Smith County, Texas

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MILITARY SITES

REPUBLIC OF TEXAS

CAMP SITE, ARMY OF REPUBLIC OF TEXAS - Near Burleson Lake - Centennial Granite Marker - 1936

ON BURLESON LAKE, 3.5 MI. W OF HERE WAS LAST CHEROKEE WAR CAMP
OF THE ARMY OF THE REPUBLIC OF TEXAS

UNDER GEN. KELSEY H. DOUGLASS, GEN. THOMAS J. RUSK, GEN. EDWARD BURLESON, AND COL. WILL H. LANDRUM. TEXAS SECRETARY OF WAR ALBERT SIDNEY JOHNSTON ORDERED THE ARMY MUSTERED OUT AFTER ITS DECISIVE VICTORY IN BATTLE OF THE NECHES AGAINST CHIEF BOWLES OF THE CHEROKEES AND ASSOCIATED TRIBES ON JULY 16, 1839, IN VAN ZANDT COUNTY. FROM THE BURLESON LAKE CAMP, THE SOLDIERS DEPARTED FOR THEIR HOMES ON JULY 25, 1839. (1975)

CAMP SITE, ARMY OF REPUBLIC OF TEXAS - US 69, ¼ mile South of Sabine River - Travel Information Marker - 1975

AT THIS SITE WAS THE CAMP OF THE ARMY OF THE REPUBLIC OF TEXAS

UNDER GENERALS EDWARD BURLESON, THOMAS J. RUSK, ALBERT SIDNEY JOHNSTON, HUGH MCLEOD, KELSEY H. DOUGLASS AND COLONEL WILLIS H. LANDRUM JUST BEFORE THEY ENGAGED CHIEF BOWLES OF THE CHEROKEES AND ASSOCIATION TRIBES IN THE DECISIVE BATTLE OF JULY 16, 1938, BY WHICH THE INDIANS WERE FOR EVER DRIVEN FROM EAST TEXAS. (1936)

CAMP SITE, ARMY OF REPUBLIC OF TEXAS - FM 346, Teaselville community - Centennial Granite Marker - 1936

AT THIS SITE WAS THE CAMP OF THE ARMY OF THE REPUBLIC OF TEXAS UNDER GENERALS EDWARD BURLESON, THOMAS J. RUSK, ALBERT SIDNEY JOHNSTON, HUGH MCLEOD, KELSEY H. DOUGLAS AND COL. WILLIS H. LANDRUM JUST BEFORE THEY ENGAGED CHIEF BOWLES OF THE CHEROKEES AND ASSOCIATED TRIBES IN THE DECISIVE BATTLE OF JULY 16, 1839 BY WHICH THE INDIANS WERE FOREVER DRIVEN FROM EAST TEXAS.

HARRIS' PLACE - Harris Creek Baptist Church yard, near Winona - Centennial Granite Marker - 1936

SCOUTS OF TEXAS ARMY

IN THE VICINITY OF HARRIS PLACE, SCOUTS FROM THE ARMY OF THE REPUBLIC OF TEXAS WERE DISPATCHED FROM THE PRESENT COUNTY OF VAN ZANDT AFTER THE BATTLE WITH CHEROKEES AND ASSOCIATE TRIBES JULY 16, 1839, IN WHICH CHIEF BOWLES WAS KILLED.

 

CONFEDERATE STATES OF AMERICA

 

BONNER SCHOOL/COL. THOMAS R. BONNER/TEXAS IN THE CIVIL WAR - 2235 South Saunders, Tyler - Granite marker - 1965

SCHOOL NAMED FOR TEXAS CONFEDERATE - COLONEL THOMAS R. BONNER - 1836-1891

BORN IN MISSISSIPPI, CAME TO TEXAS 1849. IN TEXAS MILITIA AT START OF CIVIL WAR. ELECTED CAPTAIN CO. C, 18TH TEX. INFANTRY C.S.A. 1862. COMMANDED 18TH AS COLONEL, 1863-1865. GALLANTLY LED UNIT IN BATTLES AT BOURBEAU, MANSFIELD, PLEASANT HILL, LA. AND JENKINS' PERRY, ARK., ALL BEING VITAL ACTIONS TO PREVENT FEDERAL INVASIONS OF TEXAS. AFTER THE WAR, ADMITTED TO BAR AND PRACTICED LAW IN TYLER. SERVED IN 11TH, 15TH TEXAS LEGISLATURES AND AS SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE IN 1876. FOUNDED THE FIRST BANK IN TYLER. LEADERS IN BUILDING TYLER TAP RAILROAD. ESTABLISHED AN INSURANCE COMPANY. TRUSTEE EAST TEXAS UNIVERSITY. GRAND MASTER OF MASONS IN TEXAS, 1875.

