Bosque County Historical Markers and Designations

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Official State Historical Markers (Subject Markers)

The most visible program of the Texas Historical Commission seen along the roads of Texas, historical markers commemorate diverse topics — from the history and architecture of houses, commercial and public buildings, religious congregations and events that changed the course of local and state history, to individuals who have made lasting contributions to our state, community organizations and businesses, military sites, and many more. Subject markers are solely educational and reveal aspects of local history that are important to a community or region. A subject marker is placed at a site that has a historical association with the topic, but no restriction is placed on the use of the property or site. No legal designation is required for a subject marker.

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Marker Title Text of Marker Location of Marker
Barry, James Buckner "Buck", C.S.A. (1821-1906) Came to Texas from North Carolina in 1845. Fought in Mexican War and Indian campaigns. In the Civil War, commanded Confederate cavalry regiment in Texas outposts from Red River to Fort McKavett. Camps were a day's horseback ride apart. Patrols protected outer settlements and prevented Indian attacks and threatened Federal invasion from Indian territory. Elected to Texas Legislature 1883. Died on ranch near here. Left personal records of his years in frontier defenses. Walnut Springs Park, south side of town on SH 144, Walnut Springs
Bertelsen House The stone portion of this house was erected in the 1880s for Norwegian settler Andres Johnson. The builder was probably Andrew Mickelson, who erected other structures in the community. Bertel and Christena Bertelsen bought the property in 1894 and enlarged the stone portion. They built a frame addition about 1910 for their large family of 18 children. Ownership of the home remained with the Bertelsen family until 1977. Recorded Texas Historic Landmark - 1979 2.5 miles northeast of Cranfills Gap via SH 22 north to Old Meridian Creek Road (1 mile before Rock Church) (Private residence)
Bosque County Named for the Bosque (Spanish for "Woods") River. The territory now part of this county was traversed in 1841 by the Texan-Santa Fe Expedition. Maj. George B. Erath, noted surveyor and soldier, explored the region prior to its settlement. The first colonists established homes in 1850-51. Among the national groups who immigrated here were the English (at Kent), Norwegians (at Norse and elsewhere), and the Germans (in eastern part of county). Formally created and organized in 1854, Bosque county has traditionally had farming-ranching economy. The Chisholm cattle trail crossed the area in the 1870s. Erected by the State of Texas - 1973 rear intersection of SH 22 and SH 6, Meridian
Bosque County Courthouse, 1886 Limestone quarried from nearby hills. Gothic styling. Clock tower modified, 1935, to strengthen roof. Unique iron stairs and railing remain. County's fourth courthouse. First, in 1854, was one-room log cabin. Recorded Texas Historic Landmark, 1965. at courthouse square on SH 22, Meridian
Cedron Cemetery and School Settlement of northeastern Bosque County began in the 1850s, as people traveling west through the area were attracted to the fertile lands along Cedron Creek. Among the first community projects of the new neighbors was the construction of a school building. A one-room cedar structure, it was also used for church and social gatherings. The original schoolhouse was replaced in the 1930s by a newer frame structure. Like its predecessor, it also served as a church and community center. The school was consolidated with other area schools in 1938, and the building later was dismantled. A community cemetery (about one-half miles west) was established on land adjacent to the school building. Although there may have been earlier, undocumented burials, the oldest marked grave is that of school teacher J. T. Hungerford (1844-1880), the apparent victim of tuberculosis. A few days after Hungerford's death, another community resident, Susan J. Arnold (1845-1880) was also buried in the graveyard. Since that time many area citizens have been interred there. Few residents remain in the Cedron vicinity. The cemetery and school building foundation are the last visible reminders of a once-thriving rural community. from Morgan take FM 927 about 7.2 miles east to Lakeside Village; take FM 56 about 5.2 miles south to marker
