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LOTT, TX (FALLS COUNTY)

LOTT, TEXAS (Falls County). Lott is on U.S. Highway 77 nine miles northwest of Rosebud in west central Falls County. The Texas Townsite Company bought the land in 1889. When the San Antonio and Aransas Pass Railway was built through the area in 1890, Lott was founded; it was named in honor of Uriah Lott, president of the railroad. A post office was established at the settlement in 1890 with S. J. Crump as postmaster. When the community was incorporated by unanimous vote later that year, its population was estimated at more than 200. By 1892 Lott had Baptist, Methodist, and Presbyterian churches, two cotton gins and gristmills, a weekly newspaper, and 350 residents. Its population estimates were as high as 1,200 by the end of the 1890s. Lott continued to prosper throughout the first part of the twentieth century. The First National Bank of Lott was established in 1903, and the Lott State Bank was chartered in 1909. Local businesses did well, and residents were optimistic about the community's future growth. Lott's economy received an additional boost in the 1920s when State Highway 44 (later U.S. 77) built through the community. The Great Depression, however, brought significant changes. In 1933 the First National Bank of Lott went into receivership and did not reopen. During the mid-1930s many local families had to accept government relief in order to make ends meet, although the Public Works Administration and the Works Progress Administration (see WORK PROJECTS ADMINISTRATION) provided some residents with jobs on street and water works.

Cotton and corn were for many years the staple crops of area farmers, but government subsidies encouraged diversification into stock raising and truck farming. The population of the community was reported as 921 in the 1930s; it rose to 1,021 in the 1940s but fell to 956 by the early 1950s. Lott lost its rail service in 1967, when the Southern Pacific abandoned the section of track between Waco and Rosebud. Population estimates for Lott fluctuated between 750 and 950 residents from the 1960s through the 1980s, and the number of businesses fell steadily, from forty-five in the 1940s to twelve in the 1980s. Thirteen businesses and 828 residents were reported in Lott at the end of the 1980s. In 1990 its population was estimated at 775. The population dropped to 724 by 2000.

BIBLIOGRAPHY: 

Lillian S. St. Romain, Western Falls County, Texas (Austin: Texas State Historical Association, 1951). Vertical File, Texas Collection, Baylor University.

Vivian Elizabeth Smyrl

Citation

The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this article.

Vivian Elizabeth Smyrl, "LOTT, TX (FALLS COUNTY)," Handbook of Texas Online (http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/hll66), accessed July 24, 2014. Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.
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