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

ANARENE, TEXAS

Texas Ghost Town
Archer County, Texas Panhandle / Central Texas N
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Anarene Texas Historical  Marker
Anarene Historical Marker
Photo courtesy Barclay Gibson, April 2009

Anarene History in a Pecan Shell

Annie Graham, daughter of pioneer settler J. M. Keen is the town’s namesake. Keen was an ex-Confederate who started ranching and amassed a herd estimated to number 1,500. Cattle needs to go to market and in 1908 Anarene was founded alongside the tracks of the Wichita Falls and Southern Railroad.

The town was a cooperative effort between the railroad and Charlie Graham with help from J. H. Kemp and Frank Kell, two of the most successful men in the county (and railroad board members).

Anarene was platted and received a post office as well as a two-story hotel. Success seemed guaranteed. Facilities for handling the cattle were built – including dipping vats, pens and loading ramps. A demand for beef during WWI drew thousands of head from Anarene – some of the steers selling for over $300 a head – a record price.

In 1929 with a population estimated at 100, Anarene never realized its potential. The Great Depression hit the town hard and in 1933 it was reported there were only 20 residents left. The town lost its post office and the railroad station in the mid 1950s.

Anarene Tidbit:

Anarene was the name they gave to Archer City as being the town in 'The Last Picture Show'. - Mike Price
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Historical Marker Text
Extinct Town of Anarene
Landowner Charles E. Graham (1872-1937) in 1908 granted the Wichita Falls and Southern Railroad a route across his property and platted a town at this site. Anarene was named for his wife Annie Lawrence Graham, daughter of pioneer cattleman J. Marion Keen. Graham built a hotel and obtained a post office, cattle pens, dipping vat and other facilities. The town schoolhouse was used for religious services. In 1921 oil was discovered nearby. A refinery was built in 1938. When oil production ceased and the trains stopped running in 1954, Anarene quickly declined.
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