|Bird's eye view
Photo courtesy texasoldphotos.com
in a Pecan Shell
The name has nothing to do with the country of Iran. Oil was discovered
on the ranch of Ira Yates and a contest was held to name the town
that would soon materialize. Ira's wife was named Ann. The person
who combined the two names won a town lot as a prize. (See
Iraan today has two newspapers. But as an Iraanian told us (in a confidential
tone) "It's the same news." We bought both papers. It was the same
news. Different photos though.
Because of its semi-remote location, the school district provides
its teachers with housing.
Iraan is also the birthplace of Alley
Oop, at onetime an extremely popular syndicated comic strip.
Hamlin was a newspaperman in Iraan when he came up with the idea
for a caveman who looked like he was wearing bellbottoms when he wasn't
even wearing pants. While virtually unknown now, Alley
Oop was nearly as popular as Dick Tracy and Tarzan.
Mr. Oop had a dinosaur named Dinny and there is a likeness
of both Alley Oop and Dinny at the 7 acre Fantasyland just
west of town amid mulberry trees.
Also in the park is the Iraan Archeological Museum.
Iraan Chamber of Commerce: 915-639-2232
|Left - West Texas
wildlife in Iraan's Park
Right - The Better-than-nothing Car Wash
Oop is a Texan? by C. F. Eckhardt
Alley Oop, the cave-man character created by Victor T. Hamlin in
1932, is a native Texan. The area around present Iraan, Texas was
a gold mine of dinosaur fossils. In the days before salvage archaeology,
the fossils were simply hauled away by the truckload. This gave
Hamlin the idea for a comic strip... more
T. Hamlin & Alley Oop by C. F. Eckhardt
Boy With Two Tombstones
Or Iraan's “Little Boy Lost.” by Mike Cox
A broken piece of sandstone can’t tell a story, but Edna (Snooks)
Collett sure can. Collett is curator of the museum in the still-booming
old boom town of Iraan, in the middle of the storied Yates Field,
which is well past its billionth barrel of oil and still producing.
Of course, her museum duties are only from 1-5 p.m. Thursday-Sunday...
of Iraan, TX
Regarding Iraan, Texas and the "History in a Pecan Shell": My father,
Jo Hardgrave, told my brother and sister, that his mother named the
town of Iraan by submitting the combining of the names Ira and Ann
Yates and that she won a downtown plot of land that she sold for $1,000.00.
According to the first paragrah, this is true. I'm just wondering
if you have record of the name of the person winning the contest.
My grandmother's name was Mary Louise (Lewis) Hardgrave. If you have
any information regarding this I would appreciate it. Thank you,
Carol Bennett, San Angelo, TX, October 12, 2006
in its purpose to preserve historic, endangered and vanishing Texas,
asks that anyone wishing to share their local history and vintage/historic
photos, please contact