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PIDCOKE, TX

PIDCOKE, TEXAS. Pidcoke is on U.S. Highway 84 West and Farm Road 116, just south of Cowhouse Creek and fifteen miles from Gatesville in southwestern Coryell County. Its name is derived from that of the Rev. Richard Burton Pidcocke family from England, who immigrated in 1850 with a group of colonists to found a city in Central Texas. The proposed townsite was on Cowhouse Creek, where the Pidcoke community is located today. After the area was rejected by their agent because it was too hilly, Hartley and Reginald, the two older Pidcocke sons, bought land near the proposed site in 1857 and began the operation of Pidcock Ranch. A post office called Pidcock Ranch was granted in 1875 with Thomas Williamson as postmaster. In 1882 the post office name was changed to Pidcoe, but in 1883 it became Pidcoke. Early settlers were drawn to the area by its promise of good stock country, well-watered, with fertile soil, and timber for homes, firewood, and fences. Stock raising and crops of cotton, corn, and small grains became the major economic activity. W. H. Belcher donated land and money for the first school and community church building. Pidcoke became a bustling little town with several businesses and two churches. In 1884 Pidcoke had a public school, two gristmills, two cotton gins, three churches, and a population of 150. In 1914 it had seven businesses and a population of sixty-five, and in 1940 its population was 200. The community began to decline in 1942, when Fort Hood acquired much of the school district; subsequently, local schoolchildren were sent to classes in Gatesville. In 1944 the Pidcoke post office closed and was replaced by rural routes. The community's last store closed in 1983, and in 1989 Pidcoke had twenty-five people, a few vacant buildings, and the old gin, reminiscent of days when cotton was king. The local Methodist and Baptist churches remained active. At that time some grain was grown, mostly to supply hay for stock. Some residents worked at jobs in neighboring towns and at Fort Hood. In 1990 and again in 2000 the population was reported as thirty.

BIBLIOGRAPHY: 

Coryell County Genealogical Society, Coryell County, Texas, Families, 1854–1985 (Dallas: Taylor, 1986).

Grace Moore Bratton

Citation

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

Grace Moore Bratton, "PIDCOKE, TX," Handbook of Texas Online (http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/hnp29), accessed July 30, 2014. Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.