Elijah Sterling Clack Robertson

Elijah Sterling Clack Robertson was born on August 2, 1820, in Nashville, Tennessee, the son of Sterling Clack and Fanny (King) Robertson. The elder Robertson, a member of an old Tennessee family, was a Texas pioneer, legislator, and signer of the Texas Declaration of Independence. The family migrated to Texas in 1832, where his father had a huge land grant centered around Nashville (The "Robertson Colony"). Young Robertson fought in the Texas Revolution in his father's company. From 1837 to 1839 he attended Jackson College in Tennessee. Returning home, he was immediately appointed assistant clerk of the Texas Post Office Department. During the winter of 1839 and 1840 the nineteen-year-old Robertson, having risen to chief clerk, served as Texas' acting postmaster general. In 1840 he was elected secretary of the Texas Senate. In 1845 Robertson was admitted to the bar and found employment as a translator of Spanish deeds in the state land office. Moving to Bell County, near Salado, in 1852, Robertson bought a plantation and raised livestock until the secession crisis. In 1858 he was elected chief justice (county executive) of Bell County.

Robertson was elected to represent Bell County in the 1861 Secession Convention and voted for the ordinance of secession. Long active in militia affairs, Robertson, a colonel of militia since 1844, had been commissioned brigadier general of militia in April, 1860. Despite this high civil title, he never joined the Confederate army. In the summer of 1862 he briefly joined the staff of Colonel Henry McCullough (an old friend), as a volunteer aide-de-camp and purchasing agent. Other than this he held no civil or military post during the war. Robertson did, however, donate much of his personal fortune to finance the southern cause.

After the war Robertson returned to Salado and his extensive (and lucrative) land holdings. He was active in reviving Salado College and was a member of the state constitutional convention of 1875. General Robertson died on October 8, 1879, at Salado and is buried in the family cemetery near his home.

SHSP, in its list of Confederate generals, calls Robertson brigadier general "of the 27th Brigade Texas State Forces." Robertson was a prewar militia general but his highest rank in Confederate service appears to have been captain.

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Reference: More Generals in Gray. Bruce S. Allardice. A companion volume to Generals in Gray. Louisiana State University Press. Baton Rouge. LA.