Ghost Towns of Texas (G-I)

Ghost Towns Of Texas, United States Ghost Towns

Gander Slu

County: Guadalupe
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Gansel

County: Concho
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Gay Hill

County: Washington
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Latitude / Longitude: 30°16’19″N 96°29’39″W
Elevation: 371 ft (113 m)
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Comments: Gay Hill is an unincorporated area and a ghost town in Washington County, Texas. Gay Hill is located on Farm to Market Road 390, twelve miles North-West of Brenham in Washington County.
Remains: The settlement was first known as the Chriesman Settlement, in honor of Horatio Chriesman (1797–1878). In 1839, the second oldest Presbyterian church in Texas was established here by Reverend Hugh Wilson (1794–1868). A year later, in 1840, the Republic of Texas established a post office and renamed it ‘Gay Hill’ in honor of Thomas Gay and William Carroll Jackson Hill, who owned the general store. A decade later, in 1854, a Mason lodge was formed here. Later, a Baptist church was also established.
Current Status: The town is now a ghost town. There are no stores or schools in town. The main industry is ranching. The old Gay Hill School building has been relocated to Old Baylor Park in Independence, Texas. The Red House is listed on the National Register of Historic Places listings in Washington County, Texas.
Remarks: The Glenblythe Plantation, owned by Scottish immigrant and nurseryman Thomas Affleck (1812-1868), was located in Gay Hill. He discovered the Old Gay Hill Red China rose, which is native to Gay Hill. From 1853 to 1888, Reverend James Weston Miller (1815–1888) served as the Director of the Live Oak Female Seminary, a defunct women’s college. In 1881, the Gulf, Colorado and Santa Fe Railway added a stop two miles away from Gay Hill. As a result, the town was moved, and the former location became known as Old Gay Hill. The railway made the cotton industry more efficient, and it became an important transportation hub for the South. However, shortly after World War II, the cotton industry declined and businesses started closing down. By 1971, most residents had moved to nearby Brenham.

Ghent

County: Cherokee
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Gilliland

County: Knox
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Girvin

County: Pecos
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Latitude / Longitude: 31° 3′ 47″ N, 102° 23′ 19″ W
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Comments: Girvin is an unincorporated community in Pecos County, Texas, United States. According to The Handbook of Texas, the community had an estimated population of 30 in 1963 and again in 2000. There is no 2010 census information available. The town is named for John H. Girvin, an area rancher. Girvin grew around a train stop on the Kansas City, Mexico and Orient Railway that served as a cattle shipping point. Other industries in the area such as oil, mining, and farming helped the town prosper.
Remains: In 1933, U.S. Route 67 bypassed Girvin, and eventually freight and passenger rail service to the town ended. The old railroad depot building was moved to the highway and became the since abandoned “Girvin Social Club” bar. The new town, also named Girvin, had a second life but is now too largely abandoned. There is an annual reunion of families from the area at the 1930s-era schoolhouse, which also serves as a meeting hall and voter precinct.
Current Status: Public education in Girvin is provided by the Iraan-Sheffield Independent School District.
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Glenrio

County: Deaf Smith
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Latitude / Longitude: 35° 10′ 44″ N, 103° 2′ 32″ W
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Comments: Glenrio, formerly Rock Island, is an unincorporated community in both Deaf Smith County, Texas, and Quay County, New Mexico, in the United States. Located on the former U.S. Route 66, the ghost town sits on the Texas–New Mexico state line. It includes the Glenrio Historic District which was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2007.
Remains: Originally a railroad town, the village was renamed from Rock Island to Glenrio by the Rock Island and Pacific Railroad in 1908 and began receiving motorists on the dusty Ozark Trail in 1917. Its original structures were adobe buildings. The circa-1910 Angel House was in New Mexico. The Ozark Trail was formed into U.S. Route 66 on November 11, 1926. By the 1930s, U.S. Route 66 in Texas was a paved two-lane road served locally by several filling stations, a restaurant, and a motel. The road was widened in the 1950s. A Texaco station (1950) and a diner (Brownlee Diner/Little Juarez Café, 1952) were constructed in Texas using the art moderne architectural style.
Current Status: The town consists of the remains of the courtyard motel and related Texas Longhorn Café and Phillips 66 service station, the post office, a few other buildings including the diner and adjacent Texaco service station, the old Route 66 roadbed, and the former roadbed of the Rock Island Railroad, whose tracks were removed in the 1980s. A few homes still exist in Glenrio; the Joseph Brownlee House and an office in the Texas Longhorn Motel were the last to be occupied.
Remarks: Portions of The Grapes of Wrath were filmed in Glenrio. An abandoned “Glenn Rio Motel” is depicted in the town of Radiator Springs in 2006’s animated film Cars, where the architectural design of Glenrio’s Little Juarez Café is used for a vacant, abandoned building which eventually becomes the Racing Museum.

