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CLINE, TEXAS. Cline is on U.S. Highway 90 and the Southern Pacific Railroad eighteen miles west of Uvalde in southwestern Uvalde County. The site was in Dawson County between 1858 and 1866. The community was first settled by Celeste Pingenot, from Castroville, who arrived with some cattle in 1870 and constructed a home on the south bank of Turkey Creek in 1871. During the 1870s he established a stagecoach depot complete with stables and corals, commonly referred to as the Turkey Creek Stage Stop. Pingenot also built a store and saloon near his home and established the Wallace Inn, named after his friend who brought mail to the site, William A. A. (Bigfoot) Wallace. Turkey Creek, as the settlement was called for most of the 1870s, was located near the Old Spanish Trail and was a rest stop for many travelers on their way west to Brackettville or to the silver mines near Chihuahua City, Mexico. Pingenot's small enterprise was the victim of cattle-thieving Indians and Mexican bandits during its first years of operation.
On July 14, 1878, a post office was established in Turkey Creek with Pingenot as postmaster. The name was officially changed to Wallace. August Cline, a German native, settled in Wallace in 1880 and took a job in Pingenot's general store. Cline became postmaster soon after the Texas and New Orleans Railroad reached the site in 1881. In 1883 the community was renamed Cline. By 1888 August Cline had moved the post office to his two-story rock house on the north side of Turkey Creek. Although the stage horses were cared for at Pingenot's stables and corrals, stage passengers dined at Cline's place. Celeste Pingenot's wife, Minnie, and her sister Sophie were gracious hostesses to railroad and mine workers, landladies to boarding teachers, and well-wishers to the numerous travelers who passed through the settlement in the 1880s. By 1892 Cline had an estimated population of seventy-five. In 1896 seventy-one students attended the one-teacher Cline school.
By 1914 many of Cline's seventy-five residents had telephone service. The Uvalde Asphalt Paving Company had established a business office, and four apiarists resided in the community. Cline had an estimated population of 150 by 1927 and was the terminus of a railroad spur from asphalt mines twenty miles southeast. Cline reached its highest estimated population of 250 in 1940. A resident of the community recalled that soldiers from Fort Clark maintained a contingent of cavalry near the Pingenot home during World War I. Although a school, a church, and two businesses remained in Cline in 1946, the population had dropped to an estimated fifty. The post office was discontinued in 1952. One year after the 1965 annexation of the Cline Independent School District to the Uvalde district, an estimated ten people lived in the community. Although there is evidence that ten residents remained in the community in 1974, Cline had by then lost its church, school, and businesses. The century-old Pingenot home was showcased in the 1982 publication Uvalde Heritage Homes. In 1990 an estimated ten people remained in Cline. By 2000 the population had grown to fifteen.
BIBLIOGRAPHY:Jane Knapik, Uvalde Heritage Homes: From the Uvalde Leader-News Bicentennial Series, 1976 (Uvalde, Texas, 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, Ruben E. Ochoa, "CLINE, TX," accessed July 17, 2019, http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/hnc76.
Uploaded on June 12, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.