Chisholm Trail - Kimball Crossing Kimball, one of the first towns in Bosque County, was established at this site in the early 1850s. One of the westward wagon routes forded the river at this crossing until a ferry was built in 1865. The famous Chisholm Trail made its major crossing of the Brazos here. During the 1870s tens of thousands of Texas longhorn cattle forded the river and were driven to northern markets. Building of barbed wire fences and railroads in the 1880s caused abandonment of the Chisholm Trail. Kimball, with no railroad and loss of the cattle trail, became a ghost town by the middle 1900s. from Morgan take SH 174 about 10 miles east to marker, located in Kimball Bend Park
Clifton Lutheran College Organized May 6, 1896. Located on land donated by N. J. Nelson and T. T. Hogevold. The first building, erected with voluntary donations and labor, opened as high school October 28, 1897; after 1923 housed artifacts collection of Jacob Olson, early Norwegian settler. Under the direction of Dr. Carl Tyssen, president, college courses were offered in 1922; accredited as a two-year college in 1924. High school was discontinued in 1938. College merged with Texas Lutheran College, Seguin, in 1954. Two buildings formerly used by the college remain on the site. at Bosque Memorial Museum, South Avenue Q and West 9th Street, Clifton
Clifton Whipple Truss Bridge Built in 1884 by the Wrought Iron Bridge Company of Canton, Ohio, at a cost of $6,465, this bridge spans 150 feet across the North Bosque River. This type of bridge, called a Whipple truss, was named for its designer. One of the few remaining Whipple truss bridges in the state, it opened up travel routes from the south and west to the north and east. Withstanding many floods, the bridge provided an important transportation connection for Bosque County residents from 1884 to 1941 when traffic was routed west of the Bosque River to the newly constructed Highway 6. Recorded Texas Historic Landmark - 1996 CR 3265 and FM 1991, northeast part of Clifton
Colwick, John and Mary, House John Colwick and his parents came to Texas with Norwegian colonizer Cleng Peerson in 1859. Colwick married Mary Jenson in 1879, and they lived in a small home on this site. Using some materials from that dwelling, this house was constructed for them in 1889 by J. H. Nordahl. The vernacular farmhouse exhibits unusual proportions derived from traditional Norwegian forms. Its simple, elegant detailing includes Eastlake brackets on the porch. Recorded Texas Historic Landmark - 1989 from Clifton take FM 219 eight miles west; take CR 4230 south 1 mile; take CR 4235 1.1 miles west to house (first on the right)
Crain, Roden Taylor (April 29, 1819-July 20, 1891) Tennessee native Roden Taylor Crain, a member of Capt. William Kimbro's Company of San Augustine County volunteers, was a soldier in the struggle for Texas Independence from Mexico. He fought at the Battle of San Jacinto on April 21, 1836, and later received a land grant and pension for his service. He settled on his land in present Bosque County, where he lived the rest of his life. He drowned in the Bosque River and was buried here in 1891. Recorded - 1987 Valley Mills Cemetery, Valley Mills
Cureton, Captain J. J., C.S.A. (1826-1881) Indian fighter, lawman and rancher. Settled on the Palo Pinto County frontier, 1854. Led neighbors in defending homes during Indian raids. In 1860 helped rescue Cynthia Ann Parker, who had been taken 24 years before by Comanches. Captain in frontier troops during Civil War, defending northwest Texas from Indians and northern invasion. Camp Cureton, Archer County C.S.A. outpost, was named for him. Sheriff of Bosque County, 1876-80. Grave is on Flat Top Ranch, near here. (1964) Walnut Springs Park, south side of town on SH 144, Walnut Springs
Election Oak One of three polling places in first election held after Bosque County was organized in 1854. Of 21 votes cast on that occasion (August 7, 1854) in county, 17 were polled under this tree. J. K. Helton was election judge. Officials elected were: L. H. Scrutchfield, judge; P. Bryant, sheriff; Jasper N. Mabray, clerk; Isaac Gary, assessor-collector; Archibald Kell, treasurer. In later years, Bosque County Old Settlers Association used this site for reunions, by the courtesy of Tom M. Pool, owner of the land. Site was known locally as Pool Park. from Clifton take SH 6 4 miles south to marker
