Nov 18 2014
Road and Bridges
 
After the Civil War, through the 1870s, the business of the community slowly expanded. Roads connecting La Vernia with outlying communities and farms were laid out and their rights-of-way formalized by the Commissioners of Wilson County. Built on the Cibolo, the community’s access to reliable crossings was essential to commerce and travel. 
 
At times crossings were moved due to flood damage and maintenance requirements. Scull’s Crossing, Wiseman’s Crossing, McAlister’s Crossing, Montgomery’s Crossing, and Rector’s Crossing were the names and locations of crossings. Until the installation of steel bridges after 1900, the steep banks of the Cibolo made maintenance difficult and crossing treacherous. In 1915, the Mueller steel bridge was constructed at McAlister’s crossing and today stands as a Historic Texas Landmark. 

Railroad Comes To La Vernia
 
The settlers of the Cibolo Valley understood and embraced the need for connecting their community to centers of commerce. In 1853, landowners like James McAllister and Claiborne Rector in La Vernia donated land for a railroad connecting the community to shipping on the Texas coast. 
 
The Texas legislature chartered the San Antonio River Navigation Company in 1856 that would allow navigation up the San Antonio River to Goliad and points beyond. A navigable San Antonio River has been a dream of south Texas ever since. Members of the Canfield family of La Vernia and the Cibolo valley were named as charter members in the legislation. 
 
The Civil War ended the efforts to realize these dreams. However, the railroad finally did arrived in 1895 when the San Antonio and Gulf Shore Railroad was built from San Antonio to Victoria with a stop in La Vernia. The railroad served the community as its connection to the greater world until 1957 when service was discontinued and the tracks removed.
 
Historic Notables
 
La Vernia is proud of Jane Yelvington McCallum (1877-1957), suffragist leader and Texas Secretary of State (1927 – 1933), born to Alvaro Leonard and Mary Fullerton (LeGette) Yelvington in La Vernia, Texas, on December 30, 1877.
 
La Vernia’s growing list of historical markers includes: The Cibolo Crossing on the Gonzales Road, Thomas Applewhite Homestead, Brahan Masonic Lodge, Chihuahua Road, The City of La Vernia, Concrete Cemetery, Beall Cemetery, Immanuel Lutheran Church, Immanuel Lutheran Cemetery, La Vernia United Methodist Church, Rector Chapel Cemetery, Suttles Pottery, Mueller Bridge, Grave of Claiborne Rector, and the Deaf Smith Oak Tree.
 
The legacy of the founders of Wilson County thrives in La Vernia; where the Old South met the Wild West.