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 Collection: Texas History Collection
[Texas Historical Commission Marker: Old Sherman Opera House]

[Texas Historical Commission Marker: Old Sherman Opera House]

Date: 2011-12/2012-03
Creator: West, Carolyn Effie
Description: Photograph of the Texas Historical Commission marker for Site of Old Sherman Opera House in Sherman, Texas. Text: Formerly a 3-story Victoria structure with twin cupolas. Built by Capt. L.F. Ely, who made the bricks in his city factory. Lavish interior had carpeted aisles, Damask curtains and red plush seats. Benches in economy section were called the "buzzard roost". From its completion (1881) until closing (1918), it helped make Sherman a cultural center. First show was operetta "The Mikado". Also given here were Shakespearean plays, musical reviews, temperance lectures and trained animal acts. Remodeled (1961) for commercial use. Original bricks remain.
Contributing Partner: Private Collection of Carolyn West
[Texas Historical Commission Marker: Old Sherman Public Library]

[Texas Historical Commission Marker: Old Sherman Public Library]

Date: 2011-12/2012-03
Creator: West, Carolyn Effie
Description: Photograph of the Texas Historical Commission marker for Old Sherman Public Library in Sherman, Texas. Text: A subscription library was established in Sherman in 1901 and housed in a rented room. In 1911, the city submitted a request to the Andrew Carnegie Foundation and received $20,000 for a library. This lot was purchased in 1912 for $2500 and plans were drawn for a structure of simplified Beaux-Arts styling by local architect John Tullock (1860-1947). The building served as a library from 1915 until 1973. Of note are the three interior murals, completed in 1934. Recorded Texas Historic Landmark -- 1986. Entered in the National Register of Historic Places -- 1990.
Contributing Partner: Private Collection of Carolyn West
[Texas Historical Commission Marker: Old Town of Cannon]

[Texas Historical Commission Marker: Old Town of Cannon]

Date: 2011-12/2012-03
Creator: West, Carolyn Effie
Description: Photograph of the Texas Historical Commission marker for Old Town of Cannon in Van Alstyne, Texas. Text: Founded 1852 by Elijah Cannon, who came from South Caroline with his children and slaves to develop 700 acres of land. Family established a church, cotton gin, grist mill, wagon factory. By 1885 town had an academy and 400 people. Bypassed by Houston & Texas Central Railroad, it declined rapidly in the 1890s.
Contributing Partner: Private Collection of Carolyn West
[Texas Historical Commission Marker: Olive Ann Oatman Fairchild]

[Texas Historical Commission Marker: Olive Ann Oatman Fairchild]

Date: 2011-12/2012-03
Creator: West, Carolyn Effie
Description: Photograph of the Texas Historical Commission marker for Olive Ann Oatman Fairchild (1837-1903) in Sherman, Texas. Text: Captured in Arizona at age 13 (1851) by Yavapai Indians, who massacred 6 members of family. Sold to Mojave Indians, she was treated kindly but bore mark of a slave - blue, cactus needle tattoo on skin - for rest of life. Ransomed by Army at Fort Yuma, 1856. Lived in California, then New York. There she married J. B. Fairchild in 1865. About 1872 moved to Sherman, where husband founded city bank. Resided in Sherman until death in 1903.
Contributing Partner: Private Collection of Carolyn West
[Texas Historical Commission Marker: Park of Old Settlers Association of Grayson County]

[Texas Historical Commission Marker: Park of Old Settlers Association of Grayson County]

Date: 2011-12/2012-03
Creator: West, Carolyn Effie
Description: Photograph of the Texas Historical Commission marker for Park of Old Settlers Association of Grayson County in Sherman, Texas. Text: A public-spirited group dedicated to preservation of history and enrichment of contemporary life. Founded in 1879, when oldtimers traveled by wagon and camped near Sherman to reminisce about days of Republic of Texas, the frontier, and the Southern Confederacy. Speakers at first meeting included Mrs. Julia Shannon King (daughter of donor of part of Sherman townsite) and Mrs. Sophia Porter, who came to Grayson County in 1838 as bride of Holland Coffee, owner of Indian trading post at Preston Bend. The association was incorporated on Oct. 31, 1898. Having met in various groves, it purchased this popular and accessible site in 1899 as permanent headquarters. Financing was hampered by adversities (bad weather, smallpox, power failure on commuting streetcar line), but purchase cost was paid by 1909. The auditorium, named for the Veteran Association Secretary Jesse Loving, was built in 1923. Noted orators at annual conventions have included Statesmen Joseph Weldon Bailey, James S. Hogg, Roger O. Mills, Sam Rayburn, John H. Reagan, Morris Sheppard. Used for years by Red River Valley Fair, and now by civic and youth groups, this ...
Contributing Partner: Private Collection of Carolyn West
[Texas Historical Commission Marker: Perrin Air Force Base]

[Texas Historical Commission Marker: Perrin Air Force Base]

Date: 2011-12/2012-03
Creator: West, Carolyn Effie
Description: Photograph of the Texas Historical Commission marker for Perrin Air Force Base in Sherman, Texas. Text: Plans began in early 1941 for a U.S. Army Air Corps installation to be located in Grayson County. This 1,160-acre site was acquired in June, and air corps personnel began arriving in August. The base was to serve as a basic flight training facility. During its construction, the U.S. was drawn into World War II following the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7. The first class of flight students, which arrived on December 16, graduated in February 1942 in ceremonies which included the dedication of the base in memory of Lt. Col. Elmer D. Perrin, a Texas test pilot killed in the line of duty in 1941. Pilots trained here served in World War II, Korea, and Vietnam. Their airplanes ranged from basic trainers of the 1940s to jets of the 1960s and 1970s. The presence of the air base became important in the life of Grayson County, creating jobs and boosting the local economy. Following the death in 1961 of Sam Rayburn, Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, many dignitaries, including the President and Vice President, arrived here and were ...
Contributing Partner: Private Collection of Carolyn West
[Texas Historical Commission Marker: Peter W. Grayson]

