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Mitchell County TX
Mitchell County
Colorado City Hotels

 

COLORADO CITY, TEXAS

"Mother City of West Texas"

Mitchell County Seat, Texas Panhandle / West Texas

3223'46"N 10051'44"W (32.396163, -100.862137)
I-20 and Hwys 208 and 163
On the Colorado River
63 miles West of Abilene
38 miles East of Big Spring
Population: 4,001 Est. (2016)
4,146 (2010) 4,281 (2000) 4,749 (1990)


Book Hotel Here > Colorado City Hotels
Colorado City, Texas, Second Street, 1917
Second Street in 1917
Courtesy rootsweb.com/ %7Etxpstcrd/

History in a Pecan Shell

Colorado City is the oldest established town between Weatherford and El Paso. The name comes from it's location on the Colorado River.
1880s: The Texas & Pacific Railroad arrives, the town becomes the county seat and gets a post office - all in 1881. "Pete" Snyder, namesake of the Scurry County seat does a brisk business in Colorado City. Throughout the 1880s Colorado City was a prosperous town - but it lost business to Abilene and San Angelo when the railroad reached those cities in 1887/88.
1890s: Salt mining was an economic factor
1900s: This decade brought a surge of settlers - increasing the population and creating a boom.
1910s: Electricity and water come to Colorado City and a setback from drought is experienced 1916 - 1918
1920s: The twenties were good everywhere and Colorado City was no exception. City Hall was built and streets paved
1930s: Oil discoveries in Mitchell and neighboring counties help ease The Great Depression - but for the most part the growth was stagnant
1959: Lake Colorado City and Champion Creek Reservoir were built

See "The Founding of Colorado City" Historical Marker

Texas - Colorado City Historical Marker
"The Founding of Colorado City" Historical Marker
Photo courtesy Barclay Gibson

The Founding of Colorado City

Founded, 1880, at the crossing of the Colorado River and Texas & Pacific Railroad right-of-way; central shipping point and supply depot for the sprawling cattle ranches of West Texas and New Mexico.

From 1880 (when A.W. Dunn opened his dirt-floor, tent-roof general store) to 1890 the boisterous cattle town garnered notoriety as well as fame.

The largest community between Fort Worth and El Paso, Colorado City had more millionaires than any other Texas town and the most saloons in the West. Law and order was housed in a dugout at the edge of town, where a company of Texas Rangers made all men check their guns. Modest, courageous Ranger Dick Ware was elected first sheriff in 1881.

Population soared from 700 to 5,000 in the first two years, as cowboys, cattlemen, merchants, and (as a visitor said) "any number of bummers", vied for space.

The first sermon was preached in a saloon and the town "jail" was a chain attached to a mesquite tree, but citizens could find beauty in the lantern-glow from dozens of tents in the center of town.

Although drouth and the passing of the open range soon diminished Colorado City's glory, its first decade won for it the epithet, "Mother City of West Texas".
1968

Colorado City Landmarks / Attractions
Colorado City, Texas - Mitchell County courthouse old photo
Mitchell County Courthouse
  • The Heart of West Texas Museum:
    Third Street and Locust St. Closed Mondays

  • Lake Colorado City State Park: 915/728-3931
    7 miles southwest of town off Highway 163
    4582 FM 2836 Colorado City TX 79512

  • Champion Creek Reservoir
    Texas 208, seven miles south of Colorado City on Champion Creek

    Book Hotel Here >
    Colorado City Hotels
  • Colorado City Tx Methodist Church
    Colorado City Methodist Church
    Photo courtesy Barclay Gibson, February 2007
    All Saints Episcopal Church , Colorado  City, Texas
    All Saints Episcopal Church
    Photo courtesy Barclay Gibson, 2005
    More Texas Churches
    Coca Cola sign, Colarado City, Texas
    Coca Cola sign in Colorado City
    Photo courtesy Barclay Gibson, 2005
    Colorado City Texas water towers
    Colorado City water towers
    Photo courtesy Barclay Gibson, February 2007
    More Texas Water Towers
    Baker Hotel sign,  Colorado City Texas
    Baker Hotel sign
    Photo courtesy Barclay Gibson, February 2007
    Baker Hotel, Colorado City Texas
    The closed Baker Hotel in Colorado City
    Photo courtesy Barclay Gibson, February 2007
    More Rooms with a Past
    Colorado City TX - Goodyear Ghost Sign
    Colorado City Goodyear Ghost Sign
    From Adventures with my 1972 Plymouth Cuda
    and 67 Ford Mustang Fastback

    by Jimmy Dobson


    More Texas Ghost Signs
    Colorado River High Water Mark

    "High Water Mark", Colorado, Texas
    Courtesy The Will Beauchamp Collection
    More Texas Bridges

    T & P depot, Colorado City, Texas
    T & P Depot in Colorado City
    Courtesy rootsweb.com/ %7Etxpstcrd/
    More Texas Depots

    Colorado City Chronicles

    The Horse Thief's Prayer by Mike Cox


    Colorado City Tourist Information
    Colorado City Chamber of Commerce: 325-728-3403
    157 W. 2nd o P.O. Box 242
    Colorado City, Texas 79512
    http://coloradocitychamberofcommerce.com/

    Colorado City, Texas Area Towns:
    Abilene | Big Spring
    See Mitchell County | Texas Panhandle | Central Texas North

    Book Hotel Here:
    Colorado City Hotels | More Hotels

    Texas Escapes, 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 us.

     


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