Fair Play

Fair Play, a farming community at the junction of U.S. Highway 79 and Farm roads 124 and 1251, eleven miles west of Carthage in western Panola County, is one of the oldest settlements in the area. The site occupies part of Immanuel Antonio Romero's land grant. The first settler there was John Allison, who operated a general store, boardinghouse, and blacksmith shop and became county judge when the county was organized in 1846. A post office was granted to the community in 1851. The site is said to have been named by a traveler who was impressed with the fair rates and treatment he had received at Allison's. A church, used by Whites and Blacks, was built on Allison's place, and buried in the churchyard were the Allison slaves and family, among them Thomas G. Allison, a member of the Constitutional Convention of 1875. By 1885 Fair Play had two schools, two churches, a sawmill, gristmills, a cotton gin, and an estimated population of 100. Its population dropped to fifty by 1890, and its post office was closed in 1904, when the mail was sent to Beckville. In the mid-1930s Fair Play had a reported population of ninety-five and a church, a school, a sawmill, and several stores. Its school was consolidated with the Carthage school in the 1940s, and after World War II many of the remaining residents moved away. In the mid-1960s the settlement still had three churches, a school, and a store. In 1990 and in 2000 Fair Play reported a population of eighty.

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

Belongs to

Fair Play is part of or belongs to the following places.

Adopt a Town

The Texas Almanac's Land Rush program lets you adopt the town, county, or lake of your choice and share your message with the world. 100% of the proceeds benefit education in Texas.

Currently Exists


Place type

Fair Play is classified as a Town


  • Latitude

Has Post Office


Is Incorporated


Proud to call Texas home?

Put your name on the town, county, or lake of your choice.

Search Places »

Fair Play by the Numbers

This is some placeholder text that we should either remove or replace with a brief summary about this particular metric. For example, "We update population counts once per year..."

Pop. Year Source
80 2009 Local Officials