Michael has a BA in History & American Studies and an MSc in American History from the University of Edinburgh. He comes from a proud military family and has spent most of his career as an educator in the Middle East and Asia. His passion is travel, and he seizes any opportunity to share his experiences in the most immersive way possible, whether at sea or on the land.

Texas Hill Country Trail Region

Map of Kerr County Historic Sites
Markers (click on a topic to jump to that section.)
Site of Camp Verde | Camp Verde General Store and Post Office | Camp Verde, C.S.A. | Center Point Cemetery | The Dowdy Tragedy of 1878 | Henderson Cemetery | Indian Sites on Cypress Creek | Old Ingram | Kerr County | Early Settlers of Kerr County (The Shingle Makers) | Kerr, James | Kerrville | Nichols Cemetery | Roggenbucke Homestead | Schreiner, Captain Charles | Sunset Cemetery | Tivy, Captain Joseph A. | Y.O. Ranch
Uncommemorated and Unmapped Sites
W.R. Terry Murder
Uncommemorated Active Battle Map (Stories below are on map.)
Indians Attack Taylor Home | Calvin Putman and Others* | Rolland Nichols | Spencer Goss | Mrs. Mary Alexander | Sammy Lane
Calvin Putman and Others Fight Near the Head of the Pedernales

    During 1861, Putman and about fifteen or twenty others stationed at Camp Davis on White Oak, about ten miles south of Fredericksburg, were scouting and struck an Indian trail. The warriors were overtaken at a point about two miles form the head spring of the Pedernales. A running fight followed. Three Indians were killed and the others completely routed.

    Note: Before writing this section, the author interviewed several of the surviving old settlers of that section.

Site of Camp Verde

Marker Title: Site of Camp Verde
City: Kerrville
Year Marker Erected: 1936
Marker Location: From Kerrville take SH 173 South approximately 13 miles to Camp Verde. Marker is on farm road .5 miles west of Camp Verde Store.
Marker Text: Established as a frontier post by the United States Army, July 8, 1855; headquarters in 1856 for 40 camels, sent by Secretary of War Jefferson Davis, to be used in a system of overland communication with the west, which proved impracticable. Surrendered to the Confederate government in 1861; reoccupied in 1865 by the United States Army; abandoned April 1, 1869.

Camp Verde General Store and Post Office

Marker Title: Camp Verde General Store and Post Office
City: Kerrville
Year Marker Erected: 1971
Marker Location: From Kerrville, take SH 173 south approximately 13 miles to Camp Verde. Store is located near intersection with FM 480.
Marker Text: Mercantile business operated 1857 as Williams Community Store, serving trade around Camp Verde Army Post (site of U.S. War Department's 1857-69 camel experiment). Post office opened in 1887. Recorded Texas Historic Landmark - 1971

Camp Verde, C.S.A.

Marker Title: Camp Verde, C.S.A.
City: Kerrville
Year Marker Erected: 1963
Marker Location: Courthouse grounds, southwest corner Sidney Baker and main streets, Kerrville
Marker Text: Texas frontier regiment outpost was established 1862, southeast and near old U.S. Post Camp Verde. Part of Red River-Rio Grande line of posts a day's horseback ride apart. The troops furnished own guns, mounts, but often lacked food, clothing, supplies. Still, scouting parties, patrols effectively curbed Indian raids until war's end. Kerr County population was 585. County voted 76-57 for secession 1861. 75 men served in Confederate and state forces. Some sent to protect Texas Coast from Union invasion, some helped to defend frontier in this region, others fought on distant battlefields. 19 men from county served in Texas Union forces. Old U.S. Post Camp Verde was taken by C.S.A. troops Feb. 1861. The Confederates captured 80 camels and two Egyptian drivers with other U.S. property. These camels were used to haul cotton - life's blood of South - to Mexico swap for vital supplies, including salt from lakes north of Brownsville. During post dances ladies rode a camel "Old Major" around the parade grounds. 600 Union soldiers captured leaving Texas early in Civil War were confined in prison canyon southwest of the camp. 3 cliffs, described as "very difficult to ascend" surrounded the prison area. Prisoners, held from Aug. 1861 until sometime in 1862, were allowed to build shacks and get adequate exercise with little risk of escape. One Union prisoner performed as ventriloquist at post dance, scaring ladies with unseen pig sounds. Erected by the State of Texas 1963