First Methodist Church of Valley Mills Methodists in this area trace their history to the 1840s, when circuit-riding preachers began holding camp meetings on a nearby farm. In 1889, after the railroad caused Valley Mills to relocate south of the Bosque River, the Methodists built their first church, located in a residential area. In 1915 the congregation voted to move downtown. This brick structure, which features two inset temple-front entries with Ionic columns, was completed by 1916. Art glass windows, corbelled brickwork, and a pressed metal roof which simulates tile are also prominent. Recorded Texas Historic Landmark - 1991 SH 6 at 5th Street, Valley Mills
First United Methodist Church of Morgan Organized in 1889, the Morgan Methodist Church first held worship services in the Baptist church building. At an 1891 revival, the fellowship initiated plans to construct this sanctuary. Originally a one-room structure, the building was enlarged in later years as additional rooms were needed. The Carpenter Gothic building exhibits some Greek Revival detailing and features lancet windows and a 1901-02 belfry. Recorded Texas Historic Landmark - 1983 Louise and Charles Streets, Morgan
Gary Cemetery South Carolina natives William and Rutha Gary migrated west with their family, and by 1852 settled in this area, then part of McLennan County. In 1854, when Bosque County was formed, William Gary was chosen as one of five county commissioners. Five Gary family members were among the voters in the first county election. William Gary died in 1855, followed by Rutha in 1868. Their graves formed the nucleus of this cemetery that grew slowly over the next sixty years. About 35 graves are marked; 25 more stones are not inscribed. The last burial occurred in 1932. (1996) Gary Cemetery
Graves-Payne House This home dates to the ownership of the Aaron S. Graves family, who lived in Kentucky and Missouri before settling here in the Union Hill community of Bosque County by the 1870s. A carved limestone brick in the fireplace indicates the house was built in 1876. From 1940 to 1973, it was home to the family of Shelton Payne, a Georgia native who farmed the land. The vernacular stone structure, typical of pioneer homes of the area, features gabled dormers, a hipped roof, a double-pen floor plan, low windows with segmented arches above and a chimney. The farmstead includes a windmill, a cistern and storeroom, and a well. Recorded Texas Historic Landmark - 2004 5.3 mi. NE on SH 174, then right on CR 1140
Iredell First United Methodist Church In 1869, Methodists in the Iredell area began worshipping at Hester Schoolhouse, a building used by both Baptists and Methodists for services. The Rev. Peter W. Gravis served as pastor. Two years later, the Methodist congregation moved toe Wills Chapel, a half mile east of present Iredell, on land donated by Dr. J.S. Wills for a church and campground. In the late 1870s, members moved the Wills chapel to a site in town. The growing Methodist Church increased in membership and in facilities throughout the next 100 years. Members also established programs and groups to support the congregation and the local community. (2004) 301 Eastland St in Iredell
Jenson, Jens,
Homestead
Jens Jenson (1835-1912) came to this county with his Norwegian parents and their family in 1854. Later he was a sailor berthed in Galveston for some years; he also served in the Confederate Army in the Civil War (1861-65). After he bought part of his parents' land in 1867, he built one stone room of this house and married Sarah Swenson in 1868. As his family grew to 11 children, he added rooms, three of stone, two of wood. After his death, a son, Palmer, bought the place. In 1958 grandson Arden Jenson purchased the land. He lives in the house, farming the ancestral acres. 13 miles west of Clifton, via 219 west to 182 north to Gary Creek Rd, (CO 4175) marker is in front of small ranch house 500 feet from CO 4175
Knudson, Knud S., Homestead of Norwegian immigrant Knud S. Knudson (1830-1910) and his family moved to Bosque County in 1868. He received a state land grant and established a farm at this site. A small log home was erected in the 1860s and was later enlarged with a limestone addition. Knudson and his wife Gunhild (d. 1917) were the parents of eight children. This farmstead, consisting of the family home, two barns, and out buildings, remained in the Knudson family until 1945. It is a fine example of a rural Norwegian vernacular farm complex. (1988) from Cranfills Gap take CR 445 about 6.5 miles east to marker, on south side of highway
