Look Who's Talking about Texas History

Davick Services recommends the Facebook Group "West Texas History & Memories" for history, famous people, old photos, stories, unclaimed estates and genealogy of the Western Half of Texas . . . Check it out and join the conversation

Books and Articles About Ector County Texas

Favorite Books, Authors and Articles about Ector County People, Places and Events. Here's our list of books and articles about people and places in Odessa, No Trees, Goldsmith, Gardendale and West Odessa.


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Drug Lord: The Life & Death of a Mexican Kingpin-A True Story

"It sounded so easy! It was just a matter of bringing a stash back to Odessa after a week-end visit to relatives in Ojiinaga. One day Pablo drove down to Ojiinaga with the intention of smuggling drugs back into the United States. He had never smuggled anything before. It was May 28, 1968. While Pablo was being readied in Ojiinaga with the heroin . . .. . . " Read more Look inside

Barbara Payton - A Life in PicturesBarbara Payton - A Life in Pictures

"Author John O’Dowd revisits the life of the late Hollywood actress from Odessa Texas. Barbara Payton: A Life in Pictures is an image driven follow-up to his first book on Barbara’s life and times, Kiss Tomorrow Goodbye: The Barbara Payton Story. The project contains over 1,000 photos and 550 pages..." . . . Read more

The Great Plains during World War IIThe Great Plains during World War II

Emphasizing the region’s social and economic history, The Great Plains during World War II is the first book to examine the effects of the war on the region and the responses of its residents.

"As early as May 1940 law enforcement near Odessa, Texas, had to rescue more than fifty members of the Jehovah's witnesses from a ranch house where they they had fled from an angry mob because they " . . . Read more Look inside

Washed in the BloodWashed in the Blood

Washed in the Blood is a page-turning read about the early 1960s in Odessa, Texas--during its rowdy oil boom days when violence often rode the range.  It is at once an examination of local mores and foibles, piety and hypocrisy and an inside-look at the famed ‘Kiss and Kill’ murder of a 17-year old would-be actress, Betty Jean Williams, whose ghost is said to haunt the Odessa High School campus to this very day.  And it is a courtroom saga starring the late trial super-lawyer, Warren Burnett . . .  Read more  

Texas CemeteriesTexas Cemeteries: The Resting Places of Famous, Infamous, and Just Plain Interesting Texans

Winner, Journalistic Achievement Award, Texas Historical Foundation, 2004

"Alfred M. Wilson was a 1967 graduate of Odessa High School in Odessa and entered the military service in Abilene, Texas. Private First Class Wilson was assigned to the Ninth Marines, Third Marine Division, in Quang Tri Province, Vietnam, on March 3, 1969 . . ."  Read more Look inside

Voices from the Heartland: Volume II

Found inside: I had left my most recent abusive relationship a year before, one that broke me mentally and physically. After staying nine months with my mother and her third husband, I found a job and moved us out on our own. my son and I lived in the projects in Odessa, Texas, because that's all I could afford on my minimum-wage part-time job. . . .Read more Look inside

The Last of The Old-Time Cowboys

Working cowboys live on as genuine legends who rode through a golden moment in American history. In the 1980s historian/ author Patrick Dearen went looking for the last of these fading icons.

Found Inside: William Earnest Broughton was born May 21, 1901 in Mitchell County, where his father ranched. He took up cowboying as a youngster on his father's ten-section spread near Gomez in Terry County. By age sixteen he ... Finally pulling off his leggings, he pinned on a badge in 1948 and served eight years as Ector County sheriff . . .  Read more

Oil Field Child

by Estha Briscoe Stowe

"The boomtown lifestyle of which Mrs. Stowe tells is long gone. She realized by the late 1930s, when she was a young woman living and working in Odessa, that this unique experience had already passed into history. for the most part it is unlamented, for it was undeniably hard. But it had compensations which shine forth in this book, chief of them a strong sense of fellowship and generosity among those people who endured it together . . ."  Look inside

