Historic Business District in Downtown Montgomery.
Lone Star Town
Texas is Texas
Location of Montgomery, Texas
|Incorporated||February 26, 1848|
|• Mayor||Sara Countryman|
|• City Council||Jon Bickford|
|• Total||4.6 sq mi (11.8 km2)|
|• Land||4.5 sq mi (11.7 km2)|
|• Water||0.1 sq mi (0.1 km2)|
|Elevation||295 ft (90 m)|
|• Density||108.3/sq mi (41.8/km2)|
|Time zone||UTC-6 (Central (CST))|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC-5 (CDT)|
|GNIS feature ID||1382317|
The town of Montgomery was founded in the middle of the Lake Creek Settlement by W. W. Shepperd in July 1837 on 200 acres of land that had originally been part of the John Corner League. Shepperd had established the first store in the Lake Creek Settlement in 1835. W. W. Shepperd and his partner John Wyatt Moody named the town Montgomery.
Montgomery became the first county seat of Montgomery County shortly after the county was created on December 14, 1837. Montgomery County was the third county formed during the Republic of Texas. The county originally extended from the Brazos River to the Trinity. The city was officially incorporated in 1848 with Judge Nathaniel Hart Davis as mayor.
Origins of the city's name
Local histories and accounts by 20th century historians held that the city and county of Montgomery were named after a family of early settlers to the area: Andrew Montgomery or Owen and Margaret Montgomery Shannon. However, recent evidence provided by Kameron Searle suggests that it is more likely that the town and county were named after Lemuel P. Montgomery, a major in the U.S. Army during the Creek War. John Wyatt Moody, one of the founders of Montgomery, was County Clerk of Montgomery County, Alabama before moving to Texas. Montgomery County, Alabama, is named for Lemuel P. Montgomery. Sam Houston, the President of the Republic of Texas when the town and county of Montgomery were founded, served in the Battle of Horseshoe Bend with Lemuel P. Montgomery and witnessed his death in the front lines of the battle. According to Searle, Moody and his partner W.W. Shepperd may have used Houston's connection with Lemuel Montgomery to help promote the creation of Montgomery County, with the town of Montgomery as the county seat.
Birthplace of the Lone Star Flag?
On July 7, 1922, Edmund B. Stewart, son of the early Montgomery settler Charles B. Stewart, claimed in a letter that his father had drafted the original design of the Lone Star Flag, enclosing what he claimed was his father's draft of the flag's design. To date, this letter and draft copy, along with claims by Stewart's descendants, remain the only evidence currently known that Charles Stewart was the designer of the flag. In particular, the lack of evidence not directly tied to the Stewart family has caused many flag historians to question Stewart's claim. As a legacy of the Stewart claim, one of the nicknames for the city of Montgomery is "Birthplace of the Texas Flag."
Montgomery is located at 30°23'22" North, 95°41'53" West (30.389406, -95.698089).
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 4.6 square miles (12 km2). 4.5 square miles (12 km2) of it is land and 0.1 square miles (0.26 km2) of it is water. The total area is 1.31% water.
|U.S. Decennial Census|
In the 2010 United States Census, there were 621 people, 237 households, and 167 families residing in the city. The racial makeup of the city was 67.1% White, 26.4% African American, 0.6% Native American, 0.6% Asian, 0.00% Pacific Islander, 5.0% from other races, and 0.2% from two or more races. 14.5% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
There were 237 households out of which 32.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 46.4% were married couples living together, 14.3% had a female householder with no husband present, and 29.5% were non-families. 25.3% of all households were made up of individuals. The average household size was 2.62 and the average family size was 3.13.
In the city, the population was spread out with 26.7% under the age of 18, 7.9% from 18 to 24, 24.6% from 25 to 44, 27.5% from 45 to 64, and 13.0% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38.6 years. For every 100 females, there were 95.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 95.7 males.
As of the 2015 American Community Survey, The median income for a household in the city was $48,125, and the median income for a family was $63,750. Males had a median income of $41,429 versus $24,000 for females. The per capita income for the city was $27,376. 20.3% of the population and 16.7% of families were below the poverty line. Out of the total population, 28.6% of those under the age of 18 and 9.1% of those 65 and older were living below the poverty line.
Government and infrastructure
The City of Montgomery is governed locally by a City Council consisting of a mayor and 5 council members. The current mayor is Sara Countryman. Current council members are Jon Bickford, John Champagne, T.J. Wilkerson, Rebecca Huss, and Tom Cronin.
In the Texas Senate, Montgomery is part of District 3, represented by Republican Robert Nichols. In the Texas House of Representatives, Montgomery is part of District 16, represented by Republican Will Metcalf.
