Thomas F. McKinney, a Kentucky-born trader, had ranged all over Spanish territory before establishing a trading post in Nacogdoches in 1824. In 1834, he and Samuel May Williams formed McKinney and Williams, a firm on the Brazos that shipped cotton to the United States.
The fierce-tempered McKinney was committed to the Texas Revolution. He was owner of two of the early privateers of Texas, the San Felipe and the William Robbins. Eventually he and Williams extended almost $100,000 to the Texan cause, most of which was never repaid.
Receipt for payment for John Milton Shreve, auctioneer,
December 20, 1835