Lanes Chapel and Cemetery Pioneer area settler Joshua McCuistion donated land at this site for a Methodist chapel to serve the community of Hollis Prairie. Completed about 1880 adjacent to a schoolhouse, it was built by John R. Lane and his sons, for whom the settlement was later named. The oldest marked grave in the church cemetery is that of Plonzo "Pompey" Cox (1840-1880). Regular worship services here were discontinued in 1960 and the Lanes Chapel Memorial Association was established to restore and maintain the building and grounds. A homecoming is held at this site each June. (1981) from Clifton, take SH 6 south about 3.9 miles take FM 2602 south about 9.6 miles to cemetery
Lomax, John A., Boyhood Home of Only a log kitchen now marks the homesite of John Lomax, one of the foremost collectors of American folksongs. Here, on part of the Chisholm Trail, young Lomax heard cowboys crooning and yodeling to restless herds; Negro servants taught him jig tunes, chants, work songs, and calls; and on winter nights his family sang songs and swapped stories around a blazing fire. Lomax began to write down this music while still a boy; and when he left Bosque County at age 20, he carried with him a roll of cowboy ballads -- the nucleus of his lifelong work. (1970) from Meridian, take SH 144 north about one mile to marker in picnic area
Lumpkin-Woodruff House South Carolina native James J. Lumpking (b. 1852) settled in Meridian in 1878. He established a medical practice and pharmacy, and was a prominent landowner. He married Ida Etoile (Fuller) (d. 1954), daughter of Moses W. Fuller (1830-1868), a successful Meridian businessman, and they became civic leaders and benefactors of the town. The Lumpkin's home, built in 1898, was a center of social life and activities. After their deaths, Frank Woodruff, Mrs. Lumpkin's cousin, owned the residence. The octagonal corner tower reflects the original Eastlake style of the structure. (1982) 512 North Main Street in Meridian
Nelson, General Alison (1822-1862) Soldier, statesman and Indian fighter. In his native Georgia, a legislator and mayor of city of Atlanta. General in Cuban liberation forces, 1850. On reaching Texas 1856, joined state troops fighting Indians. Elected 1859 to State Legislature; served as delegate to 1861 Texas Secession Convention. In the Civil War raised, trained and led 10th Regiment Texas Infantry. Sent into defense of Arkansas, repulsed Federal assault on Devall's Bluff, June 1862. Died of illness in camp near Austin, Ark., October 7, 1862. (1964) at courthouse square on SH 22, Meridian
Norse   7 mi. W on FM 219, then right 1.5 mi. on FM 182
Norwegian Settlements in Bosque County Though never as numerous as some national groups emigrating from Europe, Norwegians left an imprint of rural life in Texas. Hundreds sailed to the United States beginning in the 1830's. For those who settled in Texas, Bosque County had great appeal, because with its woods, hills, and steep, sloping streams, it resembled parts of Norway. In 1854 Ole Canuteson started here what became Texas' largest Norse settlement. Until past the turn of the century, the Gary Creek valley settlers spoke mainly Norwegian and retained many customs of their homeland. (1969) intersection of FM 182 and FM 219, seven miles west of Clifton
Odle Log Cabin A native of Tennessee, pioneer John Odle (1824-1913) moved to Texas in 1843, one year after his marriage to Lucinda Reeder (d. 1890). They came to this area in 1856 and built this cabin of oak logs about 1860. They occupied this structure until Odle could erect a more substantial rock house for their family of 13 children. During the Civil War (1861-1865), Odle served in a frontier ranger company and fought in the Battle of Dove Creek, January 8, 1865, against Kickapoo Indians. Recorded Texas Historic Landmark - 1978 five miles west of Valley Mills via FM 217 to CR 3155 west to Odle Ln (200 yards north of intersection of Odle Ln and CR 401)
Olson, Joseph, Family Log Cabin After the Joseph Olson family immigrated to the United States from Norway in 1858, they lived first in the homes of Norwegian immigrants in the Norse community. In 1866, Olson (1811-1894) built a log cabin for his family on part of his original seven-acre farm. The cabin served as the family's primary residence until 1872, when a larger stone house was constructed. The log cabin remained on the Olson farm and in the possession of the Olson family until the 1970s. It was moved to this site and reconstructed in 1985 as a reminder of the Norwegian heritage in the area. Texas Sesquicentennial 1836-1986 at Bosque Memorial Museum, South Avenue Q and West 9th Street, Clifton
Omenson House (Reeder-Omenson House) no text from Clifton take FM 219 west about 7 miles; take FM 182 south about 3 miles; house is located on southeast side of the highway as road turns to the west, through gate reading "Norway Mill"
