Explosion at New London LbNA # 27471 (ARCHIVED)
|Placed Date||Nov 25 2006|
|Location||New London, TX|
On March 18, 1937 the school in New London, Texas exploded because of a gas leak. At the time, New London was a growing community due to the oil boom in East Texas. As a result of this explosion several hundred people were killed mostly students and teachers. It was because of this explosion that lawmakers decided to put an odor into the natural gas to prevent this type of explosion from ever happening again. There is not much left in New London except for a new school on basically the same location, a little diner and a museum honoring those lives lost in the explosion. If you get the opportunity to go to this museum, it is really worth it. The lady who started the museum was a student in the school the day of the explosion and managed to survive. I had the opportunity to meet her a few years ago and she is wonderful to talk to about the different people who passed away.
How to get to New London...From New Summerfield, take Hwy 79 N to 42 N (left). Take 42N all the way to New London where the museum will be on your left, the school will be on your right and in the middle of the road is a memorial to the people who were killed in the explosion. After you look around there, take 42 S back the way you go to a stop sign which will be 323. Turn left. The Pleasant Hill Cemetery is on the right about 3 miles from the stop sign. There are almost 200 people buried here who died in the explosion. You will be able to locate them because of their day of death. You will need to park at the main entrance and read the historical marker.
To the letterbox:
Go through the gate. Be sure and notice the 1st headstone on your right for Lewis Malernee Payne. The marbles that spell out PAYNE belonged to this young man. Now walk straight ahead from the gate to the "Donors to Permanent Care Fund" stone. It is under a covering. Looking at the stone, turn left and look for a large bush. The box is in bush on the side away from the Donor stone
Please be careful of other people in the cemetery and please make sure the letterbox is covered well.