In 1845, William and Lydia Ann English Guyler, pioneer settlers of Bovine Bend in Texas (later to be called Wallis, Texas), were proud new owners of some 2900 acres of land marked only by the posts in the prairie. They started their journey from Kentucky to Texas traveling by riverboat and Gulf passenger ship down the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers to new Orleans, and then across the waters of the Gulf, landing in Galveston on New Year’s Day in 1859. They then traveled by small boat to Harrisburg, then by railroad, migrating to the town of Richmond, in Fort Bend County. There they sold approximately 100 barrels of flour to local merchants to finance the purchase of their new homestead in Austin County. Then, traveling by wagon train, they ended up on the banks of the Brazos River. Their first home, a log cabin, was in the Milburn and Davis Grant, where they resided throughout the Civil war years.
According to Austin County courthouse records, William Guyler owned 12 slaves in the 1860’s which most likely operated his numerous businesses including the only gristmill, cotton gin and sawmill within twenty miles. He was also a prominent real-estate man, buying and selling land throughout the prairie, aiding in the development of the community.
Mr. Guyler served in the Civil War on the side of the South with General John Sayles Company in the 23rd Brigade. Mrs. Guyler aided the soldiers at home and donated supplies wherever most needed. During the yellow fever scourge in Galveston in 1867, she helped to nurse the sufferers. She was personally acquainted with prominent men and women of pioneer days and named one of her children after General Sam Houston in memory of his victory at San Jacinto.
William Guyler had the first post office in the area established on October 13, 1873, where he was listed as Post Master of Bovine Bend by the Tenth Congressional District of Texas.
In 1880 Mr. Guyler sold 100 acres of land for $10.00 to the Gulf, Colorado and Santa Fe Railroad for their right-of-way and the building of a town. The community known as Bovine Bend was renamed Wallis, after the then Senior Vice President of the Railroad, J.E. Wallis. The name of the post office was changed to Wallis Station in 1886 and into Wallis in 1911. In 1973 Wallis was officially incorporated as a city.
City of Wallis, Texas | 6810 Guyler, Bldg B | Wallis, Texas 77485 | TEL: 979-478-6712 | FAX: 979-478-7537
Mailing Address : PO Box 190, Wallis Texas 77485
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