DJ's Texas Quizzes

Answers : Traveling Through Texas Towns

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Question 1: All of the above

Seguin, the county seat of Guadalupe County, is located on Highway 10 and the Guadalupe River. It was originally known as Walnut Springs when it was established in 1838. Its name was changed in 1839 in honor of Juan N. Seguín. He organized a Tejano unit at Gonzales, which served as the rear guard for Sam Houston's army. He and his unit were active participants at the battle of San Jacinto. A distinguished citizen of Seguin, John Ireland, served as governor of Texas from 1883 to 1887. Sherman, the county seat of Grayson County, is located 75 miles north of Dallas. It was established in 1846, and was named for Gen. Sidney Sherman. In addition to leading a regiment at San Jacinto, General Sherman was one of the state's earliest railroad promoters. Rusk, the county seat of Cherokee county, is located 120 miles southeast of Dallas. The town was established by an act of the Texas legislature in 1846 that called for the county seat to be named for Gen. Thomas Jefferson Rusk. Rusk was a signer of the Texas Declaration of Independence and was appointed secretary of war in March 1836. In addition to fighting at San Jacinto, he served as chief justice of the Supreme Court of the Republic of Texas. After annexation, he served as one of our first two U.S. senators from Texas (along with Sam Houston). Hockley is located 36 miles northwest of Houston on U.S. Highway 290. The community was actually established by George Washington Hockley in 1835, but was known for a while as Houseville. George W. Hockley was in charge of the artillery at the battle of San Jacinto, including the famous Twin Sisters. He twice served as secretary of war for the Republic of Texas

Question 2: Fort Davis

Fort Davis, the county seat of Jeff Davis County, is located 175 miles southeast of El Paso. When the first mail coach came through the area in 1850, one of the escorts was the famous W. A. (Bigfoot) Wallace. The fort in town has been reconstructed, and is now a National Historic Site. Fort Stockton is the county seat of Pecos County, located 245 miles east of El Paso on Interstate 10. It grew up around Comanche Springs, at one time the third largest source of spring water in Texas. Its fort was established in 1859. Fort McKavett is 20 miles southwest of Menard, in Menard County. It began in the 1850s as a community of civilians associated with a military post known as Camp San Saba, which closed in 1859 but was reactivated as Fort McKavett in 1868. Fort Worth, now one of the largest cities in Texas, was founded in 1849 and originally was known as Camp Worth. It was named in honor of Gen. William Jenkins Worth, a hero of the Mexican War, who first proposed a line of ten forts ranging from Eagle Pass to the Trinity River. Although the fort was abandoned in 1853, the community remained and prospered. Fort Hancock is located in southwestern Hudspeth County, southeast of El Paso. The fort that gave the town its name was established as Camp Rice in 1881 and renamed Fort Hancock in 1886, to honor Maj. Gen. Winfield Scott Hancock, one of the great Union generals in the Civil War. He fought at Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville, and Gettysburg. At Gettysburg, his corps helped repel "Pickett's Charge," but Hancock was severely wounded. He briefly commanded the Fifth Military District (Texas and Louisiana) during Reconstruction.

Question 3: Columbia

Columbia was founded in 1826 by Josiah Hughes Bell. It is located in west central Brazoria County, south of Houston. It is now known as West Columbia. The Republic of Texas congress decided to move the capital from Columbia to Houston, due to the lack of accommodations in Columbia. The town became an important oil and gas center after the discovery of the West Columbia oilfield in 1918. San Felipe de Austin was founded in 1824 and became the unofficial capital of the new Stephen F. Austin colony. It is located on the Brazos River, two miles east of Sealy and just north of Interstate 10, in southeastern Austin County. The town, generally known as San Felipe, was the political and commercial center of the Austin colony. Washington-on-the-Brazos was originally known simply as Washington. It is just south of the junction of the Brazos and Navasota rivers in northeastern Washington County. It was the site of the signing of the Texas Declaration of Independence on March 2, 1836. It served as the capital from 1842 to 1845. Houston served as capital from 1837 to 1839, when Austin (previously known as Waterloo) was chosen. When Sam Houston began his second term as president, he ordered the Texas Congress back to Houston. Later that year he issued an executive order making Washington the new capital. This order started the "Archive War," a squabble in which Austin residents voiced their strong objections to moving the government and the archives. A cannon shot fired by Angelina Eberly was a salient feature of the war. After brief service as capital, Washington permanently lost the honor to Austin. Galveston was briefly the capital when the Texas government was retreating from the oncoming Mexican soldiers in 1836.

