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 Texas : Towns A-Z / Central Texas South :

ROANS PRAIRIE, TEXAS

Grimes County, Central Texas South
Highways 30 and 90
17 Miles NE of Navasota
31 Miles E of Bryan

Population: 00056 (2000)

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Roans Prairie Texas post office

Photo courtesy Ken Rudine, October 2007
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History in a Pecan Shell

First settled in the 1830s, the community was named for early Alabaman settler Willis I. Roan, who came here in 1841. With the help of slaves, Roan built a large house and opened a general store.

He also served as the town’s first postmaster when a post office was granted in 1849. The town was located on the Huntsville-San Antonio line, so Roan’s Prairie became a stage stop as well.

The International-Great Northern Railroad ran a line through Roan’s Prairie (from Madisonville) in 1903. Shortly thereafter, the town was organized by the Smith Land and Improvement Company who renamed the town as Steadmanville, Texas. But this cumbersome name lacked the romantic sound of the former name and it was soon known again as Roan’s Prairie.

A quarry was developed just north of town and the railroad ran a spur to it. Sand, gravel, and rock were hauled out of Grimes County – much of it going to the then-under-construction Galveston Seawall.

The estimated population of Roans Prairie in 1915 was 250 but declined to only 100 during the Great Depression. At the close of WWII it had grown to 150 (also an estimate) and remained there until the late 1960s when it was recorded at 56 – the same figure that’s been used ever since.

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