Black Jack Grove

Cumby, on the Louisiana, Arkansas and Texas track a half mile north of Interstate Highway 30 in western Hopkins County, was settled in 1842 by D. W. (Wash) Cole. It was named Black Jack Grove because of its location near a grove of blackjack oak trees. The oak grove, just west of the present-day business district, was used as a camp by Texas Rangers during the days of the Republic of Texas. Freight wagoners traveling on the Jefferson road to the interior also used the grove as a campground. The Black Jack Grove post office opened in 1848 in the home of the first postmaster, John D. Matthews. Three years later D. W. Cole bought the grove from Elizabeth M. Wren as part of a tract of 307 acres. Cole ran a store, sold town lots, and donated land for a Masonic lodge that was chartered in 1852. In February 1857 the Black Jack post office was renamed Theodocias, and James M. Brown was postmaster. In May 1858 the post office again became Black Jack Grove.

By 1860 Black Jack Grove was a thriving settlement with physicians, tradesmen, and blacksmiths. The town had also earned a reputation as a tough frontier town, where the worst people in the county congregated and violent fights were common. On Christmas Day 1866 a gun battle over a horse race resulted in the death of five men. During the Civil War men from Black Jack Grove formed Company K of Col. William B. Sims's Ninth Texas Cavalry. Jim P. Williams was elected captain and Mose Brown first lieutenant. At the battle of Elkhorn, Company K was the first to plant its flag in the Union battery.

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Bob Gilbert, Michelle Gilbert | © TSHA

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Adapted from the official Handbook of Texas, a state encyclopedia developed by Texas State Historical Association (TSHA). It is an authoritative source of trusted historical records.

Belongs to

Black Jack Grove is part of or belongs to the following places:

Currently Exists


Place type

Black Jack Grove is classified as a Town

Associated Names

  • (Cumby)

Has Post Office


Is Incorporated