Names and Origins of Towns and Post Offices in Polk County, Texas
Submitted by Cannon Pritchard
This list of  towns and post offices in Polk County history was compiled in July, 1965
by the Polk County Historical Survey Committee. The committee is today called the
Polk County Historical Commission. The list is printed here as it was written in 1965.

Ace--first called Smithfield. Name was changed to Ace in 1915. (See Smithfield).

Andressville--a farming community about 1880-1930. Also called Tigerville.

Asia--a sawmill in 1880's.

Bay Ridge--a ridge near Boldsprings once covered with bay trees. Several families
        lived there in the 1880's and 1890's.

Barnes--settled in 1858 or 1859, but not named until a post office was applied for and the
        following names of pioneers were submitted: Handley, Havis, Beard, and Barnes. The
        Barnes were a respected elderly couple who lived in the area and it was named for them.

Barnum--a sawmill town in 1882, said to have been named for the P. T. Barnum Circus.
        Only two families lived there in 1965.

Bering--a small sawmill town built by Conrad Bering about 1882. A post office was operated
        from 1906-1928.

Beech Creek--farming community on Beech Creek, so called from the abundance of beech trees.

Benford--a sawmill town from 1889 until about 1920. First called Silver Hill because the mill paid
        in silver dollars instead of cheques as did other mill companies.

Boldsprings-- farming community settled by 1860. Several big springs furnished water for the
        church and school.

Battise Camp--1806, early Indian camp established by Coushatta and Kickapoo Indians, near
        the mouth of the Kickapoo Creek.

Buck--J. W. Cochran had a sawmill here in 1890's, but sold it to H. Dyer in 1902, who in turn,
        sold it to Buck Reynolds of  Arkansas in 1904. Post Office, 1904-1930, although the mill
        was moved about 1920.

Big Sandy--a farming community on Big Sandy Creek, founded prior to 1860.

Blanchard--a farming community, obtained post office 1905. Said to have been named for an
        official of a railroad extended through the community in 1905. Also said to be named for two
        families,  Pierre and Lorance Blanchete, on whose survey the railroad flag station was built.

Blue Water--farming community on Blue Branch, so called because the water is so clear it looks blue.

Camp Ruby--first called Old Hope, established by 1885. In 1924, W.T. Carter Lumber Company
        sent A. Cayton to lay out a sawmill there. Cayton said he would name it for the first girl he saw
        there. She was named Ruby, daughter of  John Thomas Moore, who in 1965 was married to
        Carl Vinson of  Camden, Texas. The mill camp was moved and the community is still called
        Camp Ruby. (Note: Mrs. Ruby Vinson is living in Livingston, Texas in 2001).

Camden--a large sawmill town built by W. T. Carter Lumber Company in 1898, still in operation.
        Was named Camden by Mrs. Carter.

Center Grove--farming community established about 1875. Later, a cemetary, church, and school
        were located in the center of a grove of pines, oaks, and other trees.

Carmona--a farming community by 1860, a sawmill town 1890-1920, located on land obtained
        from Coahuila and Texas in 1835 by Juan Carmona.

Chink--a small sawmill built about 1880 by Dave Hackney, was sold to Abe Peebles about 1883.
        Peebles' son, Johnny, 89, said in 1965 he does not know why the mill and community were
        named Chink.

Corrigan--founded about 1860, was first called Gant, later, Kurth, under which name it had a post
        office. When a railroad was extended through the community in 1882, the name was changed
        to honor Pat Corrigan, the first official of  the railroad to come there.

Coleta, Colita, Kalita--center of a number of ante-bellum plantations, settled by families from
        Louisiana in 1840's, was first called the Louisiana Settlement. In 1853, Samuel Rowe, agent
        for the Alabama Indians, and a resident, applied for, and obtained a post office, asking that
        it be named for the Indian chief, Kalita, who aided the pioneer white settlers in many ways.
        Polk County, location of  the Alabama-Coushatta Indian Reservation, was formed from
        Liberty County in 1846.

