Kimble County Historical Markers

Texas Brazos Trail Region
Map of Kimble County Historic Sites
Markers (click on a topic to jump to that section.)
Bear Creek Settlement | Old Bear Creek Texas Ranger Camp | Old Beef Trail | Old Beef Trail Crossing | Vicinity of Bradbury Settlement | Coalson-Pullen Colony | Campsite of Marques De Rubi, 1767 | Fight of Sheriff's Posse with Cattle Rustlers | First Court in Kimble County | First Court Tree | Fort McKavett-Fort Clark Military Road | Griffith, Colonel John | Johnson Fork Colony | City of Junction | Kimble County | Kimble County Jail | Kountz, Isaac | Near Route of Old Military Road | Miller-Browning Colony | Morales Ranch | The Oliver Pecan | Doom of the Outlaws of Pegleg Station | Reichenau Gap | Smith, John James | Spanish Road to Santa Fe | Speer, The Killing of Sam | Taylor, Creed | Taylor Ranch Home, Site of Creed | Taylor, Captain William Walter | Teacup Mountain | Wooten Cemetery
Uncommemorated and Unmapped Sites
Creeth, Branch and Brown | Parks Family
Uncommemorated Active Battle Map (Stories below are on map.)
Dan Robert Shoots Indian Chief | Indians Charge Nick Coalson's Residence | James H. Sewell | Thomas Spear | James Bradberry | Gentry, George | Isaac N. Kountz | Indians Kill Mexican | W.J. Nixon | Mrs. Wylie Joy and Mrs. Lafe McDonald | Johnson, Frank

Bear Creek Settlement

Marker Title: Bear Creek Settlement
City: Junction
Year Marker Erected: 1967
Marker Location: from Junction, take IH-10W about 4 miles, then go north on FM 2291 4 miles.
Marker Text: Started in 1850s by rancher Raleigh Gentry, who built a 2-room log house and cleared a small farm, but in 1862 sold out to cattlemen Rance Moore. 1860s settlers included Wm. and Lane Gibson, Charlie Jones, John New, A.J. Nixon, Billie Waites. Others came in 1870s after raids by Indians and outlaws were ended.

Old Bear Creek Texas Ranger Camp

Marker Title: Old Bear Creek Texas Ranger Camp
City: Junction
Year Marker Erected: 1966
Marker Location: about 4 miles NW of Junction on Hwy. 1674.
Marker Text: Established October 1877 as patrol base for Co. E, Frontier Battalion, Texas Rangers, on the lookout for Indians and outlaws along the Llano River. Area was popular refuge for cattle and horse thieves, murderers, mail robbers-- and within a few weeks many were captured by the unit of 30 men commanded by Lt. N.O. Reynolds. The Rangers in 1878 helped fight off one of the last Indian raids in the area. Ranger protection given from this camp (used until mid-1880s) opened the way for peaceful settlement in Kimble and nearby counties.

Old Beef Trail

Marker Title: Old Beef Trail
City: London
Year Marker Erected: 1965
Marker Location: from London, take US 377S about 3.3 miles to FM 385, go south 3 miles to marker.
Marker Text: 300 yards down the main Llano is crossing used 1867-1900 by cattle herds of Real, Frio, Kerr, Kimble, Medina, Edwards, Uvalde counties. Capts. Chas. A. Schreiner and John Lytle put half a million "SL" cattle over this end of western trail, up to market in Dodge City. Also this way went herds off " 7 OL", Western Union Beef Co., Seth Mabry, Terry, Hodges and Schmelter ranches. In early days vehicles from London and Junction forded here on way to Fredericksburg, San Antonio, Kerrville. Here also in old-time camp meetings, settlers convened for weeks. (1965)

