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BUFFALO, TEXAS

Leon County, Central Texas S
Hwys 79 & 75, and I-45
14 miles N of Centerville
36 miles SW of Palestine
29 miles E of Groesbeck
99 miles SE of Dallas
Population: 1,946 (2010) 1,804 (2000)

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Buffalo Texas downtown
Downtown Buffalo
Photo courtesy Barclay Gibson, April 2006
History in a Pecan Shell

Buffalo was named for the once-abundant animals when the International-Great Northern Railroad arrived in 1872. The Buffalo post office was granted four years later. Buffalo's first school was held in a two-story building that later became a community center and later still - a hotel.

The population of Buffalo grew from 200 to 500 from 1890 to 1892. Buffalo incorporated in 1913 when the town comprised an area of four square miles. It was unincorporated in 1917 and later reincorporated.

From a pre-Depression population of 650 in 1929, it fell to 470 by 1931 but grew to 850 by the end of the 1930s. Passenger service was discontinued in 1970.

From: Shuffle off to Buffalo by Mike Cox

... In Texas, the Leon County Buffalo is the largest community with a population of 1,847 counted in the 2010 Census. The town dates back to 1872, when the International and Great Northern Railroad laid tracks through the county. Four years later, the government approved a post office for Buffalo. Rail passenger service through Buffalo ended in 1970, but its location on I-45 kept the town alive as a way point.

Despite its evocative name, the Leon County town has not seen much colorful history. Well, there was one case of frontier-style extralegal adjudication. Back in 1888, on the night of May 10, one W.T. Martin -- accused of equine misappropriation -- was taken into custody by a deputy sheriff. As the lawman escorted the suspected horse thief to the Leon County jail in Centerville, parties unknown shotgunned Martin in an ambush. The sheriff had three suspects (one of them had accidentally left his hat near the crime scene) but it is unclear whether they ever faced trial in the killing. Tragedy put Buffalo in the national news media's cross hairs in 1959, when Braniff Airlines flight 542 plummeted 15,000 feet and crashed into a sweet potato field just outside the town. Thirty-four people died in the aviation accident.

On a happier note, Buffalo residents have been staunch supporters of the Dallas Cowboys. In 1993 and again the following year, the town temporarily renamed itself "Blue Star" when Dallas faced the Buffalo Bills in Super Bowls XXVII and XXVIII. The Bills lost both games and Blue Star went back to being Buffalo.

Buffalo Texas water tower
Buffalo water tower
Photo courtesy Barclay Gibson, April 2006
Buffalo city hall, Texas
Buffalo City Hall, by the water tower
Photo courtesy Barclay Gibson, April 2006

From: Random Notes from East Texas by Bob Bowman:

The Holy Oak

Images of Jesus and Mary are always popping up in strange places, such as a tortilla in 1977, a grilled cheese sandwich in 2004, and on a dental X-ray, also in 2004.

But when Timo Bueno, an employee of a construction company, paused for a lunch break on Jimmy Ezellís property at Buffalo in Leon County, he looked up at a limb which had been cut.

There, he saw an image of Jesus in the end of the limb.

Since then, folks have been coming to Buffalo from all over to see the image and Ezell regrets that the end of the limb, which might have contained additional images, was burned.

After all, a ten-year-old sandwich with the Virgin Maryís image recently sold on e-Bay for $28,000.


Buffalo Texas Area Destinations:
Centerville | Palestine | Groesbeck
Hotels: Buffalo Hotels | Centerville Hotels
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