a Pecan Shell
to 1880 with the arrival of the railroad. People had been anticipating
the connection and practically met the locomotive with hammers and
nails in their hands. They built the depot first but the post office
wasn't granted until June the following year.
The town was first known by the submitted name of Oliverea
but the use of that name was short-lived. When autumn arrived, everyone
was using Campbell. Texas (or Tom Campbell, Texas). There seems to
be some debate over which Tom Campbell is the namesake. The argument
was whether it was Thomas M. Campbell (who later became Governor of
Texas) or someone else who just happened to have the same name.
The post office listened to the voice of the people and renamed itself
in September of 1882. In 1900 Campbell had a respectable population
of 508 people served by twelve businesses.
Campbell incorporated in 1912. From a population of 583 in 1920, Campbell
mushroomed to an estimated 1,000 by 1925. The town had its own newspaper
and telephone exchange in the mid 1920s but by 1930, the population
had fallen by more than half (to 416).
From that point on, the population stabilized but businesses continued
to close. By the early 1960s the community had only four.
The 1970 census counted just 204 residents and during the following
decade, Campbell reincorporated, allowing it to annex rural properties,
boosting the population to 549. It has since grown to 734 for the
and Emerson Colleges historical marker
Photo courtesy Barclay
Gibson, March 2014
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