Matagorda County, Texas
Written by Margaret Hill Lawson McElrath Linn
the year 1912, Common School
District No. 12 was established between the Tres Palacios River and
Cash's Creek. The two-room schoolhouse was first situated in the Dunbar
community by the river and near the church and store. It was called "The
School House." A. L. Dyer, Lela Driskell, and Harley Lewis were the
teachers. In 1914 the building was moved to the middle of the district
(about three miles west) on the prairie, hence "Prairie Center." Emma
Shadel and Clara Schley were the faculty.
In 1917 the new three-room school was completed. These small schools throughout the state of Texas were known as "Jim Ferguson schools." Outdoor plumbing consisted of two nice little white buildings with half-moon blinds covering the entrances. The Sears-Roebuck Catalog had a secondary value then. The boys' outhouse was to the northeast, while the girls' was to the southeast. There were no paved walks, so during the wet season, rubber boots were a much needed item. Of course if you did not possess these, you went barefoot and put your shoes back on when returning to the classroom. The entire campus was a low area. Drinking water was furnished with a hand pump until sometime in the 1930s when a pretty white fountain with six outlets was installed.
George Anderson, son of G. W. Anderson;
Clarence, Bill, Mabel, Ruby and Buster Chamblee;
Clinton, Helen Leona, Leeta, and Loyal, children of S. B. Lee;
Elmer Johnson's sons, Spencer and Leo;
Honor, Agnes, Elinor and Joyce McFarlain;
Carl and Josephine Holiday;
Winfred, Charlie, Ruby, Mary, Margaret and George, children of Guy Johnson;
Fern, Faye, J. W., Wilbur, Eldon, and Maxine, children of Frank Powers;
Theodore, Alice and Margaret, children of Bill Dannels;
George Harrison's children, Ruth, Naomi, and Marion;
Ray, Donald, and Dorothy, children of L. Dorsey;
Violet and Ernest Rolene;
Sam, Mattie, and Opal Sexton;
Margaret and Eldon, children of Luther Hill;
David and W. B. Carpenter;
Eunice, Euneve, Ada Mae, Ruth and Doris Brown;
Velma, Walter, and Leona Leadford;
Bertha and Bill Wright;
Howard and Lois Parker;
Lester and Erma Wilson;
Hugh, James, Chester, and Ovie Warner;
Harley, Minnie and Merle Viets;
Mary Lee and Carrie Lee Taylor;
Olga, Littleton and Raymond Harvey;
Mamie, Bessie, Effie, and Floyd Singleton;
Frances, Ethel, Ernest, and Vernon Snider;
Freeman, Hessel, and Audrey Harvey;
George, Alice, and Wesley Jones;
Anderson White's son Richard;
Rodin, Donie Fay, and Hope Pursewell;
Johnie Mae, Chrlsie, Eldon, L. J. and Nell Brister;
Jesse, Eva, and Judy Jones;
Mava Nee Ramsey;
Fleshana Alvarez and her brothers and sisters;
Cleddie Harvey's children, Carroll and Bobbie Joyce;
John and Bessie Bohuslav and their brothers and sisters;
Lorane and Gladys Rudenes;
Howard, Richard and Raymond Mozley;
Alfred and Ray Winfield;
the three Heath children;
the Rowlinson children;
Ray Dorsey's children, Joy, Ray, and Donald;
Harold, Carl, Carol, and Vernon Hunt;
Charles, James, Lurleen, and Correan Sikes.
Matagorda County News and Midcoast Farmer, May 1, 1914
Mrs. Jack Chamblee is spending the week in Houston visiting her daughter and other relatives.
J. W. Spender and E. I. Johnson attended the Federal Land Bank meeting at Houston Monday.
Miss Ward drove to Bay City Saturday to take her pupils Misses Uneva Brown, Fay Powers and Emily Kopecky to the graduating exercises.
Miss Helen Ward of Palacios closed a successful term of school by presenting an enjoyable program to a large crowd at the Prairie Center School House, Wednesday evening, May 9th. The entire district speaks high in praise of Miss Ward’s teaching. Misses Brown, Powers and Kopecky passed the county examination for diplomas, receiving high grades on all subjects and 100% in Arithmetic.