Oswald Cemetery This cemetery, located on five acres out of the l. M. Armstrong survey, was already in use as a burial ground when the earliest original marked graves, those of three children of W. B. and E. H. Moore, were dug in the early 1860s. The original owner of the land was Captain Allen S. Anderson, a frontier scout who was interred here in 1864 when the site was known as Clifton Graveyard. His daughter, Flora Kemp, deeded it for use as a graveyard in 1877. M. J. Oswald purchased the land in 1885 and it became known as Oswald Cemetery. Burial in the cemetery has been free to people of all races. Among the pioneers interred here are early settlers of old town Clifton and several Civil War veterans. The Oswald family continues to own the land surrounding the cemetery at the dawn of the 21st century. (2000) 1.8 miles north of Clifton on FM 1991, then 0.5 mile east on FM 3221
Our Savior's Lutheran Church Mother church, former Evangelical Lutheran Church in Texas. Organized June 14, 1869, by Norwegian settlers of Bosque County. Building erected 1875-1885. Cleng Peerson, pioneer of Norwegian emigration to U.S. (landed 1821) is buried here. Recorded Texas Historic Landmark, 1965.  Supplemental plate: Centennial 1869-1969. Church built by Norwegian pioneers, 1875; contractor Gunerius Shefstad. Dedicated in 1885; enlarged, veneered with brick in 1907; veneer work redone, 1956; memorial windows given in 1958. This church has been served by eight pastors. (1970) from Clifton take FM 219 west about 6.8 miles; take FM 182 2.8 miles north to church
Peerson, Cleng (May 17, 1782-Dec. 16, 1865) Called the "Father of Norwegian Immigration to America", Cleng Peerson migrated to the United States from his native Norway in 1821. He traveled extensively and encouraged his countrymen to settle on land he selected in the east and midwest. Coming to Texas in 1849, Peerson discovered Norwegian families living near Dallas and located sites where others might move. In 1853 he led a group to Bosque County, beginning the large Norwegian settlement in this area. Peerson lived on the O. Colwick farm (.5 miles south) until his death. He is buried in the church cemetery at Norse. (1975) from Clifton, take SH 219 west about 8.5 miles to marker, on south side of highway
Pierson, Ole, Homestead Born in Norway, Ole Pierson (1804-1882) brought his family to the United States in 1853. He joined a group of Norwegians who journeyed to this area of Texas and found the land very similar to that of their native country. In 1854, eight families, including Ole Pierson's, began building their homes in what is now Bosque Country. Pierson received a grant of land from the State of Texas and later purchased surrounding tracts. Here he farmed and played a leading role in establishing the Norwegian community. The homestead remained in the Pierson family until 1939. Texas Sesquicentennial 1836-1986 private property
Pool-Tibbs House S. A. Pool built this residence, a store, and a cotton gin on the river bank in 1870, when the town of Valley Mills stood on the north side of the Bosque. The building stone came from nearby Fitzhugh Hill. Robert A. Tibbs, a Mississippi Civil War veteran, bought the house in 1891. After acquiring it in 1926, Anselm Tibbs (1886-1967) removed the original Greek revival portico and made other changes. The town of Valley Mills moved south of the river when the Santa Fe Railroad was built. As a consequence, this is the oldest house in the present, or "new" town. (1978) 108 Tibbs Drive, Valley Mills
Poston-Odle Cemetery One of the earliest settlements in this area was established in the 1850s along Hog Creek. A rock building used for a school and church was erected, and the area became known as Rock Church on Hog Creek. The family of John Odle settled here following the Civil War. Land for this cemetery was set aside by Odle following the death of his sister, Mary Odle Poston, in 1875. Those buried here include members of the Odle, Poston, Cutbirth, Pool, Cureton, Adams, Hord, Callan, Hoffman, and Le Fever families. The cemetery gates were built from the stones of the Old Rock Church. (1989) from Valley Mills, take FM 217 west about 1.2 miles to CR 3155; take CR 3155 1.8 miles southwest; turn south on CR 3160 and continue about 0.3 miles to cemetery
Randal, Martha Mabray (1852-1935) Child of J. N. Mabray, one of organizers and first clerk of Bosque County. Married Thos. J. Randal; had 11 children. Recorded - 1969 Meridian Cemetery
