Purmela is located on the prairie between Plum Creek and Cow House River, a short distance north of Highway 7. Good schools, churches, and fine community cooperation are characteristics of her people.
The name had its origin in both romance and error. A bachelor named Martin Drennon, founder of the town, and owner of the first store there, loved a young lady named Furmella, whom he ardently wooed. Failing to win her affections, he thought to perpetuate her name in the name of the village he founded. The post office department was petitioned with the name Furmela, but by error the name was returned Purmela, and the place has since born the name. The disappointed Mr. Drennon sold his property and moved to another state. - History of Coryell County, 1936, by Frank E. Simmons
Purmela Baptist Church. This congregation traces its history to 1886, when the Rev. W. M. Blakely and ten charter members organized the Basham Baptist Church in the old Basham School Building at the Smith Cemetery (ca. 1.7 Mi. S). Basham Baptist Church merged with Salem Baptist Church (also known as Round Valley Baptist Church) in 1901, and the new consolidated congregations built a sanctuary at Cravey Crossing on Cowhouse Creek (ca. 2 mi SW). The church's name was changed to Cravey Crossing Baptist Church. Worship services were held once a month, and baptismal services were conducted in the creek.
In 1927, after the congregation voted to relocate to this site, the Cravey Crossing Church building was dismantled and rebuilt here by volunteers. The name was changed to Purmela Baptist Church when construction was completed in 1928, and soon worship services were conducted weekly.
Throughout its history, this church has served members in a large rural area. The church facilities have been enlarged over the years to serve the growing congregation, which continues to maintain many of its historic traditions. - Historical Marker Text. Marker erected 1991. Location: From Gatesville, take SH 84 about 14 mi west, then take FM 932 about 1 mi north.