Palacios Beacon, May 17, 1928
The 4-H Club women met with Mrs. Elmer Johnson on Feb. 15th at 2:00 o’clock p. m. There were 17 members and six visitors present. Each member had a nice report.
Following the meeting the Club gave Mrs. Leo Johnson a shower. She received some nice and useful gifts. After the meeting refreshments consisting of hot chocolate and sandwiches were served. Everyone reported a nice time.
Our next meeting will be at the home of Mrs. Jack Chamblee on March 1, at 2 o’clock. Mrs. Sides will be there.
Palacios Beacon, February 22, 1934
Mr. Jack Chamblee has been very sick the past week with acute indigestion.
Mr. and Mrs. Arthur Wright and daughter, Bonnie Lou, returned last week from San Augustine, where they were called suddenly to see Mr. Wright's father, who was very ill. They report him improved.
Mrs. Elma Johnson, Mrs. Spencer Johnson, Mrs. Arthur Wright and Mrs. Birdwell attended the council meeting of the H. D. Club in Bay City. Also were guests of the County Federation and attended the tea given by Mrs. Thos. H. Lewis.
Mr. and Mrs. Will Phillips and family of the Prairie Center community are moving to Yuma, Ariz. Mrs. Phillips, Frances, Ned and William left Saturday and will visit at points over Texas before going on to Yuma. Mr. Phillips and Taylor will join them at Abilene.
Palacios Beacon, March 22, 1934
"We had such a grand meeting with twenty members and six visitors present, and our Short Course delegate, Mrs. Arthur Wright, gave us a splendid report on her trip to A. and M. Short Course." said Mrs. Mable Johnson, cooperator for the Prairie Center home demonstration club. She continued by saying, "We went early and stayed late, and Mrs. Wright fed us so bountifully, we couldn't sleep until midnight." This sounds like an active club and it is. They have had 100 per cent attendance record at council until this month when the council delegate was sick.
Matagorda County Tribune, August 20 1936
Mr. and Mrs. Luther Hill motored to Bay City Saturday afternoon.
Mrs. Freeman Harvey was a guest of Mrs. Glenn Harvey Saturday.
Miss Lucy Harvey spent the week in Palacios visiting friends and relatives
Mrs. Nora White and Mrs. Donnie Hill visited Mrs. Willie Laslie Friday afternoon.
Mr. and Mrs. A. B. Snider were in Yoakum Thursday and Friday, having their daughter, Jewel, treated.
Mr. and Mrs. Willie Laslie are the proud parents of a fine boy, who arrived October 2nd. Mother and baby are getting along nicely.
The Women's Home Demonstration Club met at the home of Mrs. E. I. Johnson, Thursday at 2 o'clock p. m. They discussed the Achievement Day which will be at Mrs. Ruby Dorsey's near Dunbar, October 25. Come and bring your friends.
Palacios Beacon, October 11, 1934
Mr. White returned to Houston Saturday.
We are glad to report Mrs. Hogg improved.
Harold Kelly moved to the Harrison farm Monday.
Mrs.. L. O. Hill and White and Miss M. Hill went to Bay City Tuesday.
Mrs. Harris Jones was a dinner guest of Miss Lucy Harvey Saturday.
Mr. and Mrs. Jackson and Mrs. O. W. Melvin visited at Will Laslie's Thursday.
Mr. and Mrs. S. J. Hill and Mr. and Mrs. Glenn Harvey are spending a month at Yoakum.
The farmers have their cotton about all gathered and are now harvesting rice and making hay.
The Prairie Center school opened September 10 with the same teachers we have had the past two years and they have succeeded so well we are no longer called Pumpkin Center.
The Women's Home Demonstration Club met with Mrs. L. O. Hill Thursday afternoon. An interesting program was given on the subjects:--"parents, children and money." Delicious refreshments were served.
Palacios Beacon, September 22, 1934
Misses Mary Alleen Elliott and Margaret Hill closed a very successful term of school at Prairie Center on Friday, June 1, with a program and picnic dinner. The crowd was so large all could not get in the building so the front porch was used for the stage, and the program given from there. The seats were taken from the rooms and placed in a semi-circle and then cars were parked back of them. People of that community appreciate the work done by teachers and pupils and show it by their attendance at all public entertainments. Misses Elliott and Hill have been employed for the ensuing term.