Question 4: Athens

Athens continues today as an agricultural community, with its own brand of culture. It hosts the Old Fiddlers Reunion in May and the Black-Eyed Pea Jamboree in July. In 1990 it had a population of 10,967, with 42 churches. Its newspaper, the Athens Review, has been published continuously since 1885. Paris, the county seat of Lamar County in North Texas, was previously known as Pinhook. It was indeed named for Paris, France. It was incorporated in 1845. Marathon is located in West Texas, and is the second-largest town in Brewster County. It is 26 miles southeast of Alpine. It received its post office in 1882. Capt. Albion Shepard, a former sea captain, suggested the name Marathon because the terrain reminded him of the plains of Marathon, Greece. Palestine is the county seat of Anderson County. It is located about 108 miles southeast of Dallas and 150 miles north of Houston. It was actually named after Palestine, Illinois, the former home of Daniel Parker, one of the town's founders. It was established in 1846. Dublin is in Erath County, in north central Texas. It was founded in 1854 by A. H. Dobkins. The source of the name is unclear, with three possibilities: the capital of Ireland; "double in" (a warning cry for Indian raids); or the double-log cabins used by early settlers.

Question 5: San Antonio

San Antonio has grown to be one of the ten largest cities in the United States. The name originated with Father Damián Massanet, who named a small existing village in honor of Saint Anthony of Padua. Famous battles in the town included the siege of Bexar in December 1835, the battle of the Alamo in March 1836, and the Council House Fight in 1840. The last resulted from a failed attempt to negotiate the release of captives held by Cherokee Indians. Pecos is the county seat of Reeves County, located on the western bank of the Pecos River in West Texas. Rio Grande City is the county seat of Starr County and one of the oldest settlements in South Texas. It is also a port of entry to the United States. Sabine is located 32 miles south of Beaumont. It was founded in 1878 by New York financiers who objected to the price of waterfront property at the town of Sabine Pass. Navasota was first known as Hollandale when it was founded in 1822. It was renamed Navasota (after the river) in 1854. The river name is believed to have come from the Indian name Nabasoto.

Question 6: San Augustine

San Augustine is the county seat of San Augustine County, located 32 miles east of Nacogdoches. It was previously named for Ayish Bayou, which flows through the town. The name San Augustine was chosen by Mexican officials, supposedly for St. Augustine of Hippo. Ambassador Edward Clark, a long-time supporter of the TSHA and U.S. ambassador to Australia, was born there in 1906. San Angelo, the county seat of Tom Green County, is located 220 miles northwest of San Antonio. Bartholomew J. DeWitt founded the town in the late 1860s. He apparently named it in memory of his wife, Carolina Angela. It was located across the river from Fort Concho. San Marcos is the county seat of Hays County, and is located on Interstate 35, 25 miles south of Austin. William Moon, the original resident, was joined by other former members of the Texas Rangers and by Gen. Edward Burleson. San Ygnacio (or Ignacio), the oldest town in Zapata County, is located on the Rio Grande 30 miles south of Laredo. It was founded in 1830 and named for the patron saint of Guerrero, Saint Ignatius Loyola. San Diego, county seat of Duval County, is located 52 miles west of Corpus Christi. Gen. Zachary Taylor reportedly camped at the site in 1846, but there was no established community there until 1848. It was originally known as Perezville, and was renamed San Diego, presumably after San Diego Creek.