In the United States Senate, Republicans John Cornyn and Ted Cruz represent the entire state. In the United States House of Representatives, Montgomery is part of District 8, represented by Republican Kevin Brady.
Montgomery is a part of the Montgomery Independent School District.
Montgomery ISD is currently changing the structure of their feeder system. Previously, students attended a K-4 elementary, a 5th grade intermediate school, a 6th grade middle school, a 7-8th grade junior high school, and a 9-12th grade high school.
Beginning in the 2017–2018 school year, students will instead attend a K-5th grade elementary, 6-8th grade junior high, and 9th-12th grade high school.
For students located within Montgomery city limits:
- K-5 students will attend Montgomery Elementary.
- 6-8 students will attend Montgomery Junior High.
- 9-12 students will attend Montgomery High School and Lake Creek High School.
Fernland Historical Park
In 2012, the city established Fernland Historical Park to serve as a permanent location for some of the oldest remaining buildings and artifacts in Texas. A non-profit group, Fernland, Inc., and Sam Houston State University assisted the city in restoring and relocating the buildings to the park.
The city of Montgomery contains buildings and other sites which date back to the original settlement of the area, such as Old Montgomery Cemetery, which contains the grave sites of some of Montgomery's first settlers. Historic buildings include the Davis Cottage and Museum, First State Bank, the Old Montgomery Baptist Church, and the Shelton-Smith House. Each site is designated with a historical marker established by the Texas Historical Commission. Texas Historical Commission markers inside the city limits include the most recent marker for the Lake Creek Settlement located in front of the Nat Hart Davis Cottage.
Ling-Chieh "Louis" Kung, the nephew of Soong Mei-ling, built an underground bunker in Montgomery, which was completed in 1982. Kung took money that he made from the success of the Westland Oil Development Corp. in the 1970s and used it to build the bunker, since he feared that the Soviet Union or the People's Republic of China would launch nuclear weapons towards the United States. Kung bought hundreds of acres of cow pasture on the outskirts of Montgomery and secretly began building the bunker. The two story, 40,000 square feet (3,700 m2) bunker could house at least 700 people; Kung intended to have the bunker house his employees, their families, and others in case of a two-month emergency. Melanie Trottmann of The Wall Street Journal stated that the bunker "was a source of intrigue and gossip for the town of Montgomery." After the oil bust in the 1980s, Kung lost the title to the property; Kung died in 1996. Trottman said that the bunker "sat frozen in time" until a group of investors bought the property. The facility, now called "Westland Bunker," serves as a data storage center for businesses. The facility also contains office space that corporations can use in the event of a disaster.
- Norm Branch, major league baseball pitcher. In retirement, he served as a mail carrier in the Montgomery area.
- Kambri Crews, producer and publicist located in New York City, and author of Burn Down the Ground: A Memoir in which Montgomery is prominently featured.
- Bailie Key, artistic gymnast
- W. W. Shepperd (William Watters Shepperd), colonist, town founder, businessman, land speculator and postmaster. He was a native of Surry County, North Carolina and was a colonist in Stephen F. Austin’s Second Colony. Shepperd purchased 200 acres of land in the northwestern-most corner of the John Corner League in 1835. There he built houses for his family and his slaves and established the first trading post/store in the Lake Creek Settlement. Shepperd’s store served as the community center of the Lake Creek Settlement. In deeds, contracts, and marriage records executed there, Shepperd’s store was commonly referred to as “the store of W. W. Shepperd on Lake Creek.” At this location, John Bricker built Shepperd a cotton gin and a mill between mid-1835 and early 1836. Delegate Charles B. Stewart left the Convention of 1836 (Texas Independence Convention) for a few days to marry Julia Shepperd at W. W. Shepperd’s house on March 11, 1836. W. W. Shepperd founded the town of Montgomery in July of 1837. Townspeople would later describe the 200 acres that Shepperd originally founded the town on as “Old Montgomery” or “the town under the hill.” The creek that ran through Shepperd’s land later became known as “Town Creek.” The first post office in Montgomery was located at Shepperd’s store. Two early Republic of Texas mail routes ran through his store (Route No. 1, Houston to New Cincinnati and Route No. 14, Shepperd’s Store to the La Bahia Crossing on the Colorado River). W. W. Shepperd was the first postmaster in Montgomery (1837-1840). In 1838, W. W. Shepperd purchased 200 more acres in the John Corner League just south of the two hundred acres he had purchased in 1835. Shepperd donated a half undivided interest in these 200 acres to Montgomery County and moved the site of the town of Montgomery there at the first Montgomery County Commissioners Court meeting on March 1, 1838. The town of Montgomery was the first county seat of Montgomery County, Texas. The first Montgomery County courthouse was a house that W. W. Shepperd rented to the county. The house was moved from the old town site to a location in the new town site. This is where the Montgomery Community Center is located today. Shepperd sold the town of Montgomery to James McCown in 1839 for cash and slaves.
