Wednesday, September 20, 2006
The Kuykendalls of Texas
Whether you are talking early Texas frontiersmen, Austin’s Old 300, the Texas Rangers, veterans of the Texas Revolution, Confederate soldiers from Texas or large Texas ranches, your talking the Kuykendalls of Texas. In his book, They Slept Upon Their Rifles, Marshall E. Kuykendall has written a fine family history of the Kuykendall family from its earliest days in Texas. Marshall Kuykendall is a descendant of Austin’s Old 300 colonist, Captain Robert H. Kuykendall, who arrived in Texas in 1821. This book is the story of the Kuykendall family that arrived from the Netherlands in the 1640's and migrated from New York to North Carolina and South Carolina. Marshall Kuykendall’s family history becomes much more detailed as the Kuykendalls move from the Carolinas into Tennessee, Kentucky, the Missouri Territory, the Arkansas Territory and then into Mexican Texas.
They Slept Upon Their Rifles is primarily about Captain Robert H. Kuykendall and his brothers that came to Texas prior to the Texas Revolution, their descendants, and several collateral lines. Detailed biographies include those of Adam Kuykendall, Captain Robert H. Kuykendall, R. H. (Gill) Kuykendall, Wiley Martin Kuykendall, Robert Gill Kuykendall, Wylie Moore (Bill) Kuykendall, William Erastus Moore, Arthur Swift, Captain Abner Kuykendall, Captain Gibson Kuykendall, Barzillai Kuykendall, William Kuykendall, J. Hampton Kuykendall, Joseph Kuykendall, Rev. Marshall Daniel Early and Col. Joseph Hardin . There is also an exhaustive list of Kuykendalls who served the Confederacy during the Civil War and of Kuykendall Texas death records from 1903 - 2000.
I would like to note how very attractive this family history is. Marshall Kuykendall obviously had a large budget to work with in publishing the book and it shows. In fact, They Slept Upon Their Rifles is one of the best looking family histories I have ever seen. From the photograph of a Texas pioneer on the cover to the beautiful illustrations by the late Charlie Shaw, the book’s quality is first class. They Slept Upon Their Rifles has also professionally reproduced photographs and primary documents such as deeds and letters. Charlie Shaw also drew many excellent original maps that clearly show the movement and routes taken by the Kuykendalls as they migrated across the American frontier making written descriptions much easier to understand. Shaw’s drawings of land grants and property lines will also help Kuykendall descendants figure out where family lands were in relation to natural landmarks instead of trying to figure them out from land descriptions in deeds alone.
The book has an excellent index which is something that is often missing from so many family histories. There is also an extensive 19 page bibliography providing source data. Marshall Kuykendall has done a tremendous amount of research here. Any Kuykendall descendant of these lines should have a copy of They Slept Upon Their Rifles in their libraries. They may also want to donate a copy to the Texas History Section of their local public libraries.
They Slept Upon Their Rifles is 400 pages, hardbound, Nortex Press, Austin, Texas, 2005. The book is available from Marshall Kuykendall for $50.00 and $5.00 shipping cost.
900 Enchanted Oaks Dr.
Driftwood, Texas 78619
Photo: Cover of They Slept Upon Their Rifles © Marshall E. Kuykendall