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LITTLE HOPE, TX

LITTLE HOPE, TEXAS. Little Hope is at the intersection of Farm roads 154 and 312, ten miles east of Quitman in eastern Wood County. The old Little Hope church and cemetery are about 1½ miles north of the community, which is sometimes referred to as the "new" Little Hope. The area was settled as early as the 1850s, and by 1857 a school, taught by fifteen-year-old Emily Smith, served both the Little Hope area and the Holly Springs community. In 1881 the Little Hope Missionary Baptist Church was organized; it was said to have taken its name from the fact that there was little hope that the church would survive more than a year. The first meeting of the church was held at a brush arbor near a place called the Murphy graveyard, but eventually a two-story building was constructed; the second story was used for meetings of the local Woodmen of the World lodge. Baptisms for the church were originally conducted at J. A. Stinson's millpond near the Speer community. Shortly after its establishment the Little Hope church helped organize a Missionary Baptist church at the nearby community of East Point.

The Little Hope community was probably served by the Common Ridge school district, which had eighty-four white students in 1896 and 139 in 1905. By 1921 the Woodmen lodge had disbanded, and from 1933 to 1939 the community, which apparently never had a post office, reported a population of ten served by one business. No further population figures are available, but by 1960 both the old Little Hope church area and the new Little Hope community had a few widely scattered dwellings, many abandoned. By the early 1970s the membership of the Little Hope congregation had climbed to around 128, and around that time the church added a belfry incorporating the bell from the then-defunct Common Ridge school, the lands of which also ended up as church property. Little Hope church received a Texas Historical Commission marker in the early 1980s and was still active at that time. The 1988 county highway map showed two businesses at the new Little Hope community. By 2000 the population was twenty-five.

BIBLIOGRAPHY: 

Marker Files, Texas Historical Commission, Austin. Adele W. Vickery and Ida Marie Turner, comps., Cemeteries of Wood County (3 vols., Mineola, Texas, 1970–71). Wood County, 1850–1900 (Quitman, Texas: Wood County Historical Society, 1976).

Rachel Jenkins

Citation

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

Rachel Jenkins, "LITTLE HOPE, TX," Handbook of Texas Online (http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/hrlaa), accessed September 02, 2014. Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.