TEXAS IN THE CIVIL WAR - 1861-1865

TEXAS MADE AN ALL-OUT EFFORT FOR THE CONFEDERACY. AFTER A 3 TO 1 POPULAR VOTE FOR SECESSION. 90,000 TROOPS, FAMED FOR MOBILITY AND DARING, FOUGHT ON EVERY BATTLE FRONT. A 2,000-MILE FRONTIER AND COAST WERE SUCCESSFULLY DEFENDED FROM UNION TROOP INVASION AND SAVAGE INDIANS. TEXAS WAS THE STOREHOUSE OF WESTERN CONFEDERACY. WAGON TRAINS LADEN WITH COTTON-LIFE BLOOD OF THE SOUTH-CROSSED THE STATE TO MEXICO TO TRADE FOR MEDICAL SUPPLIES, CLOTHING, MILITARY AMMUNITION, WAGONS, POTS, KETTLES, LEATHER GOODS, SALT, HOSPITAL SUPPLIES. WIVES, SONS, DAUGHTERS, SLAVES PROVIDED CORN, COTTON, CLOTH, CATTLE, HOGS, CURED MEATS TO THE ARMY, GIVING MUCH, KEEPING LITTLE FOR THEMSELVES.

ERECTED BY THE STATE OF TEXAS 1965

 

CAMP FORD - US 271, NORTHEAST OF TYLER - CENTENNIAL MARKER - 1936, TRAVEL INFORMATION MARKER - 1962

ON THIS SITE DURING THE CIVIL WAR WAS LOCATED CAMP FORD, THE LARGEST PRISONER OF WAR COMPOUND FOR UNION TROOPS WEST OF THE MISSISSIPPI RIVER. NAMED IN HONOR OF COL. JOHN S "RIP" FORD, WHO ORIGINALLY ESTABLISHED A TRAINING CAMP HERE IN 1862. IT WAS CONVERTED IN THE SUMMER OF 1863 TO A PRISON CAMP.
IT FIRST CONSISTED OF FOUR TO FIVE ACRES ENCLOSED BY A STOCKAGE SIXTEEN FEET HIGH. IN THE SPRING OF 1864 FOLLOWING THE CONFEDERATE VICTORIES AT MANSFIELD, LOUISIANA, AND MARK'S MILLS, ARKANSAS, THE ENCLOSURE WAS DOUBLED TO ACCOMMODATE THE LARGE INFLUX OF PRISONERS. APPROXIMATELY 4700 FEDERALS WERE CONFINED HERE DURING THIS PERIOD. THIS OVER-CROWDED CONDITION WAS SOMEWHAT RELIEVED THROUGH A SERIES OF PRISONER OF WAR EXCHANGES BETWEEN THE NORTH AND THE SOUTH.
UNION SOLDIERS REPRESENTING NEARLY ONE HUNDRED DIFFERENT REGIMENTS PLUS SAILORS FROM GUNBOATS AND TRANSPORTS WERE CONFINED HERE. IN ADDITION THERE WERE IMPRISONED UNION SYMPATHIZERS, SPIES, AND EVEN CONFEDERATE DESERTERS.
THE PRISONERS CONSTRUCTED THEIR OWN SHELTERS RANGING FROM LOG HUTS AND BURROWS CALLED "SHEBANGS" TO BRUSH ARBORS AND TENTS MADE OF BLANKETS.
A SPRING LOCATED ABOUT 100 YARDS SOUTHWEST OF THIS MARKER FURNISHED AN AMPLE SUPPLY OF GOOD WATER. THEIR MEAGER RATIONS, ESSENTIALLY THE SAME AS THAT OF THEIR GUARDS, USUALLY CONSISTED OF BEEF AND CORN MEAL AND WERE SOMETIMES SUPPLEMENTED BY VEGETABLES PURCHASED FROM NEARBY FARMS.
ALTHOUGH ESCAPE ATTEMPTS WERE FREQUENT, VERY FEW WERE SUCCESSFUL, DUE TO THE LONG DISTANCE TO UNION LINES AND THE DIFFICULTY INCLUDING THE TRACKING HOUNDS USED BY THE CONFEDERATE GUARDS.
EVEN THOUGH CONDIDIONS WERE PRIMITIVE, IT COMPARED FAVORABLY WITH THE OTHER CIVIL WAR PRISON CAMPS. CAMP FORD CONTINUED TO SERVE AS A PRISON UNTIL THE SURRENDER OF THE TRANS-MISSISSIPPI DEPARTMENT IN MAY, 1865. IT WAS LATER DESTROYED BY FEDERAL OCCUPATION TROOPS. (1962)

