Uncovered Texas

Williamson, Robert McAlpin


(1804-1859) Crippled by disease at 15, with a leg permanently bent at the knee, wore a pegleg which like his two natural legs was covered with his trousers. Hence he was nicknamed "Three-Legged Willie." Settled in Texas in 1827 to practice law. Here at Fort Anahuac in 1832, he made an heroic stand against the commandant, Juan Davis Bradburn, who had jailed his client and friend, Patrick C. Jack, and William Barret Travis (later Alamo commander). Bradburn and associates made a false agreement to exchange Jack and Travis for Mexican soldiers captured earlier by Williamson's men. Following a confrontation, Bradburn at last gave up the Texans, resigned his command, and left Fort Anahuac. But after this betrayal, Williamson took up cause of Texas independence, fighting with words and then with arms at Battle of San Jacinto. A district judge and a justice of first supreme court of the Republic (1836-39), he also served as a lawmaker, 5th throug 9th congresses (1840-45). In a noted episode, a ruffian is said to have drawn a Bowie knife, saying, "This is the law," but Judge williamson covered it with his pistol, declaring, "This is the constitution which overrules the law."

Fort Anahuac Park Anahuac, Texas

Chambers County

Year Erected: 1972

Marker Type: 27 in x 42 in

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