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Scurry County, Texas

SCURRY COUNTY "......Scurry County was established by the Texas legislature in 1876 from lands formerly assigned to Bexar County; in 1880 there were 102 residents, including eight blacks, living in the area. The county was attached to Mitchell County for judicial purposes until 1884, when it was organized. Snyder, the growing trading post, became a townsite in 1882 and the county seat in 1884. A. C. Wilmeth began publishing the county's first newspaper, the Scurry County Citizen, in the 1880s. By 1890 there were 184 farms and ranches, encompassing almost 142,000 acres, in the county, and its population had increased to 1,415. Ranching dominated the local economy; that year almost 23,000 cattle and 17,000 sheep were reported in the county. Crop farming was also beginning to be established by that time, as 822 acres were planted in corn and 246 acres were planted in wheat. The "Block 97 Controversy" kept ranchers and homesteaders aroused for years before the dispute was ettled by the legislature in 1899.

Scurry County (E­19) is at the base of the Llano Estacado qv in West Texas, bordered on the east by Fisher County, on the south by Mitchell County, on the west by Borden County, and on the north by Garza and Kent counties. The center of the county lies at 32°45' north latitude and 100°55' west longitude, ninety miles northwest of Abilene. Snyder, the county seat, is just south of the center of the county and sixty-three air miles northwest of Abilene. The area was named for William R. Scurry, a Confederate general.

Indian artifacts found in the area indicate that humans have lived there since as early as 1,000 B.C. In more modern times the Apaches dominated the area until the early eighteenth century, when they were displaced by Comanches and other groups. The Comanche war trail to Old Mexico crossed the county from its northeast to its northwest corner.

Buffalo hunter J. Wright Mooarqv began making excursions into the region in 1874, and by 1877 Mooar was said to have killed 20,000 buffaloqv on the plains. That year William H. Snyderqv opened a trading post to sell supplies to buffalo hunters in the area, and soon a small settlement of dugoutsqv and tents grew around Snyder's place. The first large ranch in the area was established in 1877 by Tom and Jim Nunn, who drove longhorns from South Texas to land along tributaries of the Clear Fork of the Brazos River. Ranchingqv soon became the major industry in the area......"

BIBLIOGRAPHY: Charles G. Anderson, Deep Creek Merchant: The Story of William Henry "Pete" Snyder (Snyder, Texas: Snyder Publishing, 1984). Charles G. Anderson, In Search of the Buffalo: The Story of J. Wright Mooar (Seagraves, Texas: Pioneer, 1974). Kathryn Cotten, Saga of Scurry (San Antonio: Naylor, 1957). Scurry County Historical Survey Committee, Historical Markers in Scurry County (Snyder, Texas, 1969). Hooper Shelton, comp., From Oil: History of Scurry County, Texas (Snyder?, Texas: Feather, 1973).

History and Landmark links | White Buffalo Park


SCURRY COUNTY MUSEUM - Rotating and permanent exhibits on Scurry County history. Gift shop with books on Scurry County. Located on Western Texas College grounds, 6200 College Avenue, Snyder Texas.

TOWLE MEMORIAL PARK - Popular municipal park with playgrounds, athletic fields, swimming pool, Texas 350.

Last Updated: 8 October, 2011