Blood Stripes: The Grunt's View of the War in Iraq

Earlier that same year, Daniel Amaya from Odessa, Texas, also signed up for security forces. Daniel Amaya was a blend of Jon Stewart, Toby Keith, and John Wayne. Tanned and muscular, Dan, the family prankster, stood three inches over six feet. He had sandy hair and loved to make others smile. Called "magnetic," "spiritual," and "a natural leader" by his peers, Dan the Man spun off wisecracks and one-liners with balanced, relaxed gestures and classic how-ya'll doin' Texas facial expressions. ... Read more Look inside

A West Texas Soapbox

by Jim Sanderson

Whether sprawled on barstools or preaching from pulpits, people need to make sense of their world, and in Jim Sanderson’s world of West Texas, pulpits and barstools are where many of them do so. Sanderson himself stood for many years at a podium, teaching at a community college in Odessa, Texas. There, tired of academic papers and sometimes losing the distinction between fiction and nonfiction, he turned to the world around him to figure out the meaning . . .  Read more Look inside

Hayden Fry: A High Porch Picnic

A "high porch picnic" is a Texas expression for "an exceptionally good time" During Hayden Fry's glorious career as one of college football's most unique coaches, that's a good way to describe his life. Ranked 10th on the all-time collegiate list for Division 1 victories, Fry successfully combined his football coaching savy with a down-home charm to make him one of the game's most colorful personalities. Hayden Fry tells of his childhood days in Odessa . . . Read more  . . . for more like this see Stories About Texas Football - County by Countyl  

The Secret of Mojo: The Story of the Odessa, Texas, Permian High School Football Team

An insightful documentary of how the Permian High School team of Odessa developed into perennial state champions in the super-competitive state of Texas.
"The Secret of Mojo" lays bare Permian's secrets in becoming the winningest 5A-football program in the Modern Era of Texas High School Football, garnering national recognition in the process . . . Read more . . . . see also Texas Football Stories - County by County

Spirits of the Border V: The History and Mystery of the Lone Star State


According to this book of haunted places in Texas, Odessa is home to 3 mysterious and haunted places including Odessa High School, Ector Jr. High and an old hospital on the west side of town that has a very noticeable Spanish design. " a number of the patients confined in this Asylum killed themselves in this place and it been said that at late at night their sprits still wander the hallways looking for their doctor . . .  Check it out

See Also Mysterious Texas

Not far from Dryden: A Collection of Columns

Charlena Chandler has received positive feedback since her first opinion column appeared almost 20 years ago. Her topics range far and wide. Ranch life provides a background for subjects such as growing up on the Pecos River, of eating goat meat in Peru, of hanging clothes on the line to dry, and of remembering her grandmother's macaroni and cheese ... Today she writes regularly for the Odessa American in Odessa, Texas, with a circulation that covers the vast Trans-Pecos area of the Chihuhuan Desert . . . Read more

Folklore in Motion: Texas Travel Lore

"That railroad crew was lucky, judging by the oft-told tale of the amateur cowboy cook. A version I picked up from a contestant at a rodeo in Odessa, Texas, in 1960 tells of the outfit whose cook had been run off by the Sheriff, and no replacement was at hand. So, the foreman had the hands draw straws, and the short straw-drawer was elected cook, to serve 'til somebody complained. Well, nobody complained for a good while, and Cosi wasn't too happy in his job---so he started ..." Read more Look inside

Murder In Odessa

In the oil town of Odessa, Texas, Calhoun T. Banks just wants to mind his own business and drill for black gold. But after a night out at Mickey's bar, he discovers a dead body in the bed of his pickup truck. . . and himself being framed for murder! On the run with the entire police force of Odessa and Midland searching for him . . . Read more

Friday Night Lights, 25th Anniversary Edition: A Town, a Team, and a Dream

Return once again to the timeless account of the Permian Panthers of Odessa -- the winningest high-school football team in Texas history. Socially and racially divided, Odessa isn't known to be a place big on dreams, but every Friday night from September to December, when the Panthers play football, dreams can come true. With frankness and compassion, Pulitzer Prize winner H. G. Bissinger unforgettably captures a season in the life of Odessa and shows . . . Read more Look inside

