TexasEscapes.com HOME Welcome to Texas Escapes
A magazine written by Texas
Custom Search
New   |   Texas Towns   |   Ghost Towns   |   Counties   |   Trips   |   Features   |   Columns   |   Architecture   |   Images   |   Archives   |   Site Map

Wood County TX
Wood County

Texas Counties

Texas Towns
A - Z

Winnsboro Hotels

More Hotels


Texas Ghost Town
Wood County, East Texas

FM 154 and FM 312
12 miles E of Winnsboro
10 Miles E of Quitman the county seat
Population: church congregation only

Book Area Here › Winnsboro Hotels

Little Hope Cemetery, Texas
Little Hope Cemetery
Photo courtesy Barclay Gibson, July 2007

History in a Pecan Shell

The "community" dates from the 1850s and the Handbook of Texas states that the first school was taught by fifteen-year-old Emily Smith in 1857.

Little Hope never had a post office and the only population figures date to the late thirties when the population was a mere 10 persons.

The name, according to legend, comes from the belief that the Missionary Baptist Church organized here in 1881 had "little hope" of lasting a year.

The history of the community is in fact, the history of the church.

The first meeting was near "The Murphy graveyard." The church later shared a two-story building with a Woodmen of the World lodge which disbanded in the early 1920s.

Little Hope was included in the Common Ridge school district,

Throughout the 1960s, many houses in the area were abandoned, while the congregation of the church increased to over 100. The church inherited the bell from the Common Ridge school, erecting a belfry to hold it.

The church was still active when it received a historical marker in the 1980s.

TX - Little Hope Baptist Church.
Little Hope Baptist Church
Photo courtesy Dustin Martin, October 2016

Historical marker:

Little Hope Missionary Baptist Church

Led by Elder Jacob Ziegler and Deacon P. M. Gunstream, the five charter members of this congregation held their organizational meeting in 1881 under a nearby arbor. Legend holds that the church was given its name because there was little hope the church would survive more than a year. In spite of the skepticism, the fellowship began to grow steadily. Early members were received into the congregation following baptisms held in J. A. Stinson's mill pond. A portion of the land on which the church is located was donated in 1881 by J. D. Cox. Near the end of the nineteenth century, Little Hope Missionary Baptist Church purchased three additional acres. In later years other small tracts of land, including the site of an old schoolyard, were added to the church property.

For more than one hundred years Little Hope Missionary Baptist Church has provided service and leadership to this area of Wood County. Soon after its own organization, the congregation helped establish the nearby East Point Missionary Baptist congregation. The growth of Little Hope Missionary Baptist Church reflects the ideals and religious dedication of its founders, while the historic congregation is a reminder of the area's rich heritage.

Little Hope Tx Little Hope Baptist Church Sign
Photo courtesy Barclay Gibson, July 2007
More Texas Churches

Little Hope TX -  sign on a tree next to the church
A sign on a tree next to the church
Photo courtesy Nick Samano, October 2016
More Texas Signs

Little Hope, Texas Forum

  • Subject: The "New Murphy" cemetery

    Just a comment about your article on the Church and the Murphy Graveyard there in Little Hope, Texas. The cemetery mentioned was actually the "New Murphy" cemetery. This land was donated to the church for a location to build the new community church, and cemetery. This land was given by my G-Grandfather, William Patrick Murphy. The "Old Murphy" cemetery was on land near the dam site of the old Stinson Pond that was sold off to new comers to the area such as the Blundell's, Daniels, Robbins and the Burnett's. The "Old Murphy" cemetery was never used again for public use and was lost forever with the building of the Quitman-Gilmer highway CR-154 in the early 1940's. I believe that the plots were graded away in the area on the north side of CR-154, just east of the dam for the state easement rights. I personally know of about 6-8 Murphy family members that were buried there. It is also thought to have other members of families living in the area such as the Daniel family, one of the other early pioneers to this area. The first of family to be buried in the Old Murphy Cemetery was Mary Emily Murphy Bagby in 1876 and the last was William Patrick's Mother, Charlotte nee Brown in December of 1913. She was buried beside her husband, William Murphy, who was buried abt. August of 1880. William, Charlotte and their first 3 children, James L., Mary Emily, and Nancy Elizabeth came to Wood Co. Texas from Fayette Co. Tenn. in the early spring of 1851. William grew the usual crops of the area, corn and peaches, but also went on to build one of the first syrup mills in the area near the banks of Big Sandy. The Murphy land has remained in the family for many generations from 1851 until 2005 when the last of the Wood Co. family succumbed. - B. Murphy, March 16, 2008

    More Texas Cemeteries

  • Take a road trip
    East Texas

    Little Hope, Texas Nearby Towns:
    Quitman the county seat
    See Wood County

    Book Hotel Here:
    Winnsboro Hotels | More Hotels

    Texas Escapes, in its purpose to preserve historic, endangered and vanishing Texas, asks that anyone wishing to share their local history, stories, landmarks and recent or vintage photos, please contact us.


































    Texas Escapes Online Magazine »   Archive Issues » Home »
    Texas Counties
    Texas Towns A-Z
    Texas Ghost Towns

    Central Texas North
    Central Texas South
    Texas Gulf Coast
    Texas Panhandle
    Texas Hill Country
    East Texas
    South Texas
    West Texas

    Rooms with a Past

    Gas Stations
    Post Offices
    Water Towers
    Grain Elevators
    Cotton Gins

    Vintage Photos
    Historic Trees
    Old Neon
    Ghost Signs
    Pitted Dates
    Then & Now

    Columns: History/Opinion
    Texas History
    Small Town Sagas
    Black History
    Texas Centennial

    Texas Railroads

    Texas Trips
    Texas Drives
    Texas State Parks
    Texas Rivers
    Texas Lakes
    Texas Forts
    Texas Trails
    Texas Maps

    Site Map
    About Us
    Privacy Statement
    Contact Us

    Website Content Copyright Texas Escapes LLC. All Rights Reserved