East Texas History

East Texas History is a free mobile app and web platform that places the past at your fingertips. Designed by the History Department at Sam Houston State University, the project seeks to highlight the distinctive people, places, and events that have shaped East Texas. Viewers may learn about the region through our interactive, map-based interface that includes historical stories, photographs, and oral interviews. Follow our progress on Twitter or connect with us on Facebook to learn more about the project or to become a participating author. Read more About Us

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Slave Narrative of Betty Simmons

During the Great Depression, the U.S. Government funded a special Federal Writers' Project to support authors like John Steinbeck and Ralph Ellison. As part of this effort, the government also paid interviewers to record the personal stories of…

Cincinnati, Texas

Situated along the west side of the Trinity River in northern Walker County, Cincinnati was an important river port and ferry crossing during the nineteenth century. The settlement was founded by James C. Dewitt, a veteran of the Battle of San…

Minnie Fisher Cunningham

During the twentieth century, Minnie Fisher Cunningham (1882-1964) worked as a leading reformer on women’s issues, including voting rights and equal pay. Born near New Waverly, Texas in southern Walker County, Minnie was raised by her parents,…

Capture site of Santa Anna

Lasting only eighteen minutes, the Battle of San Jacinto was the definitive ending to Mexico’s control of its northernmost province of Tejas y Coahuila and the birth of the Republic of Texas. Starting around four o’clock in the afternoon, General…

Gibbs Brothers and Company

Gibbs Brothers and Company is reputedly the oldest continuously operating family business in Texas that still resides on its original site. The business was established by Thomas Gibbs and Gardner Coffin in 1841 on the Huntsville town square. The…

Slave Narrative of Ellen Payne

During the Great Depression, writers and journalists working under the auspices of the Works Progress Administration (WPA) interviewed more than 2,300 former slaves across the American South. The leaders of this Federal Writers’ Project believed, as…