A view from the bluff
TE photo, August 2001
on a Pecan Shell|
The falls for which the town was named were called "great falls" or the "marble
falls" as early as 1817.
A man ahead of his time was Colonel Charles
J. Todd. In 1851 he bought a good portion of the land along the river for $80.
In 1854 "Todd's village" was to be a thriving community in a beautiful place,
but few people saw Todd’s vision. The land went unsold for want of buyers and
the county auctioned the land for taxes in 1880.
Adam Johnson also saw the falls in 1854 and wanted to build an industrial
showplace, channeling the waters of the Colorado into a riverside plant. Johnson
enlisted in the Confederate army during the Civil War and was blinded for life,
but not before becoming a General. In 1886 the now blind Johnson bought a good
deal of land – including the all-important falls. The Texas Mining and Improvement
Company was chartered in June 1887 and Johnson
and nine investors put the first lots up for sale in July of 1887.
timeline of significant events in the history of Marble Falls
1871: the legislature authorizes the building of a dam near Marble Falls but it
fails to materialize
1881: State Capitol in Austin
burns – a replacement is planed and granite is the preferred building material
1885: Adam Johnson grants right-of-way across 7 miles of his property – letting
a railroad spur be built from Burnet. The quarry
donates the stone for free and the spur allows it to be hauled to Austin.
1887: The town’s first newspaper The Nutshell is published
1889: The Austin
and NW Railroad builds extension to Marble Falls from Granite Mountain
the community had a weekly newspaper and an estimated 400 to 600 residents.
1892: Marble Falls Alliance University was chartered
1895: a huge building
is built, but funding runs out when the time comes to buy machinery
First city officials are elected
1908: Independent School District is formed
1917: Birdie Crosby Harwood is elected as the first woman mayor in the United
1920s: Paved roads and electric lights came in then 1920s.
a dam was built to supply power to the Marble Falls Textile Mills Company – Johnson’s
1940: the population was just over 1,000.
1950s: A dam
Marble Falls, but destroys the natural falls.
- Book Hotel Here
Man’s Town by Clay Coppedge|
called the man who founded Marble Falls “Stovepipe” because of a sneaky trick
he pulled off as a Confederate commander in the Civil War. The town he founded
was called Blind Man’s Town because he was blind when he laid out the streets
of the town by memory... more
A roadside park near Marble Falls
TE Photo, August 2001
Mountain – RM 1431 on the road to Burnet just
North of town. From a roadside park (with the nicest picnic tables in the world)
you can observe the quarrying of the same pink granite that was used in the construction
of the state capitol building.|
LBJ: (formerly Granite Shoals Lake) 6,375 acres of water with high bluffs
and granite outcroppings
Column by Mike Cox)
The expression "he just dropped out of sight" had both
figurative and literal meaning in Burnet County during and after the Civil War.
Common belief held that folks who disappeared in that area often ended up at the
bottom of a 150-plus-deep foot limestone fissure south of Marble Falls aptly named
"Dead Man's Hole." Marble
Falls Hotels - Book now
granite outcropping with cactus|
TE Photo, August 2001
| Marble Falls
Tourist Information Marble
Falls/Lake LBJ Chamber of Commerce|
916 Second Street • Marble Falls, TX
830-693-2815 • f: 830-693-1620
801 Highway 281 Marble Falls, Texas 78654
SE corner of the
Historic 1893 Depot Building at 801 Hwy 281
1 block SE of the US Hwy 281/FM
Local: (830) 693-4449 Marble
Falls Texas Forum|
Even though we are currently out here in St. Lewis, Washington,
our hearts are still at home in Kempner. Just remembering the field of bluebonnets
surrounding the little rock house north of Marble Falls. - JL Truitt, August
in its purpose to preserve historic, endangered and vanishing Texas, asks that
anyone wishing to share their local history, stories, and vintage/historic photos
of their town/subject, please contact