Col. James Bowie
In 1706, the first member of the Bowie Family, John Bowie (1688-1759), emigrated to
America from Scotland. He settled in the area that would eventually become the state of
One of his grandchildren, James Bowie (1739-1799) moved to South Carolina, where his son
Rezin Pleasant Bowie was born c. 1762.
Rezin Pleasant Bowie, who moved to Louisiana c. 1802, is the founder of the Louisiana
branch of the family, which lived in the central portion of the state (Catahoula,
Avoyelles, Terrebon & St. Landry Parishes).
Rezin Pleasant Bowie died in 1821 in Opelousas. His wife was Elve ap-Catesby Jones (d.
1838). Their children:
John Jones Bowie, b 1785, d 1859, attorney; lived in Arkansas as an adult.
Sarah Bowie, b 1787, m. Mr. Davis of Opelousas, LA. No surviving children.
Mary Bowie, b 1789, m. Abraham Bird of Missouri.
Martha Bowie, b 1791, m. James Nugent, 2nd Alexander B. Sterret, 1st settler of
Rezin Pleasant Bowie, Jr. (1793-1841) served in the War of 1812; State Rep. for
Avoyelles Parish, LA. Died in New Orleans. Married Margaret Neville. Children:
. John Bowie, b 1814, d infancy
. Matilda Eleanor Bowie, b 1817, d 1892, m. Joseph Hickman Moore
. Seyborne Bowie, d at age three
. Martha Anidremella Bowie, died age 21
. ElveAnna Bowie, b 1820, d 1873 m 1841 John Yarlor Moore
David Bowie , b ?, d mid-1810s, drowned in the Mississippi River as a teen.
Col. James Bowie (1796-1836), named for his paternal grandfather, lived in
Lousiana. Was state representative of Catahoula Parish in 1826. Some descendants claim
James Bowie, fmc., born at Catahoula, moved to Avoyelles, LA ca 1860, is a mulatto
descendant of Jim Bowie and forefather of this branch of Bowie family which still resides
in Central Louisiana. Actually, James Bowie FMC was a different person. The James Bowie
that moved to Avoyelles was the second son of James Bowie, FMC.
Col. James Bowie married Ursula de Veremendi, daughter of a Mexican governer, in 1831. Two
children were born to this union. His wife and two young children died in an 1832 cholera
epidemic. Thus, there are no direct descendants of Col. James Bowie.
Col. James Bowie died in the defense of the Alamo in San Antonio, Texas on March 6, 1836.
Stephen Bowie b 1797, d. 1833, parish sheriff; m Mary Compton.
. Mary Anne or Marion Bowie, b 1825 m. Charles Leckie
. James Bowie, Jr. b ca 1828, m. Elizabeth Kirkland
- Source: The Bowies and their Kindred, by Walter Worthington Bowie, 1899
In 1998, Mrs. Virginia Lobdell Jennings wrote a book entitled The Rezin Bowie Family of
Louisiana -- Documents Supporting Corrections and Additions Concering The Rezin Bowie
Family of Louisiana and Suggestions For Further Research". (Mrs. Jennings is a
descendant of Mary Bowie Bird.) COMING SOON: A searchable webpage genealogy of the
descendants of Rezin Bowie, using my data and that of Mrs. Jennings.
So far, I have only seen reference to one document that
contains the names of James Bowie and James Bowie, free man of color. (I am in the process
of obtaining an image of the actual document.) It was summarized in the December, 1983
issue of the Louisiana
STEPHEN BOWIE, attorney-in-fact for JAMES BOWIE, on the 24th day of
January, 1827, for $900.00, sells and delivers unto JAMES BOWIE, a free man of colour of
the parish of Catahoula, the following slaves: Kissey, aged 35 years, Lydia, aged 6 years,
and Tom, aged 4 years, all slaves for life. Witnesses: C. D. BRASHEAR and JESSE CLIFFS.
SILAS TALBERT, Notary Public.
The following footnote was added to the summary: "Stephen
and James Bowie were brothers, and originally lived in Catahoula parish, La. It is not
unlikely that this "free man of colour" was a relative."
Biography of James Bowie (from the
Alamo movie website, by historian Jeffrey Dane)
Another biography of Col.
The Bowie Knife: Its origins.
Theme song from "The Adventures of Jim
Bowie" television show (ABC 1956-58)
James Bowie, as rendered by Texas artist
is a Southern California based artist and historical illustrator who has contributed to
many movies through the years. He is
also an expert on Jim Bowie, the Bowie Knife and the Battle for the Alamo. He was able to
ascertain the correct birthplace of James Bowie (Kentucky) after years of many other
states (Tennessee, Georgia, etc.) claiming the honor. He has become such an expert on the
Bowie Knife that one design is referred to as the "Musso
Joe Musso, Steve Bowie, Jeffrey Dane
Los Angeles, March 10, 2007
The Handbook of Texas Online has articles about:
Rezin P. Bowie
The Bowie Knife
of the Republic of Texas Library
Official Alamo Site
Alamo Site (a site featuring an Alamo discussion group)