Old Beef Trail Crossing

Marker Title: Old Beef Trail Crossing
City: London
Year Marker Erected: 1997
Marker Location: 6.4 mi. S of London on FM 385.
Marker Text: Once used for revivals, this Llano River crossing became a main line of the spring cattle drives from 1867 to the 1880s. Capt. C.A. Schreiner and his partners herded cattle on their way to Abilene and Dodge City on the western trail; many area cowboys rode with them. Preceded by a trail boss and chuckwagon, as many as 2,000 cattle per herd took half a day to cross. With the air full of dust, local ranchers sat on their horses watching their own cattle closely to ensure that none of their herd joined the trail drive. This site later became a vehicle crossing. (1997)

Vicinity of Bradbury Settlement

Marker Title: Vicinity of Bradbury Settlement
City: Junction
Year Marker Erected: 1970
Marker Location: on US 377, 1.7 miles SW of Courthouse (adjacent to city cemetery).
Marker Text: (2 mi. above forks of N. and S. Llano rivers) One of earliest Kimble County communities. Opened by James Bradbury, Sr., a frontiersman. Between 1850 and 1864 he moved here from Williamson County with six children, after death of his wife. He erected several picket or log buildings, and had blacksmith shop for repairing guns and tools.Main business was ranching. Diet included fish, game, honey and bear meat cured as bacon. Five other men (some with families) lived nearby. Bradbury was killed in 1872 in an Indian fight. In 1875 his land was bought and occupied by Dr. E.K. Kountz and family. (1970)

Coalson-Pullen Colony

Marker Title: Coalson-Pullen Colony
City: Junction
Year Marker Erected: 1970
Marker Location: from Junction take IH-10 11.5 miles west, take exit to FM 1674, go west (then road goes north), 3.3 miles to marker.
Marker Text: (cabin chimney at site, about 3 mi. NW) Opened 1866 by Nick and Jennie (Blackwell) Coalson, who moved from Menard area. Stockraising and hunting provided livelihood. Their "bacon" was cured bear meat. Indians often stole horses, and in Dec. 1870 attacked cabin when Coalson and Charlie Mann had gone hunting. Ranch hand Joe Harris was killed. Mrs. Coalson in man's attire held off Indians until her husband returned. Later Coalson sold the ranch to surveyor - Civil War veteran Dr. Asa Pullen and wife Juliet (Gilliland, who had 6 daughters. Many descendants of this family still live in Kimble County.)

Campsite of Marques De Rubi, 1767

Marker Title: Campsite of Marques De Rubi, 1767
City: Junction
Year Marker Erected: 1967
Marker Location: about 4 miles NW of Junction on HWY 1674.
Marker Text: Campsite of Marques de Rubi, 1767. In 1764 King Charles III of Spain order the Marques de Rubi, a Spanish army field marshal, to tour and inspect all presidios in New Spain. Rubi arrived in Mexico in February 1766, and was joined by Nicolas de Lafora, engineer and mapmaker. They made a tour of the Northwest and California territory and entered Texas on July 17, 1767. Rubi chose this location for his campsite July 23, 1767. His report suggested small Texas missions be closed. This was done in 1772. Only Goliad and San Antonio remained. Recorded Texas Historic Landmark, 1967

Fight of Sheriff's Posse with Cattle Rustlers

Marker Title: Fight of Sheriff's Posse with Cattle Rustlers
City: Junction
Year Marker Erected: 1968
Marker Location: Courthouse grounds (Main between 5th and 6th).
Marker Text: (site marked on Rust Ranch, 21 mi. NW) On Feb. 6, 1879, Sheriff John L. Jones and deputies T.C. Taylor, Oscar Latta, John Gardner, T.W. Frazier and Bob Owens found Jim and Jourd Nite (brothers) and J.C. Crane with cattle and horses stolen from James and Peterson and John Gardner. In following fight, Crane and Jourd Nite were killed while Jim was wounded. Crane and Jourd Nite were buried at the scene of the battle. Jim Nite recovered and later at his trial, March 30, 1897, (held in earlier courthouse on this site) was convicted and sentenced as John Underwood.