[Texas Historical Commission Marker: Peter W. Grayson]

Date: 2011-12/2012-03
Creator: West, Carolyn Effie
Description: Photograph of the Texas Historical Commission marker for Peter W. Grayson in Sherman, Texas. Text: Peter Wagener Grayson was born in 1788 in Bardstown, Virginia (later part of Kentucky) to Benjamin and Caroline (Taylor) Grayson, members of a politically prominent family. He served in the War of 1812 and worked in Louisville as an attorney, businessman and legislator. Well-spoken in legal matters and also a poet, he nevertheless amassed substantial debt and privately combated mental illness. In 1830, Grayson wrote to Stephen F. Austin about acquiring land in Texas, and by 1832 he had established a plantation near Matagorda. He also became a friend and advisor to Austin. During Austin's imprisonment in Mexico City in 1834, Grayson and Spencer Jack went there with petitions in hopes of freeing the Empresario. In December 1834, they secured Austin's bail, although he was not free to leave until the following summer. Settlers began preparations for revolution soon after Austin returned to Texas, and Grayson worked with him to outline an independent government. Grayson also served as president of the Council of War and Aide-de-Camp to both Austin and Gen. Edward Burleson. After Texas' victory at San Jacinto on April 21, 1836, Grayson acted ...
Contributing Partner: Private Collection of Carolyn West
[Texas Historical Commission Marker: Pilot Grove Baptist Church]

[Texas Historical Commission Marker: Pilot Grove Baptist Church]

Date: 2011-12/2012-03
Creator: West, Carolyn Effie
Description: Photograph of the Texas Historical Commission marker for Pilot Grove Baptist Church in Pilot Grove, Texas. Text: This congregation traces its history to the establishment of the United Baptist Church here in 1848 on 3.5 acres of land donated by Hezakiah Warden. By 1850 the town of Pilot Grove contained the Baptist Church, a post office, grist mill, drugstore, several saloons, and a cotton gin. Warden donated an acre of land along Pilot Grove Creek to the Baptist Church in 1854. Pilot Grove Baptist Church was established as a mission of the United Baptist Church by Elders John A. Piars, Benjamin Watson, and George F. Calor, and a number of other charter members in 1858. Early worship services were held in members' homes and in a local schoolhouse until a sanctuary was built in 1876. During this time and until the early 1970s new converts were baptized in nearby Pilot Grove Creek. According to local tradition the original sanctuary was destroyed in a tornado and replaced with a new church building at this site in 1917. During World War II the town of Pilot Grove began a rapid decline and today is a small rural community with only this congregation ...
Contributing Partner: Private Collection of Carolyn West
[Texas Historical Commission Marker: Pioneer Cotton Seed Oil Mill]

[Texas Historical Commission Marker: Pioneer Cotton Seed Oil Mill]

Date: 2011-12/2012-03
Creator: West, Carolyn Effie
Description: Photograph of the Texas Historical Commission marker for Pioneer Cotton Seed Oil Mill in Sherman, Texas. Text: Here the Sherman Cotton Oil Company was created by John Clement Tassey between 1871-1879, to become, at one time, largest of its kind in the world. Company was at first housed in frame buildings. In 1891 a permanent building was erected. Spacious engine room contained white marble slab floor, oak paneled walls, red brick fireplace of English design, and a carved oak staircase. The new facility had a peak capacity of over 400 tons of cotton seed a day. By 1893, was called "largest cotton seed oil mill in the world" in geography textbooks, Texas "Almanac," 1904. Oil from this plant went to ports throughout the world. Tassey was known in Europe as "Mr. Sherman", and Sherman as the city "where the oil comes from". A pioneer in use of cotton seed for edible purposes; in 1902 a preparation of cotton seed oil for cooking was added to company's production. Smaller mills began competing for available seed; by 1903 plant closed because of inability to secure sufficient cotton seed to operate economically. It was reorganized and reopened in 1913 as the Interstate Cotton ...
Contributing Partner: Private Collection of Carolyn West
[Texas Historical Commission Marker: Pool Manufacturing Company]

[Texas Historical Commission Marker: Pool Manufacturing Company]

Date: 2011-12/2012-03
Creator: West, Carolyn Effie
Description: Photograph of the Texas Historical Commission marker for Pool Manufacturing Company in Sherman, Texas. Text: BACK Originally chartered September 20, 1909, as Sherman Overall Manufacturing. First machinery was secured from a glove manufacturer and placed in the Birge-Forbes Building on East Lamar Street. Company was purchased in August 1911, by R. F. Pool and son Carl; in following years, expansion led to use of several separate buildings in downtown Sherman. Name changed to Pool Manufacturing Co. in 1925. In December 1928, plant was moved to this site with 60,000 square feet of manufacturing space. Originally manufacturing overalls, they later added work pants, work shirts, and matched uniforms; all bearing the Pool's "Swetpruf" brand, an important first in the industry being a colorfast khaki. Pool was leader in the practice of preshrinking fabrics before manufacture; this was before sanforization. In the early 1930s Pool introduced the original Army cramerton cloth, basic fabric still used by the U. S. Armed Forces. Carl Pool began and developed application of modern-day industrial engineering to manufacture of garments. Further expansion recently has put Pool into the field of manufacturing sports clothes. Market area now extends to the Pacific Coast and some foreign countries.
Contributing Partner: Private Collection of Carolyn West