Goforth

County: Hays
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Latitude / Longitude: 30°01’19″N 97°47’36″W
Elevation: 620 ft (190 m)
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Comments: Goforth is a ghost town in Hays County, Texas, United States.
Remains: The community was named for a businessman J. T. Goforth who owned land and was a merchant. Cotton was the main business. From 1890 to 1902, there was a post office. There was a school which closed in 1948.
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Goshen

County: Walker
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Latitude / Longitude: 30°37’20″N 95°43’17″W
Elevation: 341 ft (104 m)
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Comments: Goshen, sometimes called Hutcheson, is an Unincorporated community in Walker County, Texas, United States.
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Graball

County: Washington
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Grapetown

County: Gillespie
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Latitude / Longitude: 30°08’51″N 98°46’06″W
Elevation: 1,732 ft (528 m)
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Comments: Grapetown is an unincorporated farming and ranching community 9.5 miles (15.3 km) south of Fredericksburg, situated on South Grape Creek in Gillespie County, in the U.S. state of Texas. It is located on the old Pinta Trail. Grapetown is noted for being the site of the first annual Gillespie County Bundes Schützenfest. The school was designated a Recorded Texas Historic Landmark in 1984, Marker number 10048.
Remains: On December 15, 1847, a petition was submitted to create Gillespie County. In 1848, the legislature formed Gillespie County from Bexar and Travis counties. For more details on this topic, see List of Petitioners to Create Gillespie County, Texas. hile the signers were overwhelmingly German immigrants, names also on the petition were Castillo, Pena, Munos, and a handful of non-German Anglo names.
Current Status: A 920 feet (280 m) long railroad trestle was built, and the cost of the tunnel sent the railroad into receivership on October 28, 1914. It was sold under foreclosure on December 31, 1917 to Martin Carle who deeded the property to the Fredericksburg and Northern Railway which had been chartered on December 26 of that year. The train operated until July 27, 1942.
Remarks: Grapetown ranchers benefited from proximity to Kerrville, where they found a thriving market in selling their cattle to Charles Schreiner. Schreiner, a native of Riquewihr, France, had emigrated to the United States as a teenager with his family in 1852. In the late 1850s, Schreiner and his brother-in-law Caspar Real contracted to supply beef to the United States Army.

Grass Pond Colony

County: Wilson
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Latitude / Longitude: 29° 15′ 5″ N, 98° 7′ 46″ W
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Comments: Grass Pond Colony was located at the site of several large natural ponds which remain filled by water year-round due to natural springs, it is located in the northern part of Wilson County, Texas, U.S. about five miles south of Sutherland Springs. It’s located in Texas.
Remains: Due to the reliable source of water the site was occupied early on by Native Americans. The Grass Ponds were later part of a Colonial Spanish “Rancho” during the Spanish Colonial period. After the American Civil War several “Colonies” of freed slaves were established in the area, one of these was Grass Pond Colony. Grass Pond Colony was named for the large lilly pad filled ponds, located in the large natural grassy meadows nearby. In 1875, the community had a church and school built of hand-split logs and filled with handmade furniture made from logs.
Current Status: The first teacher at the school was August Harrison who was paid $40 a month. With the growth of nearby Floresville, La Vernia and Sutherland Springs, and after being bypassed by the railroad and major roads, the community declined until all that remains at the site today are the large lilly-pad filled ponds it was named for.
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Gray Mule

County: Floyd
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Graytown

County: Wilson
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Green Valley

County: Guadalupe
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Grit

County: Mason
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Latitude / Longitude: 30°47’00″N 99°19’12″W
Elevation: 1,716 ft (523 m)
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Comments: Grit is an unincorporated farming and ranching community established c. 1889 in Mason County, in the U.S. state of Texas. It is located on SH 29, 6 miles (9.7 km) northwest of Mason, near Honey Creek. Grit was centered on the cotton industry, and once had its own cotton gin. While never a large population, the community did have a school, store and church. The prevailing theory of the town’s name is that it reflects the quality of the area soil. Grit received a post office in 1901, which remained active until 1980.
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Gruene

