Crane, TX

By: William R. Hunt

Type: General Entry

Published: 1952

Updated: December 1, 1994

Crane, on U.S. Highway 385 and State Highway 329 in eastern Crane County, was named for Baylor University president William C. Crane. It is the seat and only town of the county and has the county's only post office, which was founded in 1908. The discovery of oil in the county in 1926 led to the county's organization the next year and to Crane's development as an oil boomtown. O. C. Kinnison opened a realty office and platted a townsite, naming the streets for his daughters and sons. Early residents had to put up with board sidewalks, unpaved roads, and limited services-including hauling their own water-until permanent housing and city utilities were built. Schools and other amenities were established at Crane as the local oil resources were exploited. Crane's population was reported as 1,420 in 1940, as 2,156 in 1950, as 3,796 in 1960, as 3,427 in 1970, and as 3,622 in 1980, when the town had a library, a swimming pool, and some 104 businesses. These included a steel foundry, a concrete plant, a nursing home, and a hospital (that was enlarged in 1962). A special edition of the Crane News in 1972 celebrated the county's production of one billion barrels of oil. In the 1980s the town was the service center for the region's flourishing oil industry. In 1990 the population of Crane was reported as 3,533. In 2000 the community contained 156 businesses and 3,191 inhabitants.

Fort Worth Star-Telegram, August 31, 1952. Midland Reporter-Telegram, February 27, 1949.
  • Communities

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

William R. Hunt, “Crane, TX,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed July 05, 2022,

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

December 1, 1994

Currently Exists
Place Type
Town Fields
  • Has post office: Yes
  • Is Incorporated: Yes
Belongs to
  • Crane County
  • Latitude: 31.39189580°
  • Longitude: -102.35042000°
Population Counts
People Year
1,420 1940
2,154 1950
3,796 1960
3,427 1970
3,622 1980
3,533 1990
3,191 2000
3,353 2010
3,586 2019