Friday, September 29, 2006
Andrews County came into existence in 1876 when the 15th Legislature of Texas created 54 counties in the Panhandle and South Plains. It was named for Richard Andrews, the 1st man to die in the war for Texas independence in 1835. Prior to 1890, the county was inhabited primarily by some ranchers, military personnel and Indians—Anasazi, Apache and Comanche. By 1900 the population had reached 975 (mostly farmers and ranchers) with two communities—Shafter Lake and Andrews—in the county. Both communities wanted to be the county seat, so, in order to woo voters, Shafter Lake gave lots to cowboys to enable them to vote for that town in the election. But, when Shafter Lake refused to extend the deadline for the give-away for an individual, R. M. Means, whose wagon broke down on the way to the town, the tide began to turn. Mr. Means returned to Andrews, bought land and began giving lots to cowboys as well. The election was held on July 16, 1910 and Andrews won, beating Shafter Lake at its own game. i have families ties to the area, and just ran into that story, so I thought I'd pass it on.
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