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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”

Near Panhandle in Carson County, Texas — The American South (West South Central)
 

Thomas Cree Homesite

First Tree

 
 
Thomas Cree Homesite Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Kirchner, May 2, 2012
1. Thomas Cree Homesite Marker
Inscription.  After serving as a teamster in the Civil War (1861-65), Thadium (Thomas) B. Cree worked for the Union Pacific Railroad. In 1888 he and his wife came to the High Plains. They acquired this land and, with no trees for lumber, they built a dugout home. Cree traveled 35 miles at his wife's request to find a sapling and planted it here. He watered it from a nearby lake that he dug from a buffalo wallow. The tree never grew but lived many years despite blizzard, heat, and drought. Gov. John Connally dedicated an historical marker in 1963 to the first tree in the Panhandle.

(Right Side Plaque):
First Tree
Texas High Plains

Set front dugout home by
Thomas Cree 1888
Good luck symbol of settlers
throughout drouth, blizzard and heat.

Cree's bois d'arc tree
died in the 1970s. County
residents planted a new
tree here in 1990 as a
memorial to the area's
early pioneers.


(Left Side Plaque):
The 33rd Anniversary National Convention, Men's Garden Clubs of America, meeting at Amarillo, June 14-17, 1965, formally recognized and paid tribute to
First Tree Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Kirchner
2. First Tree Marker
the significance of Thomas Cree's little tree and to the memory of this heroic early gardener of these High Plains.
Recorded Texas Historic Landmark – 1967

 
Erected 1980 by State Historical Survey Committee. (Marker Number 5467.)
 
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: AgricultureSettlements & Settlers. In addition, it is included in the Historic Trees series list.
 
Location. 35° 18.638′ N, 101° 27.687′ W. Marker is near Panhandle, Texas, in Carson County. Marker is on U.S. 60 4.9 miles west of Texas Highway 207, on the left when traveling west. Marker is in the center, on a post with two other markers. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Panhandle TX 79068, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 6 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. 33rd Anniversary National Convention (here, next to this marker); First Tree (here, next to this marker); Quanah Parker Trail (approx. 5 miles away); Oldest Bank in the Texas Panhandle (approx. 5.1 miles away); The John F. Weatherlys (approx. 5.1 miles away); Callaghan Memorial Library (approx. 5.1 miles away); Old County Bookmobile (approx. 5.1 miles away); Carson County (approx. 5.1 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Panhandle.
 
33rd Anniversary National Convention Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Kirchner
3. 33rd Anniversary National Convention Marker
Thomas Cree Homesite Marker <i>is in the center</i> image. Click for full size.
By Bill Kirchner, May 2, 2012
4. Thomas Cree Homesite Marker is in the center
Thomas Cree Homesite Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Kirchner, May 2, 2012
5. Thomas Cree Homesite Marker
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. It was originally submitted on June 3, 2012, by Bill Kirchner of Tucson, Arizona. This page has been viewed 826 times since then and 48 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on June 3, 2012, by Bill Kirchner of Tucson, Arizona. • Craig Swain was the editor who published this page.
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Oct. 1, 2020