First Court in Kimble County

Marker Title: First Court in Kimble County
City: Junction
Year Marker Erected: 1967
Marker Location: 1.5 miles north of Junction on US 377/83.
Marker Text: Site: .5 mi. NW, on main Llano River) Held in spring of 1876, under a live oak tree that had a hive of wild bees in its trunk. The site, "Old Kimbleville," had been suggested as the county seat. District Judge W.A. Blackburn, of Burnet, arrived by horseback. District attorney was Frank Wilks. The jury was seated on two logs. Another log was the Judge's bench, and a piece of gnarled live oak limb the gavel. Prisoners awaiting trial were chained to nearby trees. Major trials were for horse thefts. Texas Rangers were on hand to testify and to guard court, as this was during lawless era.

First Court Tree

Marker Title: First Court Tree
City: Junction
Year Marker Erected: 1971
Marker Location: on private property north of Junction via US 377 and private railroad.
Marker Text: Site of 1876 hearing presided over by Judge W.A. Blackburn, with Texas Rangers on guard and the accused chained to tree.

Fort McKavett-Fort Clark Military Road

Marker Title: Fort McKavett - Fort Clark Military Road
City: Roosevelt
Year Marker Erected: 1966
Marker Location: from Junction go 18 miles west on IH-10 to Loop 291, go west on 291 about 1 mile to marker which is in front of Roosevelt Community Center.
Marker Text: From Nearby Ft. Terrett, This road in 1852 led south to Ft. Clark and north to Ft. McKavett. Selected mainly because it had water available, it served as route for freight and mail, 1868, when forts were reactivated. Over it went troops, supplies, a few immigrants and pioneer ranches. It was noted also for passage of forays of Col. Ranald Mackenzie against the hostile Indians to the northwest. After forts were abandoned in 1883, ranchers drove cattle to market over parts of the road. (1966).

Colonel John Griffith

Marker Title: Colonel John Griffith
City: Junction
Year Marker Erected: 1965
Marker Location: Courthouse grounds (corner of Main and 6th).
Marker Text: (1831-1889) Confederate officer in Civil War. Learned at war's end that women and children of family had fled from Arkansas to Texas in open wagon drawn by a milch cow and a one-eye mule. The missing were found in 1866, as mule was recognized near the courthouse in Comanche and 2 Griffith boys mounted him. Settled at Buffalo Gap. Helped to organize Taylor county, 1878. Moved to Kimble county, 1881. Had much property, great influence. An example of those leaders who came to Texas after war to get a new start and become outstanding citizens. (1965)

Johnson Fork Colony

Marker Title: Johnson Fork Colony
City: Junction
Year Marker Erected: 1967
Marker Location: from Junction, take I-10 E about 8 miles to exit 465 (Segovia), stay on access road until it becomes dirt, then 4.3 miles to marker.
Marker Text: One of first settlements in Kimble county, founded early 1860's on land once owned by Samuel Maverick, famed pioneer Texas cattleman. Name of the colony was taken from its site on the Johnson fork of the Llano river. Settled by Wiley Joy family, who built gravity irrigation system, rock fence, 2-room log house, traces of which still remain. By end of Civil War was home of 8 families, called the Joy Settlement; it became a watering place for troops and travelers; later a stage stop. (1967)

City of Junction

Marker Title: City of Junction
City: Junction
Year Marker Erected: 1972
Marker Location: corner of 5th and College St.
Marker Text: County seat of Kimble county. Townsite platted 1876 (year of county organization) as "Denman." Soon had named changed by voters to denote site at confluence of north and south Llano rivers. Growth was steady. By 1882 had 300 people, a courthouse, jail, school, 2 churches, 2 stores. In 1927, town was incorporated; water system bought, 1929; sewer system built, 1929; municipal hall and fire station erected 1939-40; swimming pool installed 1955. Eight mayors, 63 alderman, 5 city secretaries, and others have held offices. After annexations, by 1970 population reached 2654. (1972)

