This land was part of the John Bird League Survey of 1850 and was the first deeded land in Palo Pinto County. When the Johnsons purchased the league, or 4,200 acres, it was named the Johnson League Ranch. It was sold in the 1940s to Claude Allen, and A.D. Crawford inherited it in 1960. Today it is a working cattle ranch owned by the Crawford family.
Another historical ranch we visited was the Belding Ranch off Highway 16 near Possum Kingdom Lake. Henry Belding settled there in 1859 with his wife, who was Oliver Loving’s niece. The core of the ranch home is the remains of the log house first built there. It is one of only five long cabins still in Palo Pinto County, and the Belding family owns the property to this day.
Other sites on the tour included the Opal Guest Chapel in Strawn which was built in 1917; the Strawn Historical Museum; and the Stuart Estate, a home which united the Strawn and Stuart families who settled in Strawn from Missouri.
Also on the tour was the newly created Palo Pinto Mountain State Park on the shore of Tucker Lake, Strawn’s local water supply built in 1937.
All-in-all Raf, his sister Mary, and I had a wonderful day, and we surely look forward to doing it next year! Come join us!