The City Moves West: Economic and Industrial Growth in Central West Texas

"In 1887 the population of Ector County was 126, and two years later the business section of Odessa was comprised of Mudgett's General Store, a second store built by Nobles and Wyatt, and a hotel  operated by R. W. Rathburn consisting of a small..." Robert L. Martin traces the economic development of six major towns in the area, all with over 10,000 residents in 1960: Lamesa, Snyder, Sweetwater, Big Spring, Midland, and Odessa. Read more Look inside

Odessa 100: An Informal History

by Odessa Exchange Club... recommended for this list by Kent Alexander . . . Read more

Outlandish, Audacious, Outstanding, Outrageous, Obstreperous, Odessa!

Odessa has a rip roaring history that was always boom and bust. But we looked at both sides of the coin — the old days and today, when Odessa has many cultural institutions. Thirty or 40 years ago, it was the service part of the oil industry while Midland was the headquarters with many oil companies... Read more

Valentine: A Novel

"...somewhere in the oil patch, too far from town to see the water tank with her town's name painted on the side, Odessa, or the bank building, or the cooling towers at the petrochemical plant where her mother works..." Read more Look inside

Take Two Aspirins, But Don't Call Me in the Morning

In response to the stifling socialism of the Canadian health care system and the intolerably long Canadian winters, Dr. Mel Genraich made a life-altering decision: leave Toronto for good. "Having already secured a rental duplex in Odessa, only thirty miles away, it was easy for her to commute, and be with me when I was on call at the hospital. The rental in Odessa was a cozy, perfect little place for the two of us, and we loved it. We wanted to remain there indefinably..." Read more Look inside

Texas Literary Outlaws: Six Writers in the Sixties and Beyond

After seven months at KCRS, the Odessa American offered Larry King a job as a reporter at $100 per week, which would make the twenty-three-year-old one of the highest-paid newsmen in West Texas... "King hopped into Gents car. He quickly realized that he had made a big mistake. Gent who had been awake for several days, outfitted himself with a large quantity and marijuana and cocaine for the drive. He also kept two pistols on the front seat next to him in case of trouble...." Read more Look inside

Pioneer History Of Crane County Before 1925

by Gordon L. Hooper

"I soon discovered that as a child growing up on a cattle ranch near Odessa, Texas, that I had known a lot of those Crane County homesteaders, and decided to write a brief history about each of them. Some of their stories are from... Read more Look inside

The True Story of the Sharpest Ever-: Michael Eugene Sharp

The true story of the investigation and capture of a serial killer in a small West Texas town, including details of the killer's arrest and execution. "Mike Evans becomes burned out with law enforcement in the big city. He transfers to a small oil dependent community in Ector County Texas, where law-abiding citizens dominate the town. The biggest crimes in No Trees range from an occasional DWI to shoplifting" . . . Look inside

Roughnecks, Drillers, and Tool Pushers: Thirty-three Years in the Oil Fields

Oil, the black gold of Texas, has given rise to many a myth. Oil could turn a man overnight into a millionaire—and did, for some.

"Our rig moved into the Andector field just northeast of Goldsmith, Texas, on a Phillips Petroleum Company location. It was only 25 miles from Odessa, and the road was paved, a real luxury ride after Big Lake's dusty dirt roads. I got some good . . . " Read more Look inside

Just the Way You Are

"How could I not want to love a woman who looked like, and acted like, played like, and had the same attitude like me, was just as sensitive and loved hard, just like all the women who raised me? Doris Faye, Linda Gail, Lulu, Jackie Von and Charlotte are my aunts from Odessa, Texas. Mama Rebecca my great Grandmother, Myrtle Jones my Grandmother, and Carolyn my Mother, were the first Women to nurture me, scold . . . " Read more Look inside

The Last of The Old-Time Cowboys

J. E. "Shorty" Northcutt, born March 21, 1912, south of Colorado City, Northcutt gained exposure to the cowboying life at an early age. He started as a horse jingler, or wrangler, but soon became a cowhand. At age sixteen he ventured to Midland country and cowboyed at the Cowden spread northwest of Odessa, the Adobe Ranch near Andrews, the Sand Ranch twenty-five miles southwest of Andrews, and the Tom Nance spread south of Midland ... Read more Look inside

