Old Fort Parker Park

Quick Facts

Old Fort Parker Park

Texas

(254) 729-5253

Map Directions

Things To Do

   

Overview

This facility is operated by the City of Groesbeck and is not under T.P.W.D. control. Contact Old Fort Parker at 254/729-5253 for more details.

History: Old Fort Parker, a 37.5-acre park between Groesbeck and Mexia in Limestone County, was deeded by private owners in 1936 and was rebuilt again in 1967. The original construction of the park was by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC). It is now managed by the City of Groesbeck. It was the site of the abduction of Cynthia Ann Parker (mother of Quanah Parker) on May 19, 1836, by Comanche Indians.

Old Fort Parker is a reconstructed fort that pays tribute to the Parker family and other pioneers who paid a high price to settle in Texas. The Parkers and other members of their church came to Texas from Crawford County, Illinois in 1833. In 1832, Daniel Parker, a staunch theologian, had gained permission to settle in Texas. After organizing those who wanted to go to Texas into the Predestinarian Baptist Church, they all left Illinois in July of 1833 in ox- drawn wagons. Daniel and the majority of his followers settled near the present City of Elkhart, where a replica of their Pilgrim Baptist Church still stands in their memory. Other members of the group preferred to settle farther west, near the Navasota River. Elder John Parker and three of his sons (Silas, James, and Benjamin) began in December 1833 to clear land and to construct "Parker's Fort."

On May 19, 1836, Comanche Indians attacked the fort; 5 were killed, 5 were captured, and the 21 survivors made their way to where Palestine is today. The most famous of the captives was Cynthia Ann Parker. She adapted to Indian ways and later married Chief Peta Nocona. Quanah Parker, the last great Comanche chief, who was involved in the Battle of Palo Duro Canyon, was the most famous of their three children.

The Fort Parker Cemetery, located 2.2 miles from the Fort, is an active cemetery and has the graves of the people killed at the Fort in 1836.

Nearby are Fort Parker State Park, Confederate Reunion Grounds State Historic Site, Lake Limestone, and Lake Mexia.

Map of Old Fort Parker Park (TX)

Latitude, Longitude: 31.588041, -96.525879

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Activities

  • Historic Sites

    Living History events are scheduled throughout the year; contact the park for details. Trail rides and and reenactments are regularly scheduled.

  • Picnicking

    Picnicking is encouraged.

Seasonality/Weather

Average January minimum 34; average July maximum 95; average annual rainfall 38.3.

Directions

Driving

To reach the park, take State Highway 14 out of Groesbeck four miles north to Park Road 35 to park headquarters.

Phone Numbers

Primary

(254) 729-5253

Links