William R. Hunt

MERTZON, TEXAS. Mertzon, the county seat of Irion County, is on Spring Creek, U.S. Highway 67, and the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe line, twenty-six miles southwest of San Angelo in the east central part of the county. It was established as a post office in 1908 and was named for M. L. Mertz, a San Angelo banker who was also a director of the Kansas City, Mexico and Orient Railway, which provided service beginning in 1911. The railroad helped Mertzon develop as the county's largest town by attracting businesses, including two hotels, from nearby Sherwood. The community's population was reported as 550 in 1915, and Mertzon had several churches, a school, a bank, a weekly newspaper, and other businesses. By 1933 the town was incorporated. It carried the county seat election after a spirited contest with Sherwood in 1936. During the late 1930s Mertzon's population peaked at 950, served by some twenty-four businesses. From the 1940s to the late 1970s its population gradually declined, reaching by 1977 a low of 507. In 1988 its population was reported as 837, with nineteen businesses. At that time the town was a ranching and warehouse center for the area. It has benefited from local oil discoveries. In 1990 Mertzon reported a population of 778. The population grew to 839 in 2000.

Leta Crawford, A History of Irion County, Texas (Waco: Texian, 1966). Irion County Historical Society, A History of Irion County, Texas (San Angelo: Anchor, 1978). Kathleen E. and Clifton R. St. Clair, eds., Little Towns of Texas (Jacksonville, Texas: Jayroe Graphic Arts, 1982).

Image Use Disclaimer

All copyrighted materials included within the Handbook of Texas Online are in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107 related to Copyright and “Fair Use” for Non-Profit educational institutions, which permits the Texas State Historical Association (TSHA), to utilize copyrighted materials to further scholarship, education, and inform the public. The TSHA makes every effort to conform to the principles of fair use and to comply with copyright law.

For more information go to:

If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond fair use, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.


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, "MERTZON, TX," accessed August 23, 2019,

Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.
Texas AlmanacFor more information about towns and counties including physical features, statistics, weather, maps and much more, visit the Town Database on!

Get this week's most popular Handbook of Texas articles delivered straight to your inbox