County: Comal
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Latitude / Longitude: 29° 44′ 18″ N, 98° 6′ 14″ W
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Comments: Gruene (/’gri”n/ green) is a former town in Comal County in the U.S. state of Texas. Once a significant cotton-producing community along the Guadalupe River, the town has now shifted its economy to one supported primarily by tourism. Gruene is now a district within the city limits of New Braunfels, and much of it was listed in the National Register of Historic Places on April 21, 1975. It is part of the San Antonio-New Braunfels Metropolitan Area.
Remains: Arriving in Texas in the mid 1840s, German farmers became the first settlers of what is now known as Gruene, Texas. Ernst Gruene, a German immigrant, and his bride Antoinette, had reached the newly established city of New Braunfels in 1845, but acreage was scarce. Thus, Ernst and his two sons purchased land along the Guadalupe River, and Ernst built the first home in Gruene in early fachwerk , German Timber Framing house style.
Current Status: By 1900, Gruene was a prominent banking, ginning, and shipping center for area cotton farming. Though it never had a post office of its own, the community did possess two freight rail stations by the 1910s. In 1922, the original cotton gin burned and was replaced by a modern electric model down the road (now Adobe Verde). Gruene was decimated, however, by the boll weevil blight of the 1920s, and further doomed by the effects of the Great Depression. By 1930, the population had fallen to 75, and post World War II highway construction bypassed the town. By 1950, Gruene had become a Ghost town.
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Guadalupe City

County: Guadalupe
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Gulf

County: Matagorda
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Gunsight

County: Stephens
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Hackberry

County: Lavaca
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Comments: Hackberry (Lavaca County), Texas is an unincorporated area that that formerly held a distinct community in Lavaca County, Texas, United States. It was located along Farm Road 532 eleven miles northeast of Hallettsville.
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Hagerman

County: Grayson
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Hale City

County: Hale
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Latitude / Longitude: 34° 5′ 34″ N, 101° 52′ 20″ W
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Comments: Hale City is a ghost town in central Hale County, Texas, United States. It was located northwest of Hale Center, a city near Plainview, Texas.
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Hart Camp

County: Lamb
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Haslam

County: Shelby
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Hayrick

County: Coke
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Heckville

County: Lubbock
Zip Code: 79329
Latitude / Longitude: 33°45’17″N 101°39’55″W
Elevation: 3,245 ft (989 m)
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Established: 1948
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Comments: Heckville is an unincorporated community located on the high plains of the Llano Estacado about 16 mi (26 km) northeast of Lubbock or 7 mi (11 km) north of Idalou in northeastern Lubbock County, Texas. This small town was named after Henry Heck, who built a cotton gin to serve the community in 1948.
Remains: Heckville is located at the point where Farm to Market Road 400 intersects the tracks of the former Fort Worth and Denver South Plains Railway that extended from Estelline to Lubbock. Unfortunately, the BNSF Railway, which last owned and operated the former Fort Worth and Denver South Plains Railway, abandoned and permanently removed the tracks in 1989.
Current Status: Heckville has never been a large town: the community has never reported a population of more than twenty. Today, all that remains are rusting grain elevators, numerous large warehouses, the remnants of a cotton gin, an abandoned country store, and a large and still active egg farm operation that produces 180,000 eggs per day.
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Hedwigs Hill

