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Cherokee County, Texas



Candice Midkiff Bean

Marker location: Selman-Roark Cemetery on State Hwy. 21 in Linwood,

Text: Wife of Peter Ellis Bean born near Nashville, Tenn. in 1802. Died near Douglass, Texas in December 1848. One of those pioneer women who braved the Indian menace and rocked the cradle of Texas liberty.

Ellis P. Bean

Marker location: 2 mi. E of Alto on SH 21 at CR 2610, (1999)

Text: (Peter Ellis Bean) (June 8, 1783 - October 3, 1846) Born in Tennessee, Ellis P. Bean came to Texas with Philip Nolan's mustang hunters in 1800. He was captured by Spanish troops in 1801, and taken to Mexico as a prisoner. In 1810 he was freed in exchange for service to the Royalist Army, but he quickly deserted to the rebels under Morelos. Fifteen years later, Bean returned to the U. S. as a Mexican colonel to seek aid for the rebel cause. He joined Andrew Jackson's army at the Battle of New Orlenas, but returned to Mexico within the year. In 1816 he barely escaped the Royalists by leaving his wife to flee to the U. S. He married a Tennessean in 1818. They moved to Texas in 1823, where Bean served Mexico as an Indian agent. After Texas independence, Bean made his home near this site. He disappeared in 1843 to return to Mexico, dying in the home of his first wife in 1846. (1999)

Benge, Chief Samuel

Marker location: 4.2 miles north of Jacksonville on US 69, then 5 miles west on FM 855 and 2 miles north on FM 2137 to CR 3601

Text: A leader of the Cherokee Indians in Texas during the 1830s, Samuel Benge was present at the negotiations with General Sam Houston, John Cameron and John Forbes in early 1836 to secure a treaty with the Cherokee in return for neutrality during the imminent war for independence from Mexico. As a condition of the resulting Houston-Forbes Treaty, the Cherokee were to occupy specific lands in east Texas, and Chief Benge, a signer of the treaty, was required to move east across the Neches River into what is now Cherokee County. The Cherokee upheld their part of the treaty during the war, but the Republic of Texas senate later nullified the treaty, a step toward the ultimate removal of the Cherokees from Texas. (2001)

Berryman, Helena Dill

Marker location: private cemetery, FM 241, 5.5 miles NE of Alto (1969)

Text: Helena Dill Berryman (September 8, 1804 -- March 13, 1888) first Anglo child born in Texas, according to tradition. Grew up in Nacogdoches when it was ruled by Spain. Married Lt. Henry Berryman in 1823. They moved later to the estate she inherited in present Cherokee County. Built log home in 1847, named it "Forest Hill." There entertained many noted Texans. Took active part in county development. Had 5 children; 3 lived to adulthood. After death of husband, reared 30 orphans.

Bowles, Great Chief  (Last Home of Bowles, Great Chief of the Cherokee Nation)

Marker location: near Alto

Text:  Here he received President Lamar's decree of expulsion form Texas of the Cherokees and associate tribes in June 1839. Chief Bowles was killed in a decisive battle in the present Van Zandt County, July 16, 1839 and the tribes expelled.

Bowman, James H.

Marker location: Old Mount Hope Cemetery, near Wells

Text: A soldier in the Army of Republic of Texas, 1836. Born in 1820. Died in February 1886.

Bowman, John Joseph

Marker location: Mt. Hope Cemetery near Wells (1983)

Text: (Aug. 15, 1807-Mar. 30, 1890) Tennessee native John Joseph Bowman came to Texas with his family in 1822 and settled in Stephen F. Austin's colony on the Colorado. He later resided in Matagorda County, where, in 1835, he enlisted in the Texian Army, and served in the Texas War for Independence with his father, Joseph, and his brother James, who also is buried here. After the war, Bowman lived in Nacogdoches County before making a permanent home in Cherokee County.

Brown, Judge H.T.

Marker location: Resthaven Cemetery on N. Pineda St. in Jacksonville (1968)

Text: Judge H.T. Brown (August 17, 1885 - April 3, 1958) Judge of the 2nd District for over 13 years. Respected for his quiet, studious and careful handling of cases. Taught in country school at 20. Was chosen County School Superintendent, Judge. Served 8 years in the legislature. Married Mary Ethel Evans.

