Thursday , 17 August 2017

Collin County Rewind: A Look Back in History at the Week of Aug. 14

Some tragic and long lasting events have occurred in and around McKinney during this week in history.

In 1878, the Stony Point Baptist Church near Melissa was started. It closed as a church in the last 1950’s, but the building continued to be used for funerals and decoration days at the adjoining cemetery, one of Collin County’s oldest.

In 1882, Shack Culwell, an eighteen year old black man, was hung for the murder of W. R. Norvell, his employer. Culwell was convicted of the murder because he had become upset for being underpaid between $3.10 and $5.00 for work he had done. He confronted Norvell on his front porch and shot him. It was the last legal hanging in Collin County.

In 1887, Sam Houston, Jr., son of Sam Houston, wounded Confederate veteran of the Battle of Shiloh, medical doctor and professional writer, spoke at the Plano Institute on “Afoot in Mexico”, one of the adventures he had written.

In 1898, Nevada Camp No. 453 Woodmen of the World was chartered. An organization supported by a national insurance company, it was very prominent in North Texas for over fifty years, helping orphans and widows of policy holders.

In 1903, an annual city wide picnic was held at Old Settlers Park in McKinney. At that time, the park, located on East Louisiana, was the main city recreation area, but over the years, as other parks have been built, it has become the main recreational area for the communities in east McKinney.

In 1908, the paving of the streets around the square in McKinney with bricks was completed.

In 1910, a street car system began operations in McKinney.

In 1937, the post office in Altoga, a community ten miles northeast of McKinney was discontinued. Residents began receiving their mail through the Melissa post office.

By contributing writer, Don Newsom.
Don Newsom is a former superintendent of the Celina ISD and a board member of the Collin County Historical Society.  Don and his wife Carol have been residents of the North Texas area for over 30 years.  For the last 20 years, they have resided in rural Collin County in a home built in 1890.

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