Odessa; City of Dreams

by Velma Barrett and Hazel Oliver

This is a rare book about the early history of Odessa Texas and may not be available at the time you look. Check availability now . . . Referred by Kent Alexander

Things Unimportant, but remembered

"She and my stepson, Alex were visiting with her son there in Cuidad Acuna, Mexico where he has a small jewelry store. Me not speaking Spanish was standing out front of the place of business. I noticed a clean cut young Mexican fellow walk by and he stopped a few store fronts up, turned and came back and extended his hand and said, “I am George Garza from Odessa, Texas.” I told him that was a coincident for I was raised in Odessa. He told me he graduated from Odessa High School. I told him that was another coincident for I had graduated " . . . Read more

Voices from the Heartland: Volume II

"... that broke me mentally and physically. After staying ine months with my motther and her third husband, I found a job and moved us out on our own. Myson and I lived in the projects in Odessa, Texas, because that's all I could afford... " Read more Look inside

Castle Gap and the Pecos Frontier, Revisited

by Patrick Dearen

Found Inside: The lost mine of Will Sublett, who found gold and kept its location secret unto death.

"Will doubtless spent time twenty miles east of Odessa at Midland, a sister ranching community. There not only did Charles Dixon claim to have heard Will state that he learned the gold's location from an Apache, but folklore dictates that some of the town's leading citizens once plotted to steal the mine from him. As recounted by master storyteller J. Fank Dobie, the conspirators were pioneer banker W. E. Connell, rancher George Gray, livery stable operator Lee Driver, and horseman Jim Flannigan" . . . Read more Look inside

Blood and Money: The Classic True Story of Murder, Passion, and Power

New York Times Bestseller: The “gripping” true story of a beautiful Texas socialite, her ambitious husband, and a string of mysterious deaths.

Found Inside: "For a time Marcia worked the "spots" in West Texas, staying a day or so in San Angelo, moving on to Lubbock or Odessa. Then she telephoned home and her mother had disturbing news. The Texas Ranger had come looking for her, and the Houston homicide detectives had called to warn that Marcia was in danger of being killed by "characters" unless she contacted them ... "  Read more Look inside

The Odessa Assignment

Welcome back to the continuing adventures of OSI agent Jerry Doty. In this adventure he investigates the Texas Mafia and drug Cartel in his Uncle's hometown of Odessa Texas. Who can he trust this time? He has lost his long trusted partner in his last assignment. Now with a new young partner will she have his back or get him or both of them killed. Which of the locals can he trust? . . . Read more Look inside

Bits of Practical Wisdom

by Trent Jones

"My dad and mom moved from a Hockley County, Texas farm to Odessa, Texas and we set up central station for alarms in their home on North Muskingum Street there. We arranged with telephone answering services to monitor some system . . ."  Read more Look inside

Odessa (Texas Fridays)

"High school football and mystery overlap as private detective Pete Hamilton is called upon to investigate the disappearance of a student at Permian High School. As Pete digs into the case, he delves deeper into Odessa's underbelly, eventually unearthing connections to the highest levels of Odessa's establishment--both in and out of football. . . . Read more Look inside

Texas Far and Wide: The Tornado with Eyes, Gettysburg’s Last Casualty, the Celestial Skipping Stone and Other Tales

Found Inside: "In 1892, Julius D. Henderson, the twelve-year-old son of Ector County rancher John J. Henderson, took his horse out to find a lost calf on their property. he located the young bovine wonder grazing in an odd, oblong shaped drop-off in the terrain. He noted the landscape deviation and drove the calf home. In 1920, Elisha Virgil Graham--whose father was also a rancher and whose family had settled in the area after their wagon oxen were killed by a freight  train discovered a peculiar, lava-like rock near the center of the oblong-shaped declension . . ." Read more Look inside

