|Baby Head Cemetery
Photo courtesy Barclay
Gibson, December 2007
a Pecan Shell
One of the more
unusual place names in Texas, it stems from the grisly discovery of
an infants skull left on Babyhead Mountain by hostile Indians. (See
proposed alternative of
A town developed on the site and even had its own post office from
1879 to 1918. At one time the town hosted a county voting precinct
and up until the late 1960s, it still had a population. As late as
1990 twenty residents were counted but all thatís left today is the
cemetery and the historical marker.
| Historical Marker:
Baby Head Cemetery
According to local
oral tradition, the name "Babyhead" was given to the mountain in this
area in the 1850s, when a small child was killed by Indians and its
remains left on the mountain. A local creek also carried the name,
and a pioneer community founded in the 1870s became known as Baby
Head. The oldest documented grave here is that of another child, Jodie
May McKneely, who died on New Year's Day 1884. The cemetery is the
last physical reminder of the Baby Head community, which once boasted
numerous homes, farms, and businesses.
Forum - Naming
of Baby Head
Naming of Baby Head
There are two other accounts of the tragedy which occurred in Baby
1) It occurred in 1873 instead of the 1850s. The name of the victim
was Beth and her father was Bill Buster.
2) A group of wealthy men killed the girl and blamed it on the Indians,
hoping this would scare away future homesteaders and convince the
U.S. Calvary to help end the Comanche raids.
For a more detailed analysis of these two accounts, read this article
by Dale Fry
Skinner, January 16, 2017
Babyhead ... not buying the legend.
Read several articles on the Texas ghost town: BabyHead. The origin
of the name seems a bit far fetched. It may be true that murders occurred.
However to name a town after severed body parts is simply bad taste
& in this case - macabre! I.E: We don't find towns named "Indian Scalps".
There's a much more plausible explanation:
A large creek runs past the old ghost town all the way to the Llano
river. It is a well established principle that the source of a moving
body of water is called the "HEAD". As it turns out, that creek has
(2) heads. A greater that runs far to the northwest and a lesser (baby)
head that runs adjacent to where the "BabyHead road" currently runs.
So then - put yourself in the shoes of settlers in that time frame.
If you were describing the topography of the creek - you'd refer to
the "Baby Head" of it to draw the distinction to the location that
was settled/inhabited. Over a period of time - the location would
simply be referred to as "BabyHead".
See the [map below]. Which hypothesis
makes more sense?
I think that bad history needs a revision. - Cordially, Curtis Scott,
July 11, 2020
|Naming of "Baby
Click on image to enlarge
by Curtis Scott
|1907 postal map
showing Babyhead (northern Llano
From Texas state map #2090
Texas General Land Office
Escapes, in its purpose to preserve historic, endangered and vanishing
Texas, asks that anyone wishing to share their local history, stories,
landmarks and recent or vintage photos, please contact