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Disastrous tornado presages community's demise


On this day in 1907, a tornado hit Hemming, Texas, killing seven people and wiping out all but one of the town's buildings. Hemming, in southern Cooke County, was established in 1889 and named for the donor of its school land. A store and cotton gin were built there in 1894, and that year a post office opened in the store. At its height just after 1900, Hemming had two general stores, a school, a cotton gin, a blacksmith shop, three churches, and a population of 125. The town served as the region's cotton-processing center. During the peak years of the cotton boom after 1900 the Hemming cotton gin handled 1,000 to 1,500 bales annually. But the 1907 tornado devastated the community. Though several of its buildings were rebuilt, by the early 1920s Hemming was in decline. By the late 1980s the town was no longer shown on county highway maps.

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