top of page

Warren's Trading House at Salt Creek?

Updated: Jun 10

Map of northern Montague County
A photostatic image of a map from 1867 shows that "Warren's Trading House" stood in today's Jefferson County between Salt Creek (TX) and Red Creek in Oklahoma (Hardin Simmons Library, Portal to TX History).

As I was perusing old maps once again, I discovered a very interesting notation. This always happens, leading me down rabbit holes. Please know I am NOT complaining.

Charles Pressler's "Traveller's Map of Texas" (1867) shows "Warren's Trading House" on the Indian Territory (today's Jefferson County) side of the Red River, almost directly due north of Montague in Montague County, Texas. Today, this site would be, approximately, where Salt Creek in Texas meets the Red River in Montague County.

I knew of Abel Warren's trading post at Fannin County, Texas and his post in Love County, Oklahoma. He also ran the post at the confluence of Cache Creek with the Red River, formerly operated by Holland Coffee, in today's Cotton County, Oklahoma.

But the location of "Warren's Trading House" on Pressler's map from 1867 doesn't compute! This is either because Charles Pressler's map is mistaken, or other sources that describe one of Warren's posts are mistaken.

Lemme explain, here.

Abel Warren (1813 to 1882) was a trader from Massachusetts who set up several trading posts along the Red River in the mid-19th century. The Encyclopedia Of Oklahoma History and Culture's entry for Abel Warren, explains "most sources indicate that Warren's Post stood on Cache Creek in present Cotton County, although he is also associated with posts on Walnut Bayou in Love County and Mud Creek in Jefferson County." The Walnut Bayou location is known as Warren's Bend in Cooke County, Texas now. The Handbook of Texas's article on Abel Warren does not mention the Mud Creek location at all.

"Mud Creek in Jefferson County" is in proximity to the settlement of Petersburg, a hamlet across the river from Spanish Fort (Montague County, Texas) and the site of a large Wichita village and former French trading post.

The location indicated on Pressler's map, however, shows Warren's Trading House on the opposite side of the bend, sandwiched between Panther Creek (Texas) to its east, Coffee/Saline aka Salt Creek (Texas) to its west, and near the confluence of Red Creek (Oklahoma), which appears to be called Beaver Creek on Pressler's Map.

Was the "Mud Creek" trading post, established by Holland Coffee at one point and then taken over by Abel Warren for a while, actually NOT on the site of old Wichita Village but instead, just across from Red River Station?

By the 1850s, Abel Warren had left the Red River Valley trade for good and operated around Fort Smith, Arkansas. But his "Trading House" at Salt Creek must have still been in use in 1867 if Pressler's map was designed for travel. Or it's a trading post established by a completely different Warren and I'm reading too much into this. Or Pressler's geography is wrong!.

Whatever the answer, it was fun doing the research!

Map northern Cooke County
Abel Warren's trading post in today's Love County, Chickasaw Nation, Oklahoma is commemorated by the name "Warren's Bend" in Cooke County, Texas in this 1902 geological map (USGS).

140 views0 comments


bottom of page