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Community History: Ethnic Groups

Smith County and the World

Smith County has always had a multi-ethnic history, with immigrants from all over the world.  Even prior to the Civil War, as Caddoes, Cherokees, Shawnees, and Kickapoos gave way to Anglo Southerners and African-Americans, there were also Norwegian, Scottish, German, and even Polish settlers.  Later years brought Lebanese, Russian, Chinese, Korean, Philipino, Latin American, Vietnamese, Pakistani and Indian immigrants.  Indeed, it would probably be difficult to come with any nationality that didn't have at least a few representatives in Smith County.

Researching Ethnic Groups

There is a great deal of work that could be done researching the various ethnic groups in Smith County, both those that have been here for over 100 years, and those that have arrived much more recently.

The Bibliography of Smith County, Texas has a few of these groups already broken down:

Ethnic Groups--African Americans

Ethnic Groups--Asian

Ethnic Groups--Hispanic

Ethnic Groups--Jews (although most citations are under Religion)

Ethnic Groups--Lebanese

Much, much more needs to be done!  For more recent articles from the Tyler Morning Telegraph see the vertical files of both the Tyler Public Library Local History Room and the Archives of the Smith County Historical Society.

African American Heritage Tour

The City of Tyler and the Tyler Historical Preservation Board have published an African-American Heritage Trail brochure for Tyler which includes Stewart Park, Katie Stewart's home, the site of Butler College, the site of Tyler Negro Public LIbrary, Bethlehem First Baptist Church, theM. P. Timms Educational Building, the M. P. Timms house, Saint James Christian Methodist Episcopal Church, the home of Willie Lee Campbell Glass, the home of Charles Evan Coleman, Texas College, the location of Henry Miller Morgan's barber college, Pleasant Hill Missionary Baptist Church, the office of Noble Earnest "Doc" Young, the site of Emmett J. Scott Senior High School, and the Thomas Jefferson, Sr. and Annie Mae Givens home.