Cecil Harper, Jr.
Epperson's Ferry site in Bowie County.
Trammel's Trace rut leading to the Sulphur River and the site of Epperson's Ferry. Photograph by Gary L. Pinkerson (www.trammelstrace.org).

EPPERSON'S FERRY. During its first session the First Congress of the Republic of Texas offered half a league of land to anyone who would operate a ferry across the Sulphur River. By April 1837 Mark Epperson had built a ferry on Trammel's Trace in Bowie County, almost due south of the location of present-day New Boston. Congress granted Epperson the half league, and the ferry was soon widely known as Epperson's Ferry. In December 1837 the legislature instructed the postmaster general to institute mail service from Nacogdoches to Epperson's Ferry, and from there to the county seat of Red River County. Although little is known about it, a small settlement apparently developed around the ferry in the early 1840s, which served as a gathering place for area settlers. The ferry was eventually replaced by a wooden bridge, and then by a bridge of more modern construction in 1924. In 1936 the Texas Centennial Commission erected a marker at the site of the old ferry.


Rex W. Strickland, Anglo-American Activities in Northeastern Texas, 1803–1845 (Ph.D. dissertation, University of Texas, 1937). Austin Texas Sentinel, August 12, 1941.

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: http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml

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.

Handbook of Texas Online, Cecil Harper, Jr., "EPPERSON'S FERRY," accessed July 19, 2018, http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/rte01.

Uploaded on June 12, 2010. Modified on December 14, 2016. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

Get this week's most popular Handbook of Texas articles delivered straight to your inbox