About Texas Maryland

TexasMD1930s

Texas Maryland (also known as “Little Texas”) is a rapidly disappearing village in Baltimore County, Maryland USA.  The area was originally settled, in the mid 19th century, by Irish and other immigrants who worked in the local limestone and marble quarries.  Many of them went on to become local business owners and raise families whose descendants still recall the village as it once was.

My father’s ancestors came from Ireland and settled in Texas Maryland.  His mother, Mary Kilroy, was one of the last post-mistresses for the village, and after my grandfather died in 1932, she eventually moved with her 6 children to Baltimore city.

Although I was born in Baltimore, we moved back to Texas in 1957, with 5 more Kilroy children attending St. Joseph’s School like my father & his siblings.  We lived on Gibbons Boulevard, at the bottom of the hill where the Baltimore County Almshouse served the poor residents of the county until 1959.  The Third and Last County Almshouse, built of local limestone by the immigrants who lived in Texas, became the home for the Historical Society of Baltimore County in 1959 where it still resides.

No longer called Texas, the area has become absorbed by Cockeysville, and the local population is once again blessed with many immigrant families from around the world.  It is my hope that the lives lived by the former residents of Texas can be shared with the new immigrants, engaging the community in positive and informative ways.

Church Lane, Texas 1990s

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16 thoughts on “About Texas Maryland”

  1. Anyone out there ever hear tell of the notorious “Texas June Bug” ? His real name was John Henry Thompson, and he was probably born in Texas, MD in January 1879. He shows up as a one year old in the home of his father Thomas Eaton Thompson, and mother Mary Ann Knoop in the 1880 Baltimore County, Texas area census. When this John H. Thompson grew of age, he worked in the Texas quarries along with some of his brothers. By 1902 he had gained a reputation as an aggressive local prize fighter. News reports say that he would swing a 25 pound sledge hammer in the quarries by day, and travel down into Baltimore City at night, to take on noted tough guys from up and down the east coast, in bare knuckle fisticuffs. He was active as a fighter between 1902-1907, and had achieved such local acclaim, that many extant newspaper accounts do not even mention his given family name, but refer to him simply as the “Texas June Bug”. There are over 50 Baltimire Sun articles & blurbs referencing the Texas June Bug during his heyday. John Henry Thompson died May 14th 1957, and is buried at the Jessop Methodist Episcopal Church Cemetery.

      1. Hi Cassie, Thank you for your quick response and offer, and sorry for my delays in responding. I have had a flood of new ancestry info come to me recently, and I have been swamped trying to find time to sort through, organize, and file it all (a good problem to have!). I will get together the Baltimore Sun clippings I referenced, and will write up a blog concerning what I know about these Thompson’s that were in and around Texas, and email it to you for your consideration in the near future. Thanks again, Chris Vaught

  2. Do you have any information on African American families living in Texas (Arch Smith, he was at the Almshouse or others)? Thank you in advance for your help.

    1. Sandra, there is some information about African American families, mostly gleaned from Census returns, but some from newspaper accounts. There may even be information in the Almshouse records. I am trying to locate employment records for the quarries, the Ashland iron works, the NCRR, and others to add to what we know. If you give me some dates and other names, I can look in my records. Have you visited the Historical Society of Baltimore County research library? A lot of my records are located there as well, and the HSBC staff could also assist you if you live near enough to get there. You can search some records online at https://hsobc.pastperfectonline.com/ or they can also do research in their records for a fee if you can’t get there. I don’t charge a fee for looking in my records, but it often takes me a lot longer to get back to someone {grin}… So tell me more, and I’ll see what I can find.

  3. My grandfather , John Earl Parks, Sr. was born in Texas, Md about 1888. His mother’s name was Sarah Armstrong listed as being born in Maryland, USA. Do not know his father’s name. He supposedly worked in the quarries at a young age and made his was to Baltimore City. He was either orphaned of just left Texas at about the age of 14 years. He became an electrician and later worked as a contractor on the Baltimore Harbor Tunnel project. He had three children John Earl Parks, Jr., Myrtle Parks and my farther Robert Earl Parks, Sr. My grandfather was married to Lillian Mae Albertson, born 1894 in Wilkes Barre, PA. Is there any information regarding his family, especially his father. I believe I do have photos of his parents.

    1. Bonia – there is a lot of information about various Parks families from this area – if you search these pages (there is a search box at the top of the page) you can see what others have shared, including links to other resources. I will also look later and see if I have anything about in particular about your grandfather and other family members.

  4. I have recently found that my very Irish family emigrated from Ireland to Texas Maryland..Daniel Kearns, along with wife and ten children. Can you give me direction how to research? Greatly appreciate.

  5. How was Texas Maryland named? Where did the name Texas Maryland come from? As a Boy Scout from St. Joseph’s church, we always received comments about our arm patch that read “Texas” – especially because we were from Maryland. I also fondly remember the Star Bar on the corner of York Road and Church Lane and its Lady’s entrance on the side.

  6. My grandfather George Meszaros passed 3/17/42. His eldest son Michael is my dad who married my mom 4/11/42 and then went to war. I was born in 1947, so I never knew him or my grandmother who passed in 1922. A couple of years ago I found a typed obituary saying he lived in New Freedom PA at the time but was buried in Texas, MD. He had Catholic burial so not sure if it was St. Joseph’s or not; however grave search did not show any record. Having said that my dad had a sister that died at age 4 and saw her headstone with misspelled last name but also do not know cemetery name. Is there another cemetery in Texas, MD and could I have name and address please.

  7. Do you know when the Burkes arrived in Texas, Maryland? Daniel Burke and Mary Slattery Burke born ca 1775 in Ireland had 4 children: William, Johannah, Dennis, and Mary (Mary married John Shea)

  8. Hi, I am a graduate student at the University of Maryland in the Applied Anthropology degree. I am originally from Cockeysville, attended St. Josephs’s K-8, and still attend the church there when I am home. Required for graduation is an internship. I am focusing on the archaeology conducted in Texas both from MAAR in the 90s and UMD in the early 2000s. My primary focus is on the childhood artifacts that were found (dolls, marbles, jacks, toy guns, etc.) as well as daily living artifacts (medicine bottles, coins, religious statues). Archaeology often overlooks children in the context, focusing on adults, and often adult men. I am looking to “rediscover” the children in the context and understand how they came to negotiate their Irish American identities in Victorian America. As part of my deliverables, I am creating a website to showcase the information I have analyzed and the artifacts photos I have taken. I am wondering whether I would be able to use some of the photos on this website as background images, and whether I could include links to this website for finding out more about the town and further reading? Thanks for any feedback you can give!

    1. Samantha, sounds like a wonderful internship. Many of the photos we have used on this website are used with permission from either a publicly available source or from individuals. If you let me know which photos you are interested in, I can tell you who to contact for permission.

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