History

Thu
30
Apr

Hawley early meeting place for local settlers

www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~txmatago/
The Tres Palacios Baptist Church was established in 1850 and was by the Deming’s Bridge Cemetery. This log structure was built in the 1850s.

   Hawley, known earlier as Deming’s Bridge, was on the Tres Palacios River a mile east of what is now Texas 71 and three miles northeast of Blessing in western Matagorda County..
   At one time the Tres Palacios may have been navigable as far north as Deming’s Bridge.
   The area, used as a meeting place by local settlers as early as 1850, had a log church by 1852.
   Sometime after land was deeded for a cemetery and church in 1854, a frame building for the Tres Palacios Baptist Church was established.
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Thu
30
Apr

Blessing's roots sink deep in county's history

www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~txmatago/
More early scenes of Blessing: the Logan Building housed several businesses in its long life.

   The inception of the town of Blessing took place in the mind of Jonathan E. Pierce, owner of "Rancho Grande" on the east side of the Tres Palacios River near Deming's Bridge.
   Pierce owned cattle and land along the Tres Palacios as did other pioneer families. 
   Surnames of some of the early settlers from about 1835 to 1900 were Keller, Wheeler, Rowles, Poole, Pybus, Lacey, Partain, McSparran, Yeamans, Downer, and Duffy.
   These families were served by the early communities of Deming's Bridge and Tres Palacios, each with a general store and post office. 
   West of the Tres Palacios River was the Carancahua River. 
   Some names of families living along this stream were: Rhodes, Logan, Fleury, Harris, Jordan, and Bolling.
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Thu
23
Apr

Clemville always tied to oil, gas industry

Courtesy Matagorda County Museum
Clemville, when it was known as Hardy in the oil town’s early day. Hardy became Clemville in 1911..

   There are several modern, bustling oil- and gas-related outfits on view when anyone drives through the Clemville area - roughly where FM 1468 crosses the Tres Palacios River about five miles northwest of Markham.
   There’s a town sign marking the area as Clemville, but little on the residential or retail side indicate anything but a typical oil patch industrial site.
   But Clemville began in the early 20th Century as an early version of what the area became today.
   It was founded because of oil.
   The difference between then and now is there once was a fledgling Texas town with churches, schools, a general store and machine shops.
   Henry Parker, an early colonist, received a league in the Clemville area April 5, 1833. The league was comprised of 4,428 acres.
Thu
16
Apr

Pass Cavallo key to America, Texas history

Matagorda County genweb: www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~txmatago/
This 1895 atlas of Matagorda County shows shows how the county line crosses through Pass Cavallo, which divides Matagorda Peninsula and Matagorda Island.

   Pass Cavallo lies between Matagorda Bay and the Gulf of Mexico and separates Matagorda Island from Matagorda Peninsula.  
   The Spanish name means ‘’Pass of the Horse.”  
   This pass into Matagorda Bay was used by the early explorers and was the site of many shipwrecks in the 1800s.  
   In 1847 Port Cavallo was listed as having a post office. The post office papers show William E. Hanson as postmaster from July 28, 1847, to April 28, 1848, and listed the post office as being in Matagorda County.  
Thu
09
Apr

Jack Glenn's bracelet returns to Bay City in 2015

Matagorda County Museum photo/Jennifer Rodgers
It took 71 years, but Jack Glenn’s bracelet found its way from where it was found in World War II near Klein Quenstedt, Germany, to the Matagorda County Museum in Bay City Jan. 13, 2015.

