A good place to start visiting historic sites in Van Alstyne is the Historical Museum in downtown Van Alstyne at 214-218 East Jefferson St., which is across from City Hall. — Read more about the Van Alstyne Historical Museum.
State Historical Markers in the Van Alstyne City Limits:
- Van Alstyne City #020 (Dorothy Fielder Park, on Van Alstyne Parkway and N. Main St.):
- Boy Scout Troop 1 (Troop 44) #029.1: (300 5th Ave.)
- Collin McKinney #021: (Van Alstyne Cemetery – see below)
- First United Methodist Church #023 (Located at Preston and Fulton streets) dedicated in 1917.
- Mantua Masonic Lodge #209 A.F. and A.M. marker #024 (201 N. Waco)
- Umphress-Taylor Home #025 (109 E. Paris). Queen Anne and Classical Revival home built in 1903.
- Barron-Veazey Home #025 (104 Umphress) Prairie-influenced home built in 1905.
- Site of Campus of Old Columbia College #027 (203 S. College)
- First Christian Church #022 organized on this site in 1877.
More historic highlights: (more photos below)
First National Bank, built in 1890; current City Hall. Next to the bank is City Drug Store, which has been in continual operation since it’s founding in 1890. The store has an old-time soda fountain.
Van Alstyne Hardware, founded in 1910 as Jackson and Howell.
Texas Historic Bridge, located in Forest W. Moore Park, at the Southern end of the city on HWY 5. The bridge, which was constructed in 1890, is a pin-connected Pratt Pony truss bridge and i is one of the three longest extant examples of this bridge type in the state of Texas.
First Baptist Church, built in 1919. Corner of Waco and Marshall St.
Samaria Baptist Church, built in 1936, provided eight grades of education for African-American students. Located on the hill overlooking the baseball fields in Wilson McKinney Park.
The Carter Opera House building once housed the Carter Grocery Store and Opera House. The first level held the grocery business and the second was a grand opera house. The ornate two-story building is located at the Northeast corner of Preston and Marshall Streets.
Some of the only tracks of the old Interurban Railway still in existence run north and south through town in the middle of Preston Street. Just east of Main Street in downtown, two of the original Interurban railcars are on display and currently being restored.
Sources and for more information…
- On the Banks of Sister Grove: A History of Van Alstyne, Texas by Julie S. Morris, published by the Van Alstyne Historical Society in 2008.
- Home Town Calendar, 1994, 1996, 1998, 2000, published by the Van Alstyne Historical Society.
- Grayson County Website historical marker list.