George H. Paul, land developer, was born on an Iowa farm in 1877. He worked for the Luce Land Company of Carroll, Iowa, for a number of years selling land in Canada to midwestern farmers. On January 3, 1907, he arrived in Corpus Christi, Texas, where he organized regular Tuesday excursions from Iowa, Nebraska, and Central Texas, beginning on the first Tuesday in March 1907 and lasting through the entire spring and summer. The special trains took people to Hebbronville, Alice, and Agua Dulce. Paul worked out a deal with Robert Driscoll to sell part of the Driscoll Ranch. To promote land sales Paul established the town of Robstown. From Washington, Iowa, his hometown, he brought a contractor and carpenters, who constructed the first commercial building in town, a general store that also served as the community center. Paul arranged for the railroad to transport prospective buyers to Robstown at special rates, and the first trainload arrived in the fall of 1907. In early 1908 the George H. Paul Company had as many as 1,000 agents in Canada, the Gulf region, and the northern United States. The land sold so rapidly that by 1908 all of the land north of the Texas-Mexican Railway had been sold. By 1909 a considerable amount of land south of the railroad had been sold, as well as some lots in Robstown. In 1908 Paul formed a contract with the Coleman-Fulton Pasture Company. He bought 56,000 acres in San Patricio County from the company with the understanding that the land would be paid for as it was sold. In 1910 he had a similar contract with John J. Welder for 70,000 acres. He sold the land by employing promotional techniques similar to those used in selling the Driscoll Ranch lands. Paul founded St. Paul, Texas, in 1910. He was married and had one son. He died in severe poverty on August 22, 1965.
Support Texas History Now
Join TSHA to support quality Texas history programs and receive exclusive benefits.
- Progressive Era
The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this entry.
George O. Coalson, “Paul, George H.,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed October 23, 2020, https://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/entries/paul-george-h.
Published by the Texas State Historical Association.