State of Texas

State & Civil War Warrants

Texas Act Dates

Texas Warrant Image Archives

Background Information

        There is very little known about Warrants issued during Statehood between the Republic and the Civil War.  Hugh Shull has assigned new catalog numbers to those Warrants that had previously been found at the end of the Civil War Warrants in Grover Criswell's reference.  New examples are still being discovered and reported.  They are the "lost child" of Texas numismatic history as far as collectors and dealers in this material are concerned.  No one cared about them and few collected them since they weren't a Republic item and had nothing to do with the Civil War period.  This is however the area you find a number of Texas Ranger related items and authentic signatures of Sam Houston and other Texas Governors are often found on the back of these warrants.  If you have any type of Texas warrant dated from 1846 up to February 1, 1861 (accepted cut off date for Texas Confederate State) please report it to me and provide an image in JPEG (.jpg) format at no less than 200dpi and preferably 300dpi.  I will see that it gets recorded and assigned a number and that it makes the next update in Hugh Shulls book.

        The State Warrants issued during the War for Southern Independence, commonly called Civil War, were once overlooked by collectors and investors who preferred to purchase Republic material.  While common examples of the colorful $1, $5 and $10 have been sold to collectors of Southern State Currency since before 1915 (Bradbeer reference), only a few die hard collectors have tried to complete a  type set and even fewer a variety set.  There are a number of extremely rare issues in this series.  I have never owned one of the plain paper $100s cataloged as Cr39 and Cr40.  There probably aren't 20 known of both Civil & Military varieties known to exist.  I have only seen perhaps three pieces of both varieties and was only recently was offered the opportunity to buy a Military $100 after more than 30 years of buying and selling these notes.  

        There has been a change in the cataloging of these notes with the issuance of Hugh Shull's new work, however the old Criswell will still work for the War issued warrants.  The post Republic and pre-War warrants have been assigned new catalog numbers.  There have been a number of new varieties found and listed of the Civil War Warrants and more will be listed when Hugh Shull does an update.  I just recently provided him with two more previously unrecorded varieties.  If you have a Criswell and you run into a problem with cataloging send me an email and I'll help you figure out exactly what you have and what the new number for your variety is or will be.  

        Hugh Shull and/or Wendell Wolka the numismatic historian responsible for most of the background found in Hugh's new reference have removed the Act Numbers as a variety.  I never liked that concept but feel that it is helpful at times when researching a soldier as it gives you a time period.  When a specific act was used the payment made was for something that occurred previous to the date on the note and after the act date.  So you have a time line that helps in figuring out which soldier the warrant was paid to, or which unit he was assigned to when payment was made, which in turn might tell you his location..

        Warrants are made payable to an individual for civil or military service.  Texas is unique in this method of accounting and it follows the same method used for the Republic Warrants.  They owed someone and would make a warrant payable to the person.  The Republic Warrants were all odd denominations.  This was a way to record the payment and account for where the funds were from and of course for purpose.  The early warrants had to be endorsed to be passed on and most of them were; but these State warrants, while made out to a person (order instrument) are also payable to bearer and did not need to be endorsed.  They simply made it easier to use them as currency.  Once they paid the individual soldier or merchant he could simply pass the warrant on to someone else.  They were a transitional piece somewhere between check and currency.  You can, with a little research, find out who that person was.  It was only on occasion that you could figure out who a Republic Warrant was made payable to as many who came to Texas either died here or left and went back to say Tennessee or New York and other states and were never recorded with any history of who they were, where they came from and why they were here.  Even searching the State archives might not yield the desired information.  With these Texas civil War warrants we can look in the Handbook of Texas Online or the National Park Service Soldier's and Sailors System and find out  information about many a soldier.  We can find his unit, his rank and his company.  Sometimes there is information on who his commanders were and where his unit saw action.  Some of these have more than one possible answer and some can have a great many more and we can only guess.  These are to me far more interesting and I believe the history that can be added to the notes will greatly increase their interest with collectors over time.  Some of the warrants were made to counties and of course merchants and both could have been for either civil or military purpose.  The Handbook of Texas will have information on counties and in a  very few cases information on more prominent merchants.  They are both wonderful resources and I will provide a link to both of them in this section.

