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Red River County History


Early Land Owners of Red River County
[Submitted by Gene Phillips Added 8 Apr 2017]
A list of early land owners from Land Office records before 1830.


1890 Early County Officials
[Added 30 Jan 2014]


Confederate Indigent Pensions
[Added 30 Jan 2014]


Red River County in 1904
[—Edward Edwards And George Morrison, Clarksville. Texas Almanac and State Industrial Guide, 1904 [sd] Added 30 Jan 2014]


Is the extreme northeastern in the State, except Bowie County, which constitutes its eastern boundary, while it is separated from the Indian Territory on the north by Red river, its southern boundary being the Sulphur fork of Red river, and its western boundary is Lamar County. Clarksville, the county seat, is situated near the center of the county, and is 61 miles west from Texarkana and 31 miles east from Paris.
Population in 1900, 29,893. Property assessment 1903, $6,969,159. Along Sulphur and red river are dense bodies of timber, which spread out irregularly toward the center of the county, and between them, from east to west, extends an undulating prairie, traversed at intervals by small streams, which are generally skirted with timber, thus dividing the main prairie into a number of smaller ones. In the eastern part of the county is a body of heavily timbered land, interspersed with prairies. In the northwestern part is a section of country divided into rich creek bottoms and hilly uplands. The area of the county is 1065 square miles, in form substantially square. A little less than one-third of the county is prairie. The general surface is gently undulating. In soil at least one-fourth is black waxy prairie, which has long been in cultivation. Of the remaining three-fourths, originally timbered, less than 40 per cent is in cultivation. This timbered land may be graded into three classes: First, black hammock, a thick growth of rattan, bamboo, bois d'arc, etc., on the heaviest kind of black waxy land, which comprises at least 15 per cent of the county; second, river and creek bottoms, not less than 20 per cent of the timbered lands, being at present the least developed, but most productive; large bodies of it put in cultivation within the past few years have invariably proved a profitable investment; third, a free, open, black or yellow sand, generally with a clay subsoil or foundation. The soil in the Red river bottoms is a rich alluvial deposit of a great depth and fertility. Other bottom lands contain soils from black waxy to mellow loam. A very small proportion of the prairie lands is gray; this is true generally of the prairie found in the extreme southeastern portion of the county. A belt of pine timber extends nearly the whole length of the county, seemingly separating, as a line of distinction, the rich, black, prairie land and the alluvial Red River valley, which valley extends many miles out from the river. In all portions of the county there abound in exhaustless quantities hard woods, such as post oak, white oak,, red oak; in fact, oak of all varieties, walnut, bois d'arc, hickory of all varieties, pecan, maple, sycamore, cottonwood, dogwood, cedar, sweetgum, elm, boxwood, etc. Mustang. Little Mustang, Cuthand, Shawnee, Big and Little Caney are the principal streams in the southern slope of the county, and flow southeast into Sulphur; and Upper and Little Pine, Pecan bayou, Bason's Mill creek are those of the northern slope of the county, and flows northeast into Red river. Well water of good quality is obtained at 15 to 30 feet. Cistern water is most used in the prairie region for domestic purposes on account of the lime usually found in well water there. No irrigation is needed in this county. This county never suffers materially from the drouth. And when it suffers at all from the seasons it is on account of the excessive rainfall which sometimes occurs. The principal crops are cotton, corn, oats, hay crops, including the native grasses, alfalfa and sorghum, sweet and Irish potatoes, fruits and vegetables of all kinds adapted to this latitude. The black waxy, the hammock and the bottom lands produce on an average three-fourths of a bale of cotton and 40 bushels of corn per acre. In the other portions of the county the two main crops just mentioned yield somewhat lower, say about one-half bale of cotton and about 25 bushels of corn. The river bottoms and the hammock are especially adapted to the growth of alfalfa. It averages three cuttings per season, turning out at each from 1 to 3 tons per acre. Oats do fairly well in all portions of the county. Sorghum grows on all kinds of soil and is the principal forage crop. It yields about 4 tons per acre, and, if planted early, can be cut twice during the season. No county in the State produces finer melons. These grow in the sandy lands. As fine fruits and vegetables are grown upon these lands as can be found elsewhere. There grows a very fine grade of long staple cotton in this county, especially in the section around Clarksville. This cotton has made for this section a fine reputation in the markets. Blossom Prairie, one of the richest prairie countries in the State, will not produce it. It seems to be indigenous to the prairie region around Clarksville. The total yield of cotton in this county for 1903 is estimated at 38,000 bales. This amount falls far below the average for this county. The boll weevil has not yet appeared in this county. The other principal industry of this county is stock raising in connection with farming. Manufacturing is yet in its infancy. There are several blacksmith and woodshops, which turn out a fine grade of bois d'arc wagons. There are three cotton seed oil mills in the county, located at Detroit, Clarksville and Annona, and one compress at Clarksville. There is located at Detroit a fine press brick plant. There are 63 cotton gins, many saw mills and grist mills in the county. The best quality of hammock and prairie lands, well improved and in a good state of cultivation, can be had at $25 to $50 per acre, while the unimproved hammock lands can be had at $10 to $20 per acre. The river and creek bottom lands, in a good state of cultivation and well improved, may be had at $12 to $25 per acre; same lands unimproved at $5 to $10. The improved sandy lands, which are the easiest cultivated and produce the greatest varieties of crops, can be had at $8 to $15; unimproved at $3 to $8. The scholastic population of the county, outside of the two independent districts, is 8649 pupils, attending 160 schools. The independent districts are located at Clarksville and Detroit; the number of pupils of the Detroit district is 527 and of Clarksville 379. Total scholastic population of the county, 9555. There is but one railroad in the county, the Transcontinental branch of the Texas & Pacific Railway Company. This road runs through the county almost from west to east, and very nearly the center of the county. Clarksville, the county seat, is a splendidly built town of about 4200 people. Detroit comes next with about 2000 population. It is situated 13 miles west of Clarksville, near the edge of Blossom prairie. The next in order of the railroad towns are Annona, Avery and Bagwell. Clarksville up to this writing has received 18,235 bales of cotton; Detroit, about 10,000; Annona, about 6500; Avery, 3500, and Bagwell, 750 this season. Supplementing these railroad towns are many inland trading points and villages, such as Madras, English, Box Elder, Lydia, Cuthand Rosalie, Bogata, Halesboro, Pulbright, Woodland, Kanawha, Manchester and several others.

