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Powell in Wichita Falls

Replies: 9

Powell, Marcell, Love, Stearnes, Arwood

Posted: 934891200000
Classification: Query
Edited: 994723086000
Surnames: Powell, Marcell, Love, Stearnes, Arwood, Matthews, Gay
Well this is what I found. Oh, let me answer your question about Beaver Creek [it is located just north and west of Kadane Corner in southwest Wichita County] and Iowa Park. Beaver Creek was a small community in the early 1900s but is now only a farming & ranching area now. Iowa Park is a small town, population about 6500 today.
Now on the the rest.
[Source: Iowa Park Leader, Vol. 20, Thursday, Oct 20, 1988 - Happy Birthday Iowa Park 1888-1988 pub. 1995 by Genealogy and Historical Societies] page 175 & 222.
page 175-
In early 1880s, D. J. and Sarah Caroline Powell departed Viola County, TN with nine childten in covered wagons. In 1883 they arrived in North Texas, homesteading several hundred acres in the xouthwest part of Wichita County, the area known as Beaver Creek.
As the community grew, a Sunday School was conducted in the Powell home with Rev. Powell as leader. Founding the Methodist Church of Beaver Creek, he also rode horseback to serve others when called. On his grave is a bronze marker denoting his service as a Circuit Rider for the Methodist Church.
The family of J. C. and Rosanna Matthews of Sedalia, MO, migrated in Tarrant County, TX around 1860. J. C. served as a private of Company A, Griffins Battalion, Texas Infantry in the Civil War. He died while on duty at Sabine Pass, Jan. 14, 1864.
As the family grew and went different directions, John, son of J. C., caught the call of the west and cowboy fever. He traded with cattle and gradually moved westward, learning the tricks of the trade. His westward path halted when he met Sallie Caroline Powell, daughter of D. J. Powell. They married Oct 5, 1890.
While they lived at Beaver Creek, three children were born: Zula (Mrs. McKitrick), John Leslie, and Suvilla (Mrs. Jeff Wallace). As the children grew the problem of schooling was resolved by moving to Iowa Park. Ruth Marie (Mrs. Jack Gay [she may still alive today in Iowa Park])were born while they lived in the wouthwest part of Iowa Park.
The family has been active in civic, religious and educational activities through the years. "Johnnie" Matthews and partner, Walter Sisk, represented Iowa Park High School in debate in Austin in 1914. Matthews attended West Texas State Teachers College at Canyon. He was presented the first Life Membership granted by the Anthropological Society of Canyon.
Mrs. John Matthews was recognized as the oldest woman attending the Wichita County Diamond Jubilee on Pioneer Day in 1957. She died in 1958 at the age of 89. Mr. Matthews, who was known to all his friends as "Uncle Johnny," died in 1934.
The first home place in Iowa Park burned in 1924, and a new home was built in the same location. This is the present home of Otis and Thelma Gay.
Mrs. Gay, with her sister, Mrs. Suvilla Wallace of Mesa, AZ, are the first generation survivors of this pioneer family.
[1 listing for Gay in Iowa Park phone book and 2 for Powell. Zip code is 76367]

page 222-
Circuit-riding Preachers Important to Pioneers
by Lita Huggins Watson
In the days when travel was difficult in this sparsely-settled area, some of the religious ministry was conducted by circuit-rider preachers. Since congregations were very small, they could not afford a resident pastor and shared a traveling minister with many other fledging churches.
As the preacher traveled, he would preach on Sundays and perform marriages and baptize converts. Traveling by horseback, he stayed in the homes of members of the congregation. Usually, he received a small stipend from settlements along his circuit, or regular path.
In 1960, a monument was dedicated to the circuit-riding ministers who served the Beaver Creek area in the southwest part of Wichita County.
Honored ministers and their dates of service were:....D. J. Powell, 1882 (grandfather of Thelma Matthews Gay)... .

[the marker is located in the Beaver Creek Cemetery and is a Texas State Historical Marker]

Good Luck!

Mary Kearby
Editor of NTGA Newsletter
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