Riverside Cemetery According to local oral tradition, land for this cemetery and the adjacent church was donated by the family of Ward Keeler, a New York native who came to Bosque County about 1870 and founded the town of Iredell. The oldest documented grave here is that of James W. P. Ware, who died in November 1870. The primary burial ground for Iredell citizens for generations, Riverside Cemetery contains more than one thousand interments, both marked and unmarked. Its varied styles of gravestones stand as a reminder of the community's pioneer heritage. (1992) intersection of South Somervelle and West McClaim (FM 1238), Iredell
Rock Springs Cumberland Presbyterian Church The Rev. James B. Sadler (1828-1911), a self-educated former slave, started this black congregation in 1870 and helped establish a separate black Presbytery in 1876. Worship services were held in a nearby brush arbor or in homes until the present structure was erected in 1890. This building also housed a community school for a time. The Rev. Sadler and his wife, Susan, owned the property until 1909. It was then deeded to church officers, who maintain the church and adjacent cemetery today. The congregation's annual homecoming is held in November. (1975) from Valley Mills take FM 56 north head east on FM 1637 about 4.5 miles to marker
Scrutchfield Cemetery Located on two acres of the M. Boren survey of 1846, this cemetery was deeded to Bosque County for public burials by Lowry Hampton Scrutchfield in 1883. Family records indicate that Minnie, the infant daughter of Daniel and Carolyn Mabray Henderson, was the first to be buried on this site. The earliest legible tombstone is that of six-month-old Alpheus C. Potts, who was born and died in 1885. Lowry H. Scrutchfield (1824-1900), his wife Nancy Proffit Scrutchfield (1835-1903) and his mother Nancy Pool Scrutchfield Roberts (1800-1839) are all interred here. The graves of Nancy Scrutchfield Roberts and A. J. Lewis, another early settler, were re-interred here in the late 20th century. More than 50 identifiable graves, marked and unmarked, grace the cemetery. (1999) eight miles south of Clifton on SH 6; seven miles south on FM 854
Scrutchfield, Lowry Hampton (June 11, 1824 - November 2, 1900) Born in Nacogdoches in 1824 to Fleming and Nancy Pool Scrutchfield, Lowry H. Scrutchfield moved to Nashville on the Brazos with his widowed mother about 1834. In 1845 he met George B. Erath, who taught him land surveying and introduced him to local Indian tribes. Scrutchfield assisted Erath and John McLennan in surveying Waco Village in 1849. He married Nancy Proffit in 1851; they settled on the John C. Pool survey. Scrutchfield emerged as leader of the small band of pioneers who settled and organized Bosque County. He was elected the new county's first chief justice (county judge) in 1854. (1999) 3.6 miles southwest of Valley Mills on FM 854
Searsville Baptist Church Church named in honor of Josiah Le Grand Sears who gave land and money for the original church and for the present one. (1964) from Valley Mills take FM 217 west about two miles to church
Smith Bend-Coon Creek Cemetery John Jackson Smith (1799-1867) and his wife Margaret (1802-1881) migrated here from Mississippi in the 1850's and founded Smith Bend Community. They gave land for this cemetery after the death of their son Burton (1832-1856). The Smith's daughter Ann and her husband Silas McCabe started the nearby settlement of Coon Creek. Residents of the two communities, descendants, and friends help maintain the burial ground. Enlarged by later land donations, the site contains over 500 graves. (1978) Incise on back: Marker Sponsors: Mmes. Marshall V. Bonds, Lois Smith Hill, Camille Smith Womack from Meridian, take SH 22 17.1 miles southeast; take FM 56 south about 1.9 miles; take FM 2114 2 miles east to cemetery
Smith, William Berry Came to Texas from North Carolina in 1834; a soldier in the Texas War for Independence, veteran of the Indian Wars. Died June 30, 1876 - 84 years old. Erected by the State of Texas, 1956 from Iredell go 4 miles south on FM 1238, one gate past Marker Ranch. 1.5 miles into pasture land
Spring Creek Cemetery Volunteer refinish-2 miles of state highway also requires jumping-locked gate
Marker Text: As settlement along Spring Creek increased after the end of the Civil War, land in this area was set aside for a missionary Baptist church, a school, and this cemetery. According to local tradition, the first burial was that of a horse thief hanged in the vicinity. The earliest marked tombstone, however, is that of 2-year-old Will Bullard who died in 1881. In its role as a reflection of the area's heritage, Spring Creek Cemetery is the burial site of many early settlers, war veterans, schoolteachers, and church members. Texas Sesquicentennial 1836-1986
