Memorial For Citizens of the Republic of Texas, John Gilley and Mary A. Gilley

Gilley Cemetery, Paradise, Texas

CR 3655 about 3 miles east of Boonsville. “Black Rock Ranch”, drive down the lane and cemetery is fenced off in the pasture to the left.

The Daughters of the Republic of Texas (DRT) have long been a Texas preservation organization. They offer memorial medallions to mark the graves of DRT and CRT (Children of the Republic of Texas) as well as many other classifications. You can read more about the DRT medallions https://drtinfo.org/Members/Members/About-Us/Medallions-revised.aspx

JOHN B. GILLEY, joined the Masonic Fraternity in 1839. His Masonic Lodge history indicates he moved to Texas in 1836. His 3rd class land grant states he emigrated to Texas 1 February 1839, so he may have returned home before actually bringing his mother and father and family for permanent residence. (“History of Smith County, Texas” indicates that James Calhoun Hill took his wife, Rebecca, from Alabama to stay with relatives in Tennessee while he surveyed parts of the Republic of Texas. Working alongside him were John B. Gilley and William Gilley, sons of John Gilley, Bedford County, Tennessee). By 1850 the Gilley family consisting of John B (age 31)., his father, John (age 56) and mother, Sarah (age 56), as well as brother William (age 20) and brothers Charles and James, and sister, Susan, were all living in Smith County, Texas. John B. Gilley resided in Nacogdoches, Smith and Milam Counties from 1838. John B. Gilley moved to Wise County, Texas in 1858, and he married Mary Adeline Davis there in 1859. He was 40, she was 22. 

MARY ADLINE (DAVIS) GILLEY, born in 1836 in Georgia was the daughter of John S. and Elizabeth Davis. The family moved from Mississippi to Texas after 1845. The Davis family first settled in Bastrop County and then moved to the western area of Wise County. The Gilley’s settled in the Boonsville area of Wise County and in 1860, received their mail from a village called Prairie Point (Rhome), some 20 miles away. Mr. Gilley went as far as San Antonio in a wagon to market his cotton and returned home with six month’s or a year’s supply of groceries. Later Dallas was used as the market. After John B’s death in 1891, Mary S. continued to live on the Gilley place until 1927. They had 9 children. After 1927, Mary S. made her home with daughter, Emma Walker of Bridgeport until her death in 1935 at age 99. She told of stories how the Indians chased them in and out of Wise County from 1858 to about 1876. Mary A. Gilley’s grave received the DAR Citizens’ medallion in 1999 and was dedicated by the George Webb Slaughter Chapter, DAR.