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Monday, September 10, 2007

A Few First for Ellis County

First major road in Ellis County was a military road that cut through the middle of Ellis County near downtown Waxahachie in 1850. It ran from the Red River to San Antonio. Another road later crossed Eastern Ellis County and went from Dallas to Houston. The commissions court of Ellis County declared these two roads the first official roads in Ellis County in 1860.

Hans Smith reportedly built the first cotton gin in Ellis County in Palmer near Red Oak Creek.

William R Howe was believed to be the first white settler in Ellis County back in 1843.

Edward H Tarrant is believed to have built the first mill in Ellis County. Tarrant County was named in his honor.

Willie Love was the first black man to serve as city commissioner in Ellis County on June 19, 1969.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Cotton Gin Scales Ovilla, Texas

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The way I've been told is that the wagon loaded with cotton would ride upon the wooden platform and be weighed. I believe the measuring device were in the building next to the scales. Then after the cotton was unloaded they would weigh the wagon again. The difference was how much cotton the farmer would get paid for. I guess the wood scales floated. It would be kind of like when you got to the dump and they weigh your vehicle when you come in and weigh you after you dump your stuff. Then you pay by the weight difference. Pretty amazing that scales have lasted all this time even after al the fires of 1918 and 1966.


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