By Elaine Bay
Wood County wasn't extensively settled until after the Texas Revolution. In 1850 Wood County was formed from Van Zandt County. Upon its organization, Quitman was chosen to serve as the county seat. George T. Wood, Texas Governor 1847 - 1849, was the namesake of the newly created county.
The area was primarily settled by people from the southern United States, who brought their slaves with them and began to establish a slaveholding, cotton production society similar to their past homes
At its formation, Wood County had 17 slaves; by 1860 there were 923 slaves, approximately 20% of the county's population. By this time, the possibility of war between the northern and southern states was growing rapidly. But in order to secede from the Union and become a part of the Confederate States, Governor Sam Houston had to call a special legislature meeting for the specific purpose of considering and voting on the secession of Texas from the United States. Pressure was placed on the governor in October 1860 when it became evident that Abraham Lincoln was likely to be elected President. South Carolina was the first state to secede from the United States in mid-December 1860.Since Governor Houston refused to act, Oran B. Roberts, chief justice of the Texas Supreme Court, John S. Ford and other prominent Texas residents printed calls for election on January 8, 1861with the election to take place January 28 and supervised by county judges. On January 29th John H. Wharton made the motion that Texas secede from the Union; the motion was seconded by George M. Flournoy with a final vote of 152-6.
However, the public held to the 1845 referendum of joining the Union and insisted on a public vote concerning leaving the Union. On February 23, 1861 Texans ratified secession by a vote of 44,317 to 13,020 with approximately 34% of the male citizens of Texas voting against secession. On March 23, 1861 the secession Convention adjourned, with the final act of removing Texas from the United States and voting it to become a part of the Confederate States of America.
The two Wood County delegates to the Secession Convention, John D. Rains and A.P. Shuford both signed in opposition to secession. Emory Rains, state representative for Wood County, signed the public address, asking Texas citizens to vote against secession. Despite the efforts of these men, Wood County voted by 70% to secede from the Union during the popular election. Consequently, Wood County supported the Civil War with men and materials.
One of the communities in western Wood County was Springville. A post office was established 19 May 1859 with James C. Wright as the first postmaster.
Companies from Wood County
Companies Comprising the Twelfth Brigade, Texas Militia (reserve), Showing Composition:
Wm. D. Mcknight
John Benton, Sr.
W. R. Thorne
Grand Total: 503
The first body of troops from old Wood County was raised by Captain C.D. McKnight in 1861 with a small number of residents from Springville joining the company.
Company A, 10th Texas cavalry, Ector Brigade
Captain Wm. C. McKnight
J.J.T. Wright, 2nd Lt.
Tom Allred - later in Capt. McNabb's Co.
T. Calvin Bain - later in Capt McNabb's Co.
Alex Cook - later in Capt McNabb's Co.
Will Carr - later in Capt McNabb's 2nd Co.
Jeff Car - later in Capt. J.J. Montgomery's Co.
John M. O'Kelley
P.P. Raines - later enrolled as Captain in McNabb's 2nd Co.
Will Raines - later enrolled in McNabb's 2nd Co.
Wesley Tollett - possibly killed in the war
Joe Wright - later in Capt Montgomery's Co.
In August 1861 Brigadier General Samuel Martin Flournoy organized a brigade of nine companies, known as the 12th Brigade; two of the companies in the Brigade were made up of men from Springville and its vicinity.
The regular company from Springville was the 2nd company, commanded by Captain David W. McNabb:
12th Brigade, T.M.
Commissioned 9th September 1861
S. M. Flournoy Brig. Gen.
COMPANY NO. 2 ACTIVE:
D. W. McNabb, Captain
R. W. Spalding, 1st Lieutenant
E. F. Taylor, 2nd Lieutenant
A. Danly, 3rd Lieutenant
R. J. Tomlinson, Orderly Sargent
J. C. Rushing, 2nd Sargent
M. L. Taylor, 3rd Sargent
J. M. Vincent, 4th Sargent
J. C. Ray, 1st Corporal
D. C. Jones, 2nd Corporal
J. D. Woodbury, 3rd Corporal
A. C. Gee, 4th Corporal
J. L. Gill, Ensign
1. R. Kinnengham 2. J. C. Byers 3. G. C. Ivey
4. J. R. Stephens 5. W. H. Nunn 6. J. D. Raines
7. L. W. Green 8. T. W. Pinson 9. J. A. Williams
10. J. J. Sheckleworth 11. Joseph Hannen 12. Sam'l Cook
13. Wm. P. Hannin 14. Phillip Riggs 15. Wm. McKee
16. G. A. Cook 17. A. H. Shepheard 18. T. C. Baine
19. Alex. Cook 20. W. C. Haven 21. B. M. Reed
22. L. T. O'Kelly 23. C. N. Cox 24. Caleb Linsey
25. W. B. Linsey
26. W. B. Linsey 27. J. M. Linsey 28. W. A. Cooper
29. A. H. Reeder 30. L. C. Taylor 31. J. C. Fikes
32. Wm. G Cook 33. B. L. Kerr 34. J. C. Alexander
35. W. P. Rushing 36. W. L. Magee 37. J. T. Strother
38. M. B. Ivey 39. E. L. Trimble 40. N. D. Wooten
41. R. Tate 42. Jo Crawford 43. N. N. Nunn
44. Albert Reeder 45. A. N. Reeder 46. W. H. Maloney
47. W. S. Mann 48. Malory Waifer 49. John Loiles (Loiler)
50. A. P. Freeman 51. J. P. Dougherty 52. R. J. Dougherty
53. T. Cresvin (Curvin) 54. Isaac Gunter 55. H. Marshall
56. Jno. Tutt 57. Jno. Wrenn 58. Harvey Turner
59. Jno. Linsey 60. R. P. Reed 61. Wm. Shumate
62. Jno. Robbins 63. J. A. Segar 64. J. A. Gee
65. H. H. Fatheree 66. J. Y. Carter 67. Sam Rice
68. Jno. Monasco 69. Jno. Childress 70. S. W. Bearden
71. Josiah Fisher 72. Wm. Trimble 73. Wm. Johnson
74. T. M. Alread 75. Z. R. Nunn 76. Wm. Raines
77. W. P. Raines 78. Jno. Burnes
PRECINCT NO. : POST OFFICE: SPRINGVILLE, TEXAS.
