Welcome to Limestone County William F. Reagan. 1887 Map of Limestone County Courtesy of Limestone...
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Transcript of Welcome to Limestone County William F. Reagan. 1887 Map of Limestone County Courtesy of Limestone...
Welcome to Limestone County
William F. Reagan
1887 Map of Limestone CountyCourtesy of Limestone County Museum
Limestone County is located in a rural area of Central Texas. It was created by the Texas Legislature on April 11, 1846. At one time, numerous farming communities were spread all across the county, but today only a handful of small towns remain. On this tour you will visit these towns and some of the county’s more interesting sites.
When Limestone County was created in 1846, Springfield was selected as the first county seat. The Springfield Cemetery is now the only remaining physical evidence of this early community.
The town of Kosse was established by the Houston & Texas Central Railroad in 1869. It is located in the southern part of the county and currently has a population of 516.
First Baptist Church
Kosse is also the birthplace of Bob Wills.
Thornton was established by the H&TC Railroad in 1871. It is 8 miles north of Kosse and has a population of 525.
Old Thornton School
Lake Limestone is the largest recreational attraction in the county. People from all over come to enjoy fishing, boating, and skiing. Many people have also built retirement and vacation homes along its shores.
This church building was built by members of several denominations who took turns using it for worship. It was also used by the Old Union community as a school and is probably the only one-room school building left in the county. Church of Christ members still use the building for worship.
Old Union Church
The H&TC Railroad established the town of Groesbeck in 1871. It is located 8 miles north of Thornton and has a population of 4,358.
H&TC Railroad Depot - 1910Photo Courtesy of Limestone County Museum
Navasota Street – 1911Photo Courtesy of Limestone County Museum
Navasota Street – 2008
Groesbeck is the county seat of Limestone County. The present courthouse was built in 1925.
The Limestone County Historical Museum is located on Navasota Street in Groesbeck. It has a large collection of artifacts that documents the history of Limestone County.
Limestone County Historical Museum
Fort Parker is located 3 miles north of Groesbeck. The original fort was built by members of the Parker Colony who settled in the area in 1834. On May 19, 1836, the fort was attacked by Comanche and Kiowa Indians. Five of the settlers were killed, two were wounded and five were taken captive. One of the captives was a 9 year old girl who grew up as a Comanche and even married a Comanche chief. Her name was Cynthia Ann Parker , and her son, Quanah, became the last great chief of the Comanche.
Old Fort Parker
Old Fort Parker
The Fort Parker Cemetery was established when soldiers from Fort Houston buried the dead from the attack on Fort Parker . A monument to honor the members of the Parker Colony was erected in the cemetery by the State of Texas in 1936.
Fort Parker Cemetery
Fort Parker Monument
Mass Grave of the Five Killed During the Attack on Fort
This cabin was built by Mordecai Yell, a Methodist circuit preacher. It is believed that the logs he used to build it came from the original Fort Parker.
Fort Parker State ParkFort Parker State Park was created in 1935 on land donated by the City of Mexia and three local landowners. The Civilian Conservation Corps constructed all the recreational facilities in the late 1930s, and built a dam across the Navasota River in 1939, creating Fort Parker Lake.
Cabins Fort Parker Dam
Mexia is 12 miles north of Groesbeck and with a population of 6,708 is the largest town in the county. Mexia was established by the H&TC Railroad in 1871. In 1903 the Trinity & Brazos Valley Railroad built another line through the town.
H&TC and T&BV Train DepotsPhoto Courtesy of Limestone County Museum
Commerce Street – 1906Photo Courtesy of Limestone County Museum
During the 1920s, Mexia enjoyed one of Texas’ early oil booms. Remnants of the old oil fields can still be seen in the area.
Photo Courtesy of Limestone County Museum
Photo Courtesy of Limestone County Museum
Oil Derrick from Oil Boom Days
Mexia City Hall
Mexia Post Office
Even though she didn’t live there for very long, Anna Nicole Smith claimed Mexia as her hometown. She started school in Mexia as a ninth-grader, but dropped out during her sophomore year. Her name at that time was Vickie Lynn Hogan. While she was working as a waitress at Jim’s Krispy Fried Chicken, she met her first husband Billy Smith, who was a cook at the restaurant.
Anna Nicole Smith
Jim’s Krispy Fried Chicken(The chicken is very good.)
Cindy Walker was a member of the Country Music Hall of Fame and the Texas Music Hall of Fame and was a resident of Mexia for over forty years. She wrote over 500 songs that were recorded by various artists including Bob Wills, Eddy Arnold, Elvis, Roy Orbison, and Jim Reeves. She died in 2006 and is buried in the Mexia Cemetery.
Tombstone of Cindy Walker – Mexia Cemetery
The Mexia State School is one of the largest employers in the county. It was originally built as a German POW camp during World War II. A few of the buildings from the POW days still remain.
Mexia State School
Old German POW Barracks
German Officers’ Club
In 1889, a group of Limestone County Confederate veterans formed the Joseph E. Johnston Confederate Veterans Camp. In 1892, they purchased the first 20 acres of what would become the Confederate Reunion Grounds, and an eight-sided dance pavilion was constructed in 1893. Confederate veterans from all over the state attended the reunions held each year. Today, the park is still used for recreation, historical reenactments, and family reunions.
Confederate Reunion Grounds
Entrance Dance Pavilion
The Booker T. Washington Park was created in 1898 as a permanent place for African Americans to celebrate Juneteenth. June 19, 1865 is the day that slaves in Texas were emancipated.
Booker T. Washington Park
Tehuacana is located six miles west of Mexia and has a population of 307. It was named for the Tehuacana Indians who originally lived in the area. In an election to choose the state capital in 1850, the town received the third highest number of votes. It was also chosen in 1869 as the original site of Trinity University.
College Hall – Trinity University
Coolidge is located 7 miles west of Tehuacana and has a population of 880. It was established by the Trinity & Brazos Valley Railroad in 1903. Coolidge is the only Limestone County town that still has its railroad depot, which was recently restored and is now being used for city offices.
T&BV Railroad Depot Downtown Coolidge
Prairie Hill is located 12 miles west of Coolidge and has a population of 782. It developed as a farming community on the blackland prairie of northern Limestone County.
Prairie Hill Baptist Church Prairie Hill Community Center(formerly Church of Christ)
Thank you for visiting Limestone County.
I hope you enjoyed your tour.