Henderson Masonic Female Institute, in Rusk County, was authorized on May 25, 1864, by the Texas legislature. The sponsors were Clinton Masonic Lodge No. 23 and the Methodist church where the institute classes were held. The original trustees, who were appointed by the legislature, included A. J. Smith, William Steadman, Thomas A. Oliver, J. M. Dodson, William H. Estill, Bennett Boggess, and John P. Grigsby. Succeeding trustees were to be selected by the lodge, which would also fix their terms of office. The school building was destroyed by a tornado on December 5, 1866. Another school by the same name apparently operated in Rusk County in 1854–55.