Campbell, Thomas Mitchell

Marker location: Old Rusk-Gallatin Road, 4 miles NE of Rusk (1970)

Text: Second native Texan to serve as governor. Born here April 22, 1856, the son of Thomas Duncan Campbell and Rachel Moore Campbell. Elected in 1906, he was re-elected in 1908. His administrations were characterized by the passage of a pure food law, attempts to regulate lobbying, reform of the state prison system and regulation of insurance. Under Campbell the Texas State Library and Historical Commission was set up. He died April 1, 1923.

Carey Lake-Boggy Creek Oil Field

Marker location: 11 miles NW of Jacksonville on FM 747 (1995)

Text:  Cherokee County's first commercial oil field was discovered here in the area of Carey Lake and Boggy Creek by the Humble Oil and Refining Company in 1927. A discovery well drilled at the northeast corner of Carey Lake revealed the unique geological relationship between recoverable oil deposits and subterranean salt domes. In its operations in this area Humble Oil introduced innovative recovery techniques using seamless tubing, oil-gas ratios and well pressures that subsequently became industry standards. Oil production in this area continued into the 1950s.

Davis, Nicholas A. Davis, Chaplain, Church Founded by

Marker location:  Corner of Nacogdoches and S. Boulton

Text: Born in Alabama in 1824. Entered Presbyterian ministry. Moved to Texas in 1857. Farmed and preached. At start of Civil War joined the 4th Texas Infantry and went with troops to Virginia. As a Confederate chaplain had same pay and rations as a private, and no status privileges. Duties included religious services, lessons, counseling, funerals, baptisms, sick visits, removal of wounded and dead from battlefields. Handled mail, with special attention for men who could not read and write. Worked to get better troop living conditions. Established hospital wards. Because newspapers gave Virginians credit for Texas boys' victories, published 1863 in Richmond his "Campaign from Texas to Maryland." A Houston edition gave homefolk news few soldiers could tell. After war returned to farming, building churches and preaching over the state. For many years was a Trinity University trustee. Established the first commercial orchard in Jacksonville and started the development which makes the area foremost in Texas fruit growing. Pioneered use of insecticides, better farming methods and new machinery. Died in 1894 in San Antonio

Dean, Thomas Jefferson

Marker location: City cemetery at west end of Kickapoo Street (1986)

Text: Thomas Jefferson Dean (Aug. 5, 1883 -- Feb. 5, 1949) Born on a farm in Gregg County, Tom Dean became a pastor of the First Christian Church in Jacksonville in 1909, four years before graduating from Texas Christian University. He led efforts to establish the town's public library and Boy Scout troop. Returning to farming, he headed the local Farm Security Administration office in the 1940s. As Chamber of Commerce manager he helped establish "Farm Family Days," an annual fair which ended in the 1950s.

Frazier, I. K.

Dr. Frazer, in Civil War had been in 3rd Texas Cavalry and Brigade of Gen. Joseph Hogg. For over 40 years, until his death in 1908, Dr. Frazer was a leading physician of Rusk. RTHL 1969

Hill, Stella Salmon

Marker location: off US 69 on Cemetery Street, Alto, TX (1966)

Text: Moved to Texas, 1908, from Arkansas. Taught in Rusk and Alto before marrying Dr. James C. Hill in 1919. Teacher, civic, social and religious leader who championed her beloved East Texas. Stella Hill Memorial Library honors her name.

Lee, Isaac

Marker location: Shiloh Cemetery, FM 752 about 3 miles northwest of Alto (1989)

Text: (February 8, 1788 -- October 4, 1880) A native of Georgia, Isaac Lee lived in Mississippi and Arkansas before coming to Texas in 1828. He settled first at present San Augustine and later near Nacogdoches. He was a participant in the Battle of Nacogdoches in 1832 and served in the Republic of Texas Army. He and his wife, Mary, were the parents of four children. Lee moved to a farm near Alto to live with his daughter, Mary Ann Anderson, in 1870 and died there ten years later.(1989)

Mitchell, Robert F.

