Anderson County, TX.
Named after Kenneth L. Anderson!
Anderson County is located in East Texas between the Trinity and the Neches rivers. The First Legislature of the state of Texas formed Anderson County from Houston County on March 24, 1846. The county was named after Kenneth Lewis Anderson who had been Vice President of the Republic of Texas. Palestine was named county seat. The county is partly in the Texas Claypan area and partly in the East Texas Timberlands of the Southern Coastal Plains.
|County||Resources by City|
* = unincorporated # = WikiPedia page
Adjacent counties are; Henderson County, Cherokee County, Houston County, Leon County, Freestone County.
Anderson County, Tx. History
Indians friendly to the settlers resided in east Texas. They hunted, farmed the land, and were adept traders. By 1772 they had settled on the Brazos at Waco and on the Trinity upstream from the site of present Palestine. The Tawakoni branch of Wichita Indians originated north of Texas, but migrated into east Texas. From 1843 onward, the Tawakoni were part of treaties made by both the Republic of Texas and the United States.
An alliance of Comanche, Kiowa, Caddo and Wichita attacked Fort Parker on May 19, 1836, killing or kidnapping all but about 18 settlers who escaped. Cynthia Ann Parker was among the captured and later became mother of Comanche Chief Quanah Parker.
In October 1838, Gen. Thomas Jefferson Rusk conducted a raid against hostile Indians at Kickapoo, near Frankston, ending the engagements with the Indians in eastern Texas for that year.
In 1826 a grant from the Coahuila y Tejas legislature was given to settle 300 families in what is now Anderson County. Anderson County voted in favor of secession from the Union when the Civil War broke out.
In 1875, the International – Great Northern Railroad placed its machine and repair shops and general offices in Palestine, causing the community to double in size over the next five years.
In January 1928 the first successful oil producer in Anderson County, known as the Humble-Lizzie Smith No. 1, was brought in.
The Gus Engeling Wildlife Management Area was purchased by the state between 1950 and 1960. Originally named the Derden Wildlife Management Area after Milze L. Derden, from whom much of this land was purchased, the area was renamed in 1952 after Gus A. Engeling, the first biologist assigned to the area.
Other places in Anderson County:
Major highways include; U.S. Highway 79, U.S. Highway 84, U.S. Highway 175, Highway 287, State Highway 19, State Highway 155, and State Highway 294.
The county is 108 miles southeast of Dallas and 153 miles north of Houston. U.S. highways 287, 79, and 84 provide the major transportation routes through the county. The county’s center lies at 95°36′ west longitude and 31°47′ north latitude. Anderson County has a total area of 1,077 square miles or 689,280 acres.
Some places to visit include the Anderson County Courthouse. The Beaux-Arts style building was built atop the highest hill in Palestine. It was built in 1913 and 1914 and dedicated on December 20, 1914.
Another place of interest is the old Palestine High School (now the Museum for East Texas History). The building was built in 1915 as Palestine High School and opened in 1916. It graduated its first class in 1917. In 1939 it became a junior high school, and was named the Reagan School, after John H. Reagan, in 1955. It became an elementary school in 1966 and closed in 1976.
The Texas State Railroad might be of interest if you like trains. You board excursion trains at the beautiful Victorian-style depot in Rusk.