The History of Mayfield by Bobby Fultz
(This essay was awarded second prize in the Junior High division of the 1952 Washington County Historical Society essay contest.)
Mayfield has a varied and colorful history. One gravestone in the old graveyard above the school house is dated 1820. In the early days Methodist camp meetings were held near Brush Creek, which winds its way past Mayfield to spill into White River.
Not far from this site is one of the oldest houses in our community. It was built in 1879 and the lumber is believed to have been sawed at the old Peter Van Winkle sawmill in Van Winkle hollow. Bryant Shannon first owned the house. Harlan Harris is its present owner.
In 1886 my great-grandfather, Huston Scott, bought equipment for a water mill from Green Morris. He repaired and got the equipment into running condition and installed the mill on Brush Creek. It washed away several times and was brought back and put in running order again but was finally washed away again.
In 1897 a store, a mill and a blacksmith shop were built. The store was run by Bud Abney, who also built and operated the mill. He was the first postmaster of Mayfield. Tom Osburnoperated the blacksmith shop.
The year 1898 brought great things to Mayfield. A post office was built and the school house now being used was built. Before 1898 the mail was carried from Fayetteville to Huntsville. George Mayfield delivered it by horseback for $10 a month.
After the post office was established, the community had to have a name. The people wished to call it Macedonia but found there was another post office by that name in Arkansas. They then decided on Mayfield in honor of the many people in the community by that name.
When the school house was to be built, a contract was agreed upon with Isaac Taylor and his son Charlie. They agreed to build the school house for $50, with the help of the men of the community. Seats and desks were built also, and some of them are still in use. School was first held in 1899 and 96 pupils were enrolled by the first teacher, W. H. Shaffer.
In the spring of 1925 a canning factory for processing tomatoes was built. The land was granted by Big Green Mayfield and the factory was operated by Walter and Bill Keeney for 15 years. After that the factory changed hands several times. It is the only factory in Mayfield and furnishes work in the fall for many Mayfield community people, as well as furnishing a nearby market for tomatoes grown in this area.
The blacksmith shop and the water-powered mill are no longer needed, but a post office and store and the schoolhouse (where church services are also held) form the core of a thriving community that we still proudly call Mayfield.