At the heart of Shelby County is the city of Center. As one of the easternmost areas in Texas, it is only 17 miles from the Louisiana border. Center’s original name was White Cottage and back then it wasn’t the county seat of Shelby yet. How it became so (in 1866)is a story well worth telling.
At the time, an election was held to move the county seat from Shelbyville to Center. Shelbyville, however,refused torelocate the county records. Fed up with the impasse, residents of Center came to Shelbyville one night and made off with the records – and this was what officially established Center as the county seat.
Here are some more of Center’s other fun historical facts:
1839 – The Moderator-Regulator War started, in which the community was involved
1848 – The White Cottage post office was established
1893 – The city of Center was incorporated but later on, dissolved
1901 – The city was re-incorporated
1904 – The Gulf, Beaumont and Great Northern Railway arrived in Center
1909 – Electricity was first made available to Center
1915 – The first movie theater in Center opened
1935 – Establishment of the first ever airplane factory in Texas
From Past to Present
If you’re a history buff, you will love to visit Center because of its interesting character and its significant role in Texas history. You willbe delighted with numerous historical markers and landmarks around town, which include the Shelby County Courthouse and Grounds (inspired and modeled after an Irish castle), Eva Taylor Lane Home, the first Christian church, Truitt Cemetery, and the Historical County Jail.
Real Estate in Center
The city’s rich history is also reflected in its homes. Center has quite a few historic residences dating back to the late 19th and early 20th centuries. If you’re in the market for a charming, well-preserved Victorian, you should definitely check out what’s available in the area.
Center may be a small city, but you’ll find that there’s so much to do here.Residents take part in community events that are held almost every month – the most notable ones are the Watermelon Festival in July and the East Texas Poultry Festival in October. And when there’s nothing going on, you can always go to the Windham Civic Center, the Center City Park, the Center Mini-Park, and the Toledo Bend Reservoir.