Marker Title: Town of Bedias
Year Marker Erected: 1968
Marker Location: Cooper Park near downtown Bedias on FM 1696.
Marker Text: Named for North and South Bedias creeks, which in
turn were named for the Bidai Indians, an agricultural people reputed
to have been the oldest inhabitants of the area. "Bidai" means
"brushwood", which may refer to the building material used
in their dwellings. The first white settlement in this vicinity was
founded 1835 by Thomas P. Plaster, and for a while it was called Plasterville.
In 1903, the community of "Old" Bedias surrendered most of
its population to "New" Bedias after a branch of the International
& Great Northern Railroad was built to the northeast. Townspeople
from Pankey and Cotton also moved here. The name "Bedias"
was retained, but only after a heated struggle in which determined citizens
refused to have the town named for a railroad official. A famous, early
resident of the Bedias area was Sarah Dodson, who in 1835 made the first
"Lone Star" flag in Texas. She lived here from 1844 to 1848
and is buried in Old Bethel Cemetery, seven miles west. One of the most
unique features of this region is the large number of Tektites (also
called "Bediasites") found here. These are beautiful, glassy,
meteor-like stones which fell to earth 34 million years ago. Amazingly,
Indians called them "jewels of the moon."
Marker Title: Sarah Bradley Dodson
Year Marker Erected: 1986
Marker Location: From Bedias take SH 90 N approximately 4 miles
to roadside park.
Marker Text: Born in Kentucky in 1812, eleven-year-old Sarah
Bradley and her parents arrived in Texas in 1823 with Stephen F. Austin's
old three hundred colonists, settling near Brazoria. Sarah married Archelaus
Bynum Dodson of nearby Harrisburg on May 17, 1835. As tensions mounted
between Mexico and the Texian colonists, a call for military volunteers
was circulated in September 1835, and Archelaus Dodson became First
Lt. in Captain Andrew Robinson's Harrisburg Volunteers. Sarah offered
to design and make a flag for her husband's company. Using blue, white,
and red calico, she fashioned a flag of three equal squares, with a
five pointed white star in the center of the blue square. Reportedly
the first Lone Star flag, the banner was displayed in the town of Gonzales
in October 1835, and in December flew during the Siege of Bexar. When
the Declaration of Independence was signed, two flags were seen flying
over Convention Hall. One was described as a Lone Star flag and is believed
to have been the one made by Sarah Dodson. Following the Texan victory
at San Jacinto, the Dodsons lived in Fort Bend County, then moved in
1844 to Grimes County. They donated the land for Bethel Cemetery (5
mi. N) where Sarah was buried in 1848. Texas Sesquicentennial 1836 -
Museum Name: Fanthorp Inn State Historical Park
Mailing Address: P.O. Box 296
Zip Code: 77830
Street Address: South Main Street
Area Code: 409
Marker Title: Grimes County
Marker Text: Created April 6, 1846; Organized July 13, 1846;
Named in honor of Jesse Grimes 1788-1866; Signer of the Texas Declaration
of Independence; Member of the Texas Congress; County Seat, Anderson,
originally known as Fanthorp.
Marker Title: Grimes County Courthouse
Year Marker Erected: 1965
Marker Location: Courthouse, Anderson.
Marker Text: Unique Victorian Texas public building. Third courthouse
here. Site, in an 1824 land grant from Mexico, was donated 1850 by Henry
Fanthorp, first permanent settler in county. Built 1891 of hand-molded
brick with native stone trim. Vault is same one used in previous buildings;
has twice withstood fires. Tried here in 1930s, a Clyde Barrow gang
member vowed he'd see court in infernal regions. Recorded Texas Historic
Marker Title: Primus Kelly
Year Marker Erected: 1965
Marker Location: From Navasota take SH 6 S approx. 12 mi. to
Marker Text: A faithful Negro slave. Came to nearby Courtney,
Grimes County in 1851 with his master, John W.S. West from North Carolina.
West was a prominent and wealthy pioneer planter and landowner. At the
outbreak of the Civil War, West sent Kelly "to take care"
of his three sons-- Robert M., Richard and John Haywood-- who joined
the famous Terry's Texas Rangers, where they served with distinction.
Kelly was not content "to wait on" his charges but joined
them in battle, firing his own musket and cap and ball pistol. Twice
Kelly brought to Texas the wounded Richard, twice took him to the front
again. After war, bought a small farm near "Marse Robert",
raised a large family and prospered. Died in 1890s. The courage and
loyalty of Kelly was typical of most Texas Negro slaves. Hundreds "went
to war" with their masters. Many operated the farms and ranches
of soldiers away at war, producing food, livestock, cotton and clothing
for the Confederacy. Others, did outside work to support their master's
families. They protected homes from Indians, bandits and deserters and
did community guard and patrol duty. At war's end, most slaves, like
Primus Kelly, became useful and productive citizens of Texas.
Marker Title: La Bahia Trail
Year Marker Erected: 1967
Marker Location: Near the intersection of La Salle (Bus. SH 6)
and Bruce St. in Cedar Creek Roadside Park; Navasota.
Marker Text: Originally an Indian trail through Southern Texas
and Louisiana; known to Spanish explorers as early as 1690, when the
De Leon Expedition passed this site on the way from Mexico to East Texas.
With 115 men, 721 horses, 82 loads of flour, and other supplies, Alonso
de Leon, Governor of Coahuila, and Father Massanet, a Franciscan priest,
entered the wilds of Texas. The purpose of the expedition was to discourage
French encroachment from the north, as well as to explore, colonize,
and Christianize the Indians. They followed the rugged trail from the
present town of Refugio to Goliad and continued northeast to Navasota,
probably following Cedar Creek through this town. Then they journeyed
north until reaching the Neches River, where (near present Weches) they
founded the Mission of San Francisco de Los Tejas. The church was called
after the Tejas, or "Friendly" Indians, whose name was eventually
given to the entire state. Although de Leon's party went no farther
on the western section of the trail, known as Atascosito Road, the eastern
section extended into Louisiana. In nineteenth century, the route gained
importance as a cattle trail, the Opelousas Road, that moved Texas herds
to market in the north and east.
Marker Title: Rene Robert Cavelier Sieur de La Salle
Marker Location: SH 909, 400 blk. E. Washington, W. end Esplanade
Marker Text: Treacherously slain by his own men near this spot in March, 1687. Born in Rouey, France November 22, 1643. Explorer of the Mississippi River. Frontier statesman, empire builder, nobleman in rank and character.
Marker Title: Steinhagen Log Cabin
Year Marker Erected: 1965
Marker Location: Anderson Park on SH 90; Anderson
Marker Text: Built before 1860. Log walls are unspliced. Slaves
hand-hewed the timbers, stones, made doors, window shutters. Recorded
Texas Historic Landmark, 1965