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An Essay About Lipscomb

In 1845 Texas became a part of the United States. Many people came to Texas because of its beauty and abundant natural resources. One man said that it was the most beautiful place he had seen on earth. It was during the last half of the century that many of the ancestors of Lipscomb came here to settle. Times were hard, but they never gave up.

Lipscomb County was created from Bexar District in 1876. It was the northeast county of the Texas Panhandle bounded on the north by No Man’s Land and on the east by Indian Territory.

It was the best watered and timbered county in the area. Wolf Creek runs through the center part entering on the west. The Wolf is a broad and sandy stream. Buffalo, Sand, Plum, Cottonwood, Willow, Canyon and Camp Creeks empty into Wolf from the south.

Lipscomb County was named for Abner S. Lipscomb, Secretary of State of the Republic of Texas.

In Lipscomb County being subdivision No. 1 of Section # 602 Block # 43 the town of Lipscomb begins. At a large earth mound in the southwest corner of Section # 602, then north 950 varas to a point in the bed of Wolf Creek. Then east 950 varas to a stone set in the ground on a sand hill 68 varas south of the creek. Then south 950 varas to a stone set in the ground in the center of the south line of Section # 602, then west 950 varas to place of beginning.

Many ranchers came to Lipscomb County. In 1884 the 7K Cattle Company came to the present Lipscomb site. The headquarters was located west of town on the Hamker place. One camp was located where Tom Hausler now lives an another southwest of here, now known as the Farnsworth place. Also there was one here on the Douglas place run by Mer Biggers. John Douglas took over when Biggers shot and killed one of his drunken cowboys and had to leave the country. The dead cowboy was the first person buried in the Lipscomb Cemetery.

In 1887 A. S. Spiller laid out the town site of Lipscomb and build the house that Earl Paine lives in now. Part of it was brought from Tim City, Texas.

J. W. Arthur bought the above described land in 1887. It was surveyed into blocks, lots, streets, and alleys and designated as a town site to be known as the town of Lipscomb.

On January 20, 1888 J. W. Arthur sold lots # 15, 16, 17 in Block 1 to C. P. Walker for $1500.00.

By 1910 Lipscomb was a pretty big town. Streets were dirt streets bordered by sagebrush. It had two general stores, one operated by Wheat and Bran, the other by T. L. Shahan and W. K. Barton. There were two hotels, one owned by Mr. Bellow and one by Mr. Theisen, called the "Gilbert House". It was moved here in 1887 before there was a town. It was moved from the Box T Ranch or Old Dominion, a ghost town. The first church building was where it is now located and the first school was held in the building. The first school teacher was Mrs. Mary McClure. There was also a pool hall, one boot and shoe shop, a saloon, called the Alamo owned by Mr. McSpadden, a news paper owned by W. E. Merydith named the "Lipscomb Limelight", a telephone office and one livery barn run by Mr. Grissom. There were two blacksmith shops, one owned by Mr. Evens and the other owned by Mr. Hurhley. It was just northeast of our present grocery store. There was one large lumber yard owned by W. E. Merydith and two banks, named Bank of Lipscomb and Lipscomb State Bank. The first post office was located just north of the church building and was run by Miss Ida Tucker. It was later taken over by Mrs. Mary Parker. There were two doctors – Dr. Newland and Dr. Guthery. They made all their calls miles around on horse back or in a buggy. There was the Lloyd’s Drug and the Peoples Drug operated by Ethyl and Earl Paine. The first courthouse was north of the present one. It was a small, one-story, sod building. The steps are still there. The present courthouse was build in 1916.

As years went by most of the buildings burned down and were never replaced. The church building, one bank building (now Turner’s Store), and part of the Theisen Hotel are still here. The hotel has had the top story removed and is now the Louise Mingus home as it was owned by her parents. The new school was built and finished in 1923 after the old one was closed because of the flu. The present jail was built in 1919 and still in use. On its walls can still be seen some dates and writings of the prisoners through the years.

There are now about 80 people in Lipscomb. Although the history of this town has never been written, the old buildings and souvenirs that have been found are a history in themselves.

Sheriffs of Lipscomb
S. Y. Cupp 1887-1892
A. F. Maltsberger 1892-1894
Charles A. Fox 1894-1902
James A. Black 1902-1909
B. L. Millhollen 1909-1914
Bill Hale 1914-1920
Rudolph Geottsche 1920-1922
E. B. Roberts 1922-1934
J. E. Shahan 1935-1942
1945-1947
E. J. Tarbox 1943-1944
1947-1950
W. E. Fitzgerald 1961-1963
Basil Duke Jr. 1954-He is still the sheriff.

Officials
Present Judge – E. J. Tarbox
First Judge – Tom Connell
Present Treasurer – Louise Mingus
First Treasurer – Perry Rodkey
Present Clerk – Lena Glasgow
First Clerk – O. H. Button

Written By:
Sixth Grade
Lance Bussard
Norman Koch
Fourth Grade
Barbara Fry
Byron Mingus
Freddie Habekott
Teacher: Mrs. Darlene McMillion

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This page was last updated August 29, 2003.