Bellmead is on State Highway 31 two miles northeast of Waco in east central McLennan County. Originally part of the Tomás de la Vega grant, after changing hands several times, the land passed to Col. John W. Lapsley, an attorney in Selma, Alabama. In the absence of the landowner, squatters moved into the area but were finally removed after 1870 in a combination of legal actions, evictions of the squatters by then Sheriff Lawrence S. Ross, and the coming of a railroad line northward from Bremond. Present-day Bellmead is located on land originally part of two farms owned by the Hogan and Ashleman families. Adolph Ashleman and Mont Hogan had their lands surveyed and began selling lots. The population grew in the mid-1920s, when the Missouri, Kansas and Texas Railroad chose the site for its locomotive shops. Several hundred people were employed at the shops, and families began moving to the area. The first school was called Bellmead in honor of Belle Meade Farms, a prominent horse farm in Tennessee. Area schools were consolidated to form the La Vega Independent School District in 1927. A post office was established at Bellmead in 1937 with A. L. Gilliam as postmaster. Residents of the community voted to incorporate in 1939, but the incorporation was soon dissolved for lack of water, sewerage, and fire services. . Some infrastructure was built in the 1930s as men, laid off by the Katy Bellmead Railroad Shop in the declining economy of the Great Depression, worked for the WPA to build sewer lines, streets, and water lines. In the mid-1940s the Bellmead post office was discontinued and replaced by branch service from Waco.

Adapted from the official Handbook of Texas, a state encyclopedia developed by the Texas State Historical Association (TSHA). It is an authoritative source of trusted historical records.

Belongs to

Bellmead is part of or belongs to the following places.

Adopt a Town

The Texas Almanac's Land Rush program lets you adopt the town, county, or lake of your choice and share your message with the world. 100% of the proceeds benefit education in Texas.

Currently Exists


Place type

Bellmead is classified as a Town


  • Latitude

Has Post Office


Is Incorporated


Proud to call Texas home?

Put your name on the town, county, or lake of your choice.

Search Places »

Bellmead by the Numbers

This is some placeholder text that we should either remove or replace with a brief summary about this particular metric. For example, "We update population counts once per year..."

Population Counts

Pop. Year Source
10,494 2020 United States Census Bureau
10,771 2019 Texas Demographic Center
9,901 2010 United States Census Bureau
9,214 2000 United States Census Bureau
8,336 1990 United States Census Bureau
7,569 1980 United States Census Bureau
7,698 1970 United States Census Bureau
5,127 1960 United States Census Bureau