessions be sent to his family, and that he be given a Christian burial. He was shot in the face, an officer took his personal possessions, and his body was burned along with many of the other bodies. Not all bodies were burned, some were left where they died. There were 342 men who died in the Goliad Massacre, which is almost twice the number of men who died at the Alamo and San Jacinto combined. Twenty-eight men did escape from the three massacre sites and seventeen men’s lives were spared. It is from the accounts of the men who escaped and were spared that we know what happened at Presidio La Bahia. Francita Alavez, the Angel of Goliad and the wife of General Urrea saved the lives of a number of the men.

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Posted by on March 27, 2011 in Uncategorized



Stapps who fought for the Republic of Texas 1835-1845

From this resource, four of Elijah’s sons were on the military rolls as fighting for the Republic of Texas.

Here’s a reminder about Elijah & Nancy’s offsprings’ birth dates and birth order.

Shown as listed on the resource with commander’s names as links to a description of their service (probably not the best word choice… I am very weak with military terminology.):

Stapp, D.M.                  Ward, Lafayette
Stapp, Darwin M.             Sample, David
Stapp, O.H.                  Mitchell, Isaac N.
Stapp, Oliver H.             Ward, Lafayette
Stapp, W.P.                  Mitchell, Isaac N.
Stapp, W.W.                  Mitchell, Isaac N.
Stapp, Walter                Ward, Lafayette
Stapp, William P.            Stevenson, Alexander
Stapp, William Preston       Reese, Charles K.
Stapp, Wm. P.                Reese, Charles K.
Stapp, Wm. P.                Fisher, William S. (Col)

How different would our world be without these men and their companions’ willingness to fight for the cause of independence?

I was wondering about my ancestor, Elijah’s son Achilles Stapp, why he might not have been on the rolls, since his brothers were clearly so devoted to the cause. I looked back at his birth date (thanks Marcie!), and doing the math I realized that he would have been very young in the early years of the struggle. He was born in 1822, so he would have been 14 when his father was in Washington on the Brazos signing the Texas Declaration of Independence and during the Runaway Scrape wherein families fled the region with the approach of Santa Ana and his army.


Posted by on March 15, 2011 in Family History


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