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     Our Parker family came from England to the Colonies in the late 1600's. We will begin with John Parker, who was born in 1700 in Massachusetts. This line continues through his son Nathaniel, born in Hampshire County, Virginia in 1730, and grandson John Parker born in Baltimore County, Maryland in 1758.

     During the Revolutionary War John Parker volunteered as private in Captain Field's Company, Colonel Slaughter's Virginia Regiment for twelve months. He served another twelve months in Captain Collier's Company, Colonel Armstrong's Virginia Regiment.

     After the war John Parker married Sarah White in Culpepper County, Virginia. He moved his young family to Georgia on the Savannah River. It was here that John was made an elder in the Baptist Chruch.

     John and Sarah Parker had thirteen children, but perhaps the most famous was the eldest son, Daniel. Daniel was born in 1781 in Culpepper County, Virginia. In 1802 he united with Nail Creek Church of Franklin County, Georgia, which soon licensed him to preach. Here he married Martha Dixon.

     Shortly after the marriage the entire Parker clan moved to Tennessee. They settled along Duck River in Bedford and Dickson Counties, where he was ordained at Turnbull Church. The family's next move was to Sumner County. Toward the end of the family's stay in Tennessee Elder Daniel Parker developed his two-seed doctrine.

     In 1817 the Parker family, with Daniel as the head, moved to Clark and Crawford counties, Illinois. Daniel founded Cannan Baptist Church. He was also elected senator from Clark and Crawford Counties in the 3rd General Assembly of Illinois from 1822 to 1826. In 1826 Daniel Parker published his "two seed" doctrine in two books.

     Always looking toward new lands Daniel Parker visited Texas. He was anxious to settle in this new land, and start a church, but the laws of Texas forbade him to organize a church within its borders unless it was Roman Catholic. It did not prohibit the immigration of an already organized church. Daniel Parker returned to Illinois, organized the Pilgrim Predestinarian Baptist Church with forty members, and moved the church to Texas. His six families with their sons and children made up the majority of the congregation.

     The church was temporarily located at Brown's Fort on San Pedro Creek, near the north line of the present Grapeland, Houston County, Texas. Here some cabins of post oak logs were built and named for Daniel Parker's son-in-law, Reuben Brown.

     From here the Parker clan moved in several directions. In 1833 Daniel Parker was granted 1st Class Headright from Government of Mexico, State of Coahula and Texas. This was located two and one-half miles SW of Elkhart, Anderson County, Texas. This is where he established the permanent home for the Pilgrim Predestinarian Baptist Church. The first log church was built in 1839.

Replica of Pilgrim Church

Inside church

     Daniel Parker elected as delegate to Consultationtion of 1835, but he was not a member of the convention that framed the framed the Constitution. In 1836 he was elected from the Nacdoghes District to Congress, but was not allowed to take his seat because he was an ordained minister.

     Daniel Parker served as preacher for the Pilgrim Church until his death in 1844. His son Benjamin F. Parker then became pastor until his death in 1896. Many Parkers are buried in the cemetery behind the church.

     Elder John Parker, Daniel's father, and three brothers, Silas, James, and Benjamin did not move to Elkhart, but crossed the Trinity River and went west forty-five miles to the head of the Navasota River a few miles east of where the town of Groesbeck stands today. In the spring of 1834 they erected Parker's Fort, a wooden barricade protecting their cabins from the hostile Indians. The massacre on May 19, 1836 is well documented. To read more about the event click here.

Allied Families


     Please e-mail if you have any of these Parkers in your family tree. I will be happy to exchange information.
     Sources available upon request.

   Daniel Parker's Entry in Austin's Register of Families