Alexander Somervell was born 1796 in Maryland. In October 1835 Somervell joined the volunteers marching from Gonzales to Béxar and was elected major. He participated in the Siege of Béxar. He enrolled in the Texas army on March 12, 1836, and on April 8 was elected lieutenant colonel of the first regiment of Texas Volunteers, succeeding Sidney Sherman. He participated in the battle of San Jacinto and remained in the army until June 7, 1836. He served briefly as secretary of war in David G. Burnet’s cabinet. He was elected brigadier general on November 18, 1839.
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