Short History of
Navarro County, Texas 


County History Index

Navarro County was created from Robertson County in 1846. It was named for Jose Antonio Navarro, who played a major role in early Texas history. In addition to his other services, he was one of the delegates to the convention which voted for Texas to join the Union. Navarro County was created during his term as Senator from the Eighteenth District, and he was asked to name the new county seat. He chose "Corsicana" in honor of his father's birthplace, Corsica.

One of the better known events which occurred before the actual creation of the county was the Battle Creek - (or Surveyors') Fight between a party of surveyors from Robertson County and Indians. Several accounts of this battle exist - all differing in some respects as to the order of events and exact participants.

Clinton Fouty, an early settler, is quoted as stating that he arrived in the fall of 1845, and found some 20 families already living in the area - D. R. Mitchell, Owen Humphrey, Ham Morrell, Ethan Melton, William McCabe, John Hilburn and Dan Hartsell among others.

The original Navarro County contained the present counties of Ellis, Tarrant, Johnson and Hill, as well as portions of Palo Pinto, Parker, Hood and Somervell. W. R. Howe's house (in present Ellis County) served as a temporary seat of justice. It was located near a small community known as "Freezeout." After Howe's death in 1847, a committee was appointed to determine a permanent county seat, and Corsicana was selected.

The first chief justice of the county was Dr. John Young. He was followed by Edward H. Tarrant and later Sterling C. Cross. Other first officials were: R. N. White, county clerk; Ethan Melton treasurer; Elias Rogers, tax assessor-collector and James A. Johnson, sheriff. Some of the early Justices of the Peace were F. S. Williams, William C. Price, Fenwick R. Kendall, William Spurlin, Willis A. Price, George M. Hogan, William H. Beeman, Joseph Bartlett, A. M. Sloan, Q. N. Anderson, Augustus Barry and James A. Ross.

Navarro County TXGenWeb
Copyright March, 2009
Edward L. Williams & Barbara Knox