• The Leon Hurse Dam at Lake Ralph Hall in southeast Fannin County is taking shape thanks to hard work during 2022. This past year has been one of tremendous progress for Lake Ralph Hall, with most of the road and bridge work already completed. As part of mitigation plans for Lake Ralph Hall, the remnant of the former North Sulphur River will be restored; stream construction is expected to begin this summer.
  • Construction of Lake Ralph Hall in Fannin County reached another major milestone with the final concrete pour for the Merrill Creek bridge, one of two bridges that will span the lake. Lake Ralph Hall is one of the state’s biggest water projects in the last 30 years and will provide up to 54 million gallons of water per day to the communities Upper Trinity Regional Water District (Upper Trinity) serves in Denton and Collin counties.
  • (L-R) Richard Owen, Pct. 2 Commissioner A.J. Self, Eddie Cox, Brandon Wallace, and Nathan Coyle. The monument was removed from the grounds for the renovation of the courthouse. And last week Commissioner A. J. Self's crew returned the monument to the courthouse grounds, where it now resides on the northeast side. Hopefully its permanent resting place.
  • Cornerstones can tell us our history. Here are the ones I found in Bonham. Photo by Kay Sisk of cornerstone at First Christian Church in Bonham
  • The workers are pouring concrete for the spillway (pictured) and continue to move dirt to build the dam's embankment. SH 34 bridge across Lake Ralph Hall is almost done—getting its last coat of concrete, after which workers will just need to finish the bridge barriers.
  • Elaine Crider selling Bluebird (Camp Fire) candy to Mr. Rayburn, 1950. photo courtesy of Sam Rayburn papers, Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin
  • 1932 Bonham Warriors. Football was beginning to gain traction in the 1920s and 1930s when modern transportation became affordable for more families.
  • Over 122 years Bonham has had 35 coaches. And only 10 of those coaches have sustained 4 seasons or more. (photo by Allen Rich)
  • As the Texas Christian University website states, TCU's story began in 1869 when brothers Addison and Randolph Clark dreamed of creating a college for men and women. What is less well known is that Addison and Randolph Clark had roots in Fannin County.
  • The Sam Rayburn House invites you to join us at the Rayburn family farm on Saturday, January 7 to celebrate 141 years of Mr. Sam’s influence on Bonham, Texas, and the nation! Celebrate all things Sam Rayburn with first floor tours, birthday games and crafts, and, of course, birthday cake! Admission to Mr. Sam’s Birthday Party is free, and the festivities will run from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.!
  • Recent months have brought progress on new bridges and roads and considerable progress moving dirt and pouring concrete at the reservoir site. In addition, several other key Lake Ralph Hall projects have been moving forward behind the scenes. Rendering of the future pump station and type of pipe that will be used to create the Lake Ralph Hall pipeline.
  • This photographs shows recent progress on Merrill Creek Bridge. Construction on the roadways over and around future Lake Ralph Hall has been—quite literally—trucking along. Flatiron is finishing the decking for the North Sulphur Bridge and will roll on to the side barriers. All of the beams have been set on Merrill Creek Bridge, decking is expected to be finished by the end of December. Over the next couple of months, the side barriers will be completed followed by asphalt if the weather allows. Flatiron currently has around 80 workers onsite, and they are scheduled to open the bridges to traffic next spring.
  • The Sam Rayburn Museum, a division of the Dolph Briscoe Center for American History at the University of Texas at Austin, presents "Rayburn and the Railroad," an exhibit highlighting the role trains played in the life of Sam Rayburn.
  • What do you think of when you imagine an archeological artifact? Old bones and clay pots? Tools and weapons from a time long gone? The jar for that medicine you don’t want anybody to know about? All of these things can be archeological artifacts if they are unearthed in a few years. According to the National Parks Service, artifacts are items made or collected by people in the past that can tell us about their lives and culture. It may not seem as cool to you as some ancient pottery collection, but believe it or not, the "junk" you have around you right now might well be a key clue for people in the future trying to figure out what we did all day.
  • Millard Doan Brent, the unofficial historian of Dodd City, has published an expanded History of Dodd City, Texas, with lots of details and photos.

  • A recent Fannin County fossil find of a Tylosaurus in July, on a section of the North Sulphur River owned by Upper Trinity Regional Water District (UTRWD), continues to tell paleontologists a story written approximately 100 million years ago, when much of Texas was covered by a huge inland sea.
  • In 1888 a number of newspapers carried a story about Fannin County resident Mrs. William Drennan and her friendship with young Abe Lincoln when they both lived in Illinois.
  • Original Bonham Daily Favorite photo of Jerry Lee Lewis signing autographs for Bonham High School sophomores, Wanda Dagley, Kathy Chaney and Sandy Moore.
  • During the late 1800s and early 1900s, a number of Jewish merchants and their families moved to Bonham and engaged in the mercantile trade, the cotton business and bought and sold real estate. These men were welcomed into the community, as evidenced by the fact that two Jewish merchants were among the first shareholders of the First National Bank of Bonham. They participated in the public and social life of the community, and were well thought of and respected. There was never a synagogue in Bonham, but services were held in various buildings.