County: Mason
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Latitude / Longitude: 30°39’57″N 99°06’43″W
Elevation: 1,286 ft (392 m)
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Comments: Hedwigs Hill, Texas is an unincorporated farming and ranching community, established in 1853 just off U.S. Highway 87, located 5 miles (8.0 km) south of Art in southern Mason County, Texas.
Remains: Hedwigs Hill was settled by German settlers Christopher Voges and Louis (Ludwig) Martin, who emigrated to Texas with the Adelsverein groups. Voges arrived at Galveston on January 2, 1846, on the Gesina originally destined to settle in Comal County. Martin disembarked at Galveston on November 23, 1844, from the Johann Detthard, and was with the first settlers of Fredericksburg. In 1853 the Martin family moved 10 miles (16 km) south of what is now Mason, on the banks of the Llano River. The settlement became known as Hedwigs Hill, thought to be named for Martin’s mother and daughter, both of whom shared the name Hedwig. John Kline was another early settler, who is thought to have built the dogtrot house later occupied by Louis Martin. In 1971, Martin’s home was moved to the National Ranching Heritage Center.
Current Status: The Hedwig population began a decline in the early 1900s, dwindling to a population of ten in the 1950s, where it remained in 2000.
Remarks: Louis Martin was the first postmaster of Hedwigs Hill in 1858, succeeded by D.B. Anderson in 1861. His nephew Charles Karl Martin became postmaster on August 21, 1861, after Texas had joined the Confederate States of America. Charles was re-appointed postmaster by the Union on April 10, 1866 to service the San Antonio-El Paso Mail. Conrad Gustavus became postmaster on November 23, 1866. The post office was discontinued March 17, 1868. Charles was again appointed postmaster to a re-established post office on May 18, 1874, a position he held until his 1879 death. His widow Anna Mebus Martin took over the postmaster position on December 9, 1879. John Keller became postmaster on June 14, 1899, and held the position until the post office was discontinued on April 15, 1907. Thereafter, the mail was directed to Mason.

Helena

County: Karnes
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Latitude / Longitude: 28° 57′ 14″ N, 97° 49′ 24″ W
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Comments: Helena is a ghost town in Texas, approximately 70 mi (110 km) southeast of San Antonio in Karnes County. The seat of Karnes County from 1854 to 1894, Helena was once known as the self-proclaimed “toughest town on earth” in the mid-19th century. It was named for the second wife of Lewis Owings, Helen Marr Swisher (1831–1910).
Remains: The town was the birthplace of the so-called “Helena Duel”, in which the left hands of two opponents are tied together with buckskin and each fighter is given a knife with a three-inch blade—too short to reach a vital organ or cause a single fatal stab. After the combatants are whirled around a few times, they slash away at each other until one bleeds to death from the accumulation of cuts and stabs. Crowds of spectators would view this gory, gruesome spectacle and even bet on the outcome.
Current Status: Helena is a ghost town allegedly because of the vendetta that Colonel William G. Butler (1831–1912) had against the town he blamed for the death of his son, Emmett Butler, who had been killed by a stray bullet from a saloon brawl on December 26, 1884. A few days later, Colonel Butler went to Helena with group of cowhands and demanded to know who had shot his son and found that none of the townspeople was willing to tell the truth. Enraged, Colonel Butler reportedly shouted: “All right! For that I’ll kill the town that killed my son!” Following through on his threat, Butler, a veteran of the American Civil War and a wealthy rancher, arranged for the tracks of the San Antonio and Aransas Pass Railway to be built 7 mi (11 km) away from Helena. Then, in a bitterly contested election in 1894 the county seat was moved from Helena to Karnes City. Helena quickly died.
Remarks: The popular character actor Jim Davis played the role of Colonel Butler in the 1969 episode “The Oldest Law” of the syndicated television series, Death Valley Days, hosted by Robert Taylor not long before Taylor’s own death. Tom Lowell (born 1941) played Emmett Butler; Stacy Harris, the corrupt Mayor Ackerson, and Tyler McVey, Parson Blake.

Helmic

County: Trinity
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Latitude / Longitude: 31° 10′ 51″ N, 94° 59′ 12″ W
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Comments: Helmic, Texas, also known as Alabama Station, is a rural community in Trinity County, Texas on FM 357 12 miles from Groveton. It was originally called Alabama Station, but the name was chaned to Helmic in 1910. The post office closed in 1933.
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Current Status: In 2000, the population was 86.
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Henry’s Chapel

County: Cherokee
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Hickory Flats

