Coppell Historical Society ◊ P.O. Box 1871, Coppell, TX 75019 ◊



Grape Vine Prairie

Grape Vine Prairie near Grape Vine Springs, both of which were named for the wild mustang grapes that populated the region.

1843 Attempts to sign a treaty of peace and friendship with ten American Indian tribes begin at Grape Vine Springs. General Sam Houston invites the Indians to meet with him at Grape Vine Springs, and he journeys from Austin for the meeting. The Indians fail to appear at the appointed time, so, after waiting a few days (which he spends hunting on the prairie), he returns to Austin. When the Indians arrive several weeks later, the meeting is held at Bird’s Fort. The Treaty of Bird’s Fort is signed, opening North Texas for settlement. 

1844 First settlers arrive on the Grape Vine Prairie.

The first recorded white settlement in what would become the modern city occurred in the late 1840s and early 1850s.  General Richard Montgomery Gano owned property near Grape Vine and helped organize the early settlement against Comanche raiding parties before leading his band of volunteers to battle in the American Civil War.  Growth during the 19th century was slow but steady; by 1890 roughly 800 residents called Grapevine home, supported by such amenities as a newspaper, a public school, several cotton gins, a post office and railroad service. The settlement made continued gains early in the 20th century

1845 James Cate, Patrick Watson, Macajah Goodwin and others receive headrights from the Peters Land Company and settle on the Grape Vine Prairie near the Dallas County line. Some 600 families arrive in North Texas within a period of three years. 

1845 John C. Dunn and his wife Nancy M. Dunn arrive on the Grape Vine Prairie from Harrison County, Texas, where they had lived after leaving Alabama in 1845. Other settlers build cabins near theirs; this little settlement is sometimes called Dunnville. 

According to the Grapevine Area History Book, in mid November settlers from Missouri arrive on the Grape Vine Prairie settling near Lonesome Dove and along Denton Creek. Settlers include the Archibald Franklin Leonard family, B. J. Crowley, Hiram Crowley, Dr. J. C. Dunn, Ambrose Foster, John A. Freeman, Zeb Jenkins, Eli Jenkins, and Jimmy West. Descendants of these families still reside in Grapevine today. 

1861 Grape Vine sends the first company of volunteers from Tarrant County to the Civil War under the leadership of Captain William Quayle. They are called “Quayle’s Company of Mounted Riflemen, State Volunteers.” Men who are too old to go to war form the “Beef Club” to help keep homes on the Grape Vine Prairie well protected and supplied with food. 

1877 Land for sale on the Grape Vine Prairie brings from $10 to $12 per acre. Unimproved land rents at $4 per acre in cash. 

1880 The Tate Family comes to the Grape Vine Prairie