Question 7: Port Arthur

Port Arthur was named by its founder, Arthur Stilwell, who was a Kansas railroad promoter. He had hoped to build a railroad connecting Kansas City to the Gulf of Mexico. Gulf built a refinery there in 1901, and Texaco built one in 1902. Port Arthur is now one corner of the "Golden Triangle," along with Beaumont and Orange. Port Aransas is located on Mustang Island 24 miles northeast of Corpus Christi. It began as a sheep and cattle grazing station in 1850. It was briefly called Tarpon after the popular local game fish. Port Bolivar is located just north of Galveston. The site was once inhabited by Karankawa Indians. White settlers, including James Long, arrived in 1819. The community had several different names before becoming known as Port Bolivar in 1893. Port Lavaca, the county seat of Calhoun County, is located southeast of Victoria on Matagorda Bay. The town was formed shortly after Comanches attacked Victoria and Linnville in 1840. The town was originally known simply as La Vaca ("the cow"). It is located in an area explored by La Salle after he arrived by mistake in 1685. The French explorer thought he had found the mouth of the Mississippi. Port Isabel is located 16 miles northeast of Brownsville, on the mainland across from South Padre Island. It was a summer resort as early as 1800, and a nearby well was said to be a source for water for Jean Laffite. The first community formed in the 1830s, and by 1850 the town became an active port that exported large quantities of cotton.

Question 8: Round Rock

Round Rock is located on Interstate 35 in Williamson County 16 miles north of downtown Austin. Among its earliest settlers were Jacob Harrell and Thomas Oatts. A gristmill was built at the site in 1843 and a wool-carding factory during the Civil War. For the first 60 years of the twentieth century, the population ranged between 1,000 and 1,400. With the expansion of Austin, Round Rock is now part of that metropolis and a prominent center of high-tech industry. Rock Island (Washington County) was an early settlement on the Brazos River 15 miles south of Washington-on-the-Brazos. It declined after 1857, when the Houston and Texas Central railway changed its projected route to Navasota and bypassed the town. Rock House, in Williamson County, was also known by its Indian name of Draco, which meant "favorite place." It became a distinct community in 1878, named for a Baptist tabernacle constructed of rock. Rock Church is in Hood County near the Erath county line. Land for the community was donated in 1859. The residents collectively built a rock church, but later realized that they had done so on an Indian route to Comanche Peak. The rock building later became a Masonic meeting place. Paint Rock is the county seat of Concho County. The town was named for the extensive Indian pictographs on the nearby bluffs of the Concho River. It was chosen as the county seat in 1879. Fannie Elizabeth Ratchford, a noted literary scholar, was born there in 1887.

Question 9: Sour Lake

Sour Lake is located in southeastern Texas in Hardin County, 15 miles southwest of Hardin. The community was originally known as Sour Lake Springs. One of the early entrepreneurs who sold its mineral waters was an ex-slave named Bazile, who became known as "Dr. Mud" for his treatments. Eagle Lake is located 50 miles southwest of Houston in Colorado County. The lake bearing its name has a surface area of some 1,400 acres, and has been known for its fish and fauna since the early 1800s. North of the town is the Attwater Prairie Chicken National Wildlife Refuge. Lake Dallas is a resort community not named for the lake that it sits beside, Lewisville Lake, near Denton. The site was first occupied in 1852. Green Lake is located 12 miles southwest of Port Lavaca in Calhoun County. It was established about 1850 by Kentucky cotton planters. At the beginning of the Civil War, federal troops under Gen. David Twiggs mustered at nearby Green Lake, after which the town was named, to await ships to return to the north. Cedar Lake, located in Matagorda County, was named for a cedar brake surrounding a nearby lake. A post office was opened there in 1848.

Question 10: Venus

Venus had a population of more than 800 by the late 1920s. That declined substantially over subsequent decades, then climbed back to almost 1,000 by 1990. Pluto is located in Ellis County, 15 miles southwest of Waxahachie. A post office opened there in 1894. As far as is known, no one has ever had a daughter named Pluto. Mercury is 22 miles northeast of Brady in McCulloch County. It was hit by major fires in 1919 and 1929. Saturn, in Gonzales County, was originally called Possum Trot. It received its first post office in 1902. Mars Community is located 15 miles southeast of Canton in Van Zandt County. It was apparently settled by a group that included the brothers John and Henry Marrs.

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