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[Texas Historical Commission Marker: Van Alstyne]

Description: Photograph of the Texas Historical Commission marker for Van Alstyne in Van Alstyne, Texas. Text: The town of Mantua was established about 3 miles southwest of here in 1854. Mantua prospered but was unexpectedly bypassed in 1873 when the Houston and Texas Central Railway (H&TC) extended its track through this area instead. That year a depot was built and a post office established in the new town named for Maria Van Alstyne, the widow of W.A. Van Alstyne who had been a principal stockholder of the H&TC. Churches, businesses, and people of Mantua and other area towns moved here to be near the railroad. Van Alstyne was incorporated and a newspaper established in 1883. Columbia College was founded in 1889. Van Alstyne contained banks, schools, hotels, an opera house, a literary club, and electric service. by 1900, when cotton and other farm production dominated the local economy. Interurban transportation began in 1908. The local "Grays" semi-pro baseball team, established about 1902, played for many decades and produced a number of major league players. Many local businesses, churches, and social organizations trace their origins to Mantua and 19th century Van Alstyne. The historic downtown area, the former site of popular Saturday night social activities, continues as a business and social center.
Date: 2011-12/2012-03
Creator: West, Carolyn Effie
Partner: Private Collection of Carolyn West

[Photograph of Van Alstyne]

Description: Photograph of Van Alstyne. The Texas Historical Marker is visible in the photograph. There is a two-story brick building, gazebo, and a water tower in the photograph.
Date: 2011-12/2012-03
Creator: West, Carolyn Effie
Partner: Private Collection of Carolyn West

[Texas Historical Commission Marker: Vittitoe Cemetery]

Description: Photograph of the Texas Historical Commission marker for Vittitoe Cemetery in Whitewright, Texas. Text: This graveyard was begun as a family burial plot by Samuel and Ellen Vittitoe, who settled on land surrounding this site in 1852. Their son, Frank, probably was the first to be buried here sometime before the outbreak of the Civil War, although his headstone is undated, the Vittitoes made it known to the residents of Kentucky Town (1 mi. N.) that their plot was open for burials outside the family, but the cemetery was not used as a public burial ground until it was legally established as such in 1885. More than 700 graves have been recorded in the Vittitoe Cemetery, most of them bear tombstones with legible inscriptions, but others are marked only by stakes or pieces of stone or rock, included among those buried here are early settlers such as Andrew Thomas, who brought his family to the area in 1837; numerous Civil War veterans; the Rev. Isaac Teague, Pastor of the Kentucky Town Baptist Church during the early 1900s; and Benjamin Earnest, who helped establish a general store soon after settling in Kentucky Town in 1859. Vittitoe Cemetery, which is cared for by the Vittitoe Cemetery Association, is an important reminder of the early history of this part of Grayson County.
Date: 2011-12/2012-03
Creator: West, Carolyn Effie
Partner: Private Collection of Carolyn West

[Photograph of Vittitoe Cemetery]

Description: Photograph of Vittitoe Cemetery in Whitewright, Texas. There is a brick sign that reads "Vittitoe Cemetery". Several headstones are visible and there are several trees in the cemetery.
Date: 2011-12/2012-03
Creator: West, Carolyn Effie
Partner: Private Collection of Carolyn West

[Texas Historical Commission Marker: Walnut Street Church of Christ]

Description: Photograph of the Texas Historical Commission marker for Walnut Street Church of Christ in Sherman, Texas. Text: Completed in 1920, this classical revival sanctuary first served the congregation of the Walnut Street Church of Christ. Known as Travis Street Church of Christ since 1963, when it moved to a new site, the congregation has ties to the 1850s. Members built this edifice to serve as their third sanctuary. The chapel is a two-story raised structure with a central stairway, grand portico, and 48 stained glass windows.
Date: 2011-12/2012-03
Creator: West, Carolyn Effie
Partner: Private Collection of Carolyn West

[Photograph of Walnut Street Church of Christ]

Description: Photograph of Walnut Street Church of Christ building. It is a large brick building with stained glass windows. There is a flight of stairs leading up to the building. There are two stories, and another lower story that appears to be partially underground. There are two columns at the entrance to the church.
Date: 2011-12/2012-03
Creator: West, Carolyn Effie
Partner: Private Collection of Carolyn West

