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CLARKSVILLE CITY, TX

CLARKSVILLE CITY, TEXAS. Clarksville City is on U.S Highway 80 between Gladewater and White Oak in northeast Gregg County. The first settlers arrived in the area before 1845. There was a stagecoach stop at the home of William W. Walters, which was later owned and operated by Warren P. Victory. Though first known as Gilead, the post office was named Point Pleasant in 1852. It closed in 1867. The community withered when the railroad bypassed it in 1873 and Gladewater was established. With the advent of the East Texas oilfield in 1930, so many homes, businesses, and oil-company camps and offices sprang up along the highway that it was called the Main Street of Texas, and street numbers were designated from Longview to Gladewater. The area around George W. Clark's home on the site of the old stagecoach stop became known as Clarksville. After extensive paving projects and other civic improvements in the 1940s and the construction of Lake Gladewater in 1952, the nearby city of Gladewater had a high tax rate and was extending its boundaries. Industrialists in the area to the east became alarmed at the prospect of being taken into Gladewater and taxed more. A movement to incorporate, spearheaded by several oil companies and the L. W. Pelphrey Company, a general contractor specializing in oilfield construction, culminated in a vote to establish Clarksville City on September 14, 1956. Pelphrey was elected mayor and served until his death in August 1961. The bypassed portion of Old Highway 80 is named Pelphrey Drive in his honor. The population dwindled as drilling reached the state allowable and producing wells became automated. Cities Service Oil Company closed its office and camp in the early 1960s, and Sun Oil Company soon followed. After a population low of 359 in the 1960s, growth was steady. In 1990 Clarksville City had 720 residents and twenty businesses. In 2000 the population was 806. The town has an elected mayor and council with a city manager form of government. The city hall was built in 1962 and doubled in size in 1991. The area is in the Gladewater Independent School District. A Texas historical marker for the old community of Point Pleasant is at the city hall.

BIBLIOGRAPHY: 

Norman W. Black and Ellie Caston, comps., Guide to Gregg County's Historical Markers (Longview, Texas: Gregg County Historical Museum and Gregg County Historical Commission, 1988). East Texas Council of Governments, Regional Directory (Kilgore, Texas, 1979). Eugene W. McWhorter, Traditions of the Land: The History of Gregg County (Longview, Texas: Gregg County Historical Foundation, 1989).

Nauty Byrd Pelphrey Mayer

Citation

The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this article.

Nauty Byrd Pelphrey Mayer, "CLARKSVILLE CITY, TX," Handbook of Texas Online (http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/hlc34), accessed April 20, 2014. Uploaded on June 12, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.