Dallardville--farming community founded before 1880, named for a leading citizen,
        John J. Dallard, a doctor and a teacher.

Drew's Landing--a Trinity River port founded by 1840. In 1843, Monroe Drew and Joseph
        Baird bought a sawmill under construction, a ferry and a dwelling. Later, Drew bought out
        Baird, and the port became Drew's Landing. In 1965, it was a large subdivision, with lakes
        attracting many retired couples to build there.

Darby--a farming community, established in 1830's by Augustus Darby, for whom it is named,
        probably because he built the schoolhouse. No longer a community, it boasts the Holcombe
        Home, bearing an Official Texas Historical Medallion, occupied by R. L. Holcombe, a Darby
        descendant.  The home was built in 1860, although Darby had an earlier home there.

Easom--a small sawmill town in the early 1880's a post office 1883-1889. Changed to Fant by
        Napoleon Fant 1889-1892. (Petersville and Potomac are the same location.)

Elwood--a farming community, which had a small sawmill by 1880, which only lasted a few years.
        Probably named for the many elm trees. First called Elmwood.

East Tempe--a farming community by 1860, perhaps not named until about 1880.

Goodrich--established by 1885 on land obtained by William Goodrich in early 1840's. A United
        Gas sub-station was located there in 1930. Once known for cotton farming, is largely ranch
        area in 1965.

Holly Grove--farming community, so named by 1845, supposedly from the abundance of native
        holly trees.

Hortense--first called Bear Creek, along which most of the settlement was located about 1875.
        In 1891, John A. Handley, who operated a store, applied for a post office, and a "drummer"
        suggested that it be name for Handley's new baby girl. She was, in 1965, Mrs. Hortense Drew,
        of Livingston, Texas.

Indian Springs--a post office in the 1870's, a school in 1892, is located near Leggett, Texas.

Indian Village--a reservation, established in 1853, now has about 400 Alabama and Coushatta
        tribe members living there. Opened a museum in 1965.

Israel--founded before 1860, was not named until several families of a religious sect, the Israelites,
        settled there in 1895, and named it Israel.

Jones Prairie--established by relatives Jesse R. Jones, John R. Jones, and Enoch Jones, in 1850,
        where they were shortly joined by Dr. Erskine Virginia Jones, (not related), and a number of
        other families. It was a very fertile prairie, readily adaptible to large plantations. In 1965,
        was largely rand and timber land.

Johnson's Bluff--a ferry and port on the Trinity River, known to exist by 1846, but probably
        before 1840, built by John R. Johnson, a surveyor, by 1858, large enough to be listed as a
        town on tax records. Most of the town was on the side of the Trinity that became San
        Jacinto County in 1870.

Kickapoo--a large farming community established a few miles from the mouth of  Kickapoo
        Creek in the 1850's.
        (B)--a tiny town and ferry were established at the mouth of Kickapoo Creek by 1845,
                remained until the 1870's.
        (C)--In 1909, another farming community was established a mile from the mouth of the
                creek, a post office obtained in 1919. People came to designate it as Lower Kickapoo
                and the northern one as Upper Kickapoo. Upper Kickapoo was abandoned about 1940.

Lamonth--a small sawmill town, built by Middleton Tackaberry about 1890, is said to have been
        named for Lamont, Ohio, the birthplace of Tackaberry's father. The town was abandoned
        about 1915.

Lajarza--small farming community and school in 1890's located on the LaJarza Survey.

Leggett-- named for Ralph Leggett, first settler there, about 1870. In 1882, when the railroad
        came through this community of  three or four families, railroad official boarded with the
        Leggett's and named the station Leggett. The place was also called "Red Horse" from a sign
        on Will Freeman's store.This name is still affectionately used.

Liberty Hill--located two miles from Magnolia Hill, was founded by a small group by 1880,
        who chose the hill located for its beauty.

Laurelia--a sawmill town from about 1880 until about 1910, was named for the laurel trees there.
        (There is also a Laurelia Creek.)

