News for Public Officials and the People They Serve

Life in Menard County Tx 1800's to 1940

Menard County, Texas 1800's to 1940 as pictured in archived government photographs, vintage postcards, old school yearbooks and newspapers of the period.

 

Composite of Life in Menard County Texas from 1800's to 1940. The county seat was called Menardville when the site was laid out in 1858 after the legislature approved the establishment of Menard County. That year three families lived there in log cabins surrounded by split-log palisades. The town name changed from Menardville to Menard about 1910 or 1911.

 

Scroll down for individual photos. Click on each to view full size.

Cottonwood Saloon in Menard TexasInside the Cottonwood Saloon in Menardville Texas

Hotel man T. A. “Tom” Turner was shot and killed by banker William Bevans, Sr. on August 6, 1906, inside the Cottonwood Saloon in downtown Menardville, Texas, at 4 o’clock reason only known as, “after an argument earlier that morning.”  . . .  Menardville Texas killing of hotel man Thomas Turner

Iron Clad Saloon Menardville Texas 1800s

Iron Clad Saloon Menardville Texas 1800s

In its heyday Menardville boasted nine saloons, including the Iron Clad, Cottonwood, Legal Tender, Road to Ruin, Rock Saloon, Erskin & Bevans saloon and the Gay Brothers. Menard was a wet county surrounded by dry counties and everyone from San Angelo, Eden and elsewhere came to town to buy booze.

Murchison and Brothers Dry Goods 1800's Menardsville TxMurchison and Brothers Dry Goods and Groceries in Menardville late 1800's
J.W. Hunter's last school, Menardville 1890J.W. Hunter's last school taught in Menardville in 1890

“Professor” John Warren Hunter, from Mason, opened the Menard school September 6, 1884. Menard County was exempt from instituting a district school system until the 1890s, but soon after the turn of the century the county had nine common-school districts.

Road Work (2) Menard County,Tx 1940Road Work Menard County Texas 1940

Road Work,Menard County,Tx 1940.jpg

Men building new road in Menard County,Tx 1940

 

Menard Tx Flood of 1938

Downtown Menard Tx Flood Scene 1938

 

During July 1938, intense rainfall across several counties in central Texas produced record flooding along the San Saba River and Brady Creek, in addition to other waterways. The floodwaters had a devastating impact on many local communities, including the cities of Brady (McCulloch County), San Saba (San Saba County), and Menard (Menard County).

1936 CHEVROLET SEDAN MENARD Tx

Ad for 1936 Chevrolet Sedan  Menard Tx

Original FSA photos and negatives are archived in the Prints and Photographs Division of the Library of Congress. You can browse and view more than  20,000 images of early life in Texas in the Historical Texas Collection on eBay.

 

Resources:

US Library of Congress Prints and Photographs

Wilkinson Ranch

Vintage Texas Photos (eBay)

Historical Menardville, Menard County, Texas photos

Menard County, Texas ~ History and Genealogy (Facebook)

 

See More Menard County Texas Items

 
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