Photo Courtesy Fiddle Blue
a Pecan Shell
The Spanish explorer Gaspar Sosa is said to have visited
the area as early as 1590.
In 1849, the Army surveyed a road from San
Antonio to El Paso and they included
what is now Sheffield on their route because of the Pecos Spring and the Pecos
The first settler, a man named John Cannon moved into the
area and bought the spring. Another early settler was Will Sheffield. He had a
slight advantage in having the town named after him since he was the town's first
Six years into the new century, Sheffield had all
the amenities of a thriving town. The oil boom of the 20s changed the entire region
- including Sheffield - permanently. Sheffield didn't experience the type of lawlessness
of other oil boom towns like Ranger, Kilgore, Mexia or Freer.
On the map, Sheffield is tucked into the smallest little cranny available in Pecos
County like a spider in a huge room.
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doesn't have all the cactus|
older building in Sheffield|
on Hwy 290|
You can enter Sheffield a short 5 miles from I-10 or you can enter Sheffield after
a 20-mile scenic drive on Hwy 290 off I-10. We suggest the latter
if you're heading west.
290 Pecos River Bridge >
Highway 290 is a loop that lets you know you're not in East Texas (not that
there's anything wrong with being in East Texas). The road seems very nondescript
until you suddenly come to an overlook. Here is where the elevation drops dramatically
into the valley that once was the home for Fort
Lancaster. Picnic tables are arranged in a roadside park so you can take in
this great view. It's a good place to unwind after the long stretches of I-10.
Continue on - stopping to visit the Fort
if it's open and finally you'll pass an old iron bridge like they used to sell
miniatures of for model train layouts. Now you're coming into Sheffield.
Lancaster State Historic Site >
sudden drop in altitude on Highway 290|
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"This is another house my siblings and I lived in 1953 about 2
miles south of Sheffield. We rented it off of a man named H. C. Noelke. "
- Fiddle Blue, Photo Courtesy Fiddle Blue
former Pecos Hotel|
".. I have 6 brothers and 4 sisters. In 1952 my family
rented this hotel for $65.00 per month. We needed it with 11 kids...." -
Watch your step
TE Photo, 2000
motel in Sheffield|
Photo courtesy Patrick Cantrell, June 2006
We received a letter from Charles "Fiddle" Blue, whose daughter Charlotte sent
us the (now nearly famous) photos of the Oasis
Gas Station. Mr. Blue is a retired County Judge who now motorcycles around
West Texas and has recently acquired a digital camera. His letter provides the
identity of the building in the introductory photo of the Sheffield page.
Our thanks to Mr. Blue for his contribution and insight on Sheffield and
also to his daughter Charlotte for our introduction. - Editor, June 2001