The Dallas Journal, Volume 53, 2007 Page: 1
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El Tivoli Place History
El Tivoli Place is one of Oak Cliff's well-established neighborhoods and considered a hidden treasure
south of the Trinity River. It was originally Peters Colony land before becoming part of the La Reunion
settlement. There is a historical marker identifying the area at the sixth hole of the Stevens Park Golf
Course, just west of Hampton Road, south of the tree row behind the Stevens Park Pharmacy on
STE OF THE FRENCH COLONV
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SETTLED 1854 PLACED D
JANE DOUCGLAS CHAPTER
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APRIL 10 1924
The La Reunion Colony
Immigrants from Europe, including France, Belgium, and Switzerland, came to America as the
"European & American Society of Colonization to Texas" in 1855. Their plan was to begin a new
Utopian community that would allow freedom of their political beliefs. This generally French settlement
became known as La Reunion.
The people were mostly artisans, aristocrats, and physicians, and poorly suited to start a farming
community, although their group did include several farmers. They settled on a 640-acre parcel of land
purchased from Anson McCracken, who had originally received it as a grant from the Peters Colony
acreage. Things went well in the beginning for the colony, but the good crops fell prey to the long, hot
summer, drought, and freezing winter. La Reunion lasted 18 months before it was abandoned and its
residents scattered. Some of the more adventuresome stayed in the area and moved to the nearby city of
Dallas. Many of those moving to Dallas began businesses there, and brought their European culture and
art to the new land and people.
Julien Reverchon was among the later prominent settlers who moved from La Reunion to Dallas, and at
one time owned the land where El Tivoli Place residential addition is now located. El Tivoli Place
evolved through a series of owners to its present state.
The first owner of the El Tivoli site was Anson McCracken, who in 1855 received the 640-acre tract as a
grant from Elisha M. Pease, Governor of Texas. McCracken, his wife Mahala Ann, and their four
children came to the Peters Colony in 1844 from Missouri. A fifth child was born in 1849.
In 1850 Anson McCracken obtained a certificate, No. 18 Vol. 2, issued by the Commissioner of Peters
Colony for 640 acres. This "Grant to Anson McCracken by the State of Texas" was found at the Records
Dallas Journal 2007 1
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Dallas Genealogical Society. The Dallas Journal, Volume 53, 2007, periodical, October 2007; Dallas, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth186866/m1/5/: accessed August 22, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Dallas Genealogical Society.