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NOVICE, TEXAS (Coleman County). Novice is on Farm Road 702 just off U.S. Highway 84, twelve miles northwest of Coleman in northwestern Coleman County. It grew out of a small community known as Tyro that was founded on Rough Creek in the late 1870s. A post office called Tyro was established in 1880 but closed the next year and reopened in 1884 under the name Novice, supposedly because the local store's owners were novices in business. When a railroad built through the area in 1910, Novice residents moved the town a mile north to the line and combined it with the small community of Atoka. The new town prospered and by 1914 had cattle pens, two hotels, a cotton gin, a state bank, a Masonic hall, and a church. In 1925 the community reported a population of 200. Oil discoveries around the time of World War I led to a small oil boom during the early 1930s, when the nearby Novice oilfield was developed. The town grew rapidly, swelled by workers from the oilfields, and by 1931 it had an estimated 450 residents and ten businesses. In the mid-1930s, however, its population fell to 200 and continued to decline until 1971, when the town had 160 residents and three businesses. In 2000 Novice had an estimated population of 142 and eight businesses.


Coleman County Historical Commission, History of Coleman County and Its People (2 vols., San Angelo: Anchor, 1985).

Jeanne F. Lively


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

Jeanne F. Lively, "NOVICE, TX (COLEMAN COUNTY)," Handbook of Texas Online (, accessed November 27, 2015. Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

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