Red River County in 1857
[Furnished by A. S. Baker, Assessor and Collector.] Texas Almanac & State Industrial Guide, 1857 [sd]
Added 30 Jan 2014]


This county has 7,000 acres of land in cotton, 14,000 in corn and 20,000 in wheat. Average yield per acre, 1500 pounds seed cotton, 40 bushels corn, and 20 bushels wheat. There are 700 farms, 2,060 slaves; white population, 5,000; two deaf and dumb. Some of the lands have been in cultivation thirty-five years, and produce about as well as at first. There are three distinct soils—the deep sandy loam, the stiff clay prairie, and the pine barrens, with a light sandy soil, all having a clay sub-soil. The number of cattle, 14,758, value, $99,379; horses, 2,076, value, $128,557. Sheep and hogs are only raised for home consumption, though they do well. The fruits are peaches, apples, pears, &c. There are the usual kinds of wild animals and fish. The towns are Clarksville, the County Seat, Pine Bluff, Rowland, Eobbinsville, &c. Population of Clarksville, too.'' There are five Methodist and six other Protestant churches. McKenzie's Institute is three miles from Clarksville, J. W. P. McKenzie, the principal, with seven assistants, and 210 students. This Institute consists of four frame buildings, forty by sixty feet, and two and a half stories high. It has a library and a philosophical apparatus, and most of the higher branches are taught. Clarksville Female Institute is in charge of Mrs. E. Gibson as principal, and four or five assistant teachers. There are sixty pupils, and two large one-story buildings. Clarksville Commercial Law School is in charge of Rev. John Anderson, A. M., as principal, with three assistant teachers. There are three frame buildings for this school, which has eighty-two students. This county is bounded by Red River on the North, and South by Sulphur, and has three bayous running through it. The surface is undulating. John Stiles settled here in 1817. Wm. Humphries, James J. Ward and others, are among the early settlers. The market is New Orleans, by steam navigation; freight, $6 per bale for cotton; up freight, $3 per barrel. The Memphis and El Paso Railroad, passing through this county, is partly surveyed, and contractor grading are taken. The county is settling up fast. The lumber used is pine of a good quality, worth $1 50 per 100 feet. There are seven saw mills in the county, cutting from three to five thousand feet per day. Rail fences are general, though bois d'arc hedges are coming into use, and do well. One-fourth of the county is prairie. Bank notes from almost every State in the Union are in circulation. Springs scarce. Stock water plenty. Cistern water is used for culinary purposes. The county is healthy; the most fatal disease is the winter fever. Mean temperature in summer, ninety degrees; in winter, sixty degrees. Snow sometimes falls to the depth of six inches, and ice is often five or six inches thick.


This page last updated on -- 8 Apr 2017

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