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Laurie E. Jasinski

PIPE CREEK, TEXAS. The Pipe Creek community is on State Highway 16 about nine miles east of Bandera in eastern Bandera County. The town was founded about 1870 and was named for nearby Pipe Creek. The first settler of the community, Francis Marion Hodges, arrived in the area in 1868, and another settler, Oliver S. Shirley, arrived in 1870. In the town's first decade, about seventy families moved into the area. Early families included the Scotts, Andersons, Newcomers, Vawters, and Morgensterns. A post office called Pipe Creek opened in 1873, with A. M. Beekman as postmaster; after 1895 the post office name was reportedly changed to Pipecreek for a time. During the 1870s Mrs. Marion Hodges opened the first store; W. J. Hamilton opened the second. By the early 1880s a cotton gin and a gristmill were operating in the town, which had grown to about 100 residents. Its population consisted mostly of farmers and ranchers, who raised cotton, corn, cattle, and sheep, and also produced molasses. Stagecoaches from San Antonio to Bandera provided travel and mail services. The first public school for Pipe Creek was built in 1881 near the Pipe Creek Cemetery. In 1886 the local First Baptist Church was organized, with Baptists as well as other religious denominations meeting in the schoolhouse.

During the early 1900s the population of Pipe Creek remained about 100. A Methodist church was founded there in 1904, and in 1908 the first telephone line was installed (in the general store). A second school, called the Deskin School, was formed in 1913. By the 1920s the community population had declined to twenty-five, and in 1924 the Deskin and Pipe Creek schools consolidated. The population increased to 150 in 1941-about the time that electric service was introduced into the area. A new school was built in 1948, but in 1950 the Pipe Creek school consolidated with that of Bandera. In the 1950s and 1960s the population of Pipe Creek grew to 220, as a number of subdivisions-one source says ultimately more than twenty-five-were built in the vicinity. The estimated number of residents at Pipe Creek proper had declined, however, to sixty-six by the 1970s, and it continued to be reported at that level in 1990. In the early 1990s the town consisted of construction, auto, and real estate businesses, as well as a restaurant, a hardware store, a community center, and several churches. At that time many of the residents commuted to Bandera and San Antonio to work. A Texas historical marker at Pipe Creek notes the English-Crist home, a lodging stop for travelers during the late 1800s and early 1900s.

Bandera County History Book Committee, History of Bandera County, Texas (Dallas: Curtis, 1986). Jennette Hunter Saul and Margaret B. Focke, Bandera County Homes and Buildings of History (2 vols., Bandera, Texas, 1971–72).

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

Handbook of Texas Online, Laurie E. Jasinski, "PIPE CREEK, TX," accessed July 14, 2020, http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/HNP41.

Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.
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