Ghent. Three communities went into the making of Maydelle—Pine Town, some three and one-half miles southwest ; Java, about two and one-half miles south; and Ghent, around two miles north of the present Maydelle.
The mining of Ghent, credited both to W. S. Branhan and Doctor Scurlock, for the Belgium city gives further proof of the cultural note in pioneer life. Brannan had the first store. In the ’80s, Ezell, McCracken & Company was the leading firm. The post office was in their store, J. L. McCracken being postmaster. Among other merchants in the ’80s and ’90s were Russell S. Starkey, Charles Benge, Montgomery & Sherman (Frank) and Doctor Scurlock. Among Ghentteachers in later years were Walter Whitman and Miss Birdie Branhan, now Mrs. Alvin Sherman of Rusk. – A History of Cherokee County, 1934 by Hattie Joplin Roach
Gent Village. Located on top of Gent Mountain between two creeks, the village of Gent was settled in the 1850s primarily by families from Alabama and Tennessee in search of good farmland. The early settlers quickly established religious and educational institutions, and by 1900 the village boasted several stores, mills and cotton gins as well. Construction of the Texas State Railroad from Rusk to Palestine and the founding of the town of Maydelle (1.5 mi. s.) in 1910 pulled business away from Gent. Gradually the village was abandoned, and today not a single structure remains.– Historical Marker Text. Marker erected in 1983.
Vanishing Towns of Cherokee County, Texas: Pine Town, Gent, and Java, 1983, by Bernard W. Mayfield