Friday , 18 August 2017
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This Week in History, Feb. 24: Mobsters Visit the Area, Texas Becomes a Republic

By Don Newsom, TSB Contributing Writer

February 24 through March 2

The beginning of Texas as a republic and later a state; post offices in the county; visits by mobsters and Presidential term limits highlight the events this week in our history.

In 1836, Texas declared its independence from Mexico. Nine years later, President John Tyler signed a congressional resolution to annex the Republic of Texas.

In 1852, W. S. Forman was born. He is reported to be the first child born in the incorporated city of Plano.

In 1860, a post office was opened in Lebanon. It remained open for 45 years. When closed the residents began receiving their mail through the Allen office.

In 1862, Captain A. J. Hardin, a member of a founding family in the county, mustered Company A of the Sixth Regiment of the Texas Cavalry to fight in the Civil War.

In 1874, the U S Census, created in March 1790, reported that McKinney’s population was 300 and that 5000 students were being educated in the county.

In 1881, a post office was established in Celina and has been in operation at various locations for 122 years.

In 1899, a post office in Dump was opened. It closed three years later and mail was distributed from the Allen office. The same year the office in Hickman was closed and mailed was received through the Farmersville office.

In 1902, a hard storm, probably an early season tornado, hit Prosper. It destroyed many buildings that had recently been moved into the newly designated downtown area.

In 1935, Raymond Hamilton and Ralph Fults (pictured above), members of the infamous Barrow Gang and associated with Bonnie and Clyde were on FM 455 between Anna and Weston. They were suppose to meet a couple of bootleggers west of Anna, Fults‘ hometown. Instead they encounterd a group of lawmen led by Collin County Precinct 1 Constable, Johnny Record. After some gunfire, the two abandoned their stolen car and hid in the home of the Mayes family near Weston. When they left, they took three hostages and another stolen car. Three months later, Hamilton was dead at the age of 21. Fults, who had served time prior to his nineteen birthday and whose father worked at the post office on Virginia Street, later was pardoned in Texas. After his pardon he spent 20 years as a security guard at an orphanage. He died in 1993 at the age of 82.

In 1951, the 22nd Amendment to the Constitution, limiting a president to two terms of office, was ratified.

In 1954, the post office in the Murphy community east of Plano was discontinued after 63 years of operation. Mail was distributed to residents from the Plano or Wylie offices.

In 1957, the Alla School on Highway 289 consolidated with the Celina school district. Celina’s current high school is located on the site north of Celina where the Alla School was located.

In 1967, the Curtsinger Drug Store, a landmark in Frisco for 47 years, closed its doors.

Don Newsom is an avid historian and a former Superintendent of Schools for Celina ISD.

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