Center Point Cemetery

Marker Title: Center Point Cemetery
City: Center Point
Year Marker Erected: 1986
Marker Location: from Center Point, take FM 480 approximately .5 miles to cemetery.
Marker Text: The earliest known settlers in this area were Mrs. Elizabeth Denton and her children and slaves, who arrived in 1852. They were joined in 1858 by the family of Dr. Charles Ganahl, who named the new community Zanzenberg, after his hometown in Austria. The town became known as Center Point in 1872, and settlers continued to moved into the area. In 1872 land was purchased for a church and cemetery on this site, and in 1881 two acres were added to the property to enlarge the cemetery. The church was moved off the property, and another land acquisition in 1901 increased the cemetery property to 5.3 acres. Approximately 1,452 graves have been located here. The oldest marked burial is that of Lydia Burney (1795-1875). Many early pioneers and community leaders are buried here, as well as 32 Texas Rangers, whose names are: W.D.C. Burney; N. Coldwell; J.A. Gibbens; H.T. Hill; F.L. Holloway; R.J. Irving, Sr.; R.J. Lange; J.H. Lane; S.T. Lane, Jr.; T. Lane; M.A. Lowrance; J.L. McElroy; S.G. McElroy; A.S. Moore; F.M. Moore; G.K. Moore; G.R. Moore; G.W. Moore; H.C. Moore; James Moore; J.T. Moore; M.F. Moore; D.C. Nowlin; J.C. Nowlin; R.W. Nowlin; P. Alonzo Rees; N.O. Reynolds; W.H. Rishworth; J.L. Sellars; A.J. Sowell; W.H. Witt; S.G. Wray. Texas Sesquicentennial 1836-1986

The Dowdy Tragedy of 1878

Marker Title: The Dowdy Tragedy of 1878
City: Ingram
Year Marker Erected: 1979
Marker Location: from Ingram take SH 27 8.5 miles to marker site.
Marker Text: The pioneer family of Susan (1830-1913) and James Dowdy (1818-1900) moved from Goliad to Kerr County in 1878 and settled on Johnson Creek. Shortly after the family arrived, four of the Dowdy children, Alice, Martha, Susan, and James, were killed by Indians while tending sheep near their home. The attack occurred on Oct. 5, 1878, at a site about 3.5 miles northwest of present Ingram. The victims were buried the following day at Sunset Cemetery, northwest of Ingram. This incident was one of the last Indian raids in Kerr County. (1979)

Henderson Cemetery

Marker Title: Henderson Cemetery (two miles north)
City: Ingram
Year Marker Erected: 1990
Marker Location: from Ingram take SH 27 2 miles northwest to marker at junction with Henderson Branch Road.
Marker Text: Howard Henderson (1842-1908) came to Texas in 1857. He was a survivor of the Civil War Battle of the Nueces in 1862, in which he and other Unionists were ambushed by a Confederate force near the Nueces River. He later served as Texas Ranger. Henderson married Narcissa Turknett in 1866 and they settled near this site. In 1870, upon the deaths of their infant twin sons Thomas and Philip, they began a family burial ground which became known as Henderson Cemetery. Other family members and neighbors were also buried in the graveyard. (1990)

Indian Sites on Cypress Creek

Marker Title: Indian Sites on Cypress Creek
City: Kerrville
Year Marker Erected: 1978
Marker Location: from Kerrville take FM 1341 about 10 miles to Cypress Creek - Marker located in yard of Sturdy Oak Farm, house #121. Not visible from road.
Marker Text: Named "Sturdy Oak Farm" for an ancient live oak, this property has belonged to the Lich family since 1879. Mr. and Mrs. Ernst Perry Lich became the owners in 1945. Three significant prehistoric sites on this property indicate its importance for human habitation for at least 10,000 years. Tools from the sites represent several archaeological periods from Paleo-Indian through Archaic times. The sites are near spring-fed pools in Cypress Creek. Artifacts discovered at the three locations include arrowheads, knives, beads, and stone tools left by nomadic tribes that once wandered this area. (1978)

Old Ingram

Marker Title: Old Ingram
City: Ingram
Year Marker Erected: 1983
Marker Location: at junction of Old Ingram Loop and Indian Creek Road, Ingram.
Marker Text: Settlers began arriving in this vicinity prior to the Civil War. In 1879 the Reverend J.C.W. Ingram, a Church of Christ minister from California, bought the land at this site from pioneer settler Abner McWhorter Morriss. Ingram soon opened a general store and post office. A community grew around the store and thrived for fifty years as a commercial center. During the 1930s a new highway was constructed nearby, and the original townsite gradually was abandoned as businesses began to relocate. Today Old Ingram is an arts center with studios, galleries, craft and gift shops. (1983) Incise on base: Sponsor: Judy Wunsch, a descendant of Lucinda and Green Lackey

Kerr County

Marker Title: Kerr County
City: Kerrville
Year Marker Erected: 1936
Marker Location: from Kerrville take SH 26 East approximately 1.3 miles past Spur 100 - Marker is located on north side of road.
Marker Text: Formed from Bexar County; created January 26, 1856; organized March 22, 1856. Named in honor of James Kerr, 1790-1850; the first American settler on the Guadalupe River; general manager of DeWitt's Colony; signer of the Texas Declaration of Independence; member of the Third Texas Congress. County Seat, Kerrsville (afterwards Kerrville), 1856-1860; Comfort, 1860-1862, Kerrville since.