Among the honor students of Prairie Center is Eldon Hill, son of Mr. and Mrs. Luther Hill, who has not missed a day from school nor been tardy during the past five years. Eldon attended high school at Collegeport last year, but will be in the Palacios school the coming term.
Palacios Beacon, June 14, 1934
Mrs. P. A. Richman was visiting in Palacios, Monday.
Mrs. Jack Chamblee is visiting relatives in North Texas this week.
Leslie Adams of Bay City spent the week end here guest of his aunt, Mrs. Pete Graff.
Margaret Hill attended the District Meeting of the Girl Reserves which was held in Houston, Sat.
Mrs. Pete Graff, Mrs. Jack Sisson and Mrs. Glen Hutson were Danevang and El Campo visitors Monday.
Mr. and Mrs. Pete Graff, Mr. and Mrs. Glen Hutson were Sunday guests of Mr. and Mrs. Ed Johnson of Bay City.
Mr. and Mrs. M. A. Ellis and children of Goose Creek were visiting relatives in Prairie Center over the week end.
Mrs. Glen Hutson surprised her husband Sunday eve with a birthday dinner and "42." Forty guests enjoyed the evening.
Mrs. J. K. Darnall, and Mrs. C. G. Jeffers attended the Women's Federated Club which was held in Blessing, Saturday.
Palacios Beacon, March 17, 1938
S. J. Hill was a Bay City visitor Tuesday.
Mr. Rockenbaugh is visiting his daughter, Mrs. Frank Stallard.
Mrs. A. J. Fisher of Victoria was a visitor at the Stallard home last week.
Mrs. S. Knudson of Danevang is visiting her daughter, Mrs. Glen Hutson.
Miss Montie Sweeney spent the week end with home folks in West Columbia.
Mr. Pete Graff and L. O. Hill were transacting business in El Campo, Monday.
Mrs. S. C. Brown and daughter, Doris, of Palacios were visiting in Prairie Center, Sunday.
Mr. and Mrs. Jack Chamblee were Sunday guests of their daughter Mrs. Spencer Johnson at Oak Bluff farm.
Roy Windfield took first place in Story Telling at County Meet, Saturday for Rural Schools. We know this took hard work Ray, and also for our efficient teacher, Miss Montie Sweeney, District 12 gives you both a unanimous vote of thanks an appreciation.
Palacios Beacon, March 31, 1938
Miss Montie Sweeney went to her home in West Columbia for the week end.
Mr. and Mrs. Rick Rockenbaugh of Freeport visited the Stallards over the week end.
Mr. and Mrs. Avon Harter and children, called at the Glen Hutson home Sunday night.
Mr. and Mrs. Victor Gallaher of Simpsonville attended Church in Palacios, Sunday night.
Mr. and Mrs. D. M. Clary and children were Sunday afternoon visitors at the C. J. Jeffer's home.
Glen Hutson, Jack Sisson, Pete Graff, and L. O. Hill were transacting business in Wharton, Wednesday.
Mr. and Mrs. John Horn, and Mr. Gregersen of Bay City, were Thursday night visitors in the Pete Graff home.
Mr. and Mrs. Roland Florip and children of Palacios were dinner guests of Mr. and Mrs. C. J. Jeffers, Sunday.
Prairie Center School had an exhibit last Friday and was visited by three schools of the County. We also had our County Superintendent.
Mr. and Mrs. A. J. Fisher of Victoria were visiting friends in Prairie Center, Monday and Tuesday, also looking after their interest on the ranch.
Jack Sisson and son Bobbie, were in Houston Thursday and report Mr. Jackson recovering nicely from his recent operation, and will be able to come home Sunday.
Mr. and Mrs. S. Knudsen and daughter of Danevang, Mr. and Mrs. Henry Knudsen, and Sam K. Knudsen of El Campo called at the Glen Hutson home Thursday.
The Bible Students held a meeting Sunday afternoon at the home of Mr. and Mrs. Johnnie Pierce, and we understand it is to be there again next Sunday, and all visitors are welcome.
