The old Cagle house that sat on top of Cagle Hill for
so many years is no longer there. This house was where many family
get-togethers occurred during the last 50 to 100 years.
I owe Kenneth and Carolyn Wilson recognition and
commendation for their interest in local history. Kenneth and Carolyn
were driving around on the back roads some twenty-five or perhaps
thirty years ago. They graciously took snapshots of the many old and
decaying structures in our area.
Their collection of photos really shows their interest
and knowledge of local history that is not documented in the school
Garland Wilson and his wife, Irene, raised their large
family on Blackjack Road, and were neighbors to the Cagles. There is
certainly enough information circulating around about the early
settlement to maintain and keep a book and it should be done.
The Cagle home was larger than most family homes. From
the period of time around the Civil War, the Harmon log house was the
most prevalent structure in the area.
Notice the squared iron rocks that served as the
foundation. The house required a number of hours to assemble. The iron
rocks and oak logs were easily found in the area, making the log house
a popular idea.
Under close examination of the Cagle house, you can
detect the use of a good framing square, hammer and hand saw (these
were about all of the tools required in constructing this home). The
roofing shingles were made from cedar wood. Cedar was easy to work
with and was termite resistant.
The Cagle home was built without a framework, but was
however, built with a 1 x 12 yellow pine and rock stone. The 1 x 12
requires a 1 x 4 that was plain or with a milled indention to conform
to the rest of the house.
The front porch on the home was the place for
It would be safe to assume that a hand-dug well about
30 feet deep was built near the home to supply the family and
livestock with water.
The fireplace was another necessity for family
comfort. The Cagle home appears to have a fireplace built of rock (the
same rocks used for the foundation), with bricks on the top. The
fireplaces were located on the west and north sides of the home, which
created a natural draft effect that would allow the temperature to
flow naturally throughout the home.
Jacob Plunk was born in 1807. He was married to Mattie
J. Priest on February 11, 1839. He died on October 28, 1876. To Jacob
Plunk and Mattie Priest the following nine children were born: David,
Eliza West, Nancy E. Plunk (she married Thomas Bates Cagle), Magerell
Lillian, Peter, Jacob, Mark Daniel, John Manon, William Plunk and
George Ann Plunk.
Thomas Benton Cagle married Nancy E. Plunk. I recall
several of the Plunk family and the children of Benton and Nancy
Cagle. Some of the Plunk family lived on the road to the McKinney
David Plunk wrote the following letter to his mother
and daddy on March 22, 1862. It reads as follows:
Clarksville, Red River County, Texas
Dear Father and Mother, I now take the opportunity of
writing you a few lines to let you know that I am well at this time
and hopeing when these few lines come to you , they may find you all
well xxxxxxxx and will remain here a few days and then we will go to
fort smith in arkansas to old frises and macculloc army. I heard the
other that frise and macculloc had a fite with the north and kiled six
thousand northern men and lost, too thousand southern men. I have
nothing of importance to write mor than we all xxxxxxxthre macmckinney
I stopped and went in to the jail and the hallway. So nothing more at
present, David Plunk, To F. Priest and Family
I am calling for you local photography and history
enthusiasts, go through your old photos of farms. I am especially
interested in photos of the corn crib that was on the Harmon estate
that occupies a spot where the local geese on Mike Behrendís farm now
live. I am anxiously looking for a photo of the log house, as it no
doubt is estimated to have been built and used as a residence during
the early days of Onega. So if you can help me out, we may luck out
with an appearance in the Dallas Morning News, as they are currently
working on Onegaís beginnings. The log house will fit with the
information they are trying to put together.