Members Only Area
Bookmark and Share
sidebar menu icon


COVEY, JOHN VAN EPPS (1821–1898). John Van Epps Covey, Baptist minister and educator, was born in Fenner County, New York, on February 11, 1821. He graduated from Madison College (later Colgate) in 1845 and married Mrs. Louisa Renshaw Fastwood. He was ordained a Baptist minister in 1847. In 1856 the Coveys moved to Palestine, Texas, where Covey became the head of Franklin College, a Masonic school. Within a year they moved to Hallettsville, where he became the president of Alma Institute. From Hallettsville the next move was to DeWitt County, where, at Concrete, Covey established what was later known as Concrete College. He was its head from 1865 to 1881. For a time he taught in McMullen College and was active in raising funds. After the death of his wife in 1882 Covey returned to the ministry and preached in and around Cotulla, where he died on January 13, 1898.


Robert W. Shook, "Covey's College at Concrete," East Texas Historical Journal 6 (March 1968). Ed Wildman, Concrete College and Its Founder (M.A. thesis, Southwest Texas State Teachers College, 1944).

Ed Wildman

Image Use Disclaimer

All copyrighted materials included within the Handbook of Texas Online are in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107 related to Copyright and “Fair Use” for Non-Profit educational institutions, which permits the Texas State Historical Association (TSHA), to utilize copyrighted materials to further scholarship, education, and inform the public. The TSHA makes every effort to conform to the principles of fair use and to comply with copyright law.

For more information go to:

If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond fair use, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.


The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this article.

Ed Wildman, "COVEY, JOHN VAN EPPS," Handbook of Texas Online (, accessed November 30, 2015. Uploaded on June 12, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.