Palacios Beacon, May 5, 1938
Mrs. S. C. Brown and Doris, Mr. and Mrs. Leo Johnson and children, and Mr. and Mrs. Ray Dorsey and children all attended the Brown reunion at the B. Y. P. U. grounds.
Mr. and Mrs. J. P. Ellis and boys of Luling visited relatives over the weekend.
Mr. and Mrs. S. Knudsen and Mr. Sem visited in the Hutson home Tuesday.
Mr. and Mrs. J. T. Hill and Barbara Kay of Richmond visited in the L. O. Hill home over the weekend.
Mrs. H. B. Farwell, Mrs. Ethel Young and Miss Eleanor Wildman visited in the Hill home Sunday.
Mr. and Mrs. Ray Horn of Bay City visited relatives in the community Sunday.
Miss Elsie Hutson spent the past week in Houston visiting relatives.
Mr. S. J. Hill is visiting his daughter in Bay City this week.
Mr. and Mrs. Glen Hutson attended the wedding of the latter's sister in Danevang, Saturday.
Mrs. Ethel Young and daughter, Miss Eleanor Wildman of Victoria, were dinner guests in the Hill home Monday evening.
Mr. and Mrs. Lloyd Alton were in El Campo Monday.
Prairie Center, June 20, 1940
Mr. and Mrs. Shady Lane, and Mr. and Mrs. Joiner of Palacios visited Mr. and Mrs. Bill Chamblee Sunday.
Mr. and Mrs. Able Pierce, and Mr. and Mrs. Frank Stallard, entertained a group of Bay City friends Thursday night with a fish fry on the bay.
Mr. S. J. Hill returned home from Corsicana, Friday night.
Mrs. John Glen and daughter, Laverne, returned last week from a visit with her parents in West Texas.
Mr. and Mrs. Royce Darnell were Bay City and New Gulf visitors Monday.
Miss Grace Pearl Pierce visited in the Stallard home Tuesday.
Mr. and Mrs. Leo Johnson and children were Bay City visitors Saturday.
Palacios Beacon, August 15, 1940
The Prairie Center Home Demonstration Club met at 2:00 P. M., March 7, in regular session, at the home of Mrs. J. K. Darnall. There were 18 members and three visitors present. The meeting was called to order by Mrs. Frank Stallard, the president. Roll was called and minutes read by Mrs. Bill chamblee, secretary. Minutes were approved for the last meeting.
Mrs. Joe Edge gave the council report.
Motion was made and seconded that we have a "42" party at the Prairie Center School house, March 29. Everyone is invited. Bring sandwiches, dominoes and card tables.
Motion was made and seconded that we order 20 boxes of cards.
The Constitution was read and amended.
A bridal shower was in order for Miss Marie Clardy.
Delicious refreshments were served and meeting adjourned to meet with Mrs. Ray Dorsey on March 21.--Reporter.
Palacios Beacon, March 14, 1946
The Prairie Center Home Demonstration Club met in regular session, Thursday, February 6, at the home of Mrs. Dennis Clardy. There were twelve members and five visitors present.
Plans were made for an all-day meeting in the near future, to improve our community center.
Mrs. Abel Pierce was in charge of the program and Mrs. Glenn Hutson led the creation period.
A motion was made, seconded, and carried that we buy some song books and a recreation book.
Delicious refreshments were served by the hostess and meeting adjourned to meet with Mrs. Calvin Sexton on February 20.--Mrs. Vernon Clardy, Reporter.
Palacios Beacon, February 13, 1947
The Prairie Center Home Demonstration Club met at the home of Mrs. F. M. Jackson on May 17 with 21 members and one visitor, Munir Kahn of Pakistan present.
Mrs. Dawn Duncan, the agent, who met with us gave an interesting talk and demonstration on the placing and hanging of pictures, after the meeting had been called to order with the singing of Let Us Sing Together.
Mr. Kahn gave an interesting talk on Pakistan.
The hostess served delicious cake, coffee and punch. The next meeting will be at the club house on June 7 with Mrs. George Sorenson as hostess.--Reporter.
Palacios Beacon, May 24, 1956
The Prairie Center Home Demonstration Club met at the club house on July 5 with Mrs. Abel Pierce as hostess. There were nine members, six visitors and Mrs. LaJuan Fite, assistant home demonstration agent, present at the meeting.