[Texas Historical Commission Marker: Washburn Cemetery]

Description: Photograph of the Texas Historical Commission marker for Washburn Cemetery in Bells, Texas. Text: Samuel and Mary Washburn and their family moved to Texas from Missouri in 1836. Washburn was granted 1280 acres of land in 1838. As more settlers moved into the area, a burial site was needed and a portion of land on the south edge of the Washburn survey was set aside for a cemetery. The oldest marked grave is that of infant Mary Gentry in 1867. However, many graves marked only with rocks or Bois D'Arc posts are believed to be from the 1850s. The 2.5-acre cemetery contains about 300 graves. The Washburn Cemetery Association maintains the site.
Date: 2011-12/2012-03
Creator: West, Carolyn Effie
Partner: Private Collection of Carolyn West

[Photograph of Washburn Cemetery]

Description: Photograph of the front of Washburn Cemetery in Bells, Texas. The gate leading into the cemetery has lettering above it spelling out "Washburn." Scattered among the graves are trees.
Date: 2011-12/2012-03
Creator: West, Carolyn Effie
Partner: Private Collection of Carolyn West

[State Historical Survey Committee Marker: L.A. Washington, Jr. and Wife Martha A.]

Description: Photograph of the State Historical Survey Committee marker for L.A. Washington, Jr. and Wife Martha A. in Denison, Texas. Text: Grandnephew of George Washington, who had been guardian of L.A.'s father was a doctor; came to Texas 1849 with inaugural suit. Personal letters of George Washington. Wife came from noted West Virginia family. Recorded - 1968.
Date: 2011-12/2012-03
Creator: West, Carolyn Effie
Partner: Private Collection of Carolyn West

[Texas Historical Commission Marker: Washington Iron Works, Inc.]

Description: Photograph of the Texas Historical Commission marker for Washington Iron Works, Inc. in Sherman, Texas. Text: In 1875 Solon Totten (1847-1932) made two horseback trips to Texas from Quincy, Illinois, searching for better conditions for the family blacksmith business. Finding stage companies operating out of Sherman which required blacksmith services, he persuaded his father and family to move here. In 1876 Solon and his brother Levi Totten (1844-1915) opened "Totten Bros. Blacksmith" on Cherry Street. The business made wheels for freight wagons and stagecoaches and repaired the vehicles. L.L. Roussel, Adolph and Max Seisfeld, Noah Swain and Levi and Solon Totten were the original stockholders. The named changed in 1881 to "Washington Iron Works". In 1890 the firm moved to East Lamar Street and settled here. By 1893 the Totten brothers and their father Joseph (1821-1906) gained full ownership. It remains in the Totten family. After 1904 Solon operated the company with his sons Harry (1877-1964) and Jesse (1880-1946) until he retired in 1922. Harold Totten (1900-1969) ran the company with his father Harry after Jesse's death. The foundry section closed in 1938. During World War II, the shop made gun barrel molds. This industry, the oldest in Sherman, has expanded to a worldwide service for oil and gas processing, petrochemical plants, power generation and marine interests.
Date: 2011-12/2012-03
Creator: West, Carolyn Effie
Partner: Private Collection of Carolyn West

[Photograph of Washington Iron Works, Inc.]

Description: Photograph of the Washington Iron Works building. The building is a large brick warehouse. The Texas Historical Marker is visible on the building in the photograph. There is a door to the building and a large door to allow for loading and unloading.
Date: 2011-12/2012-03
Creator: West, Carolyn Effie
Partner: Private Collection of Carolyn West

[Texas Historical Commission Marker: Tom Randolph]

Description: Photograph of the Texas Historical Commission marker for Tom Randolph (Nov. 13, 1854 - Jan. 8, 1918) in Sherman, Texas. Text: Tennessee native Thomas Randolph came to Grayson County with his family in 1859. Groomed to be a businessman, he was invited at age 19 to join C.C. Binkley at the Merchants and Planters Bank, which grew into a very prosperous and influential financial institution. Randolph served as bank president from 1886 until his death. In that capacity, he helped attract new industry and business to Sherman, and worked to establish the city's first hospital. He also served as chairman of the board of the National Bank of Commerce of St. Louis, Missouri, but always considered Sherman his home.
Date: 2011-12/2012-03
Creator: West, Carolyn Effie
Partner: Private Collection of Carolyn West