Kimble County

Marker Title: Kimble County
City: Junction
Year Marker Erected: 1936
Marker Location: Courthouse grounds (corner of 5th and Main).
Marker Text: Jumano and Apache Indians inhabited region when Spanish explorers traveled across it in the 17th and 18th centuries, and were displaced by the Comanche tribe by the mid-19th century. Area was under military jurisdiction of forts Terrett (1852-54) and Mckavett (1852-59,1868-83), which were aided in defense by the Texas Rangers. County was created from Bexar county, 1858, named for George C. Kimble (1810?-1836), who died defending the Alamo. Organized in 1876, with the county seat first at Kimbleville, then junction in 1877. Haven for lawless element until the Rangers restored peace in 1880s. Ranching is primary industry, producing wool and mohair. Rrected by the state of Texas - 1973

Kimble County Jail

Marker Title: Kimble County Jail
City: Junction
Year Marker Erected: 1964
Marker Location: N. 5th and Pecan St.
Marker Text: This building, Kimble county's third jail, was erected in 1892 during the term of Judge W.A. Spencer and Commissioners G.R. Armstrong, J.F. Cowsert, and H.W. McCaleb. Built at a cost of $3,150, the two-foot thick hewn stone walls gave the fortress the reputation for being "as secure as Huntsville state prison". Among the many prisoners held here was the 1896 killer, Gip Hardin, brother of noted badman John Wesley Hardin. Recorded Texas Historic Landmark - 1964

Isaac Kountz

Marker Title: Isaac Kountz
City: Junction
Year Marker Erected: 1964
Marker Location: on US 377 S about 2 miles SW OF Courthouse.
Marker Text: Killed on this spot by Indians on Christmas Eve, 1867. He was 16 years old, and herding sheep for his father, Dr. E.K. Kountz. A brother, Sebastian, age 11, escaped. A posse and Texas Rangers chased the Indians to the Guadalupe River. Young Kountz was buried in Junction Cemetery. 1967

Near Route of Old Military Road

Marker Title: Near Route of Old Military Road
City: Junction
Year Marker Erected: 1966
Marker Location: from Junction, take IH-10E about 8 miles to Exit #465 (Segovia) - marker is on access road in front of truck stop.
Marker Text: Supply line from U.S. Army headquarters in San Antonio to Fort Terrett, 1852-1854. In the 1850's two-thirds of Texas was held by Comanches or threatened by raids. Posts such as Fort Terrett stood from Red River to the Rio Grande, for protection. The Fort Terrett road parallelled Johnson (Elm) Fork of the Llano near Junction. The army closed Fort Terrett in 1854, but settlers used the route as their main road to San Antonio. It appeared on Kimble county maps until 1930. Parts of the road are still visible. Recorded Texas Historic Landmark - 1966

Miller-Browning Colony

Marker Title: Miller-Browning Colony
City: Junction
Year Marker Erected: 1970
Marker Location: on FM 2169, 5.2 miles east of Junction.
Marker Text: Located about one mile north in late 19th century. Composed of two families prominent in early Kimble county affairs. Started in 1874 by John and Martha Miller. Known as "Honest John," Miller joined frontier militia to fight Indians and served on first jury and second jury commission, county district court. Was elected justice of the peace, precinct 4, in 1876. Colony also included families of A.P. Browning and William Miller. James A. Browning served longer as county official than any previous person. Descendants still reside in Kimble County. (1970)

Morales Ranch

Marker Title: Morales Ranch
City: Junction
Year Marker Erected: 1970
Marker Location: from Junction, take IH-10W about 4 miles, then go north on FM 2291 5.8 miles.
Marker Text: 350 yards southwest stands a small rock house built in 1881 by settler Meliton Morales (1837-1924). Born in Mexico, Morales was kidnapped by Indians as a youth and spent 9 years in captivity. Moved to Texas in 1855. Came here from Duval County in 1874, bringing 200 Spanish goats and 2,000 sheep to start ranching. He and wife Ramona (Pena) had 9 children. He served on jury of first court convened after organization of county. He and wife are buried on the Manuel Morales Ranch in Schleicher County, near Kimble County Line. Descendants own this land.

