Named for Harvey Hawkins (1804-1869), a pioneer settler who came to Texas from Tennessee and first settled in Rusk County, the Hawkins Cemetery is the final resting place for families of the Tate Springs community. In 1848, Hawkins married Mary Ann Elizabeth (Elliott) Hitt Turner (1817-1868) and they later traveled by wagon to what would become Tarrant County. A preemptive land grand was issued to Hawkins for 160 acres in Tarrant County by Sam Houston, governor of the State of Texas, in January 1860.Historic Texas Cemetery - 2015
The cemetery began as a family plot located in the center of the property where the Hawkins couple and their children are buried. According to legend, a slave named Poly Penn was the first burial. No gravestone has been found but the location was marked on an early map. The earliest marked gravesite is that of Mary Hawkins in 1868. Rebekah Hawkins, Mary's daughter, married Jason Bryant Little before moving with her family to Tarrant County and settled near the Hawkins family. After Jason returned from fighting in the Civil War, they opened an elementary school. Their home was used as a stage coach stop on the Star Mail Route from Johnson Station, Texas to Fort Worth. A large arched monument stands at the north end of the cemetery, marking the gravesites of Rebekah, Jason and their families.
In 1890, property owner George
W. Kee sold the cemetery grounds to the community for use as a public burial ground. The Kee family is buried on the norther section of the cemetery. Additional acreage was acquired in 1919 from the Edwards and Tunnell families. Members of the community established a Cemetery Association in 1949 to maintain the cemetery and its records. Hawkins Cemetery chronicles the pioneer families that settled the area in the mid-1800s.
Marker is property of the State of Texas