High is on Farm Road 1509 and the Missouri Pacific Railroad eleven miles southwest of Paris in southwestern Lamar County. It existed for many years before it received a post office in 1891. McDaniel High started the first store at the community in 1889. He later circulated the petition for the post office, and the community was named after him on February 26, 1891, when he became the first postmaster. Early settlers included the Highs, Snells, Colemans, Sheltons, Smileys, and McClures. Cotton and cattle became important to the community after the railroad was built through the area in 1872. At its peak between 1910 and 1915, High had three stores, a blacksmith shop, two cotton gins, a gristmill, a lumberyard, a doctor, an icehouse, two churches, a school, and a telephone exchange that served forty to fifty phones and was located in the house of the telephone operator. By 1930 High had passed its peak; its population was reported at ninety-two that year. The High post office was discontinued sometime after 1930. C. R. McClure stated at a High reunion in 1976 that "Transportation and tractors gradually reduced the population, so that today, only five houses on the road from High to Roxton have people living in them." In 1990, however, the Texas Almanac reported the town's population as fifty-five. The population remained the same in 2000.
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.
Robert M. Towle | © Texas State Historical Association
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