County: Bastrop
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Hide Town

County: Wheeler
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Hilda

County: Mason
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Latitude / Longitude: 30°35’13″N 99°06’52″W
Elevation: 1,491 ft (451 m)
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Comments: Hilda is an unincorporated farming and ranching community established c. 1852 in Mason County, in the U.S. state of Texas. It is located on RM 783, halfway between Mason and Doss. Hilda was founded by German immigrants settling in the Fisher-Miller Land Grant territory. Area residents were farmers and ranchers who traveled to Fredericksburg for their basic supplies, prior to the 1858 establishment of Fort Mason. Today, Hilda is sparsely populated, but still has an active church.
Remains: The Hilda Community United Methodist Church was begun as the Beaver Creek United Methodist Church by Reverend Charles Grote c.1851. He initially was called to minister in the communities begun along the Llano River by the Darmstadt Society of Forty: Bettina, Castell and Leiningen. The original services were held outdoors along Beaver Creek. A year earlier, Rev. Conrad Pluenneke had also come to the area to minister to local settlers. In absence of a structure, these ministers were circuit rider pastors. In 1859, August Engel became an additional circuit rider for the congregations. The area Methodists gradually began forming an area organization and drew up a charter. The first parsonage was built in 1861.
Current Status: Erection of a church building that also served as a school took place in 1880. The current existing church was constructed as a replacement in 1902. Hilda had a post office from 1901 until 1919, at which time the mail services were redirected to nearby Loyal Valley.
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Holt

County: San Saba
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Hot Springs

County: Brewster
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Huff

County: Archer
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Latitude / Longitude: 33°46’07″N 98°32’14″W
Elevation: 981 ft (299 m)
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Comments: Huff (also known as Hufftown, and later as Huff Community) is a Ghost town in northeastern Archer County, Texas, United States. It is part of the Wichita Falls, Texas Metropolitan Statistical Area. Huff lies adjacent to Lake Creek, 8 miles (13 km) south of Lakeside City, just east off of Texas State Highway 79.
Remains: Named for Charles C. Huff, an attorney for the Wichita Falls and Southern Railway (WF&SR). In 1908 the WF&SR founded the town site as a switching site. Next to the tracks the WF&SR built a giant concrete cistern that held a rail tank car-full of water that the railroad hauled in for the community’s source of fresh water.
Current Status: A post office operated at Huff from 1909 to 1913, and there was a blacksmith shop, a general store, and school. By 1936 there was only a school and some scattered dwellings. The town site became a local community center for area cattle ranchers, using the old school as a community center.
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Hughes

County: Irion
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Huron

County: Hill
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Ilka

County: Guadalupe
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Illinois Bend

County: Montague
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Latitude / Longitude: 33°52’54″N 97°29’14″W
Elevation: 797 ft (243 m)
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Comments: Illinois Bend is an unincorporated community on Farm to Market Road 677 twenty miles northeast of Montague in the extreme northeastern corner of Montague County, Texas, United States. The community, which initially was called Wardville, after local landowner C. M. Ward, was settled in 1862 by a small group of families who moved to Texas from Illinois. The name was changed to Illinois Bend in 1877, when a post office was located there.
Remains: Early settlers were plagued by their proximity to Oklahoma Territory or Indian Territory and the marauding Native Americans that often descended upon north central Texas to raid white settlements.
Current Status: In 1885 the settlement had a population of 300, two gristmills, a number of cotton gins, a school, and several churches. By 1910 the town had been bypassed by rail lines, and its population had fallen to 112. The population was sixty-eight by the late 1940s, when one business operated there. The community’s post office closed sometime after 1930. By the late 1960s, when the last population figures were reported for the community, only fifty-one persons lived in Illinois Bend.
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Independence

County: Washington
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Latitude / Longitude: 30° 19′ 10″ N, 96° 20′ 48″ W
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Comments: Independence is an unincorporated community in Washington County, Texas, United States. Located twelve miles northeast of Brenham, it was founded in 1835 in Austin’s colony of Anglo-Americans. It became a Baptist religious and educational center of the Republic of Texas. In 1845 it became the first site of Baylor University and the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor.
Remains: Independence was once a significant center for religion and education in the Republic of Texas. The year of the town’s founding (1835), Frances J. S. Trask of Gloucester, Massachusetts, started a boarding school for girls. In 1839 the Independence Baptist Church was organized, the fourth Missionary Baptist Church in Texas. It continues as an active congregation, the second-oldest one affiliated with the Baptist General Convention of Texas.
Current Status: When the Santa Fe Railroad wanted to establish a line through town, the city leaders refused to grant it a right-of-way. By the 1880s, most railroads bypassed the town, taking trade with them. As students found it difficult to get transportation to Independence, Baylor University officials decided in 1885 to move the institution to a more accessible location, Waco. The women’s college was moved to Belton, where it became known as the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor. These changes added to the long decline of Independence. By 1966 it had 200 residents, and by 1990 it had 140, qualifying as a rural settlement. The population was unchanged in 2000.
Remarks: The community has retained several significant historic structures and sites from its nineteenth-century peak. Its attractions include the Texas Baptist Historical Center; the home of Judge J.P. Coles, one of the Old Three Hundred of the Austin Colony; Baylor College Park; Old Independence Cemetery, a state historic site; and Houston-Lea Family Cemetery. The Margaret Houston House is on the National Register of Historic Places, as are the Seward Plantation and the Asa Hoxey House.

