Crane County, located at the western edge of the Edwards Plateau in Southwest Texas, is bounded on the north by Ector County, on the east by Upton County, on the south by Pecos County, and on the west by Ward County.
Cities, Towns & Communities
Crane – county seat | Tubbs Corner
Crane County, named for William Cary Crane, a president of Baylor University, was formed in 1887 from land previously assigned to Tom Green County the same year, but for many years the area’s scant rainfall deterred settlement. In 1890 only fifteen people lived in Crane County; as late as 1900 the United States census enumerated only fifty-one people and twelve ranches in the county. Almost 17,650 cattle and 3,750 sheep were counted that year.
The county seems to have experienced a brief burst of settlement during the first years of the twentieth century; Crane, the future county seat, became a post office in 1908, while census figures show that in 1910 there were seventy-one farms or ranches in the county, and that the population by that year had risen to 331. Almost no crop production was reported for the county in 1910, however, and in any case most of the new settlers had moved away by 1920, when only eight ranches, thirty-seven people, and about 4,700 cattle were reported. As late as 1918 the county had no roads, although the Texas and Pacific Railway crossed the northwest corner and the Panhandle and Santa Fe crossed the southern tip.
Crane County History 1922. This is one of the West Texas counties as yet without organized local government. It was created in 1887 from Tom Green County, and the Pecos River forms its southwestern boundary. In recent years a very limited amount of land has been brought under irrigation in the valley of that stream. Near the northwest corner of the county passes the line of the Texas & Pacific Railway, and for many years the stock interests have used some point on that railroad as their center and shipping point. In the southern part of the county is a salt lake, covering 2,000 acres, and salt has been manufactured there since the first white settlers occupied the county.
At the census of 1890 only fifteen inhabitants were enumerated ; in 1900 fifty-one ; in 1910, 331. The total area of the county is 561,920 acres, of which 310,362 acres were reported as occupied in farms, and 1,584 acres classified as “improved land.” The number of farms in 1910 were seventy-one, compared with twelve in 1900. The only important crops developed are kaffir corn and milo maize, to which 249 acres were planted in 1909; and corn with an acreage in 1909 of eighty-one. In 1920, 7,872 cattle were enumerated, and that is almost the only live stock found in the country. The total assessed wealth in Crane County in 1909 was $770,971; in 1913, $754,535 ; in 1920, $532,145.
Pioneer History of Crane County Before 1925, 2012 by Gordon L. Hooper. The book is the outcome of a lifelong love of history and the results of many years of research. Mr. Hooper tired of hearing There weren’t any people in Crane before the oil boom, and set out to prove the statement wrong. The material covers historical information of the Comanche War Trails, Chihuahua Trail out of Mexico. Gold hungry prospectors on their way to the gold fields in California. The Butterfield-Overland Mail, route which carried the mail from home. Goodnigh-Loving cattle drives and John Chisum Trail drive, which herded thousands of longhorn cattle to the forts on the western frontier, and the first tough cattlemen who, mixing herds on the open range, of miles of unfenced land. The second section covers the homesteaders in Crane County who endured the challenges and day to day dangers of living in the wild harsh country of West Texas. In-depth details of individuals, families, lives and evolving ranches, occurring after the open range ranches ended turning into fenced territory, becoming property owned by individuals. A treasure chest opened for history buffs, genealogists, with the history needed to educate the youth of today.
Crane, TX 31° 23′ 50.5032″ N, 102° 21′ 0.5112″ W