Creator: West, Carolyn Effie
Description: Photograph of the Texas Historical Commission marker for Whitewright in Whitewright, Texas. Text: Early settlers in this part of Grayson County established communities at Orangeville (4 mi. e.), Pilot Grove (4 mi. s.), and Kentucky Town (3 mi. w.). In 1878, after the Missouri, Kansas, and Texas (MAT) railroad built a line southeast from Denison to this Site, a new town was created and named for William Whitewright (1825-1898), a railroad official and vice-president of Union Trust Company of New York, the railroad's financial backer. Immediately upon the news of the town's founding, former citizens of Orangeville, Pilot Grove, and Kentuckytown moved to Whitewright. A post office was established in 1878, along with numerous homes and businesses. By 1894 the town boasted schools, churches, a newspaper, a college, and community organizations, as well as railroad depots, cotton gins, restaurants, drugstores, grocery stores, wagon yards and livery stables, lumberyards, hardware stores, blacksmith shops, and numerous other businesses. Serious fires in 1904 and 1911 almost destroyed the central business district, but the citizens soon rebuilt. The city of Whitewright no longer has passenger rail service, but it continues its role as an important marketing center for this area of Grayson County.
Contributing Partner: Private Collection of Carolyn West