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Cherokee County TX
Cherokee County

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Cherokee County, East Texas

31 51' 27" N, 95 13' 50" W (31.8575, -95.230556)

FM 347
6 Miles NW of Rusk
5 Miles SE of Jacksonville
Population: 200 (2000)

Dialville, Texas Area Hotels › Jacksonville Hotels
Dialville  TX - Old downtown in 1910-1911
"Downtown Dialville in 1910-1911"
Courtesy Dennis Dickerson

History in a Pecan Shell

Like other towns in Cherokee County, settlers were living in the area prior to the Civil War. In the early 1880s, the Kansas and Gulf Short Line Railroad arrived and storekeeper John Dial opened his business here. The community was known as Dial, Texas but when a post office was applied for - it was dicovered there was a Dial in Fannin County. In1885 the name Dialville was submitted and accepted. Although the store and post office went out of business the following year, it was reopened in 1897.

In 1899 a school was opened and a year later the town was developed as a shipping point for tomatoes. The town had a thriving population of 400 by 1915.

The town already had the Dialville News and a short time later a second paper (the Reporter) was published by theater owner L. E. Scott.

The population declined to only 200 by 1930s, and the Depression doomed many of Dialville's businesses. In recent years only two churches remain to mark what was once Dialville.

Dialville Historical Marker
Dialville Forum & Old Photos

Dialville, Texas Landmarks

Photo Gallery
Dialville  TX - downtown old photo  1910-1911
Downtown store in 1910-1911
Courtesy Dennis Dickerson
Dialville Texas store
The store in 2005
Photo courtesy Lori Martin, December 2005
Dialville Texas store
The store in 2010
Photo courtesy Gerald Massey, October 2010
More Texas Then & Now | Texas Old Photos
Historical Marker


In 1866, Confederate John J. Dial (d.1928) joined a group of 60 wagons headed for Texas. He arrived in this area the same year and soon began farming the land. With the 1882 arrival of the Kansas and Gulf Short Line Railroad, Dial opened a general store near the rail line. The following year, Dial and his wife, Ida Mae (Jones), deeded eight acres of land to the railroad for a flag stop station. The town site he platted at the site of the station was named Dialville when the post office was established in 1885.

There was little growth in Dialville until 1897, when the flourishing tomato and peach production and shipping business revitalized the area. In that year, John T. Bailey opened a store and reactivated the post office. Dialville's first school was established in 1899. C. D. Jarratt, a leading East Texas fruit and vegetable sales agent, arrived about 1900 and helped develop the town into a leading shipping point for tomatoes and peaches.

Dialville was the scene of much commercial activity during the early years of the 20th century, but by the mid 1920s had begun to decline. It remains an important part of the regional and agricultural history of Cherokee County.
TX Dialville Historical Marker
Dialville Historical Marker
Photo courtesy Gerald Massey, October 2010
Dialville Texas Methodist Church
Dialville Methodist Church
Photo courtesy Gerald Massey, October 2010
Dialville TX - Rocky Springs Missionary Baptist Church
The 1848 Rocky Springs Missionary Baptist Church
See historical marker
Photo courtesy Gerald Massey
, October 2010
Dialville TX - Rocky Springs Missionary Baptist Church & Cemetery
Rocky Springs Missionary Baptist Church and Cemetery
on FM 1910
Photo courtesy Gerald Massey, October 2010
More Texas Churches | Texas Cemeteries
Historical Marker
Rocky Springs Missionary Baptist Church
Organized April 8, 1848, by a group of settlers from this area, in the home of Thomas J. Lindsey, under Elder Walter Ross. The known charter members included Minerva Crenshaw, Frances Halbert, John Halbert, Sally Margaret Halbert, Stephen Halbert, John Harris (an ordained deacon), Lucy Johnston, Thomas Johnston, Bathsheba Lindsey, Elizabeth Lindsey, J. J. Lindsey, Thomas J. Lindsey, Isaac Sheppard, Seary Sheppard, and Wylie Thomason. True pioneers, these people had immigrated to the area just three years earlier, when Texas was admitted to the Union. The Rev. George Washington Slover, said to have built the Atlanta Hotel depicted in the Civil War novel "Gone with the Wind", was the first pastor. Soon after the organizational meeting, a log cabin was erected on the present site to serve as a place of worship. The bubbling springs here and at the Lindsey home probably inspired the church name. The cemetery originated in the early days of the church; the oldest legible headstone is dated 1849. The original log church building was replaced in a few years by the present structure and in 1950, Sunday School rooms were added to it.
TX Dialville Highway Sign
Dialville Highway Sign
Photo courtesy Gerald Massey, October 2010
Dialville Texas old house with tin roof
Photo courtesy Gerald Massey, October 2010
Dialville TX - Tin shed
Photo courtesy Gerald Massey, October 2010
Dialville, Texas Forum &
Old Photos
Dialville TX founder - Mr. Dial and family portrait
"Mr. Dial and his family (founder of Dialville)"
Courtesy Dennis Dickerson
TX - 1923 Dialville Elementary School, 1950s photo
"1923 Dialville two story brick elementary school in the 1950's."
Courtesy Dennis Dickerson
More Texas Schoolhouses
  • Subject: Dialville Old Photos & Update
    Attached (shown above) are four old photos of Dialville.

    One single and out of print 40 page book exists in the Jacksonville, Texas public library, published in 1979 by Jack Moore, titled "The History of Dialville, Texas."

    The current Dialville community is no longer an incorporated city, but only a historical landmark. However, it is no longer a ghost town. Mr. and Mrs. Jerry Barker now own and operate the Dialville General Store out of one of the remaining brick structures of the old town. - Dennis Dickerson, August 31, 2011

  • Subject: The Dialville Plung and Dancehall
    My great aunt and great uncle, Elizabeth "Bess" Sewell and Frank Sewell founded and owned the Dialville Plung. It was located in front of their farm on the Old Dialville Cutoff Road near the outskirts of Dialville. As a young boy I spent every summer visiting there where I learned to swim. It was, in its day, an amusement park, complete with a large dancehall and a jukebox. I remember "The Beer Barrel Polka" was a crowd pleaser that was very popular. During the Fall of the year, a carnival would set up outside the dancehall. People from all over Cherokee County and beyond would come to swim, dance, and amuse themselves. Unfortunately the grounds and pool have all grown over and there is no sign that such a wonderful place ever existed. - Charles Callaway, April 10, 2013

  • Subject: Dialville Memories
    Aren't you glad you went to Dialville?
    Don't you wish everyone did?

    As a child, I grew up in Jacksonville. We enjoyed going to Diaville to go swimming, in what we thought then, was a great swimming pool. As I look back I believe it was a lake the owners had enclosed with a wooden entrance where we paid admission. There was a tall tower with a trolley we held on to & "flew" through the air the distance of the pool to deep water. It was quite exciting! Then we had to pull the handlebar back with a rope! There was also a cabin up in the woods close to the swimming pool that the Girl Scouts would go to spend several days on a camping adventure! These are my memories of Diaville. - Adelaide Brewer Bennett, April 09, 2007

  • Dialville TX Post Office info
    Dialville TX 1957 canceled postmark
    Cover canceled with Dialville TX 1957 postmark
    Courtesy The John J. Germann Collection
    Cherokee County Texas 1907 Postal Map
    Cherokee County 1907 postal map showing Dialville
    NW of Rusk, SE of Jacksonville
    From Texas state map #2090
    Courtesy Texas General Land Office
    Take a road trip

    Dialville, Texas Nearby Towns:
    Rusk the county seat
    See Cherokee County

    East Texas

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