Marker location: off US 69 on Cemetery Street in Alto (1986)

Text: (Nov. 13, 1801 -- Apr. 10, 1878) Ohio native Robert F. Mitchell came to Nacogdoches County, Texas in 1837. Briefly associated with John Durst in a mercantile firm, Mitchell moved to Cherokee County in 1849 and, soon after, his land on the upland divide between the Neches and Angelina Rivers was used for the townsite of Alto (Latin for high). He later ran a store and gin in Alto and a hotel north of the Old San Antonio Road and served as a leader in the development of the town and area.

Nelson, Helena Kimble Dill

Marker location: family cemetery off SH 21, 2 miles east of Alto (1969)

Text: (1770 -- 1848) Mother of child thought to have been first Anglo-American born in Texas, in 1804. Helena Kimble was born in Maryland. Married James Dill in 1786. Moved to Nacogdoches, then under Spanish rule, 1793. There he became an Indian trader and served as alcalde (mayor), 1821-1823. He died 1825. She gained title in 1828 to Dill's land grant, in present Cherokee County. Moved here and soon after married Wm. Nelson.

Pike, Zebulon

Marker location: 7 miles west of Alto at Caddo Mounds State Park (1982)

Text: In 1807, under commission from Gen. James Wilkinson, Governor of the Louisiana Territory, Lt. Zebulon Pike led an expedition to explore the headwaters of the Arkansas and Red Rivers and to report on Spanish settlements in the New Mexico area. Heading south from present Colorado, where the party saw the mountain later named Pike's Peak for the expedition's leader, they were arrested by Spanish authorities. Under escort back to the United States, the party camped near this site on June 24, 1807. The Pike expedition furnished an important account of Spanish Texas and New Mexico.

Slover, George Washington

Marker location: .5 mile west of Dialville on FM 1910 (1969)

Text: (March 27, 1816 -- August 22, 1864) Baptist minister and carpenter. Of French descent, he was born in Jefferson County, Tennessee. Said to have built the Atlanta Hotel depicted in "Gone with the Wind", famous novel of the South during the Civil War. Moved to Cherokee County in 1848, where, on April 8, he helped found the Rocky Springs Baptist Church. He also served as pastor. On March 2, 1837, at Danridge, Tennessee, he married Adelia Wood. They had seven children.

Smith, Jackson

Marker location: city cemetery in Jacksonville (1986

Text: A blacksmith by trade, Kentuckian Jackson Smith came to Texas in the 1830s and participated in the War for Independence. He later visited this area as a Republic of Texas scout. In the 1840s, he settled southwest of here in the Gum Creek community. Near there he platted a townsite he called Jacksonville. Smith served as a Confederate officer in the Civil War. In 1972, Jacksonville was moved to its present site along the new railroad.

Stadler, Robert Graves

Marker location: Fitch Cemetery, Blackjack Cmmunity, 12 miles northeast of Jacksonville east of FM 2750 and SH 110 intersection (1985)

Text: Born in Granville County, North Carolina, Robert Graves Stadler was a veteran of the War of 1812 and the Texas War of Independence. He purchased land in this area in 1845 and settled near the already established community of Griffin (2 mi, SE). By 1853, Stadler had encouraged relatives from North Caroline to make their homes here. He died just as the Civil War began, having laid the foundation for what became the farming community of Blackjack.

Templeton, David Green

Marker location: Jacksonville City Cemetery (2001)

Text: (Aug. 5, 1815 - June 29, 1871) Cherokee County pioneer David Greene Templeton arrived in the county shortly after the legislature organized it in 1846. Settling in the Gum Creek Community (later Old Jacksonville), the North Carolina native became a prominent landowner and civic leader. In 1850, Templeton was appointed one of nine original trustees to the Presbyterian College at Larissa (later Larissa College). Active in his local Masonic lodge, he was part of the Confederate home guard during the Civil War. His descendants served prominently in the early development of Jacksonville. Recorded - 2001

Tennison, Dr. William Reuben

Marker location: McDonald Cemetery, 1 mile south of New Summerfield on SH 110 (1988)

Text: (March 18, 1855 -- November 12, 1936) Born in a log cabin in rural east Cherokee County, William Reuben Tennison earned a degree from St. Louis Medical School in 1878. He returned home to open an office in the home of his father, Mathew Tennison. For the next fifty-eight years he provided health care for the people of Cherokee County, often treating indigent patients without payment. He continued to treat patients until shortly before his death.

This  information comes from The Texas Historical Commission Markers.