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Collegeport Articles

1947 - 1949

Collegeport Student Receives Award At San Marcos College

SAN MARCOS, Feb. 11--Kathryn Louise Bowers of Collegeport was awarded the Gregg Publishing Company Complete Theory Certificate recently by the Business Administration Department of the Southwest Texas State College.

The theory certificate awarded by the Gregg Publishing Company is evidence of the mastery of the theory of Gregg shorthand.

Palacios Beacon, February 13, 1947

County Federation To Meet Saturday In Collegeport

The Matagorda County Federation of Women’s Clubs will meet Saturday, June 14th, in Collegeport at the Community Church. The board meeting will open at 9:30 with the general session at 10 o’clock.

We are very fortunate in having as our guest speaker, Mr. Roy Wade, of State Department of Public Safety, Austin, who spoke before Athena Club here a short time ago.

We urge all women to make an effort to be at this important meeting. The session will close with the luncheon at the “Mopac” house, price 75c.

Palacios Beacon, June 12, 1947

R. E. "Bob" Smith Buys Mad Island Slough, 1980 Acres

R. E. "Bob" Smith, oil man of Houston and formerly a Bay City boy, recently closed a deal which made him owner of the famous hunting grounds near Collegeport, known as Mad Island Slough. The consideration was less than forty thousand dollars and the acreage amounts to nearly 2,000.

"I did not retain any mineral rights," stated Mr. Smith, "because I merely want it for the hunting it affords and also want to have a place for my friends when they want to go hunting."

Mr. Smith was through the city today on his way to Collegeport where he and his family spend several days a month in his beautiful home there on the bay.

Daily Tribune, October 8, 1948

Collegeport Once Site of Coastal University

By Annie Lee Shelton
Post Staff Correspondent

Wharton County Junior College is by no means the first college in the Gulf Coast Country, even though it is the first to survive.

The Community of Collegeport, down on the bay in Matagorda County, was once the site of the Gulf Coast University--born in 1909--died in 1910. [Note: It survived several years after 1910.]

Only the old-timers remember the university, which grew out of land development by northern real estate dealers who sought to make the Collegeport section a citrus growing area.

For a while the land promoters were successful. They chose the wrong crops, however, not knowing that in due time the area would become rich in rice and cattle.

Gulf Coast University was advertised in glowing terms to prospective students. Lessons were held in the mornings, and in the afternoons the boys worked in truck gardens and the girls worked in community homes.

"I remember where the building stood" Mrs. Hattie Kundinger, resident of Collegeport for 40 years, says.

"William Travis was the teacher, and his brother, Murray Travis, was pastor of the Collegeport Federated Church, and editor of the Collegeport Chronicle."

There were three hotels, each catering to the tourist trade and prospective land buyers; two hardware stores, lumber yard, drug store, and many other business houses. Hugo Kundinger came to Collegeport in 1916 from Illinois, and has owned the Collegeport Drug Store, which he and Mrs. Kundinger operated, since 1917.

"Those really were the days," Mrs. Kundinger said. "We used to have a barge to Palacios to ship our fine watermelons out over the state. We also had a boat service to Palacios. A round trip ticket cost 25 cents.

"I remember July 4, 1909, the entire town boarded the "Dena H." an excursion boat, and spent the day at the peninsula.

Some history of the community can be gleaned from news stories in a June, 1911 issue of the Collegeport Chronicle, which Mr. Kundinger has preserved.

One news story reveals that "the late tourist party from Morris, Illinois, who visited our state recently, took only lemonade at the bars in Fort Worth, Houston, and Galveston."

After a visit over neighboring counties which the editor described as "like a trip through a wonderland of cotton, alfalfa, potatoes, and onions," the editor also said that he found out "marvelous facts about the Texas coastal rain belt," and that it is the "best corn country on earth."

The Pierce Estate, he wrote, "has many fine thorough bred cattle and hogs, and the herd of Brahma cows and Poland China hogs have attracted national attention.

"Our town was damaged at times by coastal storms," Mrs. Kundinger said, but the town failed to develop because the wrong crops were being promoted. I don't know how we got the name 'Collegeport' because our school was called a 'University.'"

Today there is a community of 200 persons at Collegeport. The town is scattered. Part of its homes and the elementary school are at the original site of the Gulf Coast University and town hotels and business firms.

Palacios Beacon, July 14, 1949

Collegeport Girl Crowned Festival Queen
Jeanette Williams, Local School Girl, Cops Another Title

Pretty, hazel-eyed Jeanette Williams, a 17-year-old Palacios high school senior and daughter of Mr. and Mrs. C. J. Williams, was selected as the 1949 Rice Festival Queen Friday night in ceremonies at the Service Center in Bay City.

Miss Williams succeeds Miss Barbara Borel of Freeport and will reign until the 1950 queen is selected. She will be an honor guest at next year’s festival.

She is five feet three inches tall and weighs 102 pounds. Her measurements: bust, 34 inches; waist, 23; hips, 34 inches. She has hazel eyes, brown hair and an olive complexion. She wears a size nine dress.

Miss Williams represented the County Farm Bureau in the competition. She has won two other similar prizes—that of county farm bureau queen and a bi-county title for farm bureau honors. She will enter state competition in Dallas November 20. If she wins there, she will enter the national contest later in the year to be held in Chicago.

Miss Williams was crowned by oilman Glenn McCarthy. Other judges were Movie Actor John Carroll and Model Mary Beth McDonald of Houston.

Oilman Glen McCarthy and movie actor John Carroll were forced to land at the Palacios Municipal Airport because of the inclement weather in Bay City. They were to be the guests of honor at the Rice Festival. They were also judges of the queen contest.

Palacios Beacon, October 10, 1949


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Sep. 24, 2011
Sep. 24, 2011