Edwards County Historical Markers

Texas Brazos Trail Region

Map of Edwards County Historic Sites

Topics (click on a topic to jump to that section).
Pioneer Coalsons | Dixie Settlement | Edwards County | Edwards County | Edwards County Courthouse | Stopping Place on the Fort Clark-Fort McKavett Military Road | Mackenzie Trail | Rock Spring | Smith, Clinton LaFayette

Pioneer Coalsons

Marker Title: The Pioneer Coalsons
City: Barksdale
County: Edwards
Year Marker Erected: 1972
Marker Location: .5 miles north of Nueces River on SH 55; Barksdale
Marker Text: Indians attacked goat camp of Nick Coalson on June 1, 1877; son Arthur, 10, was killed; Johnny, 14, wounded. Coalson escaped after 3 hours of hard fighting. One year later he lost his wife Alice, a daughter Etta Elizabeth (twin of Arthur), and infant stepson in another Indian raid. Captains Pat Dolan and Dan Roberts with Texas Ranger units, S.D. Coalson (Nick's son), U.S. Army scout Jim Hill, Jim and John Welch, and Henry and Sam Wells pursued but failed to find the Indians. The victim's graves are near old homesite, on Half Moon Prairie. Coalson descendants are prominent in Texas history. (1972)

Dixie Settlement

Marker Title: Dixie Settlement
City: Barksdale
County: Edwards
Year Marker Erected: 1974
Marker Location: .5 miles north of Nueces River on SH 55; Barksdale
Marker Text: Named for Camp Dixie, a Texas Ranger post near Military Road to Fort Inge (42 miles southeast). First civilian settler was Jerusha Sanchez, midwife for Nueces Canyon area, widowed by Indians in the 1870s. Next came Elizabeth Hill, whose eldest son Jim was a military scout. Lewis Barksdale, a veteran of Republic of Texas wars, opened a ranch on his 1876 land grant. The J.R. (Bob) Sweeten family established a store that became the focus for the expanding community. When a post office was created in 1882 and named for Lewis Barksdale, the name Dixie disappeared from use. (1974)

Edwards County

Marker Title: Edwards County
City: Rocksprings
County: Edwards
Year Marker Erected: 1967
Marker Location: south end of courthouse square, Rocksprings
Marker Text: Atop the Edwards Plateau, extending into the scenic Nueces Valley. Angora goat capital of the world. The economy is based on ranching. Wild game is abundant. Created in 1858 and organized 1883 from old Bexar district. Named for Haden Edwards (1813-1865), an early leader and colonizer in Texas. First county seat was Leakey; present boundaries were created, and county seat was moved on April 13, 1891, to Rocksprings. First courthouse and jail were built that year. After a fire in 1897, the present courthouse was erected; it withstood a destructive tornado that claimed 72 lives in the county in 1927. First officials to serve the county (1891-1893) as it is presently constituted were the following: James M. Hunter, County Judge; W.M. Sanford, County and District Clerk; Ira L. Wheat, Sheriff and Tax Collector; S.A. Hough, County Attorney; W.H. Cowan, County Treasurer County Commissioners: John Eaton, Precinct No. 1; C.H. Kirchner, Precinct No. 2; H. Schweithelm, Precinct No. 3; M. M. Bradford, Precinct No. 4 (1967)

Edwards County

Marker Title: Edwards County
City: Rocksprings
County: Edwards
Year Marker Erected: 1936
Marker Location: from Rocksprings take US Highway 377 north approximately 2 miles.
Marker Text: Formed from Bexar County; created February 1, 1858. Organized September 10, 1883. Named in honor of Haden Edwards 1771-1849. Empresario leader of the Fredonian War in 1827. County seat, Leakey 1883 Rocksprings, since 1890.

Edwards County Courthouse

Marker Title: Edwards County Courthouse
City: Rocksprings
County: Edwards
Year Marker Erected: 1973
Marker Location: Courthouse Square; Rocksprings
Marker Text: Late Victorian structure of rusticated limestone, quarried in Southwest Texas. Contractors were Davey and Schott, of Kerrville, 1891. Roof was damaged by 1927 storm that killed 70 people. It was afterward restored. Recorded Texas Historic Landmark - 1973

Stopping Place on the Fort Clark-Fort McKavett Military Road

Marker Title: Stopping Place on the Fort Clark-Fort McKavett Military Road
City: Rocksprings
County: Edwards
Marker Location: from Rocksprings take US Highway 377 north approximately 20.5 miles.
Marker Text: One of many roads built to connect frontier cavalry posts in Texas, this route led south to Fort Clark and north to Fort McKavett (both established in 1852). Rocksprings, located here at the head of the South Llano River, was a natural mid-way rest stop. In 1877 Major John B. Jones' Texas Rangers assembled here to begin a major offensive to capture frontier outlaws. In addition to its military uses, the Fort Clark-Fort McKavett Road provided an accessible route for immigrants, cattle drovers, pioneer ranchers, mail carriers, and freighters. (1968, 1990)

Mackenzie Trail

Marker Title: Mackenzie Trail
City: Rocksprings
County: Edwards
Year Marker Erected: 1977
Marker Location: from Rocksprings take SH 55 north approximately 9 miles.
Marker Text: When the U.S. Army built Forts Clark (70 miles southwest) and McKavett (90 miles northeast) in 1852, this frontier trail connected the posts. After Fort Concho was established in 1867, the trail was extended farther north, to present San Angelo. It was later named for Col. Ranald S. Mackenzie, the 1873 commander of Fort Clark, who traveled it in his campaigns against hostile Indians. One of its landmarks was Mackenzie Lake (6.5 miles north), which furnished water for the troops, for cattle drives up the trail, for settlers, and for Texas Rangers on frontier patrols. (1977)

Rock Spring

Marker Title: The Rock Spring
City: Rocksprings
County: Edwards
Year Marker Erected: 1972
Marker Location: from Rocksprings go north on US Highway 377 approximately .3 miles.
Marker Text: Known to early Texans as one inch flow of water out of rocks. Site of a camp for travelers and freighters. Occupants of land around the spring included W.J. Greer, with a sheep camp, 1882; Francis Winans, with a cattle and sheep ranch, 1884; A.O. Burr, farming, about 1885. Cattlemen, including Frank Gray, camped here during roundups. Outlaws in 1880s frequented a hut nearby. Rocksprings Post Office opened 1891 in townsite platted for a new county seat at center of Edwards County. The rock spring still seeps in city and county historic park and playground. (1972)

Clinton LaFayette Smith

Marker Title: Clinton LaFayette Smith
City: Rocksprings
County: Edwards
Year Marker Erected: 2001
Marker Location: Rockpsrings Cemetery, on SH 41, 1 mile north of US 377.
Marker Text: Clinton (Clint) Lafayette Smith, son of Henry M. and Fanny (Short) Smith, was born in Kendall County, Texas. Clint, age 11, and his brother Jeff, age 9, were kidnapped by Lipan and Comanche Indians while herding sheep near their home in 1871. Clint was adopted by Chief Tasacowadi and lived with the Comanche for five years, until he gave himself up in a trade for Indians imprisoned at Fort Sill, Oklahoma. After returning to his family, Smith became a trail driver and Angora goat breeder. He moved to Rocksprings in 1910 with his wife, Dixie (Dyche), and children. (2001)


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