Lily Island--is a Black community in 1870's. In 1880, the new church was named Lily Island.

Long King's Village-- near the mouth of  Long King Creek, named for an Indian Chief of  the
        Coushatta Indians.

Livingston--founded 1836, by Moses L Choate, a native of Tennessee, perhaps of  Livingston,
        Tennessee, though there is controversy that it was Livingston, Alabama. Established as
        Springfield, because of the many springs. In March, 1846, a committee which had been
        asked to suggest a county seat suggested Springfield, Swarthwout, and Johnson's Bluff.
        Choate offered 100 acres of  land to Polk County if the site of Springfield were chosen,
        with the stipulation that the name be changed to Livingston. There are conflicting stories
        about this, that his hometown was of the same name in Alabama or Tennessee, whether
        they were named for Robert Livingston or Edward. Anyway, the county seat was
        Springfield, and the named changed to Livingston.

Lime Ridge--appropriately named for the lime ridge upon which it was located in northeast
        Polk County.

Magnolia Hill--a farming community founded in the southern part of the county on a low hill,
        among magnolia trees, before 1860.

Magnolia--established about 1890, by several families who built a Methoidst Church the same
        year, named it for the numerous magnolia trees. Fifteen years later, the economic influence
        of the Onalaska sawmill influended twenty families to settle there. The mill stopped
        operations in 1925 and in 1965, there were only three families and a cemetery at Magnolia.

Marston--first called Norma, for a young lady, had its beginning in 1895 as a sawmill. When the
        sawmill closed, most of the community moved a short distance. In 1901, a new post office
        was applied for under the name of  Marston.

Menard's Chapel--a small farm community, settled by several families by 1860, is located by
        Menard's Creek, named for Pierre Menard, who settled at its lower course by 1834.
        A church and cemetery by the creek give the name "Menard's Chapel".

Midway--a large agricultural community, established by 1850, but unnamed until about 1888.
        Two leading families conflicted about the schoolhouse, each wanting it located nearest them.
        When the dispute threatened to explode, an intermediate family suggested a compromise
        --locate it half-way. The school was so located, but since there was no spring available,
        (as had been at the two proposed sites), the children had to bring their own drinking water.

Morgansville--a small town, on Wood's Creek, was mapped out by James Morgan, and by 1840,
        bore his name. Because it became a farming community, the name was changed to Wood's
        Creek when a school was established, about 1888. James B.Woods obtained the land in 1836.
        Morgansville was a post office 1856-1870's.

Moscow--founded in 1844, by David G. Green, from Moscow, Tennessee, was first called
        Green's Shop, Green's Post Office, then Greenville, for David Green. In 1853 the name was
        changed to Moscow, probably for Moscow, Tennessee.

Mount Rose--a settlement largely agricultural, was established by 1870, but was not named until
        a Baptist church was organized by a Reverend Johnson, from Mississippi, where he had
        known a church named Mt. Rose. In 1965, there was a cemetery, but no church.

New Willard--Will Freeman built a sawmill near here in 1886 and called it Freeman. In 1909,
        a sawmill was moved in from Willard (in Trinity County) and the settlement became
        New Willard, which thrived from 1909 until 1954. In 1965, a few residents remain.

New Hope--an all black community, has a Baptist Church, called the New Hope Baptist Church,
        established in 1885, which probably antedates the settlement by many years. It is located
        southwest of  Goodrich, Texas.

Old Palestine--a black community in Polk County.

Ollie--established in 1870's, first called the "Rice Community" from the families named Rice.
        David A. Rice obtained a post office in 1901 and named it for one of his daughters.

Onalaska--founded when a large sawmill was moved there from Onalaska, Arkansas, by
        William Carlisle in 1905-1906. The mill was "shut down" in 1925 and the community
        changed to prosperous farming and ranching use.

Oakdale--so named for the many large oak trees, was probably settled before 1860.

Patrick's Ferry--a river port and ferry on the Trinity River, at the mouth of Kickapoo Creek,
        established by Isham T. Patrick in 1844, was operated until the 1870's.

