Terrell, Texas has the unique distinction of being associated with the first car trip and car accident to occur in the state of Texas. In 1899, Terrell, TX resident Colonel Edward Howland Robinson “Ned” Green decided to test out one of the first automobiles in Texas by driving it from Terrell to Dallas. As the story goes, somewhere near the town of Forney, Colonel Green came across a farm wagon. When the Colonel attempted to swerve around the wagon, his vehicle ran off the road and ended up in a ditch.
Eccentric residents such as Colonel Green were not the norm in Terrell, TX. But the industry that brought the Colonel to Terrell was in those early years. Colonel Green was the president of the Texas Midland Railroad company and a major player in the city’s largest industry, the railroads. In fact, the town of Terrell, TX began as a depot along the Texas and Pacific Railroad Company’s transcontinental line. By the 1920’s Terrell was the world’s leading shipper of cotton and the site of the Terrell State Hospital, one of the largest psychiatric hospitals in the country. Today, nearly 16,000 residents call Terrell, TX home.