Saturday, December 26, 2009

Christmas Morning.....

Ronnie and I were on our way back from feeding horses when we passed the Old Iowa Park Cemetary located on HWY 25 in Electra.  He happened to look over and this is what we saw.  WOW!  Now this is not something you see every day, even in a little country town... but there they were.

West Texas had a huge snow storm late Wednesday night early Thursday and into the latter part of Thursday.  Since we got so much snow, the ground is covered in most parts and the animals are searching for food. 

So these guys decided to get out somehow and go searching for Christmas Dinner.

So next time you happen to be driving around, dont be suprised if you see some visitors at your local cemetary.  I would have never believed it if I had not seen it for my own eyes and I live here.

Merry Christmas Ya'll
 Graveyard Rabbit of Wichita County, Texas

Tuesday, August 4, 2009


W. C. and Viola Baker

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Summer Break....

Hey All my Rabbit Friends....

Sorry I have not been here in a few months. This summer has been really busy and HOT. Here in Wichita the temperature at 10pm at night is till 100+ most nights. By the time I get off work, it is the hottest part of the day and it is just horrible. On top of that, I started classes this summer and they have been divided into two sessions that are 4 1/2 week sessions. Hello, that is just ridiculous. They have required research papers of ridiculous lengthes during that short time also. Currently working on one that is suppose to be 20-25 pages on a topic I dont know anything about. HELP! Anyway, I will be back in AUGUST full force. See ya then....

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Sarah .......

Inscription on this marker is hard to make out. When we went, I was not properly prepared for this sort of finding. I will be going back with some cleaning tools to see if I can save the information on this headstone. This particular stone moved me and made me realize just what we do and the reason why. The elements are destroying this marker and those persons after us who may want to locate Sarah wont find her if something is not done. I know nothing about Sarah at this time, but hope to locate a family memember that is unaware of this issue and maybe we can do something...

Friday, May 22, 2009

Circuit Riders of Beaver Creek, Wichita County, TX

Front side of Memorial Monument
(Dedicated by: Vera F. Backus)
Vernon Marble and Granite Works
Inscription Reads:
In the memory of the early Circuit Riders and early settlers, who established the homes-the camp meeting grounds-the church-the school and the cemetary of Beaver Creek Community. This monument is affectionately and gratefully dedicated
Their Courage was reflected in the glow of their campfires, their faith and industy tamed an untamed land. Their love and devotion to almighty GOD pointed us Heavenward on that upward path, that leads to the Great Divide.
Backside of the Monument list the Riders:
J.W. Campbell S. O. Gafford F.N. Crutchfield
D. J. Powell A.B. Trimble G.C. Davis
J.T. Hosmer L.G. Rogers F.L McGeehee
A.P Smith T.J. Minnis E.H Cannon
Casey C.G. Williams G.R. Slagle

The following information was provided to me by Edward Powell in conjunction with the History of D.J. Powell.
Circuit Riding preachers Important to Pioneers, by Lita Huggins Watson

"In the days when travel was difficult in this sparsely settled area, some of the religious ministry was conducted by circuit-rider preachers. Since congregations were very small, they could not afford a resident pastor and shared a travelling minister with many other fledgling churches.
As the preacher travelled, he would preach on Sundays and perform marriages and baptize converts. Traveling by horseback, he stayed in the homes of members of the congregation. Usually he received a small stipend from settlements along his circuit, or regular path.

In 1960 a monument was dedicated to the circuit-riding ministers who served the Beaver Creek area in the southwest part of Wichita County.

Source, Iowa Park Leader, Vol. 20, Thursday, October 20, 1988- Happy Birthday Iowa Park 1888-1988 pub
1995 by Genealogy and Historical Society page 175 and 222.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Graveyard Hunting

Going out hunting for stories and information today in the rain. I decided that since it wont stop, I would just join in. They say, "life is not about learning to weather the storm, but rather learning to dance in the rain." So I'm gonna go dance.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

William Earl "Billy" Hall 1950-1972

Death Certificate states that he died from a gunshot to the head.
Memorial Cemetary in Electra, TX

Thursday, April 16, 2009


Weather and work has kept me from doing much Graveyard Searches. However, I hope to get back into the grove of things this week. So check back Sunday for updates.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Cemetaries Located in Wichita County Texas

Listed below are the cemetaries I have found located in Wichita County TX. These will be the cemetaries which will be covered in the weeks to come.
Beaver Creek..............................................near Electra TX (located On FM 2326, W of SH 25)
Burkburnett Cemetary...........................Burkburnett, TX
Clara Cenetary.........................................Burkburnett, TX
Crestview Memorial Park................Wichita Falls, TX
Dick Sparks Cemetary..........Electra, TX (directly behind the Old Electra cemetery)
Evert Cemetery.................................(Located on Bacon Switch Road near FM 369)
Highland Cemetery...............................Iowa Park, TX
Highland Memorial Gardens............Iowa Park, TX (across from Highland Cemetary)
Memorial Cemetary........................Electra, TX (located just off of 287, corner of HWY 25)
Mount Carmel Cemetery....................Haynesville, "Punkin Center", TX
New Electra Cemetary........................Electra, TX
Old Electra Cemetary.........................Electra, TX
Riverside Cemetary.............................Wichita Falls, TX
Sacred Heart Cemetery.....................Wichita Falls, TX
Wichita County Cemetery................Wichita Falls, TX (County Farm on Armory Road)
Wichita Falls State Hospital Cemetery..........Wichita Falls, TX (FM 2380)

Wichita County War Memorial
dedicated May 16, 1987
Donated by: Mr. and Mrs. Johnny Watson

This memorial, erected by grateful citizens of Wichita County and elsewhere in the United States, is dedicated to the memory of those brave and patriotic free Americans who made the supreme sacrifice for their country in the sacred cause of peace, freedom and democracy...

