Isaac Marlin

By Danella Dickson

Isaac Marlin was born about 1830 in Tennessee, the son of James and Nancy (Taylor) Marlin. The Marlin family and a group of relatives emigrated to Texas in the year 1834 and settled in what was then known as Robertson County, near the Great Falls of the river Brazos, where they resided on the extreme border of the frontier. The Marlin’s arrived in Texas to find Texans rebelling against what they perceived as Mexican oppression.

“The first shot of the Texas was fired at the Battle of Gonzales on October 2, 1835; this marked the beginning of the revolution. Over the next three months, the Texan colonists drove all Mexican army troops out of the province. In January 1836, Mexican president and General Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna led Mexican troops into Texas to put down the rebellion. General Jose Urrea marched half of the troops up the Texas coast in the Goliad campaign, while Santa Anna led the rest of the troops to San Antonio de Bexar. After a thirteen day siege, Santa Anna’s army defeated the small group of Texans at the Battle of the Alamo and continued east. Many Texans, including the government, fled their homes in the Runaway Scrape. Santa Anna and his troops searched for the Texan government and the Texan army led by Sam Houston. On April 21, 1836 the Texans defeated Santa Anna’s army at the Battle of San Jacinto; Santa Anna was captured the following day. The Mexican army retreated back to Mexico, ending the Texas Revolution.” (Timeline of the Texas Revolution – Wikipedia)

In 1839 Isaac Marlin survived an Indian attack that took the lives of his mother and sister and caused life threatening injuries to another sister. The brave nine year old Isaac walked several miles the night of the attack to summon help from his uncle John Marlin. After a series of battles a treaty was negotiated by John Marlin that led to the Indians moving further west and reducing the threat of attack.

In 1860 Isaac was listed on the Falls County, Texas census as 30 years old, and single, he never married The census listed him as a farmer with real estate valued at $544.00 and personal property worth$2,290.00.

Isaac Marlin enlisted August 25, 1861 as a private in Company B, 5th Regiment Texas Mounted Volunteers Confederate States of America. He was mustered into service in September at San Antonio and at the time supplied his own horse and equipment valued at a total of $325.00. The 5th was under the command of Brigadier General Henry H. Sibley, who was organizing a brigade for a campaign in New Mexico and Arizona. Sibley’s ultimate goal was to capture the gold and silver mines of Colorado and California. Isaac’s regiment, Company B, was commanded by Captain Willis L. Lang. In October the brigade began its march up the Rio Grande toward Santa Fe, New Mexico. On February 20- 21, 1862 the brigade engaged federal forces at the battle of Val Verde. Captain Lang led Company B in what was perhaps the only charge of lancers in the Civil War. As might be expected, the company was cut to pieces. (Handbook of Texas)

Official military records verify Isaac’s death at Val Verde and the loss of his equipment and pistol in the battle. Historians believe the men killed in action were buried at the north end of the battlefield. A survivor reported the men were wrapped in their blankets and buried in an unmarked mass grave.
Courtesy of J.B. and Ramona Roberts