May 2, 2001

Tracing Our Bosque County Roots
By: LaDawn Garland
02 May 2001

This week I read a wonderful book entitled, The Memories of Will Conine, 1860s to 1890s, collected and compiled by Sharon E. Whitney. Will Conine, the great great uncle of Whitney, grew up in the Coon Creek area here in Bosque County and later in his life took the time to write down his early memories of his life here in the county.

On tablets, lovingly preserved by his family he tells of the early days, when Clifton was barely large enough to be called a village. He gives us a vivid glimpse of life during these times, including encounters with cattle rustlers, outlaws, and his neighbor, Belle Reed, the woman who would one day be know as the notorious outlaw, Belle Starr.

Whitney along with her parents took these tablets and painstakenly copied and compiled them into a fascinating look at life during the early years, when Bosque County was still part of the wild wild west.

If you want to get your own copy of this book, and I highly recommend it, there will be a book signing at the Bosque Memorial Museum in Clifton on Sunday, May 6 , 2001 from 2 to 4 p.m.. You can purchase the book and have it signed by the author.

The copy I read was loaned to me by Bryan Davis, but I definitely plan on attending the signing and getting my own.

On Saturday, May 5th at 12 noon there will be a dedication ceremony and picnic at the Scrutchfield Cemetery located southwest of Valley Mills.

The Scrutchfield Cemetery has been designated a Texas Historic Cemetery, the first in Bosque County to receive this distinction.

Members and friends of the Valley Mills Cemetery Association, The Bosque County Historical Commission and The Bosque Valley Heritage Society are invited to attend.
For more information contact Bob Allen at 254-932-6307.

I took a tour of the new home of the Bosque County Collection, in the Lumpkin Building in Meridian, this week. It is so beautiful inside, I know everyone will be thrilled. They are still unpacking, but I think it may be opening up for visitors and researchers sometime this week. You might want to call to verify this. Not everything is up on the shelves yet, but you
really should visit just to see how wonderful it looks.

Please send in your stories, memories and queries on your Bosque County families, so take time to talk with your relatives and be sure to record you family stories, and share them with us all.

Early News Items from  The Meridian Tribune
on file at the Bosque County Collections

January 23, 1903
Marriage Licenses Issued:
Sid Ansley and Miss Sue Steen
G. C. Smith and Miss Bettie Savage
W. M. Crump and Miss Emma Gray
G. J. Andrew and Miss Mona B. Cox
E. N. Smith and Miss Zee Ogle
J. B. Wagoner and Miss Carrie Braddy
H. C. Ammons and Miss Dora Kavanaugh

Local News and Personals
Mrs. J. A. Sherrill is visiting in the city this week
Hon. Pearce Ward of Cleburne attended court here this week.
Mr. and Mrs. J. H. Standifer are visiting the family of Mr. and Mrs. J. M.
Robertson this week.
J. W. Adams of Valley Mills was in the city the first of this week.
Sam K. Lewis of near Valley Mills was visiting in the city earlier today.
Arthur Duncan of Hamilton County was in the city this week
Miss Florence White of Morgan is visiting relatives and friends in the city
this week.
Miss Etta Morgan returned Wednesday from a visit to Austin she was
accompanied by her little sister Jimmie.
W. H. Seale of Walnut was in the city Monday.
Miss Eunice Duncan of Dell, is visiting in the city, the guest of her
sister, Mrs. J. L. Mingus.
Hon. J. L Scott, who has been in Greer Co., Okla., for several months
visiting his daughter Mrs. Filtzhugh returned home yesterday.


I had a query sent in this week from a researcher trying to locate information on an ancestor here in Bosque County. If anyone has any information they would like to share on Presley Bryant, who was a sheriff here in Bosque County, he was supposedly waylaid and killed on Village Creek in Johnson County around 1854, please contact

If you are researching your Bosque County families online be sure to visit Bosque Co. TXGenWeb site at you’ll find a wonderful collection of information provided by other researchers, it’s quite possible you might just find other researchers there researching your same family lines. This column will also be available weekly at this site. If you would like to submit a story or query about your Bosque County family to this column please mail them to: LaDawn Garland c/o The Bosque County News, P.O. Box 343, Meridian, TX 76665, fax to (254) 435-6335 or email me at