History of Wichita County Texas

Ok! First we need to have a little history lesson on Wichita County, Texas before we can understand those who lived and died here.

Wichita County is located in the extreme northwest portion on the state near the boarder of Oklahoma. We are 144 miles from Dallas, Texas and 141 miles from Oklahoma City and is home to Sheppard Airforce Base. Wichita Falls was named after the river that was named after the Indians. The original falls have been lost, but replica falls have been built in recent years. Conveniently located off I-44

The area the we call Wichita County was home to the Caddoan Indians, principally the Wichitas and Taovayas. These natives migrated from present Kansas and Nebraska, in the middle of the eighteenth century. These groups were masters of the horse and introduced them into the region by Spanish explorers-and therefore the buffalo. However, they remained heavily dependent upon the agriculture. The location of their lands, in extreme north central Texas, placed them in conflict with the Lipan Apaches and the Comanches, both of which claimed the area as their own territory and continued to visit it long after their removal to Oklahoma. The presence of these often aggressive Native Americans caused difficulties for Anglo-American settlers in the region until after 1850, when the federal troops forced the Indians to relocate to reservations North of the Red River. A number of Europeans, beginning with the Spanish Indian trader Athanase de Mézières, visited the area that became Wichita County during the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. Among these were Pedro Vial and José Mares, who crossed the region in the course of developing trails from San Antonio, Texas to Santa Fe, New Mexico, in 1786 and 1787, and members of the Texan Santa Fe expedition in 1841. Although local lands had been granted to survivors and heirs of soldiers who fought in the Texas Revolution as early as the 1830s, the first surveys of the area that is now Wichita County took place in 1854 under the direction of the Texan Emigration and Land Company. Mabel Gilbert, a pioneer of the settlement that became Dallas, became Wichita County's first permanent Anglo-American settler when he built a house on a bluff above the Red River, ten miles north of the site of present Wichita Falls, in 1855. Although Native Americans twice drove him from his isolated farm, in 1855 and 1862, he returned in 1867 and died there three years later. Wichita County was established by act of the Texas legislature on February 1, 1858, from the Cooke Land District, and was attached to Clay County for judicial purposes. The new county was named for the Wichita Indians, and settlement was hindered by Indian attacks. Most of the area's Anglo-American pioneers arrived after 1870, when school lands were purchased to become cattle ranches, which have remained an important part of the economy. Wichita County remained unorganized and sparsely inhabited until after 1880, when its population reached 433 on June 7, 1882.

Wichita County remained unorganized and sparsely inhabited until after 1880 when its population reached 433. On June 7, 1882, Robert E. Huff, a recently arrived attorney, presented a petition bearing 150 signatures-some of which allegedly were fraudulent-to the Clay County commissioners court seeking independence for Wichita County. Elections for county officers took place on June 21 of that year. Wichita County's population increased relatively rapidly during the decade after its organization, rising to 4,831 in 1890. The population was predominantly Anglo-American. In 1880 the county only had seventeen African Americansqv and in 1890 only 128. This pattern has remained constant throughout the county's history. Wichita County remained overwhelmingly rural and agricultural during its first decade, with the number of farms increasing from sixty in 1880 to 326 in 1890. Cattle production dominated the economy, and between 1880 and 1890 the number of cattle increased 62 percent to 88,683. Corn and hay were the leading crops raised in the county. The extension of the tracks of a number of rail lines into the county greatly facilitated growth. The Fort Worth and Denver City Railroad reached the tiny settlement of Wichita Falls from Fort Worth in September 1882. This connection ensured the existence of Wichita Falls, which adopted the date of the arrival of the first train, September 26, 1882, as its birthday. Additional railroad-building activity resulted, in large measure, from the efforts of two Wichita Falls businessmen, Joseph A. Kemp and Frank Kell.qv Between 1884 and 1911 these men, acting independently and in concert, organized and promoted three rail lines out of Wichita Falls: the Wichita Falls and Northwestern, the Wichita Falls and Southern, and the Wichita Falls and Wellington. The construction of these roads, all of which were purchased by the Missouri, Kansas and Texas line in 1911, established Wichita Falls as a regional transportation and distribution center. Its population increased from 2,480 at the turn of the century to 8,200 by 1910. Call Field,qv an Army Air Corps training facility, was built south of the city during World War I. Wichita Falls continued to grow; by 1920 it had a population of 40,079 and by 1930 of 60,000, or 80 percent of the county's total population.

BIBLIOGRAPHY: Louise Kelly, Wichita County Beginnings (Burnet, Texas: Eakin Press, 1982). Wichita Falls Times, May 12, 1957.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

The Story Begins...

Born: 1 August 1880, (somewhere) in Tennessee
Died: 22 April 1964, Wichita Falls, Wichita, Texas
Carrie Calline Hamilton
Born: 1881, (somewhere) in Texas
Died: 19 January 1965, Wichita Falls, Wichita, Texas

Married: 21 October 1900, Jack County, Texas

My search begins with my boyfriends father's family. Finest was born somewhere in Tennessee from what I have gotten from his death certificate and the US Census that I have located with he and Carrie. However, other than the information provided here, I can not locate any family past Finest. I think Finest has a sister name Molly, but I am not totally sure at this time. Carrie and Finest are both buried at Ringgold Cemetary in Ringgold Texas.

*NOTE: Finest and Carrie are not buried in Wichita County. However, I am including them in this venture because they are the reason that I got started searching for graves. So I thought it fitting that they be here. They did live in Wichita County and also died in Wichita County.