The Port Ghost Town in Clay County that Doesn’t Have a Port at All
More ghost town goodies, this time we head on over to Clay County for Newport, Texas.
Well Newports have been in the news a lot recently with a proposed ban on menthol cigarettes. Today though, let's talk about the town of Newport, Texas. With a town right here in Texoma, why on Earth would you call it Newport? You would expect that for a town near a wide body of water that deals with shipping, right?
Turns out the folks that founded the town were quite clever. Their names were Norman, Ezell, Welch, Pruitt, Owsley, Reiger, and Turner. They were the seven founding families in the town and everybody used one of their initials to name the town. Yes, the same way that NSYNC got their name, the town of Newport got theirs. The town was established all the way back in 1862.
Newport's heyday was from the 1920s to the 1940s. Where they had just under 300 people living in the town. Today they estimate it's about 70 people still live there. From what I've seen, the town has a church and some homes. That's pretty much it. Back in the day it did have a post office and a school. No idea when the school closed, but the post office ceased operations in the 1990s.
Fun fact about Newport, Texas, it is home to someone somewhat famous. The longest serving Texas Commissioner of Agriculture John C. White grew up in Newport, Texas. He was actually the youngest person ever elected in the state of Texas to a statewide office at the age of 25. He would go onto be the Deputy Secretary of the U.S. Department of Agriculture during Jimmy Carter's presidency.
That's all I got on Newport, Texas. It's located on Farm to Market Road 1288 and SH 59, 24 miles southeast of Henrietta. If you want to read some more about other ghost towns in our area. I have written on Sunshine Hill here in Wichita County and Anarene in Archer County. Let me know of any others you want me to write on.
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