Key to Texas Act Dates
M = Military  C = Civil
M1    February 3, 1860 
M2     February 8, 1861
M3     April 5, 1861
M4     April 8, 1861
M5    January 4, 1862
M6     January 12, 1862
M7     January 13, 1862 
M8     January 14, 1862
M9    March 5, 1863 
M10   March 6, 1863
M11   April 11, 1863
M12   December 16, 1863
C1    February 11, 1860
C2      April 8, 1861 
C3      January 8, 1862 
C4     January 13,  1862
C5    March 2, 1863
C6      March 3, 1863    
C7      March 5, 1863
C8     December 15, 1863
C9    December 16, 1863
C10    May 28, 1863
C11    November 15, 1864
Texas Act Dates

            There are 8 Military Act dates that are unique.  There are 7 Civil Act dates that are unique. There are four (4) Act dates that are common to both military & civil appropriations.  I have underlined these four dates in the table above.  A number of Civil warrants are known with Military written over Civil.  There are fewer where Civil is written over Military.  In Shull's book it states that Military over Civil increases Rarity by 1 and that Civil over Military will increase Rarity by 3 or 4.  I for one don't have a
really good understanding of these so-called Rarity Scales.  I just know from experience that Military over Civil is scarce and Civil over Military approaches Rare!  However, this doesn't mean that one of the Civil warrants will necessarily cost you more than a Military.  The emphasis with collectors is and has always been Military designation with these notes.  As a Type you shouldn't really care one way or the other and should focus on acquiring the nicest you can of any denomination and design.  The Civil warrants are scarcer as major variety but tend to trade hands for less money.  Any Military will always bring more than one designated Civil for the more common types, unless of course it is an extremely scarce denomination or variety.  This lead me to another point.

            The use of Military over Civil and Civil over Military caused me to pause as I researched some of these notes.  While I'm sure the auditors tried to account expenses to the correct act authorizing payment, they obviously had occasion to write up a warrant of one type for another purpose.  Could it be possible that some of the Civil Warrants were used for Military purpose and were not so marked?  It is my opinion that the answer is YES!  Especially with the smaller denomination Warrants used for soldiers pay.  I have had groups of Warrants where almost every one of them is for a Cavalry soldier.  Then I find a Civil Warrant to a specific person and he too is on the records as Cavalry soldier.  I believe that most of the specific denomination warrants were made payable to Texas soldiers who by and large were Cavalry.  There are some that were issued to Infantry soldiers that were stationed in Texas as Texas Troops and never left the State spending duty time in forts, depots, garrisons and/or cities like Austin and Waco &c.  Many of these soldiers were merchants, bankers, lawyers, government officials and they manned the local cities and towns and continued to conduct business even while designated as a soldier.  By and large the Texas Troops along the border with Mexico and the border to Indian Territory were Cavalry solders.  Some stayed in the State as Frontier Troops and might have seen more action against bandits than against federal soldiers.  There were several instances of Texas Governors refusing to give up many of their Frontier Troops for Confederate service as they were needed here to protect the frontier against outlaws, Indians and bandits.  

        The Warrants of larger denomination and with handwritten amounts have mostly been for soldiers that left the Trans-Mississippi Department and went to the Army of Tennessee or Army of Northern Virginia areas.  It was harder to pay them on a regular basis and these larger warrants made it easier to do exchanges.  But, getting back to my point, some of the smaller denomination warrants for Civil purpose are to names I can trace to specific soldiers and some of those Warrants have had a Red-Orange stamp on them dated 1867.  This Stamp says Registered 1867 and none of these Warrants were supposed to be valid after the War.  I have found collateral evidence that many of those Warrants (notes) were paid out to Soldiers to be used for passage on the railroads and/or for purpose other than being a soldier.  They needed to find a way to fund these Warrants (notes) and pretty much anything would do and it's not uncommon even today to use funds appropriated for a specific purpose to pay emergency needs of another by borrowing from the other appropriation.  It's just accounting procedure that leaves a paper trail.  

(click the image to enlarge)             This Round Red Stamp says "Registered Jan 8 1867".  It hasn't been determined if they are all dated the same day.  It was only recently that I found a stamp I could read and learned the year was 1867.  Since then we have found a few more and confirmed the year is the same on all these stamped notes.  They are found on a wide range of notes but generally on the smaller denominations from $1 to $10.  There are a few examples with handwritten Registered statements with and without a day of the month.  I had always been told these were a cancellation stamp but with the year clearly 1867 they show that an event occured that we essentially know nothing about.  Many of the notes bearing these stamps are found in nice condition.  They represent another "Type" in my opinion much like the Trans-mississippi stamps, roundel and straight-line, used on Confederate notes that we know were applied in Huntsville, Texas.

            Marvin Ashmore, a fellow Trainman, and I discussed this stamp recently and it is quite clear to both of us
that no one has researched these stamps.  Marvin felt that they might apply to a lawsuit against the State of Texas by a Railroad that wasn't settled until many years after the War had ended.  He said this lawsuit began shortly after the War in late 1866 or early 1867.  

            Circumstantial evidence points to this stamp having a relationship with that lawsuit.  While most debts of the State were declared uncollectible there were some that because of certain circumstances were ultimately collected.  At this point we don't know if the railroad collected on these notes which most likely were accepted for fares and perhaps freight charges.  The railroad did win a large number of concessions.  There are a few cases like this across the entire South where there were attempts to collect funds or debt incurred during the War.  Some were successful but ultimately most were not!  There must be evidence in the Texas archives should someone wish to do further research.    