The Oliver Pecan

Marker Title: The Oliver Pecan
City: Junction
Year Marker Erected: 1973
Marker Location: on FM 2169, 2.5 miles E of Junction.
Marker Text: Young P. Oliver (1857-1925) came to this area in 1876 from his native Guadalupe County. In 1896, Oliver purchased this section (640 acres) of land, on which grew hundreds of pecan trees, and became a pioneer in the pecan industry. The grove contained "Old Oliver", a giant tree which produced 350-400 pounds of soft-shelled nuts per year; 800 pounds in 1906. By grafting buds from "Old Oliver" on seedlings from its pecan strain, the well-known Oliver pecan strain was developed. A flood in 1935 destroyed the tree, but its pecans are still produced commercially. Nut harvesting is a major Kimble County industry.

Doom of the Outlaws of Pegleg Station

Marker Title: Doom of the Outlaws of Pegleg Station
City: Junction
Year Marker Erected: 1969
Marker Location: on US 377 S, about 9.5 miles SW of Junction.
Marker Text: Here the climax of a western track-down occurred on Jan.18. 1878. When Texas Rangers killed suspected murderer Dick Dublin, member of a gang of outlaws. Although a friend yelled for him to run, Dublin was shot (150 yds.S) as the intrepid James B. Gillett and 3 other Rangers rushed his hide-out (60 yds.E). Dick's brothers (Role and Dell), Mack Potter, and Rube Boyce were captured after a partner of the gang turned informer. Three of them (plus two others) were convicted Aug. 23-24, 1880, of the 1877 robbery of the U.S. Mail at Pegleg Station. (1969)

Reichenau Gap

Marker Title: Reichenau Gap
City: London
Year Marker Erected: 1966
Marker Location: 1.5 miles SW of London on US 377.
Marker Text: For more than 100 years, travelers followed road from Mason to Junction through this pass. Named for Adolph A. Reichenau, a German emigrant who settled near pass in 1860 as an early landholder in nearby Big Saline Valley. He moved in 1866 because of Indian depredations. Recorded Texas Historic Landmark, 1966

John James Smith

Marker Title: John James Smith
Year Marker Erected: 1981
Marker Location: US 377 S, 3 miles SW of Junction.
Marker Text: (March 24, 1822 - April 22, 1924) Illinois native John James Smith came to Texas shortly before enlisting for service in the Mexican War, 1846-48. He later served as a Texas Ranger, helping protect frontier areas from attacks by hostile Indians. During the Civil War Smith joined the Confederate Army and served as city marshall of Greenville, Texas, for two years. Smith moved to Kimble County in 1881, where he was a farmer and a respected citizen. He lived at his nearby farm home (300 yds. SE) until his death at the age of 102.

Spanish Road to Santa Fe

Marker Title: Spanish Road to Santa Fe
City: Junction
Year Marker Erected: 1967
Marker Location: FM 385 ROW, 32 miles E of Junction.
Marker Text: Most direct road from San Antonio to Santa Fe, during Spanish era in Texas, 1519-1821. Charted for closer ties between Mexico City and New Mexico, after American explorer Zebulon Pike blazed trail from U.S. to New Mexico. Spanish road of 1808 was mapped by Capt. Francisco Amangual and 200 soldiers. Amangual, veteran of 46 years of service to Spain, left San Antonio on March 30, 1808. On April 8, coming into this valley 5 miles to the south, he followed The East James (then called El Chimal Creek, for its bordering bluffs that resemble Indian headdresses), and camped that night by this red bluff. The party saw much game, including buffalo, and killed a bear. Stampedes and losses of horses and mules (some loaded with crude sugar and other food) made the trip difficult. The route pointed north-northwest. The party reached Santa Fe on June 19, and six months later returned to San Antonio. Although Zebulon Pike (discoverer of Pike's peak) had traveled with only eight men, Amangual had to field a large party. One goal of his expedition was to impress the wild and fierce plains Indians with the might and glory of Spain. The road measured in 1808 has traces visible today, parallel to auto roads.