STATE OF TEXAS)
COUNTY OF WOOD) I hereby that . . . that the within members roll was
made in pursuance of the authority of Brig. Gen. S. M. Flournoy of
the 12th Brigade of the Texas Militia and that the officers above
named was duly elected according to law.
R. W. SPRADLING, Enrolling Officer
Pr. No. . . . Wood Co., Tx.
Also a reserve company, composed of older men from Springville, composed the 8th Company, commanded by Captain Jesse J. Montgomery.
Company No. 8 Reserves
J. J. Montgomery, Captain
Ira B. Dement, 3rd SargeantRichard Magee, 1st Lieut
R. J. Pinson, 4th SargeantJ. A. Sorge, 2nd Lieut
T. J. Kerr, 1st CorporalR. H. Fowler, 3rd Lieut
S. Casey, 2nd CorporalW. M. Yarbrough, OrderlySargeant
A. J. Waldrope, 3rd CorporalWillis Parker, 2d Sargeant
T. M. Mitchell, 4th CorporalS. W. Byers, Ensign
1. R. T. Conklin 2. W. D. Leggett 3. P. T. Woodburry
4. E. H. Brown 5. S. L. Fitzgerald 6. J. S. O'Kelly
7. Wm. Parker 8. A. B. Self 9. C. McKen
10. W. L. Pouncy 11. W. B. Miller 12. B. Y. Ratcliff
13. W. H. Reid 14. J. O. Spicer
15. J. E. Neill 16. E. L. Trimble 17. T. M. Bivens
18. Tyre Buckley 19. Wm. Dove 20. R. Coots (Coats)
21. Jab. Raines 22. Tho. Dove 23. Wm. Parker
24. A. L. Phillips 25. E. C. Trimble 26. M. Johnson
27. W. P. Maloney 28. W. B. Maloney 29. S. M. Lyson
30. J. J. Austin 31. White Watson 32. Isaac Alread
33. G. H. Hill 34. J. A. Biddy (Bidby) 35. Elisha Cook
36. J. O. Pinson 37. Wm. Rice 38. Wright Norton
39. Rich'd Crawford 40. S. Miller 41. Calloway Reed
42. Boyd Pinson 43. Jefferson Bass 44. Alex Robertson
45. David Pinson 46. G. B. Yarbrie 47. Wright Cox
48. Wm. Case 49. D. Calhoun 50. M. Rushing
51. Jno. Stephens 52. Wm. Saterwhite 53. Jacob Freeze
54. E. G. Kendrick 55. S. Waskom 56. J. D. Mills
57. J. O. Wright 58. F. D. O'Kelly 59. Jno. Thrasher
60. Marion O'Kelley 61. John Spradling 62. (blank)
63. Post Office: 64. Springville, Wood Co., Texas
THE STATE OF TEXAS )
COUNTY OF WOOD ) I hereby . . . that the above
named officers were duly elected . . . ac. .vie Company at
Springville, Wood Co., July 10th, 1861, and that the above company
was enrolled by me under the authority of the Brig. General S. M.
Flournoy of Texas Militia in pursuance . . . instructions of the Ad-
jutant General of the State aforesaid, as a Reserve Company.
R. W. Spradling, Enrolling Officer
July 25th, 1861
There were approximately 150 men who served the Confederacy from Springville. These companies are known to have organized and gone off to war under the Wood County banner but may have been broken up and formed into other companies or even been absorbed into other companies.
Springville, one of the communities in western Wood County, was named for one of the numerous springs running through the area now known as Rains County, with the largest being Springville Springs that now runs through the Emory City Park. A town plat of Springville shows that by 1857 there was a store, a tannery, a gin, and a number of houses. When Rains County was organized Springville became the county seat, with its name being changed to Emory, in honor of Emory Rains.
Claudia Hazlewood, "EMORY, TX," Handbook of Texas Online (http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/hle19), accessed September 26, 2011. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.
David W. Gilbreath, "WOOD COUNTY," Handbook of Texas Online (http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/hcw15), accessed September 26, 2011. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.
Walter L. Buenger, "SECESSION CONVENTION," Handbook of Texas Online (http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/mjs01), accessed September 25, 2011. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.
Wood County Genealogical Society, "12th Brigade Texas Militia" (http://www.txgenweb2.org/txwood/brig12.htm#comp), assessed September 26, 1922, Published by the Wood County Texas GenWeb.
Toney, Benjamin C.: The Lost Confederates of Springville. Springtown, TX : Benjamin C. Toney, c1993"Confederate Clip Art and Graphics", (http://www.bonniebluepublishing.com/Free%20Confederate%20Clip%20Art%20and%20Graphics-Page%201.htm), assessed October 13, 2011, Courtesy of Bonnie Blue Publishing