from Meridian take SH 22 about 2.3 miles west continue west on FM 1473 about 8.9 miles turn north on County Road 2160 to Spring Creek Cemetery, about 2 miles, near church
St. James Episcopal Church Local Episcopalians founded the St. James congregation in 1913. Charter members Dr. James Julius Lumpkin and his wife, Ida Etoile (Fuller), donated this site, and church officials consecrated the new facilities that year. The church prospered in service to the community and for a time shared its facilities with Faith Lutheran Church. Membership at St. James declined over the years, and in 1994, the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth donated the deconsecrated property to the Alliance for Justice Foundation. The vernacular frame sanctuary exhibits Gothic Revival influences, with lancet windows and a gable end entry with a segmented glass arch. The building is flanked by what was the parish hall of St. James. Recorded Texas Historic Landmark - 2004 514 N. Bosque in Meridian
St. Olaf Lutheran Congregation, The Rock Church Built in 1886 of native stone by architect Andrew Mickelson and his brothers, Christian and Ole Mickelson. It originally had a dirt floor and planks laid on wooden kegs for pews. The bell was acquired in 1897. The church served the Norwegian settlers of this area, who were members of Our Savior's Lutheran Church of Norse (6 miles east). In 1902, the growth of the community necessitated separation from the Norse church, and the St. Olaf congregation was organized. A new edifice was erected in Cranfills Gap (4 miles west) in 1917, and this church has since been used only for special services. Incise on back: In Memory of Otto H. Reesing 1890-1974 from Cranfils Gap, take CR 4145 about 4 miles east to church and cemetery, on north side of road
Union Hill School Started before 1879, the Union Hill School was one of several rural schools that served the early settlers of Bosque County. A two-room 1888 schoolhouse, located across the road, was used until 1914, when a two-story building was constructed at this site. A nearby stable housed the student's horses during the school day. Enlarged by the 1926 merger with the Auburn Hill District, Union Hill became part of the Kopperl District in 1939. Former students, which include many area business, professional, and agricultural leaders, still meet for a biennial school reunion. (1981) from Morgan take SH 174 about 4.5 miles north, marker is on south side of the highway
Valley Mills Santa Fe Railway Depot A standard No. 9 combination freight-passenger depot, built in 1910 on Temple-Cleburne line of Gulf, Colorado & Santa Fe Railway. Local social center, especially at train time, when in pre-radio and TV era the conductor brought late news or traveling political candidates wooed votes. Highway travel and instant communication robbed depot of its business and glamour. Phased out in 1966, it was relocated here as museum in 1969. Recorded Texas Historic Landmark - 1973 Valley Mills Park, 5th to 6th Streets on Avenue D, 2 blocks west of SH 6, Valley Mills
Valley Mills, Original Site of A. H. Steagall and Dr. E. P. Booth purchased 300 acres of land on the north side of the Bosque River in 1868. They mapped out and platted a townsite, which they named Valley Mills. As settlers began arriving in the area, the first homes were built of logs. Soon, however, with products provided by a local sawmill, many more homes were constructed of sawn lumber. In addition to the sawmill, flour and grist mills were also built in the valley. Cotton gins were soon built, as well, to process hundreds of bales from neighboring farms. A United States Post Office was established in Valley Mills in 1867, with Moses Isenhower serving as first postmaster. Experiencing steady growth, the town at its peak boasted homes, general stores, a drugstore, blacksmith shop, boardinghouse, and stagecoach stop. In 1881 the Santa Fe Railroad line was built through the area, but the tracks were laid on the south side of the river about one mile from the original townsite. Soon thereafter the residents of Valley Mills moved their town to be closer to the rail line. By 1900 the original site of Valley Mills had become a ghost town. (1990) from Valley Mills take FM 56 north 1 mile; go east on FM 1637 about 0.2 miles to marker

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