The Killing of Sam Speer

Marker Title: The Killing of Sam Speer
City: Junction
Year Marker Erected: 1967
Marker Location: 1.5 miles N of Junction on US 377/83.
Marker Text: On Dec. 24, 1876, a band of Indians killed Sam Speer, only 17 years of age, who was driving in horses near here. A 50-caliber gun his brother was using failed to fire. This was the last Indian murder in Kimble County. Speer is buried in the North Llano Cemetery.

Creed Taylor

Marker Title: Creed Taylor
City: Junction
Year Marker Erected: 1962
Marker Location: 29 miles E of Junction, via FM 479, on CR just E of Little Devil's River; pass Noxville School and continue about 1 mile down CR to cemetery.
Marker Text: Soldier Texas War for Independence. Gonzales to Bexar, 1835. Scout and courier, 1836.

Site of Creed Taylor Ranch Home

Marker Title: Site of Creed Taylor Ranch Home
City: Junction
Year Marker Erected: 1967
Marker Location: 19 miles East of Junction Via FM 479 on private road just west of James River about 1/2 mile off FM 479 (private property).
Marker Text: A two-story ranch house of native stone was built here in 1869-71 by Creed Taylor, veteran of Texas War for Independence. Considered the finest home west of San Antonio, it burned in 1926. Rebuilt by Dillard Stapp, it again burned down in 1956. Taylor (1819-1906) fought in the Battle of Gonzales in 1835, and later in the Battle of Concepcion and the Siege of Bexar. Joined the Texas Rangers in 1840 and fought in Plum Creek Battle. In 1841, he joined Rangers, serving under Capt. Jack Hays in Bandera Pass Indian fight, Battle of Salado, and the Mexican War of 1846.

Captain William Walter Taylor

Marker Title: Captain William Walter Taylor
City: Junction
Year Marker Erected: 1967
Marker Location: 1.5 miles SW of Junction Courthouse via SU 3775, in city cemetery; marker is 1/2 way down main road though cemetery.
Marker Text: Grandson of Josiah Taylor and grandnephew of Creed Taylor, Indian fighters who took part in Battle of Bandera Pass, 1841. Born at Clinton, Texas; in 1889 he moved to Kimble County, to begin ranching with an uncle. In 1898 became county sheriff. His six terms included critical period of 1902 land rush. He was appointed Texas Ranger Captain in 1917 by Governor W.P. Hobby; he served ten years, chiefly at Ranger, Brownsville, and Borger. Recorded 1967

Teacup Mountain

Marker Title: Teacup Mountain
City: Junction
Year Marker Erected: 1967
Marker Location: 8 miles E. of Junction on US 377.
Marker Text: Named for its peculiar formation. Probably used as a lookout post by both whites and Indians in pioneer days. Near here occurred the Indian killing of pioneer James Bradberry, Sr., 1872; and the capture of a wanted man by Lt. N.O. Reynolds and four fellow Texas Rangers in 1878.

Wooten Cemetery

Marker Title: Wooten Cemetery
City: Junction
Year Marker Erected: 1997
Marker Location: 10.5 mi. SW of Junction on US 377.
Marker Text: Typical of burial sites chosen by early Texas Hill Country pioneers, Wooten Cemetery was established by April 1880 when one-year-old Cornelius Clay Jackson was buried. His headstone is the earliest grave marker in the cemetery. His mother, P. Jane Jackson, died in 1881 and is interred nearby. Other notable graves include a family group believed to be tuberculosis victims. The plot of the Allsup family is also prominent, as is the grave of Civil War veteran Simon Lee Wooten (1830-1896), for whom the cemetery is named, who came to Texas from Georgia upon the death of the Old South. (1997).


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