Texas Midwest 2022 Visitors Guide

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STRAWN

Population 683 (page 89) Strawn was one of several towns developed in the early 1880’s when the T&P Railway began service in the area. The town was laid out on the land of two early ranchers, S.B. Strawn and J. N. Stuart. Stuart built the first house in 1875 which, along with Strawn’s house, still stands today. The population grew steadily but peaked in the 1920’s with first the Coal Boom and then the Oil Boom. Immigrants from Italy, Poland, Mexico, Austria/Hungry, Germany and many other countries were brought in to work the mines creating a diverse melting pot of nationalities and religions. The mines produced 1.6 million tons between 1910 and 1920; most of which was sold to railroads. For outdoor enthusiasts, several popular lakes, including beautiful Possum Kingdom, are less than a 30-minute drive away, as is public access to the Brazos River. In 2012, the TPWD purchased 5,000 acres west of Strawn surrounding Lake Tucker for the creation of a new state park. Palo Pinto Mountains State Park (Tentatively scheduled to open in 2023). Strawn Chamber of Commerce, 254-595-0197 strawnchamber@att.net ,

SWEETWATER

Population 10,681 Sweetwater, established in the 1870’s, was a Trading Post with the name derived from “Mobeetie”, the Kiowa word for “sweet water” to describe the water in a nearby creek. There is no indication that Sweetwater was an unruly community in early days. However, the most celebrated occasion of violence occurred because Sweetwater lacked a bank. It was rumored the saloon often held up to $20,000 in cash deposits left by residents. In February 1883, there was a raid on the saloon that resulted in the murder of the owners and the wounding of a bystander. Eleven of the seventeen murder indictments returned in 1881–83 arose from this saloon robbery attempt. The next month Thomas Trammell and others established a bank. Moving forward in time, the Army Air Force used Sweetwater’s airfield for training during World War II. In 1943 the Women’s Air Force Service Pilots (WASP) were trained there. Today Sweetwater is home of Avenger Field, where the National WASP WWII Museum is located along with a memorial to these daring ladies. Chamber of Commerce, 810 E. Broadway, 325235-5488, chamber@sweetwatertexas.org

Tye

Population 1,247 (page 90) Located at the intersection of the Missouri Pacific line, State Highway 84, and Farm Road 707 just west of Abilene on I-20, Tye was incorporated in 1954. Shortly after the TEBO railroad track was laid, a Methodist circuit rider, the Rev. John Tye, served as the first postmaster. In his honor the name was changed from TEBO to TYE. In 1882 Indian Creek near Tye offered a picturesque setting to those who came seeking a home. The area was ranch land with longhorn cattle, deer, and jackrabbits. There were well-populated prairie dog towns, roadrunners and rattlesnakes when the stouthearted pioneers came to settle. Indeed, the early settlers found a wild, regal beauty in spite of the wind, dust and drought. Water was almost as scarce as hen’s teeth, as an old timer would say. There has been growth in population, but several new businesses from small to larger corporations have located in Tye because the community works together. Tye Economic Development Corporation and Tye Industrial Development Corporation, 649 Scott St, 325-695-8253, tedco@cityoftyeedc.org

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