Minutes of Meeting

Coppell Historical Society

February 11, 2012


Present:  Pat Lambert, Andy Johnsen, Noble Fortson, Lynette Fortson, Pat Quinlan, Barbara Webster, Deb Onstott, Joy Onstott, Ken Hevron, Srena Petitt, Kevin Mote, Don Carter, Martha-Allison Blewer, Pete Wilson, Barbara Lee


The meeting was scheduled to take place at the Coppell Library, but a scheduling mistake required that the meeting be relocated to the home of Kevin Mote.


President Barbara Lee called the meeting to order at 10:48 a.m.


The minutes of the last meeting, sent to members by email, were approved.  Moved by Don Carter; seconded by Pat Quinlan.


The treasurer’s report showed income in the last month of $180.00 (dues) and expenses of $30.00 (post office box rental).


Barbara Lee reviewed our decision that our next meeting will be on March 10, at 1:00 p.m., location to be announced, as a public forum to present our Witness Tree Program.  Micah Pace, from the Texas Forestry Service, and John Elias, Coppell’s Tree Preservationist, will be on the program.  The Coppell Nature Park organization has agreed to participate in the Witness Tree Program, and the Coppell Farmers’ Market organization has been invited to participate, also.  The Witness Tree Program, similar to our annual archeological dig, will take place in April, with the public encouraged to participate.


Pete Wilson reported for the Historic Marker Committee that their recommendations have been delayed due to lack of immediate communication from the foundry that will produce the markers.  However, the committee members will be meeting shortly and will attempt to reach a consensus to present to the membership regarding the following items: Size and design of markers; color of markers; whether the city should be involved from the start or if we should decide what the membership wants, then present ideas to the city.  Pat Quinlan volunteered to join Pete Wilson, Martha-Allison Blewer, and Jean Murph on the committee and was appointed by Barbara Lee.


Pete Wilson reported that Kathye Carpenter continues to work on historic information about the George Coppell family.  She has located a living relative, Gary Santini, in Connecticut, and Pete has written him and is waiting for a reply.  Photos of the Coppell mansions in Tenafly, New Jersey, as well as photos of a family that worked as servants for the Coppells, have been found in an Arcadia book about the history of Tenafly.  The owner of the original photos is John McNamara, and it has been determined that he lives, also, in Connecticut and is a descendant of the family in the photos.  Pete and Kathye are going to attempt to contact him.


Kevin Mote presented a “rough cut” of the video about Coppell history that our Society has commissioned.  After viewing, it was decided not to re-tape sections of the video that were made much earlier, when the quality of the images were not as good as others in the video.  Pete Wilson, director of the video, and Kevin Mote, editor, agreed to address the following items in the video and produce another version that will be viewed at a called meeting within the next two months:

1. Change the photo displayed when Bird’s Fort is mentioned; probably use a photo of the plaque that’s there now.

2. When the narrator mentions the four historic cemeteries in town, show each cemetery.

3. When the narrator mentions the Bethel community, remove the school photo which is actually of Coppell School and substitute a photo showing Bethel School, or show a photo of what is currently at the intersection of Moore Road and Bethel School Road (although this would be just houses).

4. Re-record the audio portion of Jackie Parrish’s narration that mentions that Barnett Gibbs was the first Lieutenant Governor of Texas.

5. When the narrator mentions that there were schools in the Coppell area as early as 1879, possibly use the photo of a Coppell School in 1897 (since it’s our earliest school photo).

6. Add at the end of the video, “The final version of the video was produced in 2012.”


Pete Wilson reminded the membership that, once the video is finalized, there will be fifty copies made initially, and they will be distributed to all members, teachers, and anyone else who requests a copy.  Kevin was asked if the final version of the video could be accessed through the Society’s website.  By linking it to another server, this could be accomplished.


The meeting was adjourned at 12:00 noon.


Wheelice (Pete) Wilson, Jr.

Recording Secretary

Coppell Historical Society

Cell 972-741-3894

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