C.S.A ORDNANCE PLANT - Bergfeld Park, Tyler - Travel Information Marker - 1963

NEAR SITE OF C.S.A. ORDNANCE PLANT

FOUNDED 1862 BY J. C. SHORT AND WM. S, N. BISCOE (BOTH GUNSMITHS) AND COL. GEO. YARBROUGH. IN 2-STORY BRICK MAIN BUILDING, ON 125-ACRE SITE, CONTRACTED TO MAKE FOR STATE OF TEXAS 5,000 RIFLES FOR THE ARMING OF TROOPS IN THE CIVIL WAR. AFTER TROUBLE OBTAINING MEN AND MATERIAL, PLANT WAS SOLD IN OCTOBER 1863 TO THE CONFEDERATE GOVERNMENT. SHORT AND BISCOE STAYED ON
WITH THE PLANT, TO CONTINUE MAKING GUNS.

WITH MACHINERY AND MEN EVACUATED FROM AREAS UNDER SIEGE IN ARKANSAS, OPERATED UNDER COMMAND OF LT. COL. G. H. HILL. PLANT INCLUDED LEATHER SHCP, TIN SHOP DRY KILN, CARPENTER SHOP. THE 150 TO 200 MAN WORK FORCE HAD (BESIDES GUNSMITHS AND GUARDS) BUTCHERS TANNERS, BLACKSMITHS, DRAFTSMEN, CARPENTERS, HARNESS
MAKERS, AND COAL BURNERS; GUNS MADE .54 CALIBER, LONG AND SHORT HILL RIFLES; LONG AND SHORT TEXAS RIFLES; AUSTRIAN, ENFIELD AND TYLER RIFLES, WITH BARRELS 27 TO 37-1/2 INCHES LONG. SOME WERE EQUIPPED WITH STEEL TIPPED BAYONETS INVENTED BY SHORT. DURING
3 MONTHS OF 1864, PRODUCTS MADE WERE 394,156 CARRIDGES, 411 RIFLES AND 3,531 CANTEENS. 160 GUNS WERE REPAIRED.

MANY TYLER RIFLES WERE SENT TO TROOPS FIGHTING NORTH AND EAST OF RED RIVER, TO PREVENT A FEDERAL INVASION OF TEXAS. (1968)

DOUGLAS SCHOOL/MAJOR JAMES P. DOUGLAS/GOOD-DOUGLAS BATTERY - 1508 North Haynie, Tyler - Granite Marker - 1965

SCHOOL NAMED FOR TEXAS CONFEDERATE MAJOR JAMES P DOUGLAS - 1836-1901

BORN IN SOUTH CAROLINA. CAME TO TEXAS 1948. LED 50 TYLER MEN, 1861, TO JOIN 50 IN DALLAS TO FORM GOOD-DOUGLAS BATTERY--ONLY TEXAS ARTILERY SERVING EAST OF THE MISSISSIPPI. AT CHICKAMAUGA, BATTERY SHOVED ITS BIG GUNS TO EDGE OF FEDERAL RIFLE PITS. GALLANTRY OF DOUGLAS WAS PRAISED. IN 1865 HE RETURNED TO EDITING TYLER "REPORTER." BECAME A LAWYER. WAS IN TEXAS SENATE, 1876-80. JOINED LEADERSHIP OF TYLER TAP RAILRAY. WAS PRESIDENT OF COTTON BELT RAILROAD. LED IN TYLER'S FRUIT AND VEGETABLE GROWING, CANNING INDUSTRY. WAS AN ORGANIZER AND TRUSTEE OF EAST TEXAS UNIVERSITY, TYLER.

