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Robert Houston Document

Identifier: MS-2237

  • Staff Only

This document, signed by Tennessee's Secretary of State Robert Houston on June 12, 1811, certifies that James L. Armstrong was commissioned as a justice of the peace for Rutherford County on April 22, 1809.


  • 1811 June 12

Conditions Governing Access

Collections are stored offsite, and a minimum of 2 business days are needed to retrieve these items for use. Researchers interested in consulting any of the collections are advised to contact Special Collections.

Conditions Governing Use

The copyright interests in this collection remain with the creator. For more information, contact the Special Collections Library.


0.1 Linear Feet


This document was signed by Robert Houston, Tennessee's Secretary of State, on June 12, 1811 in Knoxville. It certifies that James L. Armstrong was commissioned as a justice of the peace for Rutherford County on April 22, 1809.

Biographical/Historical Note

Robert Houston (1765-1834) moved to the Territory of the United States of America South of the River Ohio from the upstate of South Carolina in the 1790s, settling in what would become Knox County, Tenn. During the territorial period, Governor William Blount appointed him to a number of offices, including sheriff of the county (1793-1795) and collector of county and public taxes (1795-1796). After the admission of Tennessee into the Union in 1796, he continued to be active politically on the county level, serving at various times as sheriff, tax assessor, county trustee, and justice of the peace. From 1807-1811, he served as Secretary of State for Tennessee. In 1819, he was appointed by President James Monroe to run survey lines of tracts of land reserved to the Cherokee Nation in Tennessee, North Carolina, and Alabama. In addition to his political work, Houston also served as president of the Knoxville branch of the Bank of Tennessee and was a charter trustee of Knoxville's Blount College and Hampdon-Sidney Academy as well as the Knoxville Female Academy.

James L. Armstrong was one of the earliest settlers of Rutherford County in Middle Tennessee. He was also one of the first trained doctors in the area. Having studied in Lexington, Ky., Armstrong began practicing medicine in Murfreesboro in 1809. He served as a surgeon in the War of 1812 and played an active role in fighting a cholera epidemic in Murfreesboro in the 1830s.


Collection consists of a single folder.

Acquisition Note

This collection was purchased by Special Collections in July 2000.

Repository Details

Part of the Betsey B. Creekmore Special Collections and University Archives, University of Tennessee, Knoxville Repository

University of Tennessee, Knoxville
Knoxville TN 37996 USA