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Terry County TX
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Texas Ghost Town
Terry County, Panhandle / West Texas

33 10' 53" N, 102 16' 31" W (33.181389, -102.275278)

Highway 82 / 380
17 miles W of Brownfield the county seat
57 miles SW of Lubbock
Population: 24 est. (2000) 60 est. (1990)

Tokio Area HotelsBrownfield Hotels | Lubbock Hotels

former Tokio School, Texas
The former Tokio School.
Photo courtesy Jason Penney, June 2002

A ghost town in Terry County (sort of) between Big Spring and Lubbock. It's a little out of the way - which partially explains the population.

History in a Pecan Shell

Texas has two towns named Tokio (the now-antiquated spelling was correct on maps of the day). The other Tokio is now within the city limits of West, Texas in McLennan County.

This Tokio was granted a post office in 1912. The former postmistress, Mrs. H. L. Ware, is said to have named the town.

In 1929 Tokio had a population of only 15. Tokio kept its post office and it's name - throughout WWII. It record high population was in the 1940s with 125 people calling Tokio home. The population of 60 has been more or less constant since the 1950s.

Tokio School historical marker, Texas
Tokio School Historical Marker
14 miles W of Brownfield on US 380/82
Photo Courtesy Jason Penney
More Texas Schoolhouses

Historical Marker:

Tokio School

Early classes in the Tokio area were held in the ranch house of the J Cross Ranch near the turn of the century. In 1911, a school building was constructed near the center of town (about 300 feet N), and classes were relocated. Larger school buildings later were erected, once due to fire and twice due to changing space needs. The school facilities continued to serve the community's educational as well as religious and civic needs until 1941 when Tokio School was consolidated with the Brownfield Independent School District.

Tokio, Texas - Post Office info
Tokio, Texas - September 2, 1945 postmark
Cover canceled with Tokio, TX Sept. 2, 1945 postmarkan
"An interesting cover postmarked on the day of the signing of the Japanese surrender aboard the USS Missouri in Tokyo Bay. The name connection was too much for one patriotic American to resist." - JG

Courtesy The John J. Germann Collection

Tokio, Texas Forum

  • Subject: Tokio, Texas
    While reading about Tokio, I noticed some conflict of information concerning the closing of the school. I was supposed to begin school at Tokio in September of 1946, but the school closed at the end of the school year 1945-1946. As a result my mother almost cried because I had to ride the school bus the longer distance to the Gomez, Texas, school instead of the two miles to Tokio. (You remember things like your mother being upset when you are young.) Anyway, that is what I remember. - Thanks, Dennis Richardson, March 05, 2011

  • The Marble Champ of Tokio, Texas
    I was born in 1933 and I started to school in Tokio in 1939. We then moved to Wellman and in 1942, we moved back to Tokio. We lived about 2 miles east of town. I went to school there for 2 more years ( 1942 and 1943 ) and then my parents transferred me to Plains in January of 1944. Tokio consolidated with Brownfield. Grades 1 through 8 went to Tokio and grades 9 through 12 went to Brownfield. I don't know why the [historical marker] is not right, but I know what I am telling you is correct.

    When I went to school at Tokio, marbles was popular game for kids to play. I am bragging, but I was the BEST marble player around. So much for that. Ha Ha. I see where my cousin LeRoyce has sent you a message. He is absolutely correct in his statements. He told about one person riding a horse to school. The name of the person was Roland Pair. He and his brother James would also bring an old donkey to school for people to ride. If you pulled on the hair of the donkey, he would buck. It's real hard to ride a donkey when he bucks, but it was fun. THOSE WERE THE GOOD OLD DAYS. - G.W. Brantley, Buckscratc@aol.com, June 12, 2007

  • Subject: Tokio Schooling
    The Tokio school was not shut down in 1941 (as stated in the historical marker). There are a lot of people that went to school at Tokio during that time frame (30s - 40s). In fact one of them rode a horse to school part of the time and tied it in the outhouse.

    I was born in 1935 and started school at Tokio in 1941. I went through 1st grade there 1941-1942 and then 2nd and third grade at Plains in Yoakum County. I went through the 4th grade 1944-1945 at Tokio and then 5th & 6th grade at Gomez in Terry County. I went through the 7th grade at Brownfield, Terry County and finished the rest of my schooling at Plains in Yoakum County.

    Tokio just had 1st through 4th grades. Gomez had grades 1st through 6th, then you had to go to Brownfield.

    We still lived at Tokio but all our friends went to Plains because they had moved the Plains ISD from the county line two miles east to Tokio. We lived 2 miles east of Tokio. Our folks had to pay the state fee the first year for us to transfer after that the state payed the transfer fee. Our folks took us to Tokio to catch the school bus. Back then they had a mail car that ran from Brownfield to over into New Mexico. The car was a limousine that also carried passengers. We rode home in the mail car from Plains in the afternoon. - LeRoyce, Gorman, Texas, March 26, 2007

  • TX Terry County 1940s Map
    Terry County 1940s map showing Tokio, W of Brownfield,
    near Yoakum County line
    From Texas state map #4335
    Courtesy Texas General Land Office

    Take a road trip
    Tokio, Texas Nearby Towns:
    Brownfield the county seat
    See Terry County | Yoakum County

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