GOOD - DOUGLAS TEXAS BATTERY

MARCHED OUT OF TEXAS JULY 9, 1861, AFTER MUCH ROMANTIC FANFARE IN DALLAS. ATTACHED TO 3RD TEXAS CALVARY CAPT. J. J. GOOD OF DALLAS SOON RESIGNED. J. P. DOUGLAS COMMANDED 1862-1865. FOUGHT AT WILSON'S CREEK, MO., PEA RIDGE, ARK., MURFREESBORO, CHICKAMAUGA, MISSIONARY RIDGE, TENN., RINGGOLD GAP, KENNESAW MOUNTAIN, ATLANTA, GA., FRANKL;IN AND NASHVILLE, TENN., AND OTHER BATTLES. CAPTURED FEDERAL GUNS WERE THE ORIGINAL EQUIPMENT. DOUGLAS' MEN BECAME THE MOST ILLUSTRIOUS TEXAS FIELD ARTILLERY BATTERY IN WAR. THEY COVERED CONFEDERATE WITHDRAWAL UNDER FIRE, NASHVILLE, FEB. 1865, AND THEIR GUNS WERE CAPTURED. AT SIEGE OF MOBILE, MARCH-APRIL, 1865, FIELD GUNS WERE ISSUED TO DOUGLAS. THESE THE MEN OF THE DOUGLAS BATTERY LAID DOWN IN HONOR AS THE WAR CAME TO ITS END.

(ERECTED BY THE STATE OF TEXAS 1965)

HEADACHE SPRINGS, C.S.A. MEDICAL LABORATORY - SH 64, East of Tyler - Travel Information - 1965

HEADACHE SPRINGS, C.S.A.
MEDICAL LABORATORY

A QUARTER MILE NORTH OF THIS SITE IS "HEADACHE SPRINGS," NOTED FOR ITS HEALING MINERAL WATERS DURING THE CIVIL WAR, AS SEA BLOCKADES CUT OFF IMPORTS, A CONFEDERATE MEDICAL LABORATORY OPERATED HERE. ONE OF NINE, AND ONLY ONE WEST OF MISSISSIPPI RIVER. FOR THE GOVERNMENT IT MADE MEDICINES AND WHISKEY. THE ARMY AT THIS TIME WAS BUYING MEDICINAL HERBS, INCLUDING POKE ROOT, SNAKEROOT, MULLEIN, JIMSON WEED, JERUSALEM OAK, NIGHTSHADE, MISTLETOE AND CHERRY BARK. WITH MINERAL SALTS, THESE WERE THE MEDICINES OF DESPERATION. (1965)

MARSH SCHOOL/COL.BRYAN MARSH/TEXAS CIVIL WAR MANUFACTURING - 800 North Bois d'Arc - Granite Marker - 1965

SCHOOL NAMED FOR TEXAS CONFEDERATE COLONEL BRYAN MARSH - 1833-1901

ALABAMA NATIVE, CAME TO TYLER 1854-1861 WAS CAPTAIN CO. C. 17TH TEXAS CALVARY. IN 1863 CONFEDERATE CAMPAIGNS TO PREVENT SPLIT OF SOUTH ALONG MISSISSIPPI RIVER. HE WAS ONE OF THE 4,500 C. S. A. MEN ATTACKED BY 30,000 FEDERALS AT ARKANSAS POST IN JAN. 1863. TAKEN PRISONER THERE, HE WAS EXCHANGED IN MAY. PUT INTO BRAGG'S ARMY IN TENNESSEE. LATER, IN ATLANTA FIGHTING LOST RIGHT ARM. RETURNED TO FIGHT UNTIL LEE SURRENDERED. IN 1880's WAS CAPTAIN OF CO. B, FRONTIER BTTN., TEXAS RANGERS. QUELLED RIOT BETWEEN TOWN AND SOLDIERS AT FORT CONCHO. ENDED GUNPLAY IN RAILROAD CONSTRUCTION TOWNS. FOUGHT INDIANS. WAS SMITH COUNTY SHERIFF FOR 20 YEARS.

