Gholson, TX (McLennan County)

By: Vivian Elizabeth Smyrl

Type: General Entry

Published: 1952

Updated: September 1, 1995

Gholson is at the intersection of Farm roads 933 and 1858, twelve miles northwest of Waco in northern McLennan County. The area was settled in the late 1840s, and the community that developed there was called Sardis. Its first school was built in 1854. A post office was established in January 1858, with John S. Bell as postmaster, but it was discontinued shortly after the Civil War. Among the early settlers had been the Gholson brothers, Benjamin and Samuel, and the community gradually came to be called Gholson. A new post office by that name was established in February 1887 with Thomas Rhodes as postmaster. In 1890 the community had a general store and twenty-five residents; by the mid-1890s it had grown to include two churches, a corn mill and gin, two general stores, and seventy-five residents. The post office was discontinued in 1905 and replaced by a rural route from Ross. Throughout the first half of the twentieth century, Gholson remained a small farming community; its population was reported as thirty-four from the early 1930s to the early 1970s. In 1975, however, Gholson residents voted to incorporate with a mayor-council form of city government, and the community grew rapidly. Population estimates were as high as 650 in the late 1970s. Either these numbers were inflated, however, or the community underwent a dramatic slump, since only 263 residents were reported in 1980. The population began to grow steadily in the 1980s and was reported as 692 in 1990 and 922 in 2000.

Dayton Kelley, ed., The Handbook of Waco and McLennan County, Texas (Waco: Texian, 1972). William Robert Poage, McLennan County Before 1980 (Waco: Texian, 1981). Vertical File, Texas Collection, Baylor University.


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

Vivian Elizabeth Smyrl, “Gholson, TX (McLennan County),” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed October 19, 2021,

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

September 1, 1995