GLADISH, TEXAS. Gladish was once a thriving community on what is now Farm Road 1736 eight miles northeast of Hempstead in northern Waller County. It was named for Capt. Richard Allen Gladish, a Confederate soldier who settled in the area in 1873, the year the county was formed. Dick Gladish bought 300 acres of land in the Samuel Hardin survey and built a steam-powered cotton gin, which had a substantial clientele because of the influx of new farmers when the county was formed. He also served as county tax assessor intermittently from 1878 to 1895. Members of the Gladish family operated not only the gin, but a gristmill and a general store as well. In 1885 a post office was established in the general store, with William B. Tompkins as postmaster. When a fire destroyed the store building, the post office and store were moved to the Gladish home. At one time the community had a brickyard, a racetrack, and accommodations for cockfighting. In 1890 it reported twenty-five residents, and by 1896, fifty. The Gladish school was one of fifty-two community schools established in Waller County between 1873 and 1894. By 1905 separate schools at Gladish enrolled thirty-six white and forty-eight black students. The Gladish post office closed in 1906, after the advent of rural free delivery. Around 1914 Dick Gladish closed his gin and moved with his family to Houston, where he died in 1918. Other families also moved out of the county or settled in nearby Hempstead. By 1937 the schools of the Gladish district had been absorbed into the Waller Independent School District. The community is not shown on the 1941 county highway map, though Gladish continued to be a voting precinct until 1966. By then, however, the former townsite was indistinguishable from the rest of the countryside.
Mildred W. Abshier et al., Former Post Offices of Waller County (Hempstead, Texas: Waller County Historical Society, 1977). Waller County Historical Commission, Cotton Gins of Waller County (Brenham, Texas, 1981). Waller County Historical Survey Committee, A History of Waller County, Texas (Waco: Texian, 1973).