Aldridge's, Goodman's Crossing, and Mount Huling
Nacogdoches County, East
About 7 Miles S of the Hwy 21 bridge over the Angelina River
a Pecan ShellOnce
a river port on the Angelina River, Mt. Sterling was founded in 1837 by John
Durst, famed for being the “Paul Revere of the Texas Revolution.”
site was very near what had been the Nuestra
Señora de la Purísima Concepción de Maria Mission. Durst,
as entrepreneur, built both a sawmill and gristmill powered by the flow of the
He also constructed a toll bridge which connected two
segments of the Camino Real (Old Spanish Trail). Besieged by Cherokee Indians,
Durst’s substantial house was
used as a refuge for settlers on more than one occasion. The settlement had a
post office in operation for a brief period, closing in 1840 due to Indian raids.
Durst had enough and
moved to safer ground in Leon County about this time. The leaving of a town’s
founder can dishearten even the most enthusiastic setters and soon the site was
left to the Indians, who, finding no settlers to terrify, moved on, themselves.
In December 2010, Mount Sterling’s site was found by photographer Barclay
Gibson who went in search of the marker and found lagniappe in the
form of a beautiful 1929 bridge.
Today the name of Goodman’s Crossing is kept alive by a very tidy liquor
store (that doesn’t sell ice cream).
Mount Sterling Town Site Centennial Marker|
Barclay Gibson, December 2010
planning this trip, I made sure to use a back road that would lead me to the Goodman
Pony Truss Bridge. Built in 1929, it was 150 feet across with Wooden Planked Decking
over the Angelina River, the county line between Cherokee and Nacogdoches Counties.
Subject: Nacogdoches County - Mt Sterling & Goodman Bridge
a right, the Mt Sterling marker
was supposed to be just up the road. I saw the Goodman Store and thought I'd stop,
buy an ice cream bar, and ask if anyone knew the location of the marker.
Inside, I didn't see the freezer case and asked if they had ice cream bars. The
clerk said, "This is a liquor store and we don't have ice cream bars. Are you
lost, Hon?" I don't know for sure that she called me Hon but it would have fit.
You can see that the photo shows it to be the Goodman LIQUOR Store.
wasn't lost but the question did give me an opening to what I was looking for.
She said that she and her husband used to own the property with the marker, and
thought it was about 1/4 mile up the road. It was.
Durst founded Mt Sterling. The marker
tells the story. - Barclay
Gibson, December 21, 2010
Goodman Bridge Update:
Subject: A concrete bridge is under construction immediately to one side, the
old bridge is still there and used for traffic. I suspect it will be demolished
after the new bridge is completed. - John Goeser, September 26, 2011
The 1929 Goodman Pony Truss Bridge|
Barclay Gibson, December 2010
Escapes, in its purpose to preserve historic, endangered and vanishing
Texas, asks that anyone wishing to share their local history, stories, and vintage/historic
photos of their town, please contact
Mount Sterling, Texas Area Hotels
|Save on Hotels