Date Original



This land grant was issued to John Drennen by President Martin Van Buren.

Biographical/Historical Note

John Drennen was born in Elizabeth, Pennsylvania, on February 5, 1801, to Thomas and Isabella Drennen. He married Emily Deadrick Stuart on March 21, 1826. They had three daughters: Caroline, Margaret, and Johanna. Emily died on August 20, 1844. He later married Kate Humphrey on March 28,1848, and they had three sons: Charles Holden, Henry Clay, and William Moore. Drennen settled in Arkansas in 1830, establishing a ferry business south of Van Buren in Crawford County with his brother-in-law David A. Thompson. Drennen later became postmaster and had the land surveyed and streets platted for the city of Van Buren. He donated the property for the county courthouse and town square. In 1835, Drennen represented Crawford County at the Constitutional Convention, helping to write the state's first constitution. He was a member of the first Arkansas House of Representatives, 1836-1838. In June 1849, he was appointed by President Zachary Taylor as an agent for the Choctaw Indians. He later became Superintendent of Indian Affairs for the Southwest region. After the Little Rock and Fort Smith Railway was established in 1853, Drennen served as the railway's president. He donated ten acres to develop the area's first public cemetery, Fairview Cemetery. Drennen died of yellow fever in Indianapolis, Indiana, on September 27, 1855.

Physical Description

Document, 8.5" x 11"

Geographical Area

Arkansas; Indiana





Resource Type



John Drennen land grant, SMC.007.013


Arkansas State Archives

Contributing Entity

Arkansas State Archives

Recommended Citation

John Drennen land grant, Arkansas State Archives, Little Rock, Arkansas.


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United States History