   When Bernerd Harding, 90, began a personal mission in 2009 to return to Germany to search for his pilot’s wings, little did he know what awaited him.
   Mr. Harding was a 25-year-old B-24 pilot with the 8th Air Force’s 492nd Bomb Group when the 492nd was sent to Bernburgh, Germany on July 7, 1944 to bomb an aircraft manufacturing plant.
   After they dropped their bomb load, German fighters fired on the “Georgette,” their plane, and Mr. Harding and his crew of 11 others had to bail out when the plane caught on fire. 
   They landed in a wheat field and three farmers captured them, holding them until German army officers took charge.
   While being held captive in a dirt-floored basement of a local house, Mr. Harding buried his wings in the dirt floor.
   He feared he would be killed if the Germans discovered he was an American pilot.
Thu
09
Apr

Jack Glenn: BCHS salutatorian to B-24 navigator

Photos courtesy Mrs. Helen Foreman, Matagorda County Museum
Jack Glenn at gunnery school

   Second Lieutenant Jack Harold “Bucky” Glenn, U.S. Army Air Forces (Aug. 16, 1923 – July 7, 1944) was born to Verner Clive “VC” Glenn (Nov. 5, 1894 – April 2, 1959) and Elizabeth (Schauer) Glenn November 8, 1898 – April 17, 1981) at Tulsa, Tulsa County, Oklahoma.
  His parents were married at Tulsa on July 12, 1920, then later moved to Bay City. 
  Jack attended Bay City Public Schools and graduated as salutatorian from Bay City High School with the Class of 1940. 
  Following high school, he attended A&M College for one year before entering the U.S. Army (1941-42). 
  He enlisted in the Army Air Forces Reserve Corps in October 1942, and was called to active duty in January 1943. 
Thu
02
Apr

Early Matagorda memories: Havards, Rymans

Matagorda County genweb: www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~txmatago/
This early scene of Matagorda shows many of the early buildings, including Christ Episcopal Church, the first Episcopal church in Texas

 EDITOR’S NOTE: This is the second part of the story about early Matagorda settlers.
   This history is from a Matagorda County Historical Association tape made in 1982 at the home of Geraldyne Havard in Matagorda.
   She talked about the house, its occupants, the Ryman family and the history that is involved with their comings and goings.
   Eve Bond conducted the interview that’s found on the Matagorda County genweb: www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~txmatago/.
(Last week’s article ended with telling how Geralyne Havard’s Grandma Williams was with the family when they moved into the new (1903) Ryman-Havard house Matagorda.)
Part 2 
 
Thu
26
Mar

Matagorda Cemetery restoration: fixing effects of nature, time

Scotland native John McNab’s grave marker was the oldest one that received attention during this restoration work. A specialized team put the pieces together with a special epoxy glue.

    Matagorda Cemetery gravesites have withstood the rigors of time, hurricanes and other severe storms and flooding from Colorado River rises over the past 185 years. 
   But 21st century know how and technology are being used to preserve those graves and the Matagorda Cemetery Association will continue that work.
   Members of the state’s oldest organized cemetery association work ceaselessly on keeping this historic site – its first burial was in 1830 - in the best shape possible.
   Repairing 190 markers battered by time and nature is the cemetery’s latest project, said George Deshotels, the association’s treasurer.
Thu
19
Mar

early Matagorda memories: Havards, Rymans

http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~txmatago/
The Ryman-Havard house is a Matagorda landmark. The house was built in 1903 (above)

EDITOR’S NOTE: The following story about early Matagorda settlers if from a Matagorda County Historical Association tape made in 1982 at the home of Geraldyne Havard in Matagorda.
   She talked about the house primarily, its occupants, the Ryman family and the history that is involved with their comings and goings.
   Eve Bond conducted the interview that’s found on the Matagorda County genweb: www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~txmatago/.
 
  This house was built at the turn of the century by my grandfather who was Boltes Albert Ryman.
Thu
12
Mar

Caney grew where several early roads crossed

http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~txmatago/
The Caney store first opened in 1853 by Virginian Presley C. Evans at the crossroads of the routes leading from Matagorda to San Felipe and Columbus and from Brazoria to Texana and Victoria. Another Virginia native, John Matthews took over its operation in 1857 and ran the store until 1913.

   Situated in the shadows of the Bay City Regional Airport, near the crossroads of FM 457 and FM 2540, is a small cemetery which was a part of the Caney community, and is now only a memory, except for the historical marker placed on the side during the Texas Centennial in 1936. 

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