Latitude / Longitude:
1,562 ft (476 m)
Central (CST) (UTC-6)
Pontotoc is an unincorporated community on Pontotoc Creek, in northeastern Mason County, Texas, United States. The community is located at the junction of State Highway 71 and Ranch to Market Road 501.
M. Robert Kidd, proprietor of the first general store and originally from Pontotoc, Mississippi, is said to have given the community and the creek their names. In 1859, Benjamin J. Willis was one of the first settlers in this community that was historically a junction of roads leading to San Saba from Fort Mason and from Llano. A small number of other families arrived in the same time period, establishing the community by 1878. Pontotoc included a hotel, general stores, mills, and businesses related to the horse industry. Agriculture products, cotton and pecans, helped support a community economy that also included wool and cattle.
Pontotoc had a local newspaper in 1906, and received its first telephone in 1914. A mica mining operation was begun in 1924. In 1941, Pontotoc had seven businesses. In 1947, a fire that began in the local theater swept through the town. Some of the structures were rebuilt, but the burned-out shells of the others stand today. Now, Pontotoc is a rural community with a small population.
In 1972, Recorded Texas Historic Landmark number 11294 was designated to acknowledge the 1883 establishment of the Pontotoc and San Fernando Academy. At its peak, the school had a student body enrollment of 200 for generalized education, or for achievement of teaching certificates. Principals were K. T. Hamilton and W. C. Roaten. With so much of the population decimated by the typhoid epidemic, the school went under in 1889. It was sold to the Pontotoc public school system, which used the academy as a public school until 1927. The ruins of the academy collapsed into rubble during a storm in 2016 The closing of the academy affected the local economy and was a factor in the decline of the population.