Remembering The Runaway Scrape In Texas

Just as a reminder, the Runaway Scrape was a period in Texas history that was just what the name implies…a time when people in Texas ran away. It can be dated generally as occurring between January of 1836 and lasting until what we call the Battle of San Jacinto on April 21 of that same year.

During the early months of 1836, a feeling of terror that created panic in the Texians who expected the Mexican army to descend upon them every day. Typically, settlers loaded up and left their homes in such haste that they carried very little with them as they fled, often in the rain and the cold.

Hunger and sickness claimed the lives of many Texians who believed they were fleeing in front of Santa Anna. As news reached them of the fall of the Alamo and the massacre at Goliad panic often turned into an even more freenzied running away with little but the clothes upon their backs.

Most settlers returned to their homes immediately upon learning of Santa Anna’s defeat at San Jacinto. Unfortunatly, very few found their homes intact upon their return. For most, however, this was a period of rebuilding the homes and settlements which had been burned…either by the Mexican army or by the settlers who refused to allow their things to fall into the hands of the Mexicans.

It wasn’t long before the tenacity of the Texians paid off  as Texas and its citizens, now called Texans, found themselves a free people!

About Fredda Jones

Fredda Davis Jones was raised “in the country” in Comanche County and learned very early that creativity and innovation are traits that can flourish even in small-town Texas and that with enough effort, indeed nothing is impossible, including being married to the same man for over 40 years! Rickey and Fredda have 2 children, 5 grandchildren, and a crazy life that includes sitting in the bleachers several times a week. The rest of her time is spent creating great content for and marketing small-town Texas.
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2 Responses to Remembering The Runaway Scrape In Texas

  1. Janella Hendon says:

    Your story reminds me of our family story about the runaway scrap. (Ties to Erath County, the youngest child in this story was Emily Ann Howard White, the mother of Louisa Jane White Barbee of the Edna Hill community.)
    Sarah Gage Howard lived on a land grant near Nacadoches. When she heard the cry that the Mexicans were coming, she loaded her two small children, 3 feather beds and other supplies onto an ox card and joined the run-a-way scrape. When they reached the river, they made them cut the feather beds, because they would have been very heavy if they had gotten wet in the river. It is said that the banks of the river were covered with so many feathers it looked like snow! They safely crossed the river to the other side.
    Her husband, John H. Howard, was off fighting in the Texas Revolution. She was pregnant with the next child.
    (When I was young, I pictured them like in the movies hitched to a wagan with fast horses.
    Some how, I now think she was even braver alone, saving her children by fleeing in an ox cart.)

  2. Missy Jones says:

    I heard about the runaway scrape from my late sister-in-law, Effie Mae Montgomery Cox of Brownwood. Her husband Wilburn Cox was my brother. The connections was from her ancestor, Gordon C. Jennings, who was at the Alamo when it fell. He was in William R. Carey’s artillery company. Effie Mae’s mother was a direct descendant of Gordon C. Jennings. I remember hearing them tell stories about the runaway scrape. Jennings and his family lived near Austin, and he had a young teen aged girl named Katie Jennings. When the family received word that Mr. Jennings and everyone at the alamo had been killed, and Santa Anna was on the move, Katie Jennings got on a horse, no saddle and hit the road and told neighbors that the Alamo had fallen and that Santa Anna was coming. Mrs. Jennings and the children joined in the flight from the Mexicans, the weather was cold and it rained a lot. Many people died on the road, and were buried where they fell. Katie’s ride was pretty famous, and it became known as “The Ride of Katie Jennings”. One other sad note, Gordon C. Jennings, brothe Charles B. Jennings was serving with Fannin, and was murdered by the Mexicans at Goliad. So, that family lost two sons fighting for Texas.

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