“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Forney in Kaufman County, Texas — The American South (West South Central)

William Madison McDonald

William Madison McDonald Marker image. Click for full size.
By Rheba Bybee, June 26, 2016
1. William Madison McDonald Marker
Inscription. William Madison "Gooseneck Bill" McDonald was born in 1866 near Johnson Point, a small community southeast of Terrell. His parents, former slaves, were George McDonald, born in Tennessee, and Flora Scott McDonald, born in Alabama. His mother died when he was young, and his father remarried to Belle Crouch.

McDonald started school at age seven and graduated from high school in 1884. He had the reputation of being the smartest boy in all the area schools. During his youth, he worked for attorney and rancher Capt. Z.T. Adams, who took an interest in McDonald, lecturing him on business and law while he worked.

After graduating, McDonald was principal of the African American high school in Forney. His first wife, Alice Gibson McDonald, was a teacher there. He remained principal for several years.

McDonald was an early leader in Texas' Republican party as part of the "Black and Tan" faction, a group of whites and blacks who shared leadership roles. His political partnership with powerful businessman E.H.R. Green provided him a strong voice in state politics. In 1899, he became the right worshipful grand secretary of Texas' African American Masons, a position he held for almost 50 years.

McDonald moved in 1906 to Fort Worth, where he was a civic leader and businessman. He died in 1950 and is buried in Old Trinity Cemetery, part of Fort Worth's Oakwood Cemetery. Throughout his life, McDonald was a leader in the struggle for social justice, advocating persistence and civic and moral responsibility as the steps to equality.
Erected 2002 by Texas Historical Commission. (Marker Number 12885.)
Location. 32° 44.816′ N, 96° 28.279′ W. Marker is in Forney, Texas, in Kaufman County. Marker is at the intersection of Elm Street and East Main Street, on the left when traveling south on Elm Street. Click for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 200 E Main St, Forney TX 75126, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Walter Dickson Adams and the Adams Drugstore (within shouting distance of this marker); Forney (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); Dixie Overland Highway (about 400 feet away); 1899 Automobile Trip (about 500 feet away); Dick P. Moore House (about 500 feet away); McKellar House (approx. 0.2 miles away); The Forney Messenger (approx. 0.2 miles away); William and Blanche Brooks House (approx. 0.3 miles away). Click for a list of all markers in Forney.
Categories. African AmericansPolitics
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Rheba Bybee of Seagoville, Texas. This page has been viewed 56 times since then. Photo   1. submitted on , by Rheba Bybee of Seagoville, Texas. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on July 14, 2016.
Editor’s want-list for this marker. Wide shot of marker and its surroundings. • Can you help?
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