Take Two Aspirins, But Don't Call Me in the Morning

In response to the stifling socialism of the Canadian health care system and the intolerably long Canadian winters, Dr. Mel Genraich made a life-altering decision: leave Toronto for good, and seek his fortune in Texas. "I've been fortunate (and conniving) enough to have lived in some great homes in such great cities as Toronto, Houston, Lubbock, Oklahoma City, Odessa, Monahans, Levelland, and now back in Lubbock TX. In Amarillo, Texas, I lived in an exclusive country club community right up to and after, my second divorce . . . Read more, Look inside

Spirits of the Border: School Spirits

In this newest installment of this award winning series, the authors look at what they like to call School Spirits! Find Haunted Texas schools in Alpine. . . Levelland, Lindale, Littlefield, Lubbock, Luther, Mcallen, Mesquite, Mission, Monahans, Moody, Nacogdoches, Odessa, Pasadena, Pearsall, Plainview, Rio Hondo, San Angelo, San Antonio, San Benito, San Juan, San Marcos, Santa Ana, Sealy, Seguin, Shafter, Sweetwater, Tyler, Uvalde, Waco, Weslaco, White Oak, and Zapata, Texas . . . Read more

See Also Mysterious Texas

Folklore in Motion: Texas Travel Lore

The adventurous spirit of Texans has led to much travel lore, from stories of how ancestors first came to the state to reflections of how technology has affected the customs, language, and stories of life on the go. "Our confirmation, postmarked “No Trees, Texas,” came about ten days later, saying that we could meet them in Tahoka. Upon arriving, we quickly found there were basic rules for all participants, including taking care of the campsites, and . . . " Read more Look inside

Dead Men's Clubs: A Story of Golf, Death, and Redemption

”Well, I guess any guy who's been to No Trees, Texas can't be all that bad,” she teased. ”Great! Are you home tomorrow, or working?” ”I have three days before I fly again,” she said, writing her telephone number on Munch's card and handing it ... Read more Look inside

Tejano West Texas

Featuring a side of Tejano history too often neglected, author Arnoldo De León shows that people of Spanish-Mexican descent were not passive players in or, worse, absent from West Texas history but instead were active agents at the center of it . . . Read more Look inside

Valentine: A Novel

"It’s February 1976, and Odessa, Texas, stands on the cusp of the next great oil boom. While the town’s men embrace the coming prosperity, its women intimately know and fear the violence that always seems to follow. In the early hours of the morning after Valentine’s Day, fourteen-year-old Gloria Ramírez appears on the front porch of Mary Rose Whitehead’s ranch house, broken and barely alive. The teenager had been viciously attacked in a nearby oil field—an act of brutality that is tried in the churches and barrooms of Odessa before it can reach a court of law  . . . Read more Look inside

Odessa: An Illustrated History
Odessa - A Pictorial History [Odessa, Texas]

“A Pictorial History – Odessa” is divided into three sections: Around the Town, Friends & Family, and Schools & Sports. The photographs in each section are displayed in chronological order so that the progression of this Texas city and its people can be felt as the images from the past are viewed . . .

Odessa Yearbooks


. . . see more Odessa Yearbooks


West Texas History & Memories

Early Life in Texas County by County

Books about Texas People and Places

Amazing People from Texas County by County

Texas History in the 19th Century (Amazon)

Texas History by Category and Event

Famous People from Ector County TexasFamous People from Ector County (B)
Life in Ector County Texas 1850 1950

Life in Ector County Texas 1850-1950Pictorial History of Ector County


What's your Favorite Book about a Texas County, Town, Person or Place? Here's our best reads list County by County


Mysterious TexasTrue Stories of Amazing People and Places in Texcas
 Loneliest, Least Populated Counties in Texas
Texas Cowboy HistoryBooks about Texas People County by County
Ector County People
Ector County Appraisal District
Ector County News
Ector County Land Auctions
Ector County TX Experts
Ector County Products
Ector County Unclaimed Estates
Books about Ector County

Ector County Treasures

Rare Artifacts, Books, Memorabilia, Ancestry and History Records from Odessa, Goldsmith, Gardendale and West Odessa. See Ector County Treasures (eBay Ads)