GEM, TEXAS. Gem was on the divide between the Washita and Canadian rivers near State Highway 33 in east central Hemphill County. The community, built on land owned by the Moody Land Company, was named by rancher Thomas F. Moody for his wife, Gem Hibbard Moody. In 1909 the site was surveyed, and town lots were sold on July 4. That year also a post office opened there. Though Gem was meant to be a trading point for the farmers and ranchers of southern Hemphill County, the community eventually died because of other nearby settlements and the advent of faster transportation in the area. In the mid-1920s Gem had five businesses and an estimated population of seventy-five, a number which it continued to report through the early 1960s. The community's post office was closed in March 1954, and sometime thereafter Gem was abandoned. Only a church remained at the site in 1984.
Sallie B. Harris, Cowmen and Ladies: A History of Hemphill County (Canyon, Texas: Staked Plains, 1977). Glyndon M. Riley, The History of Hemphill County (M.A. thesis, West Texas State College, 1939).
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The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this article.H. Allen Anderson, "GEM, TX," Handbook of Texas Online (http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/htg04), accessed February 10, 2016. Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.
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