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GROOM, TEXAS

Carson County, Texas Panhandle
Interstate 40 (Old Route 66)
FM 295
42 miles E of Amarillo
30 miles W of McLean

Population: 587 (2000)

Where to Stay - Groom, Texas Area Hotels
Amarillo Hotels

Cross at Groom Texas Old Route 66
Photo courtesy Barclay Gibson, December 2008
The Cross at Groom
Groom's unique roadside attraction

History in a Pecan Shell

The Man:
The town was named for "Colonel" B. B. Groom (1812-1906), an English-born cattleman who imported shorthorn and Angus cattle. Groom, who had a substantial estate in Kentucky, lost most of his fortune and by 1882, as a widower in his 70's, he was hired to be general manager for the Francklyn Land and Cattle Company.

To his credit, Groom was the first to hire well-drillers to provide water for the ranch's cattle, however, his enthusiastic acquisition of land for the Francklyn Company caused its bankruptcy (and subsequent reorganization as the White Deer Lands Trust) in 1886.

Groom, with his son Harry, became managers for the Mortimer Land Company of Chicago. These leased holdings in SE Gray County were for years known as "the Groom pasture." Colonel Groom entertained guests at this well-tended ranch until the manager of the White Deer Lands refused to renew the lease. Son Harry left for El Paso, where he eventually became president of the American Livestock Association and Colonel Groom left Texas, eventually returning to England, where he died in 1906.

The Town:
In 1902 the town of Groom was platted to be on the approaching Chicago, Rock Island and Gulf Railway. A store / post office was established that same year.

By 1906, the town was thriving with a bank, hotel, lumberyard, school, barber and several stores. Groom suffered one fire in 1912 and another in 1915.

In 1928 the town's infrastructure was installed and the main street was paved.

Populations of Groom:
1911 - 250
1931 - 564
1972 - 808
1984 - 736
1990 - 613

The Attraction: The Cross at Groom >

Groom Texas cross
The Cross
Along the highway in Groom, this cross, reputed to be the 2nd largest in the Western Hemisphere, stands tall over the Texas plains.
Photo courtesy
Noel Kerns
Resurrecting the Ghost of Route 66 -
From Shamrock to Amarillo, Texas
>

Where to Stay - Groom Area Hotels
Amarillo Hotels
Groom Texas -  Welcome Sign
Welcome To Groom, Texas
Photo courtesy Barclay Gibson, December 2008
Groom Tx - Tin Man Water Tower
Groom Water Tower
Photo courtesy Barclay Gibson, December 2008
More Texas Water Towers
Groom Tx -  Grain Elevators
Photo courtesy Barclay Gibson, December 2008
Groom Tx -  Grain Elevators
Photo courtesy Barclay Gibson, December 2008
More Texas Grain Elevators
Groom Tx -  Motel sign
Motel - Two Blocks
Photo courtesy Barclay Gibson, December 2008
Groom Tx -  Route 66 Steakhouse
Route 66 Steakhouse
Photo courtesy Barclay Gibson, December 2008
Groom, Texas Area Hotels
Amarillo Hotels

Texas Escapes, 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, please contact us.

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This page last modified: April 9, 2011