Plans were made to attend Rally Day at LeTulle Park on July 10.
Nancy Seerden and Annette Bunk gave an interesting demonstration on "Repairing and Selecting Electrical Equipment."
The next meeting will be July 19 at the club house with Mrs. Fulton Lothridge as hostess.
Delicious refreshments of sandwiches, cake, cookies and cold drinks were served by the hostess to Mesdames Joe Edge, Glen Hutson, Roy Nelson, Cleddie Harvey, E. B Hogg, Pearl Clardy, Frank Stallard, R. L. Henry, Walter Alton and Chris, and Paul Cooper, also to Misses LaJuan Fite, Annette Bunk Nancy Seerden, Susan Barnett.--Reporter.
Palacios Beacon, July 12, 1956
Mrs. Elizabeth Anderson, accompanied Mr. and Mrs. G. A. Swenson and Mr. and Mrs. Ray Fulk of Olivia, to Houston Friday to attend the funeral services of their mother and grandmother, Mrs. Gust Swenson, who passed away 10 days before her 95th birthday. The Olivia relatives, joined by Elizabeth, had planned a birthday surprise for her on Sunday, August 5th, but were notified July 25th that God in His infinite wisdom, understanding and love, had called her to her reward in heaven.
Palacios Beacon, August 2, 1956
The Prairie Center Home Demonstration Club met march 6th at the home of Mrs. Niels Carlsen in the Foley Addition. There were 12 members and one visitor, Mrs. R. H. Neeley, present at the meeting.
Mrs. Carlsen gave the Council report, stating it would be voted on whether they would like to go see the Hogg Foundation at West Columbia or to New Braunfels for our educational tour sponsored by Council on April 14.
Mrs. Dawn Duncan gave an interesting demonstration on "Foods and Nutrition."
Recreation was a game to unscramble the names of flowers and the prize was won by Mrs. Cleddie Harvey.
Our next meeting will be on March 20 at 2 p. m. at the home of Mrs. E. B Hogg.
Delicious refreshments were served to Mesdames Frank Stallard, Leon Arlla, Cleddie Harvey, F. M. Jackson, R. C. Florip, Glen Hutson, E. B. Hogg, W. B. Jaynes, C. McDonough, C. M. Cox, T. W. Morton, Robert Neeley and Mrs. Carlsen.
Palacios Beacon, March 11, 1959
The Prairie Center Home Demonstration Club met on April 3rd at the home of Mrs. R. C. Florip. The president, Mrs. Frank Stallard, presided at the meeting, and roll call was answered by 15 members and one visitor, Mrs. C. G. Jeffers.
Plans for a Chicken-Spaghetti supper to be held at the club house on June 2 were discussed.
There will also be a demonstration on First Aid held at the Prairie Center clubhouse at 6 p. m. on April 16. Anyone interested in learning First Aid may attend. Bring a covered dish for a Pot Luck supper.
We adjourned to meet on April 16 at the clubhouse with Mrs. W. B. Jaynes as hostess.
Delicious refreshments of coffee cake, coffee and tea were served by the hostess.
Palacios Beacon, April 9, 1959
The Prairie Center Home Demonstration Club met April 17 at the club house with Mrs. W. B. Jaynes as hostess. There were 11 members and two visitors, Mrs. A. W. Hurta and Mrs. Franzen present at the meeting.
Mrs. A. W. Hurta gave an interesting report on her trip as a delegate to the District T. H. D. A. meeting at Orange on April 11.
Mrs. Niels Carlson gave the Council report, and Mrs. Joe Edge reported on "Tang, the New Breakfast Drink" taken from Consumer's Magazine.
On April 16 there was a First Aid course held at the clubhouse with Van J. Simmons and W. J. Klingman of Bay City as instructors. This was a very interesting course and all members present considered their time well spent.
On April 14, Mrs. Joe Edge, Mrs. Frank Stallard, Mrs. Cleddie Harvey and Mrs. Abel Pierce Sr., were among the members from the Matagorda County H. D. Clubs that made a trip to New Braunfels and went on an educational tour of the Mission Valley Mills.
Recreation was led by Mrs. Glen Hutson at our meeting and Mrs. Cleddie Harvey won the prize.
