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 Texas : Towns A-Z / South Texas / Ghost Towns :

CALAVERAS, TEXAS

Wilson County, South Texas
Highway 181 and FM 3444
8 Miles NW of Floresville
About 10 Miles SE of San Antonio
Population
: 100 (estimated, 2000)

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Calaveras, Texas store
Photo courtesy Terry Jeanson, March 2008
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History in a Pecan Shell

The community had originally been in Bexar County prior to 1869. It was established around 1860 when the community was named Wright, Texas. The current name is the Spanish word for "skulls.” The opening of the post office in 1885 required the change of name. The town only had a population of 20 and at that time the community’s mail came from San Antonio.

All of that changed with the arrival of the railroad (the San Antonio and Aransas Pass Railway, aka the SAAP) in 1886. The population increased and businesses opened. By 1892 the population had increased ten fold to 250 and Calaveras had most essential businesses, including three brickyards and a new hotel.

It reached its population high-water mark in 1900 with 369 residents.

The post office closed its doors in 1925 and the railroad demoted the town to a flag stop. After WWII, the town was reduced to a single business, although they have kept the same population estimate for the last 60 years (100 residents).

The Creek and the Lake

The creek, from which the town gets its name, rises in Bexar County, south of the town of Martinez. The mouth of the creek meets the San Antonio River, one mile SW of town and Calaveras Lake was formed when the creek was dammed near Elmendorf. Lake Calaveras appears on the state map, while the town does not.
Old railroad bridge over the Calavaras Creek, Texas
Old railroad bridge over the Calavaras Creek
Photo courtesy Terry Jeanson, March 2008
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Old bridge over the San Antonio River, Calaveras, TX
Old bridge over the San Antonio River, just south of Calaveras, TX
Photo courtesy Terry Jeanson, March 2008
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Old bridge over the San Antonio River, Calaveras, TX
Close-up view of the San Antonio River old bridge
Photo courtesy Terry Jeanson, March 2008
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Calaveras Cemetery gate, Texas
Photo courtesy Terry Jeanson, March 2008
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Photographer's Note:
Could not get into the cemetery because of a locked fence and a huge, vicious dog. Although the town is spelled "Calaveras", the nearby creek is spelled "Calavaras." - Terry Jeanson, March 04, 2008

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This page last modified: March 12, 2008