Pinckney--the community was never called Pinckney, but when Pinckney J.Waldrep, who lived
        on the east edge of the Midway community, applied for a post office, the U. S. Post Office
        Dept. chose the name Pinckney.

Petersville--a sawmill town, built by Peter Josseran about 1902. In 1907, a post office was
        obtained and called Potomac. Note: Easom, Wakefield and Potomac in the same location.

Providence--settled in the early 1850's by a number of families from Henry County, Alabama,
        was first called the Henry County Settlement. When a  Methodist church was built, it was
        named Providence.

Patonia--a turpentine distillery camp, was built by B. M. Pate in 1912, discontinued in 1919.
        In 1921, Mrs. Gertie Hood asked that the post office be re-established in her home.
        She said that the settlement was never called Patonia, that it was just a post office at Coleta.

Pine Grove--a farming community, established by 1860, named for the beautiful pine grove there.

Plum Creek--south of  the Boldsprings community in 1870's and 1880's.

Pine Ridge--established in 1847 by a large family named Hickman. Other families settled there
        on the long ridge covered with pines. Bering Lumber Company had a "front" there in the
        early 1900's.

Rock Island--a small sawmill town in 1890's-1900-1910, changed to farming when the sawmill
        ceased operations.

Segno--an oil field and farming area, named by Henry Knight because the name was short.

Schwab City--first a farming community, was named for Dick Schwab, who discovered oil there
        in 1930. Had been called Ten Mile Board, Crossroads, Munsonville, and Roosevelt.

Seven Oaks--site of a small sawmill, named for the seven middle-sized oak trees that grew almost
        in a line, where one of the mill owners built his home. The post office was applied for in 1886.
        The mill moved but the post office was kept until 1925.

Skinnertown--settled by 1870's by some families of Skinners from Alabama.

Soda--settled by farmers before 1860. A sawmill was built there about 1897. In 1898, an
        application was made for a post office and names were submitted. The Post Office Dept.
        chose letters from those submitted names and formed Soda.

Smithfield--established by 1834 on the Trinity River. Later, it was moved a mile up the river,
        became a port, and by 1841 had a post office named Smithfield. In 1848, the post office
        was re-established as Smithfield. The story is that Smith farmed for an influential citizen,
        and the tract he cultivated was called "Smith's field". The name was changed to Ace in 1915
        when Asa Emanuel became postmaster.

Stryker--a large sawmill town, established in 1884 by Henry Stryker and his cousin, D.M. Angle,
        natives of  Pennsylvania.

Swarthwout (Swartout)--a Trinity River port and ferry, was laid out for a town in 1838 by
        James Morgan, Arthur Garner and Thomas Bradley. It was named for Samuel Swarthwout,
        New York financier, a friend of James Morgan. A post office by 1843, re-established
        May 1846, continued until 1872 when railroads took the trade from steamboats.

Tin Top--a small but populous community a mile and a half  from Onalaska grew from the
        economic influence of Onalaska. When a school and a church were erected with tin roofs,
        it had the name Tin Top by 1910. Farmers had settled on nearby Kickapoo creek in the
        1850's and 1870's.

Union Springs--settled by several families by 1860 where two springs were only a few feet apart:
        Union of  the springs. A church and cemetery were established, and the cemetery is one of the
        largest in Polk County.  This place is one mile north of Corrigan.

Valda--named for a member of the Hackney family who built a sawmill there about 1885. Post
        office 1890-1906.

Vreeland--a railroad flag station on railroad from Carlisle to Livingston 1904-1907,
        had very few families.

Wakefield--a small sawmill town in early 1900's.  (See Easom).

Wheeler--a small community in early 1900's.

West Tempe--settled by farmers by 1875, named for West Tempe Creek,
        which was named for Indians.

Walnut Springs--laid out for a town in 1902, amid springs and walnut trees,
        but it was only a "bubble" that soon burst.

Yellow Branch--boasted a few families and a school house in the 1890's. It was located on a
        short creek called Yellow Branch.

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