PIEDMONT, TX (GRIMES COUNTY)
PIEDMONT, TEXAS (Grimes County). Piedmont is on Farm Road 3090 seven miles west of Anderson in west central Grimes County. In 1843 William W. Arrington bought the site and built bathhouses and one-room cottages for a campground and health resort. There were three springs of sulphur water, named White, Middle, and Black or Bitter, after the strength of the minerals in the water. The area was called Sulphur Springs until 1850. In 1858 Arrington sold the property to H. Lee and C. S. Taliaferro, and they sold it to Leander Cannon in 1860. By then a four-story rock and wood hotel had been built, with a hundred rooms, broad verandas, a ballroom, and a turreted roof. Sam Houston, Gen. John B. Magruder, Gen. Pierre G. T. Beauregard, and Governor Marmaduke of Kentucky stayed there at various times. In 1865 John G. Walker's Greyhound division of the Confederate Army camped at the springs for six days. In 1871 John K. Spears bought the inn at a bankruptcy sale for $5,940. Thereafter the site was used as a campground. The inn deteriorated and was finally torn down.
A church and a school were constructed at Piedmont in 1886, and a new school opened in 1916 near the springs. In 1940 this school was consolidated with the Navasota school system. The Freewill Baptist Church met at Piedmont until 1979. In 1982 the Little Flock Missionary Baptist Church, which was established in 1906 by the black community and which served as a school until the 1940s, still had twenty-four members. In 1906 the Mexia Cut-off, a branch of the Houston and Texas Central Railway, was built through Piedmont, and the town gained a general store, a post office, and a commissary. The post office closed in the 1920s. By 1939 Piedmont had one business and a population of 100, but by 1948 its population had dwindled to fifty. It had an estimated forty-six residents in 1990. The population remained unchanged in 2000.
Irene Taylor Allen, Saga of Anderson-The Proud Story of a Historic Texas Community (New York: Greenwich, 1957). Joseph P. Blessington, Campaigns of Walker's Texas Division (New York: Lange, Little, 1875; rpt., Austin: Pemberton Press, 1968). Grimes County Historical Commission, History of Grimes County, Land of Heritage and Progress (Dallas: Taylor, 1982). Marker Files, Texas Historical Commission, Austin.