We adjourned to meet on May 1st at the home of Mrs. Cleddie Harvey at 2 p. m.
Delicious refreshments of Devil's Food cake, pound cake, coffee and tea were served by the hostess, Mrs. Jaynes.
Palacios Beacon, April 23, 1959
The Prairie Center Home Demonstration Club held its regular meeting on May 1 at the home of Mrs. Cleddie Harvey. There were 15 members, two visitors, Mrs. Ellen Franzen and Mrs. Paul Cooper, and our agent, Mrs. Dawn Duncan, present.
Mrs. Frank Stallard presided at the meeting and roll call was answered by "What do you have in your medicine cabinet?"
Plans were discussed for Rally Day to be held at LeTulle Park on May 12, also for the Chicken Spaghetti Supper to be held on June 2 at the Prairie Center Clubhouse.
Mrs. Duncan gave an interesting demonstration on Bathrooms and Repairing Plumbing Fixtures.
Recreation was led by Mrs. Glen Hutson with Mrs. F. M. Jackson winning the prize.
Our next meeting will be on May 15 at the home of Mrs. R. L. Henry at 2 p.m. The demonstration will be on Cake Decorating.
Refreshments of German chocolate cake, cocoanut cake, potato chips, olives, coffee and punch were served to Mesdames Frank Stallard, Leo Arlla, F. M. Jackson, Niels Carlson, John Jensen, Joe Edge, Roland Florip, Glen Hutson, E. B. Hogg, R. L. Henry, Roy Nelson, Ellen Franzen, W. B. Jaynes, C. C. McDonough, C. M. Cox, Paul Cooper and Steve, Dawn Duncan and the hostess, Mrs. Harvey.--Reporter.
Palacios Beacon, May 7, 1959
The Prairie Center Home Demonstration Club met at the home of Mrs. Joe Tanner on September 4. Present were 14 members and one guest, Pamela Saunders of Houston, also Mrs. Dawn Duncan, county agent and Miss Ward, assistant agent.
Mrs. Niels Carlsen gave the council report stating Rally Day would be held on September 22 at LeTulle Park at 10 a. m.
Mrs. Fulton Lothridge read the report of the nominating committee and officers for 1960 will be Mrs. Leon Arlla, president; Mrs. Roland Florip, vice-president; Mrs. Cleddie Harvey, secretary and Mrs. Glen Hutson, treasurer.
Mrs. Duncan and Miss Ward gave an interesting program on "Use of Credit." Mrs. Hutson led recreation and Mrs. Cleddie Harvey won the prize.
Next meeting will be on September 18 at the clubhouse with Mrs. John Jensen as hostess.
Delicious refreshments of ice cream, soft drinks and crackers were served by the hostess.
Palacios Beacon, September 10, 1959
The Prairie Center Women's Club will meet Friday, May 18, at the Clubhouse instead of at the home of Mrs. A. H. Pierce, as previously reported, as Mrs. Pierce has been called to Louisiana due to the illness of her daughter-in-law, Mrs. John Pierce. Mrs. Frank Stallard will be hostess at Friday's meeting.
Palacios Beacon, May 17, 1962
The Prairie Center Women's Club met Friday, November 2 at the Club House with 14 members and one visitor present.
The president, Mrs. R. C. Florip, called the meeting to order and after committee reports were read, Mrs. E. B. Hogg and Mrs. Abel Pierce gave a program on "Thanksgiving."
Papers were read by Mesdames Frank Stallard, E. B. Hogg, Joe Edge, Clarence Cox and Leon Arlla covering Thanksgiving by the early settlers, the original Thanksgiving, Texas Thanksgiving, European Thanksgiving and the modern Thanksgiving.
It was decided to have the usual Christmas supper, with the exchange of gifts, at the Club House on Saturday, December 15.
The hostess, Mrs. Pierce, served delicious pumpkin pie with whipped cream, nuts and coffee.
The recreation prize was won by Mrs. Leon Arlla.
The next meeting will be held at the Club House with Mrs. Carlsen as hostess on November 16.
Palacios Beacon, November 8, 1962
Copyright 2006 -
Present by Carol Sue Gibbs
Dec. 3, 2006