Ivanhoe is ten miles north of Bonham in north central Fannin County. W. A. Carter's History of Fannin County, Texas (1885) reports that one could reach Ivanhoe by way of Island Bayou Road. The town was originally named Hawkins' Prairie after Strother Hawkins, a pioneer who settled there in 1845. In 1885 Capt. Joe Dupree, a Confederate veteran, named the town Ivanhoe after Sir Walter Scott's novel, when the United States Postal Service rejected the original name. The Baptist church was organized there in 1872. In the mid-1880s the community had two general stores, a blacksmith shop, a steam mill and cotton gin, a hotel, a physician, and a school. Stage connections to Bonham could be made regularly from Ivanhoe. In the 1880s 150 residents lived in Ivanhoe. The population climbed to about 200 in the 1890s but dropped by 1915 to only seventy-five. The population was around 100 in the 1960s, when the Ivanhoe school district was consolidated with the schools of Telephone to form the Sam Rayburn Independent School District. Ivanhoe is the home of the Ivanhoe Winery, an award-winning enterprise. In 1990 the population was 110. The population remained the same in 2000.
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