Emily Ann Elizabeth (Brown) Stokes-Fullwood
Navarro County, Texas


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Emily Ann Elizabeth (Brown) Stokes-Fullwood
Feb 6, 1839 - Oct 1, 1930

REMINISCENCES OF CORSICANA DURING EARL DAYS GIVEN

PIONEER WOMAN WHO CAME HERE IN 1869 TELLS OF HARDSHIPS ENCOUNTERED

On December 22, 1869, a long train of wagons, consisting of four ox teams, two yokes to a wagon, eight mule wagons, and two hacks, with our party of emigrants from Meridian, Miss., having trailed six weeks through rains, snows, sleet and mud, half frozen and without breakfast, drove into Corsicana while the most terrible blizzard was howling, and found our retreat a failure. Oh, how terrible! The merchants had been notified by Esq. David Haggard Thomas and Dick Stokes of our coming, so they were on the lookout for us. But what could they do for us? There was not a tavern, hotel or vacant house to accommodate such a party.

The merchants were very kind, and sympathetic, but could do nothing for us, but direct us to a lake or tank of water three miles west of Corsicana on the Dresden road. And there, we build log heaps and camped and ate our breakfast and dinner and slept. The warmth of the fire rejuvenated us and so thawed our almost frozen blood that we were able the next day to continue our journey and in good time arrived in Dresden and were taken in and cared for by our brothers, Thomas and Dick Stokes.

We remained with our kindred until the raging blizzard had spent its force, and ceased, and the men, W. W. Stokes, father; S. W. Stokes, husband; G. W. Brown, R. T. Brown, brothers; Hiram Brown, Charley Ransom, Henry Edwards, and others, went out to Cryer Creek and bought out the Melton Town, as it was called, and with Mr. Dave Maggard and Mr. Dave Williams formed the Mississippi Colony.

The railroad was completed as far as Kosse and there was no furniture store in Corsicana. There were four ox wagons sent there for bedsteads, chairs and such things as we were in actual need of. It took three weeks for the wagons to go and return with our much needed supplies.

To the best of my recollection there was three log store houses, a log court house and jail, and blacksmith shop. The merchants were the Keltons of Cryer Creek and the Corsicana Observer gave us the news of the county. The lumber to build our first home at Cryer Creek was hauled on ox wagons from East Texas, but when the rail road reached Corsicana, it brought all things needful and it began to grow, and spread its wings out to reach further and further, higher and higher, until it became a city of some importance.

But when the oil field was opened up its growth was like a bed of mushrooms, it grew so fast. A galloping horse could hardly keep up with it, and its population is in the thousands instead of a few hundred.

In January, 1894, I left this county and returned in June, 1926, but, Oh, what a change. Not a building I can recognize except Col R. Q. Millsí home. All the city has changed to more modern residences. The faces that I once knew and loved have passed away and strangers have taken their places. Excepting a few can I look into their faces and say, I once knew you, and love you still.

And now I am old and feeble, an octogenarian, a shut-in, but I enjoy life, and am glad to look on the changes as they come and go, and watch the growth of Corsicana from a log village to a large and flourishing city.

Mrs. E. A. E. Stokes Fullwood, Corsicana, Texas Motor R. A., Box 263.

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