  • The Sam Rayburn House State Historic Site invites you to join us on Saturday, October 29 for our fourteenth annual walking tour of Willow Wild Cemetery in Bonham, Texas. The program will offer a guided tour featuring teachers and educators from the Bonham area. The walking tour is free. After the Cemetery Walking Tour, you are invited to join us back at the Sam Rayburn House from 1:00 to 3:00 p.m. for a celebration of Texas Archeology Month, with a special display of some of the items found on the site and free archeology-themed crafts for all ages!
  • (L-R) Frank, Will, Jim, Sam, Dick, Tom Rayburn 1920s. Tom Rayburn probably had a lot going on in October. He had a farm to manage, cattle to tend to, baseball to keep track of, and maybe some last-minute campaigning for his brother Sam. Minnie Eldridge also had a busy October. She lived in the Rayburn home from 1927 – 1937, having moved in after the death of her cousin Martha Rayburn (Tom’s mother), and she worked as a home demonstration agent. During October, Tom and Minnie both had responsibilities to the Fannin County Fair in addition to the goals they set for themselves with teaching men and women of the county better farming practices. This October, let’s look back on the things Tom and Minnie did for themselves and the people of Fannin County.
  • A member of the North Texas Color Guard pauses to honor the gravesite of James Carter, a member of the North Carolina militia who fought in the American War for Independence and then led his family on the long and arduous journey to the Republic of Texas in 1839. The Sons of the American Revolution and the Daughters of the American Revolution hosted a Patriot Gravesite Dedication at the Russell Family Cemetery on September 11, 2022, to honor the life and service of Carter.
  • The Harvey Lynn & Patsy Milton Scholarship Endowment was created by daughter Ruth Ann Jones and son Robert Milton to honor their parents.
  • Most people agree there was a lot to respect about Sam "Mr. Sam" Rayburn, but had at least one of what we today refer to as a vice – smoking. Mr. Sam had a habit of smoking unfiltered Camel cigarettes, and it's kind of hard to miss all the ashtrays he had around the house.
  • Kenneth Arnold's supposed encounter with flying saucers over Mount Ranier led to the U.S. Air Force study, Project Blue Book in 1952. But that was more than a century after the first UFO report in Fannin County.
  • When finished, the earthen dam will be about 2 miles long and 90 feet high with a width of 1,000 feet (approximately 3 football fields) at its widest point. About 95% of the entire site has been cleared of brush and trees for the dam floor. Dirt is being placed and compacted for the embankment on both the sides of the reservoir. Excavation is underway for the future spillway. Over the next few years, crews will place about 5 million yards of dirt and 200,000 yards of concrete to finish the spillway.
  • Having spent a good number of my formative years in Fannin County, I have a great interest in the rich history of Northeast Texas. An amateur genealogist and historian for the greater part of my adult life, my primary area of interest is that of the origins of the names of people and places. An honest historian in the purest sense of the word should deplore revisionism unless new facts (or old facts seen in a new light) overwhelmingly support previously unseen truth. In hopes of maintaining that approach, I wish to present some of my thoughts and research concerning the naming of Windom, Texas. I encourage any comments that the reader may wish to share in relation to the subject at hand in hopes that our common goal is further enrichment and knowledge of our local heritage.
  • (L-R) Benny Goodman and Bonham, Texas native Charlie Christian. Although it was overlooked for decades, the story of Charlie Christian is as compelling as that of legendary Mississippi Delta bluesman Robert Johnson. Charlie learned fast, he played fast and they say he even had a wicked fastball, too. Unfortunately, he was gone just as fast. Charlie Christian didn't live to see his 26th birthday, but in 25 years he went from those first steps in Tanktown to walking with Bennie Goodman, Count Basie, Lionel Hampton and the true masters of his day.
  • Approximately twelve miles east of Sherman, along Texas Highway 56 at its intersection with U.S. Highway 69, a traveler will find the City of Bells, Texas. Situated in the midst of the rolling hills and prairies of northeast Texas and only a few miles south of the Red River, Bells and its neighboring communities lie in close proximity to Mill, Cornelison, Choctaw and Bois d'Arc creeks. This is the fertile land that inspired Colonel David Crockett to proclaim in his last letter home to his family in Tennessee, just prior to his death at the Alamo, "I expect in all probilaty [sic] to settle on the Bordar [sic] or Choctaw Bio [sic] of Red River that I have no doubt is the richest country in the world." David Crockett portrait by Chester Harding
  • Lake Ralph Hall is the newest reservoir to be built in Texas in the last 30 years, right after completion of Bois d'Arc Lake which is also located in Fannin County. Major tasks currently underway include constructing a 1.1-mile pedestrian friendly State Highway 34 bridge, rerouting a portion of FM 1550 and building an earthen dam to create the reservoir.