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This book is the story of a ghost town, the first county seat of Brazos County, named Boonville after the pioneer hero of the early nineteenth century, Daniel Boone.


The town site of 150 acres was laid out in 1841, only five years after Texas became independent from Mexico. Incredible hardships were endured to survive those early years in the wilderness, especially by the women who often had to raise large families.

Boonville could not have survived without the guiding spirit of Harvey Mitchell, the same individual who, in 1871, convinced the site committee for a land grant college, now Texas A&M University, to be established near Bryan.


The Boonville Cemetery survives today as a monument to the pioneers who laid the foundation for Brazos County.


Author: Margaret Lips van Bavel

Publication date 1986



About the Author:

Margaret Lips van Bavel was born and raised in The Netherlands. She immigrated with her husband to the United States in 1948. Love for her adopted country has led her into many activities benefitting Brazos County. She has organized city tree plantings and  has done research on the early history of the county for the writing of this book. Mrs. Van Bavel has worked for years to create an interest in the Boonville Centery as a historic park.

Birth and Death of Boonville: First Town of Brazos County

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