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CRYSTAL FALLS, TX

CRYSTAL FALLS, TEXAS. Crystal Falls is at the intersection of Farm roads 1481 and 578, on the Clear Fork of the Brazos River in northwest Stephens County. It evolved during the 1870s, when settlers began to come into the region, and was named for a small waterfall nearby. Caravans of hide wagons stopped there during the brief buffalo boom of the 1870s. A post office was granted to Joseph C. Reavis in 1877, and by 1892 the town had grown to include a general store, a gristmill, livery stables, a steam gin, a flour mill, a Union church, a doctor, a blacksmith, and a population of 175. In 1900 Crystal Falls was the largest town in the county. The short-lived oil boom of 1918–21 pushed the population to 1,200 residents, who supported numerous businesses, including a bank, a hotel, and two restaurants. Rapid decline came in 1921, when oil prices plummeted, and every bank in Stephens County went bankrupt, save one in Breckenridge. Although it acquired a station on the new Cisco and Northeastern Railway during the 1930s and 1940s Crystal Falls had a population of only 150 and one surviving business. The post office closed in the early 1940s. After the 1950s the population declined further; from 1974 until 2000 it was estimated at ten. In 1980 a church and cemetery were indicated on county maps.

BIBLIOGRAPHY: 

Betty E. Hanna, Doodle Bugs and Cactus Berries: A Historical Sketch of Stephens County (Quanah, Texas: Nortex, 1975). Loy W. Hartsfield, A History of Stephens County (M.A. thesis, University of Texas, 1929).

Charles G. Davis

Citation

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

Charles G. Davis, "CRYSTAL FALLS, TX," Handbook of Texas Online (http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/hncaq), accessed November 28, 2014. Uploaded on June 12, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.
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