Home Projects At The Museum History Of The Museum Wise County Historical Society Wise County Historical Commission Current Exhibits Upcoming Events County Historical Sites Gift Store Membership and Support Frequently Asked Questions Related Links Contact Us Photo Gallery

Dr. William Renshaw
US 380, East of Decatur
From Decatur, take US 380 east about 5 miles.

    Born in Illinois, William Renshaw studied medicine and set up practice in Sparta, Tennessee. His wife Sarah received from the Mexican government a grant of land in Texas, where her father Samuel Worthington lost his life in a colonization attempt in 1828. Dr. Renshaw traveled to Texas in 1853 to locate this headright, which encompassed many acres of Wise County north of this marker site. Dr. Renshaw returned to Sparta and served two terms in the Tennessee Legislature before moving his family to Texas in 1859. The first doctor to settle permanently in Wise County, Dr. Renshaw was often away from home for long periods, with a practice extending from Denton to Jacksboro. The Renshaws organized one of the county's earliest schools, taught by J. D. White, for their own and neighbor children. After the Civil War, the family moved to Decatur, where Dr. Renshaw and his son Lute opened a drugstore. They were devout Baptists and supported Decatur Baptist College. Dr. Renshaw died in 1887 and was buried at Oak Lawn Cemetery in Decatur. As his 10 children married, each received a portion of the Worthington survey. Two family members still own part of the property. A number of descendants became doctors.