Early Settlers of Kerr County (The Shingle Makers)

Marker Title: Early Settlers of Kerr County (the Shingle Makers)
City: Kerrville
Year Marker Erected: 1971
Marker Location: Courthouse Square, Sidney Baker and Main Street.
Marker Text: The earliest permanent settler at this point on the Guadalupe was Joshua D. Brown (1816-74), a native of Kentucky who came to Texas in 1830 and settled at Gonzales near a fellow Kentuckian, James Kerr, surveyor and resident manager of Green DeWitt's Colony. Brown did military duty for the Republic of Texas. After marrying Sarah Jane Goss of Gonzales, he sought new opportunities on the frontier, learned the art of hand-riving cypress shingles, and found here on the Guadalupe's headwaters an abundance of giant cypress trees suitable for commercial use. In 1846, he led to this site ten shingle makers, and built a camp of picket houses in which to work. Despite Indian raids that sometimes drove the crew to Gonzales for safety, he made a success of the first industry operated at later site of Kerrville. Brown bought 2,640 acres of land with frontage on the river. When the county was organized in 1856, he insisted upon having it named for his friend, James Kerr. He donated the original townsite, including 4 acres of land for public building and streets in Kerrsville (as town was then called), the county seat. He lived out his lifetime on his ranch near town. A son, A.P. Brown, was county commissioner in 1935-36. (1971)

James Kerr

Marker Title: James Kerr
Address: 700 Main St.
City: Kerrville
Year Marker Erected: 2000
Marker Location: Courthouse lawn.
Marker Text: (1790-1850) Kentucky native James Kerr, the son of a Baptist minister, was reared in Missouri. Kerr fought in the War of 1812 and was later sheriff of St. Charles County, Missouri. He married Angeline Caldwell in 1818 and served in the Missouri Senate and House of Representatives. Kerr was appointed Surveyor General of the Texas colony of Green DeWitt in 1825. With his wife, three children and several slaves, he joined Stephen F. Austin's "Old Three Hundred" colony in Brazoria. In August 1825 he set out to select a site for the DeWitt colony. Kerr named the community Gonzales in honor of the governor of Coahuila, Mexico. By this time, Angeline Kerr and two of the children had passed away. Kerr was active in area politics and law enforcement during the formative years of the Republic of Texas. He acted as attorney and surveyor for Benjamin Rush Milam in 1827. He negotiated for peace before the Fredonian Rebellion, signed a treaty with the Karankawa Indians and fought other tribes. He was the Lavaca delegate at the Convention at San Felipe de Austin in 1832 and served as a member of the Second and Third Conventions. Two years later, he married Sarah Fulton. He became a major in the Texas Rangers in 1835 and in the Republic of Texas army in 1836. He was elected to the Third Texas Congress in 1838. Kerr's later years were spent practicing medicine in Jackson County. In 1856, pioneer Joshua Brown gave the land around this site in order that Kerr County be named for his longtime friend, Texas frontiersman and patriot James Kerr. (2000)


Marker Title: Kerrville
City: Kerrville
Year Marker Erected: 1989
Marker Location: 800 Junction Highway, Kerrville at Kerrville City Hall.
Marker Text: Kerr County was formally created on January 26, 1856, and named for Republic of Texas soldier and pioneer James Kerr. Among the first settlers in the area was Joshua D. Brown, a veteran of the Battle of San Jacinto. Brown was instrumental in naming the county for his friend James Kerr. The new county seat was named Kerrsville in May 1856 when Brown donated four acres of land for a public square. (The "S" was later dropped.) Early Kerrville settlers included Anglo-American pioneers and German immigrants. The area became an important cattle raising and shipping point in the 1870s. In an election held on September 7, 1889, the citizens of Kerrville voted to incorporate the city, and a mayor and five aldermen were elected later that month. Joseph A. Tivy served as first mayor. The town continued to grow. A city marshal was soon hired and a volunteer fire department was established in 1891. Also in the 1890s city water works and electric service were instituted. By the mid-20th century agriculture, medical services, and tourism had become the major economic concerns of the city. (1989) Incise on base: Kerrville Centennial Celebration - 1989

Nichols Cemetery

Marker Title: Nichols Cemetery
City: Ingram
Year Marker Erected: 1982
Marker Location: On SH 27, east side of Ingram.
Marker Text: Born about 1805, Rowland Nichols settled in Kerr County where he served as county commissioner. Upon his death at the hands of Indians, Nichols was buried, as he wished, under a live oak tree on his farm on April 11, 1859. This site became a community burial ground and the burial place of many area pioneers, including J.C.W. Ingram (1829-1902), for whom the town of Ingram was named. Additional property was later purchased from Lafayette Nichols to enlarge the cemetery. For over a century Nichols Cemetery has served the residents of this part of Kerr County. (1982)

