Navarro City


Taken from the article "The Flo News" in the Buffalo Express  written by Norma Moore

(May 14, 2003)
        The Navarro City, Leon County settlement was established in the 1840's, William Murrah as a first time settler.  William McDonald the surveyor, designated Navarro City to be 2/3's of a mile square the location being in the vicinity of the Oakwood area.  Navarro City was founded on the basis of its potential for important river commerce of the Trinity River.
        The township, popular with the farmers of our Leon County by steam boats to Galveston was a busy place of its beginning with farmers and their families from surrounding communities.  The men would take their cotton by wagon to Navarro City for market and shipping and most of the time the complete family would make the trip and upon pay for their cotton grocery feed, seed, cloth material and farm supplies would be purchased at the Navarro General Mercantile store.  The Boarding House was a welcome site for a wholesome meal and a good nights rest.  There were a number of businesses in the town, a post office.  The first postmaster was John McBride.  Other post masters were Mathew Taylor, George Goodman, Alonzo and John Perrin, George Jetter, J. B. Stillwell, the post office being in service from 1850 until 1866.
        The Mt. Pisgah Church of  Navarro was established in the late 1850's, which was also their school.  It was located on the Navarro-Waco Road about three miles from the present town, Oakwood.  After a few years the church and the school was moved to the site of the Mt. Pisgah Cemetery.  When more pioneer settlers populated Navarro City the church membership divided.  Some members built New Hope Baptist Church in the river bend.  The Mt. Pisgah church moved to the Red Branch Settlement.

(May 21, 2003)
        The Navarro City Community established in the 1840's was a flourishing settlement its importance of its river commerce it being located near the Trinity River of the Oakwood area.  There were many established businesses.
        The Mt. Pisgah church has been an established ministry of God since the beginning of our Leon County.  The church at first was located at the Navarro City township and was later moved to our Red Branch, Flo Community.  It was in operation from the 1840's until 1976.  The church also was the Navarro City School, the first teacher was Elizabeth Barkley.  The township with a cotton gin and a cotton shed, supplied farmers from Leon County and surrounding communities a market place for their cotton and a place to store their cotton before it was sold to be shipped to Galveston by steam boats.
        The cotton shed was constructed with a platform that could be loaded with cotton bales and lowered from the river bluff to the steamer below, in operation by Captain Webb.  He and his steamer the Reliance provided great river travel and a cotton market of the town that brought a business transaction of the cotton business like no other for our Leon County.  In 1848 due to this operation a stock company was formed.

(May 28, 2003)
        The Navarro City Leon County Community famous for its river commerce was located near the trinity River.  With its cotton market of trade by steamboats to Galveston brought a cotton gin and cotton shed to Navarro, which led to a stock company business.  It is believed to be the first of Leon County and probably the only one of its quality in 1848.
        This stock company with Captain Webb and his steamer the Reliance and the planter that owned two steamers the Jack Haynes and the Magnolia provided a prosperous wealth for its community and Leon County.  There was a General Mercantile store, a post office, a boarding house, blacksmith, favorite camping, fishing sites for family entertainment, a saloon, and three churches, Mt. Pisgah, New Hope and African Methodist Church, which also was a school.  This one was established on the A. J. and J. C. Lamon Land.  They donated two acres of land for the church and school.  A parcel of Thomas Thurman's land was purchased from the Burleson Lodge.  This charter was founded in Navarro, the grand master being M. T. Mott.  The postmasters were John J. McBride, Matthew Taylor, George Goodman, Alonzo Perrin, George Jetter and the post office in operation from 1850-1866.  The Boarding House known as a well-furnished cozy sleeping quarters and a family style dining room provided a welcomed lodging for the many visitors who traveled to the Navarro community of different business transactions.  It was a busy place with fine food, large fireplaces; the fine parlor dining areas, and clean beautifully decorated bedrooms had warm hospitality.

(June 4, 2003)
        The Navarro City Leon County Community established in the early 1840's with a few settlers at its beginning was only farming land.  One of its most memorable characters, Christopher Columbus Goodman, formerly of New York, was a land agent who came to the new Texas State to promote land development and to populate Texas with families of decent honest standards.
        Christopher, a respectful, well liked gentleman, and an influential business man soon with his expertise of the land business and the knowledge and insight of attracting people to our Texas, Leon County brought an endorsement of a rapid population, land development, and business transactions.  Christopher's new Navarro City place with its fertile land and its plentiful water supply of the Trinity River the citizens was well satisfied.
        The farmers were amazed at all the vegetables, fruit trees, cotton, corn crops and the wild fruits, nuts, and the bounty of wild game, buffalo, deer, turkey, bison, squirrels and fish.  They had a prosperous living throughout the whole year.  Christopher said you could grow anything you wanted to in that soil the largest sweet potatoes, juicy delicious watermelons, squash, okra, peas, and beans.  Just plant it in the ground and watch it produce.
        Leonard Radford, another important pioneer settler said there were some wonderful family times held on the banks of the river, fishing and camping.  The best times were when the crops were laid by and before the harvest a yearly camping fishing was held for all the families to gather for visiting, robbing bee trees, enjoying the biggest fish fries and squirrel stews.
        Families worked hard, went to church on Sundays were actively involved of neighborly affairs helping each other whenever needed.  When a new family moved into their community, they were supplied with their needs until the land could be prepared and the crops were harvested.
        Their homes were structures of logs with rocks, sticks, and mud chimney's. Most had a dog trot that connected the kitchen to the living quarters with a large fireplace room with sleeping areas in the loft above.  The post office, general mercantile, cotton gin, cotton shed, the stock company, the commerce trade with the steamboats and the boarding house with its inviting hospitality, delicious food, beautifully decorated clean lodging provided the many travelers with an appealing place for comfort of rest and fine home cooked food and for visiting.
        Other important settlers of Navarro City were the P. L. Anders, James Boggs, Alexandra Coker, D. A. King, Jacob Horn, William Little and Daniel Parker families.  Christopher Columbus Goodman was considered a remarkable Navarro City Gentleman.  His Letter sent to his brother in New or is a Leon County Historical document that was edited, published in the southwestern historical quarterly courtesy of Frances Jane Leathers.
        The Railroad and the civil War brought an end to Navarro City, yet today is a memorable settlement.