in a Pecan Shell
Lobo with an empty swimming pool
is appropriate, since Lobo lived and died on the availability of water.
The original Van Horn Wells were not far from present day Lobo
and the town (Lobo) was once a rival with Van
Horn for the Culberson county seat. The town actually appears
on the 2000 Official Texas Department of Transportation Map, but the
sad truth is: the vacancy sign is up, out in Lobo.
may or may not have been the first child born in Lobo
1907 Lobo had it's own post office and enough water to sustain the
people who had been lured there by land promoters a few years later.
The promoters lied, which is nothing new, but the buyers sued and
won, which is noteworthy. The promoters were forced to built the hotel
(later destroyed in a 1929 earthquake) and amenities that they had
The town's water had been discovered before the Civil War and the
wells were the reason for the town to be on the San Antonio-San Diego
Stagecoach Mail Route. The water even seemed abundant enough to make
the town a water stop for steam locomotives in the 1880s.
The town lost population after the seat went to Van
Horn in 1911 and the 20 remaining inhabitants lay in a sleepy
twilight until efficient pumps came into being just after WWII.
(The post office had already closed in 1942). Enough water was produced
to irrigate hundreds of acres of cotton
and still have enough left over for an occasional shower. The pumping
proved expensive, though, and wells were shut by the late 1960s.
When the population approached 90 people, the water table fell. The
population was estimated at 40 in the mid 1970s when a man named Bill
Crist bought the entire town. He opened the store for awhile, but
crime reared its familiar head and the building was burned. The entire
town with motel, diner, several houses and a gas station were offered
for sale in 1988 for $60,000. As you can see by Mr. Penney's photos,
the place remains as it was. A modern ghost town, with limited water
and an annual rainfall of 13.2 inches.
The Culberson County map shows a cemetery for Van Horn Wells, but
none for Lobo.
(Bert E. Bailey) and his family lived in Lobo, Texas 1915-1917. My
grandfather, Lee Bailey ran a small cattle and horse ranch there.
My Dad said that a couple of times, all the children of Lobo were
taken to the court house in Van Horn for safety during raids by Mexican
There was a school in Lobo at the time. Fewer than a dozen kids attended.
My grandmother, Lena Bailey, bought a camera somewhere and took all
of the old family photos. She was actually a pretty good photographer.
I don't know where the negatives were developed.
I went with my Dad to Lobo in 1956 to locate the old place. We found
the location, but there was very little left of it."
- Wayne Bailey, Richardson, Texas, November 25, 2011
Bert Bailey, with Sister Orla and brother Buster enjoying themselves
at the Bailey property in Lobo." - Wayne Bailey
|My folk's place
in Lobo. On the back of the photo "Bert and Sis just home from school
& Mrs. Bettersons chaps come home with them". - Wayne Bailey
| "The T&P
yard at Lobo" - Wayne Bailey
photo enlarged - "A locomotive is being serviced" - Wayne
photo enlarged - "cattle cars are in place to receive cattle"
- Wayne Bailey
A. Ivy 1970's at that time owner of Lobo Texas. We used it for housing
for Evergreen Farms for a time in the 70's"
Photo courtesy Howard Ivy, January 05, 2008
Today & Photos Gallery
|Lobo, Texas today
is a private property. Three Germans from Frankfurt, Germany purchased
Lobo on November 5, 2001.
Lobo is a favorite stop for photographers:
closed gas station behind barbed wire fence
Photo courtesy Barclay
Gibson, May 2009
pool in Lobo
Photo courtesy Rob Hann, 2001
courtesy Rob Hann, 2001
desert reclaims the motel
Photo courtesy Jason Penney
"Originally a truck stop owned by Buddy Griffin, a farmer in
- Ron Segura
Photo Courtesy Jason Penney
County map showing Lobo
(Near Jeff Davis
Courtesy Texas General Land Office
I think my
Great Aunt, Vivian Hackett, was born in Lobo Texas, January 1899.
My Great grandmother was Ida Belle Hackett. J. D. Hackett would
have been an employee of the railroad, probably telegrapher. I have
never been able to find Vivian Hackett's birth certificate though.
Any ideas on how I could find a birth certificate or record for
Culbertson county? - Kimberly Ammeter, December 28, 2016
and I lived in Lobo from 1978-80. I had a welding and mechanic business
set up in the old service station. I provided services to the local
farms. In '79 Miller Beer made a commercial in Lobo. It was called
Jack's Chili Bus. Ruth Bussy was there because her husband was in
the commercial. She parked her motor-home along side of my shop.
They were very nice people and stayed for about 5 days. We really
enjoyed it. I can't remember the owners name but it was a couple
who sold rocks. In fact they moved to Marfa
and set up a rock shop and left us to take care of the town.
I just recently visited Lobo in October, 2004. There are three Germans
(I think they are Alexander, Claus and Annette) who now own Lobo
and are doing some restoration and repairs to some of the buildings.
... It's right on Highway 90. Interesting place to visit and sets
in a beautiful valley. - Clarence Louviere, November 09, 2004
My uncle, Edward
Eugene Johnson, was a section foreman in Lobo, Texas in the early
1930s. His father, my grandfather, William R. Johnson lived there
with him. They lived in the Railroad Section House. Uncle Eugene
took my grandfather to Valentine
to a doctor and he died there in March, 1936. The Section house
probably dose not exist now but sure would like to find a picture
of it or even of the water tower for the railroad there. - Jane
Johnson Taylor - September 10, 2003
It has come
to my attention some people are trying to resurrect Lobo, Texas.
See web site www.lobo-texas.com - Lon Braselton, Allen, Texas, August
for information on nearby, Candelaria,
Texas, I came upon the article on "Lobo For Sale", this particular
building was originally a truck stop owned by Buddy Griffin, a farmer
in Lobo Valley, I worked the truck stop during summer vacation and
Christmas vacation 1958 while a student at Texas Western College
(now UTEP) in El
Paso, Texas. A great place to save money since there was no
place to spent it! - Ron Segura, April 29, 2002
Albert Ivy owned Lobo
My name is Howard Ivy. Albert Ivy was my dad. Even named my hound
dog after the town. We used it for housing for Evergreen Farms for
a time in the 70`s - Howard Ivy, April 28, 2002
for seeing it in person to totally round out my final decision,
I am, and let me make this clear, 95% positive that I will purchase
LOBO, Texas !!!! - Mike G., Pennsylvania
I enjoyed your
article immensely. Can you point me to any other information about
Lobo? Is it still for sale, and who owns it today? I'm actually
interested in buying it if it's available. I've always wanted my
own town. ;) - Larry T., Charlotte, NC
Lobo, Texas Area Hotels
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