Daily Progress, Jacksonville, TX

Columns

October 1, 2011

Bob Bowman’s East Texas

How towns, rivers and areas got names

JACKSONVILLE — When settlers from the U.S. poured into Texas following its independence and later statehood, they started slapping names on the places where they put down roots.

Most of the names are still around and just as colorful as they were decades ago.

Bloody Hollow in Delta County was named for a disagreement at a brush arbor revival.. Buggy Whip Creek in Hopkins County was named for local switch cane often used as buggy whips.

Looneyville in Nacogdoches County is near Loco and Crazy creeks, but the name comes from the Looneys, a stable local family. Buck Naked lies in Parker County and, contrary to rumor, is not a nudist colony.

Crush in McLennan County, west of East Texas, is famous for the Crash at Crush, where two locomotives were pointed at Crush on the same track, and their throttles tied open,The result was perhaps the only deliberate train crash in Texas.

In Lipscomb County, the folks who named five local creeks apparently couldn’t find any colorful names, so they named them First, Second, Third, Fourth and Fifth creeks.

Cut ‘n Shoot in Montgomery was apparently named for the disposition of the local menfolk. There are a few other supposed reasons.

There’s a Deadwood in Panola County, a Dime Box in Lee County, a Dollarhide in Angelina County and a Day Duck Creek in Kent County.

Four Notch can be found in Walker County and Five Notch lies in Harrison County.

Byspot in San Jacinto County got its name when O.H. Bennett of Conroe spelled his wife’s name Topsy backward and added a B from his own last name.

Can’t ‘Cha Get Over That Creek is in Kaufman County. The creek flooded after the smallest rain, blocking the way of travelers.

Chicken Creek lies in Walker County was named for wild chickens who lived in the area.

Fair Play in Panola County was named for the community’s concern for a child from a wagon train who died in the community.

Bob Bowman of Lufkin is the author of more than 50 books about East Texas history and folklore. He can be reached at bob-bowman.com

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