Indianola

County: Calhoun
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Latitude / Longitude: 28° 30′ 43″ N, 96° 29′ 15″ W
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Comments: Indianola is a ghost town located on Matagorda Bay in Calhoun County, Texas, United States. The community, once the county seat of Calhoun County, is a part of the Victoria, Texas, Metropolitan Statistical Area. In 1875, the city had a population of 5,000, but on September 15 of that year, a powerful hurricane struck, killing between 150 and 300 and almost entirely destroying the town. Indianola was rebuilt, only to be wiped out on August 19, 1886, by another intense hurricane, which was followed by a fire. Indianola was designated a Recorded Texas Historic Landmark in 1963, marker number 2642.
Remains: Prince Carl of Solms-Braunfels, representing the Adelsverein, selected Indian Point in December, 1844 as port of entry for the Verein colonists from Germany. Prince Solms renamed the port Carlshafen in honor of himself, Count Carl of Castell-Castell and Count Victor August of Leiningen-Westerburg-Alt-Leiningen whom Solms claimed had been christened Carl. Prince Solms’ choice of Carlshafen and its inadequate accommodations as a port of entry, as well as the isolated route to New Braunfels, was to keep the Germans from interacting with any Americans. In February 1845 Henry Francis Fisher conspired with Dr. F. Schubbert to coerce incoming immigrants to sign legal documents disassociating themselves from the Verein and to join Schubbert’s colony in Milam County.
Current Status: The town was rebuilt but events were repeated in 1886. The destruction served as an object lesson for many residents of Galveston, 100 miles up the Texas coast. However, their calls for a seawall to protect that city went unheeded, and Galveston nearly shared Indianola’s fate when the Galveston Hurricane of 1900 struck the island. A railroad was intended to connect the port of Indianola to San Antonio. After the two storms, discouraged investors abandoned the venture and made Galveston the port of choice. After Galveston’s hurricane, shipping traffic recentered over time to inland Houston.
Remarks: After the 1886 storm, the county seat was moved to Port Lavaca. On October 4, 1887, the post office in Indianola was permanently closed and the town declared “dead”. Today, almost nothing remains of the original Indianola, as, due to storm erosion, most of the site of the city is now under water. A granite marker was placed on the shore at the nearest point to the Indianola courthouse, now 300 feet (about 90 meters) away in Matagorda Bay. It reads, “Calhoun County Courthouse. Edward Beaumont, Architect 1859. During the Storms of 1875 and 1886, precious lives were saved within its walls of shell, concrete, and lime. Abandoned 1886.” The site is also home to a statue of René-Robert Cavelier, Sieur de La Salle.

Indio

County: Presidio
Zip Code: 78545, 78584
Latitude / Longitude: 26°32’56″N 99°5’45″W
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Comments: Indio is a census-designated place (CDP) in Starr County, Texas, United States. It is a new CDP formed from part of the Falcon Heights CDP prior to the 2010 census with a population of 50.
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Ireland

County: Coryell and Hamilton
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Iron Bridge

County: Gregg
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Islitas

County: Webb
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Latitude / Longitude: 27° 40′ 2″ N, 99° 39′ 11″ W
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Time Zone: Central (CST) (UTC-6)
Established: 1882
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Comments: Islitas is a ghost town in southwestern Webb County, Texas, United States. It was established as a railroad stop and coal shipping center on the Rio Grande and Pecos Valley Railroad in 1882. In 1914 Islitas had its peak population of 300.
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Current Status: After 1914 the local mines declined. In 1920 the last census report for the community showed 100 people.
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Izoro

County: Lampasas
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How Many Ghost Towns Are In Texas?