- Charles B. Stewart, physician and statesman. Stewart was Secretary to the Executive of the Consultation, a provisional government established during the Texas Revolution. He served as a delegate at the Convention of 1836, signing the Texas Declaration of Independence. He also represented Montgomery County at the Convention of 1845, which drafted the Texas State Constitution, and served as Montgomery County's first representative in the Texas State Legislature.*
- John Marshall Wade, soldier, newspaperman, and surveyor. Wade was a native of New York City. As a youth, Wade set type next to Horace Greeley. Wade served as a soldier in the Texas Revolution in the Battle of San Jacinto where Texas won its independence from Mexico on April 21, 1836. In the Battle of San Jacinto, Wade manned one of the famed Twin Sisters cannons. Wade published the first newspaper in Montgomery County, Texas the Montgomery Patriot in 1845.
The climate in this area is characterized by hot, humid summers and generally mild to cool winters. According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, Montgomery has a humid subtropical climate, abbreviated "Cfa" on climate maps.
- City Council City of Montgomery, TX. Accessed on June 21, 2017.
- Census 2010: Montgomery, TX Archived 2020-02-13 at Archive.today United States Census Bureau. Accessed on June 21, 2017.
- "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- Searle, Kameron K. The Early History of Montgomery, Texas. City of Montgomery, Texas: July 7, 2012. Accessed on November 4, 2017.
- Montgomery County, Alabama. Alabama Department of Archives and History. Accessed on June 21, 2017.
- Haley, James L. Chapter 1: The Runaway Grocery Boy. in Sam Houston, pg. 14-15. University of Oklahoma Press: April 10, 2015. Accessed on August 9, 2017.
- Spain, Charles A. Who Designed the Lone Star Flag? Heritage Volume 18, Number 1: Winter 2000. Accessed on June 21, 2017.
- Maberry Jr, Robert. Letter to Representative Creighton April 9, 2009. Accessed on June 21, 2017.
- Smith, Whitney. Letter to Charles A. Spain, Jr. The Flag Research Center: May 19, 2009. Accessed on June 21, 2017.
- Report on the Design of the Lone Star Flag Texas Vexillological Commission: May 4, 2013. Accessed on June 21, 2017.
- Homepage for the City of Montgomery Website "Birthplace of the Texas Flag" is written as a banner at the top of the page. Accessed on June 21, 2017.
- "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23.
- "Population and Housing Unit Estimates". Retrieved March 12, 2020.
- "Census of Population and Housing". Census.gov. Retrieved June 4, 2015.
- Who Represents Me: Montgomery Texas Legislative Council. Accessed on June 22, 2017.
- "Post Office Location - MONTGOMERY." United States Postal Service. Retrieved on December 8, 2008.
- "Post Office Location - MONTGOMERY ANNEX." United States Postal Service. Retrieved on December 8, 2008.
- MISD Bond 2015. Accessed on June 21, 2017.
- MISD Attendance Zones 2017 and Beyond. Accessed on June 21, 2017.
- "Charles B. Stewart West Branch Archived 2008-12-19 at the Wayback Machine." Montgomery County Memorial Library System. Retrieved on December 8, 2008.
- Order of the Confederate Rose meet in Fernland Historical Park. Houston Chronicle: August 9, 2016. Accessed on November 5, 2017.
- Montgomery Historic Landmarks County Gen Web. Accessed on June 21, 2017.
- Trottman, Melanie. "Continental Airlines Finds a Safe Haven In a Texas Bunker." The Wall Street Journal. October 2, 2006. Retrieved on December 22, 2009.
- Mendoza, Jesse. Westland Bunker Community Impact Newspaper: June 2, 2015. Accessed on June 21, 2017.
- Lee, Bill. The Baseball Necrology: The Post-Baseball Lives and Deaths of More Than 7,600 Major League Players and Others. McFarland: April 16, 2009. Page 44. Retrieved on October 28, 2017.
- "Kambri Crews' Website." Kambri Crews. Retrieved on December 8, 2008.
- Women's Past Senior National Teams: 2015-2016. USA Gymnastics. Accessed on July 20, 2017.
- Biographical Directory of the Texan Conventions and Congresses: 1832-1845. Legislative Reference Library of Texas: 1942. Page 171. Retrieved on October 28, 2017.
- Climate Summary for Montgomery, Texas
|Wikivoyage has a travel guide for Montgomery (Texas).|