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Hughes Springs

Hughes Springs is on State Highway 49 and the Louisiana and Arkansas line, a mile from the Morris county line in southwestern Cass County. In 1839 Reese Hughes built the first cabin in the area near three mineral springs. The springs, first called Chalybeate Springs, soon came to be known as Hughes Springs, as did the settlement which grew up there. A post office known to postal officials as Hugh's operated in Cass County from 1847 to 1849 with W. V. Hughes as postmaster. This office may have been at or near the Hughes Springs settlement. When the East Line and Red River Railroad was built through the southwestern corner of the county in 1876, Hughes Springs became a station on the line and began to grow. In the beginning one of the principal attractions in the area was the mineral springs, which were considered medicinal. By 1878, the year a post office was established at the community, Hughes Springs had become a relatively popular health resort as well as a shipping and supply point for area farmers. The town by 1884 had saw and grist mills, cotton gins, three churches, a school, and a population of 300. Its population level remained relatively stable during the late 1800s, and the census of 1900 recorded 317 residents there. The town was incorporated in 1903, and by 1920 its population had reached 831. The population reached an estimated 1,000 in 1929 but fell during the early years of the Great Depression , declining to 736 by 1933.

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