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WEST MOUNTAIN, TX

WEST MOUNTAIN, TEXAS. West Mountain, at the junction of U.S. Highway 271 and Farm Road 726, eight miles southeast of Gilmer in southeastern Upshur County, was founded by Isaac Moody, one of the earliest Anglo settlers in the county, and named for a nearby small rise. A post office operated from 1859 until 1867 and from 1888 until 1905. By 1890 West Mountain was a prosperous town with a sawmill, a carpenter, a general store, a Baptist Church, and an estimated population of 100. Two schools were in operation after 1900, and in 1906 they had a combined enrollment of 114. In the early 1930s oil was discovered in the area. After 1931 the population grew rapidly, swelled by large numbers of oilfield workers. By the mid-1930s the town had a church, two or three stores, and a large number of houses. After World War II the population began to dwindle, falling to sixty-five in the early 1970s. During the later 1970s the small town became a bedroom community for nearby Longview and Gladewater, and the population again began to grow. By 1984 the number of residents had reached 395. In 1990 West Mountain was a dispersed community with a population of 412. The population was 445 in 2000.

BIBLIOGRAPHY: 

G. H. Baird, A Brief History of Upshur County (Gilmer, Texas: Gilmer Mirror, 1946). Doyal T. Loyd, History of Upshur County (Waco: Texian Press, 1987). Audie Ray Stanley, Lurline, and Douglas Ray, comps. and eds., Upshur County Cemetery Records (Gilmer, Texas, 1974).

Christopher Long

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Handbook of Texas Online, Christopher Long, "West Mountain, TX," accessed February 13, 2016, http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/hlw20.

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

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