Pottsboro man turning Texoma legend into state-recognized cemetery

By: Allison Harris Email
By: Allison Harris Email

POTTSBORO, TEXAS -- A Pottsboro man is becoming an activist in his own right.

He's turning a Texoma legend into a state-recognized monument.

Allison Harris stepped back in time -- way back to 1860 -- for the story.

Stewart Parris's curiosity became a one-man movement with this question.

"Can you imagine what it would be like to lose four small children and have to bury them here in such a short amount of time?" Parris said.

Stewart moved to Texoma Estates in Pottsboro a year and a half ago. As a geologist, this fossilized limestone peaked his interest.

Turns out this gravesite is a Pottsboro legend, rumored to be the burial ground of Irish immigrant M.A. McBride.

"He was a good man no doubt. Caring father. He was a postmaster here for a small town in Grayson County," Parris said.

Records show his four daughters died of disease and fever between 1860 and 1871.

And with some research...

"I determined that in fact, M.A. McBride was never laid to rest here, his four children were and this area that we're standing on here is actually a children's cemetery," Parris said.

We met up with Stewart as he picked up a sign to mark the site.

He is in the process of getting the cemetery state-recognized before it's too late.

Stewart says they're just a few letters away from losing the identity of the monument and the history behind it.

He says some locals have been vandalizing the site. Receiving Texas Historical Commission designation could put an end to that vandalism.

Designation "records the cemetery location and boundaries... As a cemetery worthy of preservation," according to the Texas Historical Commission.

For Stewart, it's what should be done for an age old Texoma family that worked to establish the Colbert Ferry -- helping define this area.

"Here's a man who was living the American dream: came from Ireland, married, ventured West and made the very best he could. And in the course of doing so, he made history. His history is captured right here," Parris said.


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