Centennial, Texas facts for kids
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Centennial, Texas road sign
|Parish/County||Panola County, Texas|
|Elevation||328 ft (100 m)|
|Time zone||UTC-6 (CST)|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC-5 (CDT)|
Centennial was founded around 1850. The community’s first school was founded in 1867, additionally serving as a church called Centennial ME Church.
The community's post office operated from 1875 until 1913. Its postmasters and their appointment dates were:
- Joiner, Jas. M., July 23, 1875
- Holland, John, October 14, 1875
- Adams, David W., November 19, 1875
- Lacy, John T., February 2, 1876
- Bagley, Columbus, June 18, 1877
- McDaniel, Jas. H., January 21, 1879
- Johns, Asa D., August 3, 1881
- Johns, Wm. C., March 3, 1887
- Bagley, Columbus L., June 5, 1888
- Bagley, Katie L., December 27, 1905
- Adams, Carrie V., March 26, 1907
The post office was closed on November 30, 1913, and mail sent to Midyett, TX. However, the Deberry, Texas post office now services the community.
In 1904, Harmony Colored Methodist Episcopal Church was founded by George Delaney, Albert Perkin, Tom Davis and William Townley. The church was later renamed Harmony Christian Methodist Episcopal Church in 1954. During this time period, the church property served as a school for colored children, a Prince Hall Mason Lodge, an Eastern Star meeting site, and the founding home of the East Texas Burial Association and Funeral Home.
In 2010, the church was later renamed Harmony Invisible Network after church trustees decided to leave the Christian Methodist Episcopal Church. The following year, the SJM Group (formerly The SJM Family Foundation) purchased the land from the United Methodist Church and renamed the church Harmony Centennial Methodist Evangelistic church.
The Centennial Cemetery was organized in 1858. The cemetery was divided up into two sides: White and Black. The black side is called Centennial Afro-American Cemetery (CAAC).
According to Allee Simmons Jacobs McNamee, the community's long-time historian, preservationist, and also director of The SJM Group, in the beginning of the (black) cemetery, family, and friends of the deceased would dig the graves, make homemade caskets and had walking processionals to the cemetery (later, the casket was pulled by mules). The deceased were buried the next day with their head facing east. This burial practice was used because most slaves felt they would obtain freedom after death and this position would cause them to be ready when the angel Gabriel would blow his trumpet at the resurrection.
They used broken plates, saucers, jars, and pitchers as headstones. At the gravesite service, they sang songs like "Go Down Moses”, “Swing Low, Sweet Chariot”, and “Shine on Me”.
The Centennial Afro-American Cemetery was designated as a Texas Historical Cemetery by the Texas Historical Commission in 2009. The campaign for the cemetery to receive state recognition was spearhead by ‘’’The SJM Group’’’ (formerly the SJM Family Foundation and Talbert Preservation Group).
Centennial, Texas is located on FM 123 in Panola County on the Keatchie-Marshall Highway, west of the Louisiana state line. Centennial, Texas is latitude 32.226 and longitude -94.065. The elevation of Centennial is 328 feet. Centennial appears on the Old Panola U.S. Geological Survey Map. Panola County is in the Central Time Zone (UTC -6 hours).
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