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William R. Hunt

CROWELL, TEXAS. Crowell, on U.S. Highway 70, State Highway 6, and Farm Road 98 in central Foard County, was organized in 1891 and named for George T. Crowell, owner of the townsite. M. F. Thacker sold lots and became the first postmaster in 1891. In 1860 Texas Ranger captain Lawrence Sullivan (Sul) Ross had defeated a band of Comanche Indians on the Pease River near the site of Crowell and rescued Cynthia Ann Parker. Foard County was organized the year after the town was founded, and Crowell was voted county seat. It quickly became a trade center and the largest town in the county. Before the railroad was built, mail was carried to Crowell from Vernon. By 1900 Crowell had 500 residents and a number of businesses, including a hotel, a cotton gin, and a gristmill. The first train of the Kansas City, Mexico and Orient Railway reached the town in 1908. Crowell was incorporated that year, and a boom followed. The population was 1,500 by 1925. The Foard County News was published by J. L. Harper beginning in 1891. Crowell thrived after oil was discovered in the county in 1927 and weathered the Great Depression reasonably well. The community suffered heavy tornado damage in April 1942. Ten people were killed, 125 hurt, and 1,500 left homeless; 90 percent of the business buildings and homes were destroyed. The Red Cross, WPA, and Civilian Conservation Corps helped during the emergency, and eventually the town was rebuilt. The population climbed to 1,922 in 1950 and stood at 1,509 in 1980, when the town had twenty-seven businesses. Agribusiness and the manufacture of sporting goods are the leading industries. Tourist and recreation attractions include the Crowell Firehall Museum and Copper Breaks State Park, eight miles to the north in Hardeman County. In 1990 the population of Crowell was 1,230, and in 2000 it was 1,141.


Bailey Phelps, They Loved the Land: Foard County History (Quanah, Texas: Quanah Tribune-Chief, 1969). Kathleen E. and Clifton R. St. Clair, eds., Little Towns of Texas (Jacksonville, Texas: Jayroe Graphic Arts, 1982).

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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, William R. Hunt, "CROWELL, TX," accessed April 04, 2020, http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/hjc22.

Uploaded on June 12, 2010. Modified on October 2, 2019. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.
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