[Photograph of Tom Randolph]

Description: Photograph of Tom Randolph's memorial. It is a large granite structure with columns and a statue in the middle. The sun is setting behind the memorial in this photograph.
Date: 2011-12/2012-03
Creator: West, Carolyn Effie
Partner: Private Collection of Carolyn West

[Marker: Trading Post of Holland Coffee]

Description: Photograph of the marker for the Trading Post of Holland Coffee in Pottsboro, Texas. Text: Established about 1837 for trade with the Indians of the Red River region and the Western Plains. Here many white captives of the red men were redeemed. From its vicinity, the Snively Expedition set out for New Mexico on April 25, 1843. Abandoned after Coffee's death in 1846. Erected by the State of Texas 1936.
Date: 2011-12/2012-03
Creator: West, Carolyn Effie
Partner: Private Collection of Carolyn West

[Texas Historical Commission Marker: Travis Lodge No. 117, A.F. & A.M.]

Description: Photograph of the Texas Historical Commission marker for Travis Lodge No. 117, A.F. & A.M. in Sherman, Texas. Text: Founded in 1852, only six years after Sherman was designated the county seat, this Masonic Lodge is one of the oldest continuing institutions in the community. Local attorney Burrell Smith and fifteen other Masonic brothers petitioned for a dispensation to organize a Masonic lodge in Sherman on February 10, 1852. On August 28, 1852, Travis Lodge No. 117 was organized and officers were installed. Over the course of its history, the lodge has shared facilities with a Union church, other lodges, and several businesses in commercial buildings. A major fire destroyed most of the business section of Sherman on October 30, 1875, and lodge records, furniture, and equipment were lost in the blaze. A duplicate charter was issued June 10, 1876. The built a classical revival style temple on the northeast corner of Lamar and Walnut Streets in 1924. It remained the lodge headquarters until 1985, and was designated a recorded Historic Texas Landmark in 1988. Through the years Travis Lodge members have been prominent community leaders and the lodge has supported various masonic charitable endeavors such as hospitals, orphanages, and retirement homes.
Date: 2011-12/2012-03
Creator: West, Carolyn Effie
Partner: Private Collection of Carolyn West

[Texas Historical Commission Marker: Trinity United Presbyterian Church]

Description: Photograph of the Texas Historical Commission marker for Trinity United Presbyterian Church in Sherman, Texas. Text: In the 19th century, Protestant denominations began sending representatives into Texas to organize new churches. By 1850, the Cumberland Presbyterian Church had established seven congregations in Grayson County. The following year, the Rev. W.A. Provine led Sherman residents in organizing their own church, which began meeting in 1852 in the Masonic Lodge Hall, which was used by several local congregations. After subsequently using space at the Methodist church, the Cumberland congregation constructed its own sanctuary in 1872 on the northwest corner of Travis and Cherry Streets. Throughout the early years of the church's life, regular revivals played an important role. In 1906, after almost a century of separation, the National Cumberland Presbyterian Church rejoined the Presbyterian Church (USA), and individual congregations were given the choice to follow suit. The Sherman church voted to rejoin but maintained its name, Cumberland Presbyterian Church, until 1909, when it became known as Grace Presbyterian Church. As the church's membership grew, it built additional and larger facilities at that same site over the next several decades. In 1921, the congregation voted to be known as Central Presbyterian Church, and in the early 1960s, as the congregation moved to a new site in northwest Sherman, the name changed again, to Trinity United Presbyterian Church. Throughout its history, the congregation that began as Sherman's Cumberland Presbyterian Church emphasized youth, mission and benevolence programs at the local, national and international levels. These efforts continued after the church united in 1995 with Sherman's First Presbyterian Church, forming Covenant Presbyterian Church.
Date: 2011-12/2012-03
Creator: West, Carolyn Effie
Partner: Private Collection of Carolyn West
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