            Marvin Ashmore found that the lawsuit mentioned above was eventully heard by the US Supreme Court and was finally settled in 1900.  Here is a link to the findings of that court case:  
Houston & Texas Central R. Co. v. Texas - 177 U.S. 66 (1900)  <>    

            One point I wish to make is that just because a Warrant says Civil you shouldn't assume that it wasn't related in some way to a specific soldier.  I study the Confederate Treasury Department and they had two Auditors.  One was for Civil payments and the other for Military.  There are cases where a soldier's pay voucher was paid Civil instead of Military for the nature of what he was doing during a specific pay period.  If he was fighting, or preparing to, it was a military payment; but, if he was conducting business for the the Treasury, basicly a detached duty for benefit of the government, the payment would be denied by the Military auditor and sent to the Civil auditor for collection.  It is nothing more than Accounting Procedure and back then I'm sure no one really cared what it said on one of these Warrants.  When a Warrant was received
it was passed on with little regard for how or why it was accounted.

            These are just a few of my opinions on the purpose behind many of these notes.  I have truly enjoyed looking up the soldiers and/or individuals these notes were made payable to.  Some were easy to find and others have proved impossible, at least for me, to figure out.  Either there isn't any information where I was looking or there were a number of possible answers and no way to narrow down my search to a specific man.  From the standpoint of history these Texas Civil War Warrants are a lot more interesting than most all the other Southern State Civil War issues!  They are "unique" in that you can tie each one to a particular soldier and/or event within a given time period.

            As I stated earlier, the vast majority of the soldiers these warrants are payable to are cavalry.  Most of those soldiers were part of regiments whose duty was protection of the frontier.  A large number of those men, specifically the cavalry, were also Texas Rangers.  Of course there are quite a few infantry soldiers covered by these warrants with most staying in the Transmississippi and fighting in Arkansas and Louisiana.  Artillery units and some cavalry were of course  part of those units as well.  There is a representative sampling of sometimes higher denomination and handwritten amounts that one can trace to soldiers in the Army of Tennessee area and a few that were in units that were part of the Army of Northern Virginia.  It was easier to pay Texas soldiers in Texas on a regular basis as well as any soldier in the other Trans-Miss areas and most of the smaller warrants were for those soldiers; but, the soldiers who were east of the Mississippi were likely paid a little less regularly, or they were paid by the state they were fighting in (or their respective military command) and Texas paid what they owed less frequently in larger denomination.  While the warrant was payable to a specific person (order instrument for accounting purpose only) it was a "bearer" instrument.  Each warrant has the statement "Pay to (person named) or bearer," in the text.  Soldiers in the Army of Tennessee were paid every other month with local or Confederate notes and a 2nd Lt from Tennessee whom I researched was paid $160 each pay period.  The amounts found for quite a few soldiers suggests a pay of several months at a time and perhaps even a bonus because they were stationed in another theater of operation.  One soldier who joined his unit in September 1861 wasn't paid until September 25, 1862.  His pay voucher for a 2nd Lt in the 9th Regiment Texas Infantry was $1450.  He was in many of the same battles as the Tennessee soldier including Chickamauga.  This $1450, essentially 12 months and several days extra amounted to roughly $120 per month for this Texas 2nd Lt where the Tennessee 2nd Lt received only $80 per month.  I have no proof that I am correct other than comparrison of pay vouchers for same rank within the same theater of operation.  I suppose someone with an interest in history might research this anamoly in pay and find the true reason it existed.

                There is no electronic data available where you can find out who specific warrants were issued to and why &c.  Here is link to
Texas Comptroller's Office
:  An Inventory of Comptroller's Office Appropriations and Warrant Volumes at the Texas State Archives, 1836-1932.   This tells you where those records are kept and in what register they can be found.  There are several choices depending on the Time Period and the type of warrant issued.

Common Texas Civil War Warrants

The most common name found on Texas Civil War Warrants is Henry Redmond.  I believe they are all Military.  The second most common name is J. M. Steiner followed closely by F. R. Lubbock.  Steiner and Lubbock are found on Civil Warrants.  It has been observed that warrants made out to Counties are all Civil.  There is one known city, Galveston, that had warrants made out to it.  Those are all Military.  I have never seen one but I was told that a Houston newspaper had warrants made payable to it and they were likely Civil.

Special &c Treasury Warrants  
Such as TW64 were issued primarily for Protection of the Frontier making them a Texas Ranger Warrant.  They were signed on the reverse by Texas Civil War Governor Edward Clark.  The Pre-War warrants, also Ranger Related, were signed by Sam Houston.