TEXAS CIVIL WAR MANUFACTURING

HEAVY MILITARY DEMANDS - 90,000 TEXAS TROOPS, 2,000 MI. FRONTIER AND COASTLINE TO GUARD - PLUS REDUCED IMPORTS, CAUSED FAST EXPANSION OF TEXAS INDUSTRY. ARMS AND MUNITIONS PLANTS WERE BUILT, ONE BEING HERE IN TYLER. IN SOME INSTANCES LAND GRANTS WERE USED TO ENCOURAGE PRODUCTION. STATE AND PRIVATE INDUSTRY STEPPED UP PACE TO HELP MEET MILITARY AND CIVILIAN NEEDS OF WAGONS, KETTLES, POTS, LEATHER GOODS, CLOTHING, HOSPITAL SUPPLIES. THE TEXAS PENAL SYSTEM MADE 1,712,328 YARDS OF CLOTH IN TWO YEARS FOR THE WAR EFFORT. PRODUCTIONS OF SALT AND "KING COTTON" WAS HIKED TO TRADE FOR SCARCE ITEMS IN MEXICO. LADIES AID SOCIETIES SPUN AND SEWED TO OUTFIT SOLDIERS. THE CONFEDERATE QUARTERMASTER ESTABLISHED DEPOTS AND SHOPS FOR MILITARY GOODS. TEXAS WAS STOREHOUSE AND LIFELINE FOR THE CONFEDERACY.

ERECTED BY THE STATE OF TEXAS 1965

NECHES SALINE, C.S.A - SH 155 - Travel Information Marker - 1965

NECHES SALINE, C.S.A

NOW COVERED BY THE WATERS OF LAKE PALESTINE, THE NECHES SALINE WAS THE SOURCE OF SALT FOR EARLY SETTLERS FROM OVER A WIDE AREA OF EAST TEXAS. AS EARLY AS 1765, THE SPANISH MISSIONARY CALAHORRA RECORDED THE PRESENCE OF SALINES IN THE AREA.
AN EARLY MANUFACTURING PROCESS FOR EXTRACTING SALT FROM THE SALINE INVOLVED DRAWING WATER FROM SHALLOW WELLS AND BOILING IT TO THE EVAPORATION POINT, LEAVING THE SALT BEHIND. THE POSSIBILITIES FOR COMMERCIAL DEVELOPMENT OF THE NECHES SALINE BECAME EVIDENT TO THE EARLY SETTLERS, AND A SMALL ISOLATED SETTLEMENT DEVELOPED HERE BEFORE THE TEXAS REVOLUTION.
LOCAL SALT MAKING DECLINED THROUGHOUT THE SOUTH BETWEEN 1850 AND 1861 AS SALT BEGAN TO BE IMPORTED FROM ENGLAND. WITH THE FEDERAL EMBARGO DURING THE CIVIL WAR, SALT BEGAN TO BE MADE LOCALLY AGAIN. IT WAS REPORTED THAT JAMES S. O. BROOKS, WHO HAD COME TO TEXAS FROM WEST VIRGINIA, HAD TWELVE FURNACES OPERATING AT THE NECHES SALINE DURING THE WAR AND MANUFACTURED 100 BUSHELS OF SALT PER DAY TO MEET THE NEEDS OF THE CONFEDERACY. BROOKS LEASED THE SALT WORKS TO HIS SON, WILLIAM BRADFORD, IN 1865. W. B. BROOKS, WHO PURCHASED THE OPERATION IN 1871, APPARENTLY WAS THE LAST OWNER AND OPERATOR OF THE SALT WORKS AT THE NECHES SALINE.

