Collin & Betsy McKinney
Van Alstyne Cemetery
(April 17, 1766 - September 8, 1861) A pioneer leader of
North Texas and signer of the Texas Declaration of Independence, Collin
McKinney was born in New Jersey, a son of Scottish immigrant parents. In
1780 the family moved to Kentucky and in 1824 McKinney migrated across
the Red River and settled near present Texarkana. In January, 1836, he
was elected a delegate to the general convention at Washington-on-the-Brazos
and there served on a committee of five that drafted Texas' Declaration
of Independence from Mexico. On March 2, he signed the document. He also
served on the committee which prepared the Constitution for the Republic
of Texas. Later he served in the 1st, 2nd and 4th Congresses of the Republic.
In private life, McKinney was a leader in establishing the first Disciples
of Christ Church in Texas. In 1846 he settled near the Grayson-Collin County
line; this became his permanent residence. In 1792 he married Amy Moore;
they had four children. He and his second wife, Betsy Leake (Coleman),
by whom he had six children, are both buried in this cemetery. Collin County
and its seat, McKinney, were named in his honor. In 1936 the Texas Centennial
Commission had his house moved to Finch Park in McKinney.
(photograph of this marker at bottom of this page)
photographs and information.
By Elaine Nall Bay & Patricia Nall
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Elaine Nall Bay
Grayson County CC
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