Roggenbucke Homestead

Marker Title: Roggenbucke Homestead
City: Kerrville
Year Marker Erected: 1983
Marker Location: on private property - west from Comfort post office to Front Street to North Creek Road
Marker Text: Prussian immigrants Oscar and Louise (Weiss) Von Roggenbucke were among the first settlers in the Comfort area, arriving in 1855. They bought this farm land and built a home here for their large family. During the Civil War, Moritz and Franz Weiss, Roggenbucke's stepsons, were killed in the Nueces River Massacre. They were among 36 area German settlers who were attempting to join Union troops when they were attacked by Confederate forces. Roggenbucke's grandson Edgar, a Comfort area sculptor, created a scroll that hangs over the door of the home. (1983)

Captain Charles Schreiner

Marker Title: Captain Charles Schreiner
City: Kerrville
Year Marker Erected: 1970
Marker Location: 216 Earl Garrett Street, Kerrville.
Marker Text: (1838 - 1927) Enterprising businessman. Born in France. Moved (1852) to U.S. with parents. Served with distinction in Texas Rangers, 1854-1857. Fought with Confederacy in Civil War. In 1869 began general store in Kerrville. Activities expanded to include banking, ranching, and marketing wool and mohair. He also started one of first wool and mohair warehouses in Texas. By 1900 he owned 600,000 acres of land, and by 1945 his country store was one of most progressive in the Southwest. Among his many philanthropic activities was the founding of Schreiner Institute (College). (1970)

Sunset Cemetery

Marker Title: Sunset Cemetery
City: Kerrville
Year Marker Erected: 1979
Marker Location: from Kerrville take SH 27 West approximately 17 miles - head south on first road after crossing creek.
Marker Text: The earliest marked graves in this cemetery are those of James and Susan Dowdy's four children. They were killed by Indians in 1878, soon after the family migrated from Goliad. However, local tradition says the first interment in that of M.B. Shults. Plain stones mark burial sites of four Byas children who died in the 1880s typhoid epidemic. Early pioneer H.L. Nelson (1835-1922), who established Mountain Home Post Office, is buried here. Land for this 4-acre cemetery has been acquired from the A. E. Oehler heirs, M.D. Henderson, and Sunset School when it closed in 1953. (1979)

Captain Joseph A. Tivy

Marker Title: Captain Joseph A. Tivy
City: Kerrville
Year Marker Erected: 1980
Marker Location: from Kerrville take FM 1341 2 miles east to junction with road to Tivy Mountain - marker is at junction.
Marker Text: In 1837 Joseph A. Tivy (1818-92) and his two sisters came to Texas from Canada. After serving as a Texas Ranger, Tivy joined his sisters in the California Gold Rush of 1849. There they operated a hotel and he later served in the State Legislature. After returning to Texas in the late 1850s, Tivy fought in the Civil War, attaining the rank of captain. A surveyor, rancher, and Texas Legislator (1873), he served as the first Kerrville mayor in 1889. During his term of office he gave land for the city schools. He and his wife Ella (d. 1888) and his sister Susan (d. 1901) are buried on nearby Tivy Mountain. (1980)

Y.O. Ranch

Marker Title: Y.O. Ranch
City: Mountain Home
Year Marker Erected: 1986
Marker Location: from Mountain Home take SH 41 16 miles west to entrance of Y.O. Ranch.
Marker Text: Charles Armand Schreiner (1838-1927), a native of Alsace-Lorraine, immigrated to Texas with his family in 1852. He joined the Texas Rangers at age fifteen, and in 1856 entered the cattle business at Turtle Creek in Kerr County. He left to serve in the Third Texas Infantry during the Civil War, and returned to Kerr County in 1865. Moving to Kerrville in 1869, he opened a successful mercantile business. The threat of Indian raids in the area soon prompted the formation of the Kerrville Mounted Rifles, and Schreiner was appointed Captain by Governor Richard Coke in 1875. In 1880 he bought the Taylor-Clements Ranch and its Y.O. brand. Texas longhorn cattle became Captain Schreiner's primary concern, and over 300,000 head were driven from this area to Kansas railheads. Because of Schreiner's venture in raising sheep and goats, Kerrville was known as the "Mohair Center of the World". The last cattle drive from the ranch was held in 1941, the stock being moved to Kerrville for shipment to Fort Worth. The Y.O. Ranch has also become known throughout the world for its Texas longhorn cattle and its native and exotic wildlife conservation programs. Texas Sesquicentennial 1836-1986.

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