in a Pecan Shell
Originally called Grelton, Stanton was just a spot next to
the Texas and Pacific Railroad tracks when it came through
from Kansas and Arkansas were the first settlers. They imported
the lumber which was nailed together to form the first buildings.
The town was
renamed Marienfeld in 1885.
The First Catholic Church in West Texas was built in 1881 and the
next year the first school in West Texas was opened.
A monastery and a convent were built and while the nuns opened
schools and hospitals in Pecos
Stockton, the priests would take the train to Big
Spring and Midland
to say Mass.
Sisters of Mercy Convent
droughts, the agricultural dreams of the Germans were dashed
and they were forced to move to greener pastures (in this case Louisiana
As the population that named the town Marienfeld
dwindled, the town was renamed again (1890) by the schoolchildren
of the town who chose (presumably with some help from faculty)
Stanton after Lincoln's Secretary of War and Supreme Court Justice
Edwin McMasters Stanton.
The old jail has served a variety of jobs, including museum and
library. Originally part of the old courthouse, the holding
cells were kept after the courthouse was razed and the (then new)
jail built around them
A 1938 tornado
hit the town and closed the Catholic academy, which had already
been suffering low enrollment. A 1950 flood did considerable,
but not catastrophic damage. Shortly thereafter oil was discovered
and the economy recovered.
In 1977, the Texas
and Pacific Railroad discontinued service 96 years after arriving
1939 Martin County Explosion by Mike Cox
Pruno by Mike Cox
The story of Joe A. Pruno reads like a Victorian-era dime novel,
complete with ample exaggeration, outright fabrication and historical
inaccuracies... . [He] was buried in the town’s Catholic cemetery.
If he ever had a tombstone, it has not been located. Neither has
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