SMITH COUNTY C.S.A - Courthouse lawn, downtown Tyler, Granite marker-1965

SMITH COUNTY C.S.A.

MAJOR CENTER OF CONFEDERATE ACTIVITY DURING CIVIL WAR. MANY DISTINGUISHED MEN AND MILITARY UNITS SERVED SOUTH. THE LARGEST ORDNANCE PLANT WEST OF THE MISSISSIPPI RIVER MANUFACTURED "TYLER RIFLES" NEAR HERE. CAMP FORD LOCATED EAST OF TOWN WAS THE LARGEST PRISONER OF WAR COMPOUND IN THE WESTERN CONFEDERACY. OTHER MILITARY ACTIVITIES HERE INCLUDED A QUARTER MASTER DEPOT, TRAINING CAMPS, TRANSPORTATION DEPOT, FOUNDRY, GENERAL HOSPITAL AND MEDICAL LABORATORIES. TWO LARGE SALT WORKS PRODUCED DAILY THOUSANDS OF POUNDS OF THIS VITAL COMMODITY. AT HOME, WOMEN, CHILDREN, OLD MEN, LOYAL SLAVES RAISED COTTON AND GRAIN FOR ARMY. WOMEN MADE ALL THEIR OWN CLOTHES, USED PARCHED OKRA AND YAMS FOR COFFEE AND MADE HATS OUT OF SHUCKS AND STRAW.

TYLER-SMITH COUNTY C.S.A.
MEN AND UNITS

ELEMENTS OF THE FOLLOWING CONFEDERATE TEXAS MILITARY UNITS WERE RECRUITED FROM OR ORGANIZED IN TYLER AND SMITH COUNTY:

DOUGLAS BATTERY
1ST TEXAS INFANTRY
3RD TEXAS CAVALRY
1lTH TEXAS INFANTRY
15TH TEXAS INFANTRY
22ND TEXAS INFANTRY
ERECTED BY THE STATE OF TEXAS 1965

SITE OF CONFEDERATE ARMS FACTORY - Mockingbird Lane and Robertson Streets, Tyler - Centennial Marker - 1936

WORLD WAR II

CAMP FANNIN - US 271, Northeast of Tyler - Subject Marker - 1990

CAMP FANNIN

NUMEROUS MILITARY BASES WERE EXPANDED OR ESTABLISHED THROUGHOUT TEXAS DURING WORLD WAR II. ORIGINALLY PLANNED AS AN AIR CORPS INSTALLATION, CONSTRUCTION OF CAMP FANNIN BEGAN IN LATE 1942. NAMED IN HONOR OF TEXAS REVOLUTIONARY HERO JAMES WALKER FANNIN, JR., THE CAMP OPENED IN THE SPRING OF 1943 AND WAS FORMALLY DEDICATED IN SEPTEMBER.
THE MAIN PURPOSE OF THE CAMP WAS AN INFANTRY REPLACEMENT TRAINING CENTER (IRTC), AND DURING THE PEAK OPERATION AS MANY AS 35,000 TO 40,000 MEN WERE TRAINED EVERY FOUR MONTHS TO REPLACE TROOPS KILLED WOUNDED, OR RECALLED FROM THE WAR'S BATTLEFRONTS.
IN ADDITION TO THE INFANTRY TRAINING CENT, THE CAMP ALSO INCLUDED A GERMAN PRISONER OF WAR FACILITY FROM 1943 TO 1946, AND A WOMEN'S ARMY CORPS (WAC) INSTALLATION IN 1944.
CAMP FANNIN HAD A TREMENDOUS IMPACT ON THE LOCAL ECONOMY, EMPLOYING ABOUT 3,000 CIVILIAN WORKERS AND GIVING RISE TO NUMEROUS NEW BUSINESSES CATERING TO THE MILITARY TRADE. MANY OF THE CAMP'S FACILITIES WERE LATER ACQUIRED BY BUSINESS INTERESTS AND ARE STILL IN USE. SOLDIERS STATIONED HERE, AS WELL AS AT LEAST ONE FORMER GERMAN PRISONER, RETURNED TO EAST TEXAS TO SETTLE AFTER THE WAR. (1989)

 

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