in a Pecan Shell
Back at the time of its founding in 1831,
Liberty was consider divided by the Trinity River. Present day Dayton was considered
"West Liberty" - the official name until the mid-1880s. The name of
Liberty comes from the capital of the old Mexican municipality of Santísima Trinidad
de la Libertad.
Liberty and West Liberty were connected by a ferry.
The West Liberty post office was apparently discontinued after a few years.
Land was designated for a school in 1847 and the schoolhouse was accepted on December
31, 1853. The town was platted and surveyed that same year.
became known as Day's Town, sometime after 1854. I. C. Day, was a wealthy
landowner who lived south of West Liberty.
The Texas and New Orleans
Railroad arrived in 1860 and made the town a flag stop. It was known as either
West Liberty, Days Station, or Dayton Station. In 1877 the name Dayton
was applied to the post office made the name permanent.
1885 the population was a mere 60 people
By 1890 it had risen to 239 residents.
By 1910 it had reached a population of 2,500
By 1940 it had declined to 1,207
By 1965 it had 3,367 people
Lumbering and cattle raising
were the economic engines until rice production was introduced. Dayton was recorded
as an incorporated municipality on May 3, 1911 and Texas governor Marion
Price Daniel, Sr., was born in Dayton the year before. Oil development during
the 1920s brought new industries.
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School has been totally refurbished thanks to two grants and the construction
efforts of Assistant Superintendent Doug Coleman, for Dayton ISD. I suggest a
visit to Dayton, TX for a followup on the story. The people of Dayton have converted
the old school house into a beautiful museum with many items donated back to the
school from the time the school was in operation. Just thought it would be an
interesting story for your website."
- Deborah Coleman, February 08, 2012
TE Photo, September, 2004
Daniel by Archie P. McDonald
"... Daniel was born
in Dayton, Texas, in 1910, and attended Baylor University. He opened a law practice
in Liberty and became a prominent attorney in Southeast Texas. I once heard him
say that he had taken an oath of office pledging loyalty to the Constitution of
the United States eight times. Let’s see if we can reconstruct that career..."
Liberty-Dayton Chamber of Commerce
1801 Trinity Street
P.O. Box 1270, Liberty, Texas 77575
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