|The remains of
the 1911 Upton County Courthouse in Upland. On private land. Pieces
of the old jail still stands.
Photo courtesy Barclay
a Pecan Shell
The first county
seat of Upton County
tried its best to comply with state law and located very near the
county’s geographic center. It was granted a post office in 1907 and
was platted the following year by Henry Halff. Upland was officially
declared the county seat in May of 1910.
With a centered county seat, a small but growing population, and even
a newspaper, Upland’s future looked bright despite a severe lack of
water and poor soil. Residents held out against nature, but it was
progress that doomed the town.
Upland joined the long list of ghost towns that were killed by being
bypassed by the railroad. The year was 1911 and the population of
Upland relocated to Rankin, even going
so far as to move the hotel there in 1912. The newspaper moved to
Rankin as well and although the post
office held out for a few more years, it closed in 1918.
Today there is the historic marker in the Upton County Courthouse
to serve as Upland’s tombstone. The name still appears on old maps
and perhaps some faded postmarks on brittle envelopes in distant trunks.
On Courthouse Lawn,
corner of 10th and Rankin St.
Photo courtesy Terry
Jeanson, February 2013
Upton County Seat
the town of Upland (10 miles N) was intended as a station on the rail
line from St. Louis to Chihuahua, Mexico. It was also located near
the stage route of the Butterfield mail line. Henry Halff and his
son platted the townsite in 1908 and a school opened the same year.
In 1910 Upland was named the first county seat and a stone courthouse
was constructed later. By passed by new rail lines and suffering from
a severe drought, the town declined. Homes and buildings were moved
here by 1921 when Rankin
became the new seat of government.
County map showing Upland and Rankin
From Texas state map #10749
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