W. A. Flachmeier

RUNNELS CITY, TEXAS. Runnels City, or Old Runnels, is a ghost town five miles north of Ballinger in Runnels County. It was designated the county seat when the county was organized in 1880. Its population was 250 in 1882, but the Santa Fe Railroad bypassed the town in 1886. When the railroad offered residents building sites and a general relocation of buildings in Ballinger, people in Runnels City accepted, and in 1887 Ballinger became the county seat. By 1947 a rock hut and ruined two-story rock building were the only remnants of Runnels City.

Ed Ellsworth Bartholomew, 800 Texas Ghost Towns (Fort Davis, Texas: Frontier, 1971). Leonard Glenn Smith, A History of Runnels County (M.A. thesis, Trinity University, 1963).

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, W. A. Flachmeier, "RUNNELS CITY, TX," accessed July 19, 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