Concrete, Guadalupe County, Texas

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Concrete is a ghost town in southwestern Guadalupe County, Texas, alongside the present Farm Road 775, approximately 2 miles (3 km) north of La Vernia 6 miles (10 km) south of New Berlin.

The community was originally called "Bethesda" but was later called "Concrete" because of the old rock church built in 1852 that once stood on the site and was also used as a school and meeting hall for the Bethesda Masonic lodge. The New Berlin road ran past the old rock church, and on Sundays the road was lined with ox carts carrying both whites and blacks to the church. The church was the site of many old-fashioned camp meetings with both whites and blacks attending.

The community was founded by James Henry Newton, who owned a plantation on the north bank of Cibolo Creek. The lumber as well as other supplies to construct the buildings were hauled by slaves with ox teams from Port Lavaca. Lumber was so scarce that the homes of the first settlers were built of logs and the floors were made of flat stones.

The land for the Concrete Cemetery which is all that presently remains on the site was donated as a public cemetery by James Newton in 1856, and the first recorded burial was of his brother Joel Wooton Newton on January 16, 1856. Concrete Cemetery is also the burial site of Claiborne Rector, who fought in the Texas Revolution.

In the early 1860s, the growth of nearby La Vernia and New Berlin led to a decline in population. After the old rock church was damaged in a hurricane, it was decided to rebuild in nearby La Vernia where it still stands and is known as the Brahan lodge site of the oldest Masonic lodge in Texas.

Sources[edit]

  • "The Good Old Days a history of LaVernia" by the Civic Government class of LaVernia High School, 1936-1937 school year.
  • "Wilson County Centennial 1860-1960" By the Wilson county library, Centennial program handed out at The 100yr centennial celebration.
  • "The Concrete Cemetery" A webpage by Shirley Grammar, Concrete Cemetery historian.
  • "Concrete Cemetery" A Texas Historical Commission historical marker.

Coordinates: 29°14′18″N 97°17′35″W / 29.23833°N 97.29306°W / 29.23833; -97.29306