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2017-11-02

Ghost Towns of Bandera County

By Carol Wier

The Tuff Post Office still stands today, a reminder of the community that once existed in western Bandera County.



They say the only thing constant is change and I suppose that's true. While poking around (discovering Bandera County history), I came across several ghost towns. I find it quite fascinating that these towns once existed.
Lima, Texas, was located northwest of Medina along what is now FM 2109. It was originally called “Horse Valley.” According to Texas State Historical Association: “A free school opened there in 1881. The Lima post office was established in 1898 with Robert P. Reeves as postmaster. It was discontinued in 1924, and mail for the community was sent to Medina.” Horse Creek flows in the area, and feeds into the North Prong of the Medina River.
Tuff, Texas, is another Bandera County ghost town. It was originally called “Crockett” and remnants of it still exist 25 miles west of Bandera on FM 337. The community had a one-room schoolhouse with 19 students its first year, on land donated by Andy Crockett in 1883. A post office still stands from 1901. Ola Adams was the postmistress. She is buried in the Adams/Tuff cemetery. In 1914 Tuff had 50 residents and even a general store, but by 1925 only 10 people remained. The post office was discontinued in 1926, and the mail was sent to Medina. Even the school was disbanded. Log cabins from the area can still be seen on FM 337 and while driving down Jackson Road. The original post office is on private land, but viewable from the road.
Bluff, Texas, another Bandera County community, was settled in the 1800s. Bigfoot Wallace roamed and ranched in the nearby area. Wallace Creek is named after him. In the 1890s, a school was built in Bluff for the 50 students at the time. The school building was destroyed by fire in 1899. The population was 20 in the early 1900s with a post office and a general store. The Great Depression took its toll in the 1930s, and the school and post office were absorbed by Medina.
Station C is another ghost town on private land in Bandera County. It built up around the Station C pumping station that employed many people in the area. In its heyday, in 1927, Station C boasted 12 company homes, a clubhouse, and even a dance hall! Ruins of the once thriving small town are now overgrown with weeds — all but invisible.