Thomas Lillard was born in Decatur, Meiggs County TN in 1831. He married there, Mary Franklin about 1850. They had four daughters there, and migrated to the Coryell County Texas frontier in 1859.
Soon after his arrival in Texas, Thomas and four of his brothers signed the roster for the Texas Militia on the same day. Thomas was elected a Captain of Militia, and served in the Mexican War.
On Oct 14th, 1862, he was commissioned a 2nd Lt in Co.A, 30th Texas Cavalry, known as Gurley's Regiment of Texas Partisans. The 30th Texas Cavalry was organized during the summer of 1862 at Waco, TX. The unit was one of three Texas units which were known as the First Texas Partisan Rangers.
The 30th Texas Cavalry was assigned to the Trans Mississippi Department and their first engagement was at Galveston, TX on 1 Jan 1863. From there they moved north to the Indian Territory where they were in action in May at Fort Gibson and in August at Perryville, Indian Territory. In March and April 1864 the 30th Texas Cavalry was engaged in operations in and around Roseville, Arkansas against Steele's Expedition from Little Rock.
During the spring and summer of 1864 they were involved in numerous actions in Arkansas and then in September returned to the Indian Territory where they remained until late in 1864. From there they were ordered to Shreveport, LA where they remained until the following spring. In April 1865 the unit was moved to Austin, TX where it was disbanded in mid May 1865 when the news of the collapse of the eastern Confederacy reached Texas.
The family moved from Coryell to McLennan county about 1863.
After the war, Thomas bought a farm four miles out of Waco, on the Bosqueville Road. He lived there until his death in 1920.