| Texas Towns
THE NAMING OF
"Texas is one of those rare state names
that goes with anything."
- John Fergus Ryan
Can you imagine
Abilene, Wisconsin or
you live in Texas, there are several books
on Texas place names. The most recent and one of the best is "Muleshoe
& More: The Remarkable Stories Behind the Naming of Texas Towns"
by Bill Bradfield & Clare Bradfield. We thought our piece "The Naming
of Names" would be an appropriate introduction for the Bradfields' book.
Some of these names may be old hat to our Texas
readers, but there's bound to be some you haven't heard of, and for our out-of-state
readers, here's a collection straight off The Texas Department of Transportation's
Official Highway Map for the year 2000. |
were built by men, but they named many towns after their womenfolk. A sampling:
and Thalia. Pandora
sounds like a place to keep the lid on and Hedley
might have been named after a Lamar
family member. (name courtesy of Mel Brooks). For people who say bafroom or birfday,
there's Marfa as in Marfa
Washington. And then there's Maud.
There's Winona and
Idalou was named after
two girls, as was Mineola.
connect us to Iago
and our other male names:
Chester and Sidney
all have a 19th Century sound to them. There's a New Willard, but no sign
of an old one, and there's a Smiley,
Leroy and Dabney
as well. Some towns are both first and last names like George
West, who got to name the town since he built it on his ranch. Ben
Bolt, the person, has been lost to history, but he's a lyric in a song
and the town still wears his name. Tom Ball has become Tomball,
Burk Burnett has become Burkburnett
and Ed Couch Edcouch.
condensed when he got here.
Not Names! |
While we're on the subject of condensing: It's safe to say everyone's heard
and maybe Lake Texoma.
But unless you live close to Austonio,
you might not be aware it exists. One would think Austonio would be between Austin
and San Antonio. If one
did, then one would be wrong. It's between Houston
and Dallas (Houston County).
There was a recent movie called Happy,
Texas, and indeed there is one. The movie was shot in some other state,
though. Speaking of shooting, there are towns of Gun
Barrel City, Point
Blank and Cut
There's the modest trio of Elysian
There's Munday and Friday
and Keene's Post
Office is open on Sunday*. There's Telephone,
City, which is almost as good as Hot Coffee, Alabama, and other
food names include Raisin,
Rice and Noodle.
foes here are not forgotten|
Indian names are well represented
with Caddo, Seminole,
While we're sure there's no Sam Houston City in Mexico, we've got a Santa
Anna in Coleman County. Actually, the town's name comes from local mountains
named after an Indian Chief, or so we're told.
One would think Levelland,
Horizon City and Sundown
would be in a straight line, but they're not. Other names which we hope are only
in Texas include: Grice,
Wamba, and Fluvanna.
is not a four-letter word|
But these towns are: Alto
(Cherokee Co.), Port
Alto (Jackson Co.), Acme,
Bula, Buna, Cash, Fink,
|Too many Villes,
Not enough Burgs|
Our map shows 51 Greenvilles,
Floresvilles etc. and
only 10 Pittsburgs, Bloomburgs,
If you exclude Rosenberg which is a berg and not a burg, then it's only 9.
population is mostly comprised of Seventh Day Adventists, most businesses are
closed Saturday, but open Sunday. Including the Post Office.
First published June 2000
Naming of Texas Towns Texas
Town List - Over 2,800 Texas TownsTexas
Ghost Towns - Over 800 Ghost TownsTexas
on a First-name Basis
Of the roughly 2,000 town names on the official
state map, over 400 of them are first names.Texas
place names describe unique stories of towns by Delbert Trew
Name Survey of Texas, developed and added to for the past 20 years or more, lists
and explains the uniqueness of names in Texas. Here are a few that caught my eye...
strange town names by Bob Bowman
While some early East Texans named their
towns for families, their hometowns or landmarks, othes were a tad more creative...
and Newton Counties, Beyond the Sabine
odd names all over Lone Star State, 'Top 10' of the U.S. are commonplace here
by Bill Bradfield Why
did they name it that? by Archie P. McDonald Wonder
Why They Named it That by Archie P. McDonald A
Geography Lesson by Bob Bowman New
Geography - Place name tweaking of several Counties and County Seats by Mike
Place name tweaking of several Counties and County Seats
Towns by Mike Cox Cut
and Shoot, Gun Barrel City, Gunsight, Point Blank and Winchester by Mike CoxBoo-boo
towns by Mike Cox
The Texas map is sprinkled with cities and towns that
got their names by mistake...Population
Ranks by Mike Cox
The historic urban population hierarchy and population
figures dating back to 1850... Unique
town names by Bob Bowman
Town Names / History - Books