United States / Mesquite, TX

all or unphotographed
Z. Motley Cemetery. Zachariah Motley migrated to Texas (1856) from Kentucky with his family and slaves. He and his wife Mary, five sons and three daughters helped settle this area and built their home some 200' northeast of this site, a one-half acre portion of the original homestead bought from the Crittenden Survey. Earliest known burial (1863) was Penelope Motley McLain, a daughter, and the wife of Capt. J. B. McLain. The plot is still in use and is owned and cared for by Motley descendants. Twenty-five known graves include family members and their slaves. #6789

3737 Motley Dr., Mesquite, TX, United States

Public Education in Mesquite. Founded in 1885, the Mesquite community school served students until the first building of the newly formed Mesquite Independent School District was completed on this site in 1902, beginning with 200 students. Through strong community support, a high school was erected in 1923 and accredited in 1924. In the late 1930s a new high school was completed, and the George W. Carver School was opened for area African American students. The district was integrated in 1964. More buildings were acquired as needed. With a district enrollment of 30,000 in 1997, Mesquite High School remains a focal point of public education in the area. (1998) #11836

300 E. Davis St., Mesquite, TX, United States

Potter Cemetery. #14727

5841 Lumley Road, Mesquite, TX, United States

Train Holdup. #15415

?, Mesquite, TX, United States

First Presbyterian Church of Mesquite. #15749

1028 South Beltline Road, Mesquite, TX, United States

City of Mesquite. In May 1873, Texas & Pacific Railroad engineer A.R. Alcott platted a new depot town named Mesquite. The post office opened the following year. The community developed along the rail line, with businesses initially facing Front Street. As the town grew, business owners turned their front doors to Main Street in an effort to create a Town Square. Voters incorporated Mesquite in 1887. In 1903, following a legal challenge, the city re-incorporated with new boundaries. Mesquite, which began with an Agrarian economy, grew rapidly in the second half of the 20th century as a Dallas suburb. The school district, established in 1901, is a draw for new residents, and the city continues to grow. (2004) #13120

209 W Main St, Mesquite, TX, United States

First Methodist Church of Mesquite. In 1857, prior to the incorporation of the town of Mesquite, a group of area residents began gathering occasionally for Methodist worship services led by circuit riding preacher W. K. Masten. Services were held in a nearby building known variously as the Frost Schoolhouse or the Bennett Schoolhouse. By 1863, the group had organized formally as the First Methodist Episcopal Church, South. Services continued in the schoolhouse until 1880, when charter members John L. and Lucy Futrell deeded this land to the congregation for the construction of a church building. Soon a small wood-frame structure was erected. Later damaged by a storm, it was rebuilt in 1900. In 1887 when the town of Mesquite was incorporated, charter member J. E. Russell became the town's first mayor, and the downtown area began to develop near the church site. As the population of Mesquite increased, so did the congregation, and several progressively larger sanctuaries were built after 1916 to accommodate its growth. Because of denominational mergers, the congregation changed its name to the First Methodist Church of Mesquite in 1939, and to the First United Methodist Church of Mesquite in 1968. #6700

300 N. Galloway, Mesquite, TX, United States

Potter Cemetery. John P. (1827-1899) and Martha (Oden) (1835-1872) Potter, pioneer citizens of the Republic of Texas, bought a farm near the Haught's Store community in 1860. When their son William L. Potter died in July 1861 he was the first to be buried on this site; John Potter enlisted in the Confederate Army in the same month. After the war he served as justice of the peace; his landholdings included almost 1,000 acres. Most of the Potters' nine children are interred here. The last recorded burial was in 1947. A 1997 count revealed 16 possible graves. The Potter Cemetery remains a record of the settlers who shaped eastern Dallas County. (1998) #11835

5841 Lumley Road, Mesquite, TX, United States

Sam Bass Train Robbery. Sam Bass -- with Seab Barnes, Hank Underwood, "Arkansas" Johnson, and Frank Jackson -- held up a Texas & Pacific train here, April 10, 1878. They took $152, but missed hidden shipment of $30,000. In planning a bank robbery 3 months later, Bass was fatally shot by rangers. #6591

?, Mesquite, TX, United States

Lawrence Farmstead. The son of an original member of the Mercer colony, Stephen Decatur Lawrence (1853-1934) received about 640 acres of farmland on his twenty-first birthday. He began building the first structure, a small home, on this site in 1874. In 1882 contractor Charley Florrer built a T-plan house about six feet east of the original structure. The new house was of clapboard construction with square nails. In 1886, a kitchen room was added, altering the building to a cruciform floor plan. The striking central tower is an example of the Victorian features of the home, which include the steeply pitched overhanging roof and prominent porches. Other structures were added to the farmstead, on which Stephen D. Lawrence and his first wife Louisa E. Porter (1861-1891) reared three surviving children. Charley Florrer built the barn in 1887; other structures erected just north of the main house included a smokehouse, a brick-lined root cellar, and the wash house. The Lawrence Farmstead complex is representative of the evolution of domestic buildings from the 1870s to the late twentieth century on the North Texas plains and blackland prairie. S. D. Lawrence married his second wife, Louisa Hill Walker (1867-1948), and they reared their eight children here. Members of the prominent Lawrence family lived on the land until 1995, when 13.7 acres including the family complex became a city historical park according to the wishes of one of Stephen and Louisa's daughters. Recorded Texas Historic Landmark - 1998 #11831

701 E. Kearney, Mesquite, TX, United States

Florence Ranch Home. David W. (1848 - 1932) and Julia Savannah (Beaty) Florence (1850 - 1914) built the first portion of this ranch house in 1871-72 after moving here from Van Zandt County. Elaborate wood trim decorates the gallery of the simple frame structure. The house was enlarged by the 1890s, when the Florence homestead covered 730 acres. After Florence retired in 1908, his son Emet (1885 - 1963) and Emet's wife Perle (Curtis)) (1889 - 1976) continued to run the ranch, known as Meadow View Farm. RTHL - 1978 #6712

1424 Barnes Bridge Rd., Mesquite, TX, United States