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Rabb Switch, Texas

Rabb Switch is located on U.S. Highway 90A five miles east of Hallettsville in northern Lavaca County.

History

Rabb Switch. Edward M. Rabb (1855-1908) a native of La Grange, Fayette County, Texas, was the son of William and Prudence Smalley Rabb. In the 1880s Dr. Edward M. Rabb settled in this area and purchased 2089 acres of land from S. W. Campbell. At his death, Dr. Rabb left a will with instructions calling for a wood and water switch to serve the railroad to be built on a portion of his land. The San Antonio and Aransas Pass Railroad was built across the Navidad River in 1887. The switch was constructed and local residents cut and loaded firewood for shipment to Houston. The land that was cleared of firewood was used to farm cotton and corn, the primary source of income for farmers in the area. Two stores opened at Rabb Switch, and a school built in the 1800s was moved to the community in 1919 and served 30-35 students. The railroad ceased operations during the 1950s, at the same time that U. S. Highway 90-A was improved. When the school was closed in 1953, students were transferred five miles west to the Hallettsville Independent School District, and the population declined thereafter as businesses closed. - Historical Marker Text.  Marker erected 1997.  Located on US 90A, 5 mi. E of Hallettsville.

The land for Rabb Switch was originally granted to John Morris, a Methodist circuit rider. Dr. Edward M. Rabb, settled in the area during the 1880s. When the Texas and New Orleans Railroad crossed the Navidad River in 1918, a wood and water switch was built on his land. Two stores opened at the site, and a school built in the 1800s was moved to the community in 1919; at one time it had thirty to thirty-five students. Local residents cut and loaded firewood for shipment to Houston. The railroad ceased operations during the 1950s, at the same time that U.S. 90-A was improved. When the school was closed in 1953, students went to the Hallettsville Independent School District, and the population declined thereafter as businesses closed. During the 1980s two businesses were again established, and local residents petitioned the highway department for recognition on maps and for signs verifying their status as a community. Source: Handbook of Texas Online.

Location

29° 27' 15.084" N, 96° 51' 18.828" W