Big Lake

Big Lake, Texas

Big Lake, Texas

Downtown view of Big Lake Texas, the seat of Reagan County, Texas Photograph credit: Terry Jeansen via

Big Lake is on State Highway 137, U.S. Highway 67, and the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway seven miles north of the Crockett county line in south central Reagan County. In 1905 the Coates family settled on the west side of the water-filled depression called Big Lake, a landmark holding the only fresh water between the Concho rivers and Comanche Springs at Fort Stockton. The Taylor family took up land on the east side of the water. In 1911 T. H. Taylor sold 320 acres of land to the Kansas City, Mexico and Orient Railway of Texas for a townsite and station. The townsite, named for the lake located two miles to the south, was laid out, and a stock pen was built to hold cattle for railroad shipment. A boxcar became the depot, and a hotel with family-style dining was established. The Nairn family opened a grocery store near the tracks, and the Anderson family began a general mercantile store. W. W. Coates and A. H. Garner installed a line from Stiles, the county seat, to Big Lake to give the community telephone service. A public school was started with fifteen students in a small building that later became the Methodist parsonage. The town was ready for the arrival of the railroad. In 1912 the KCM&O built tracks from Mertzon to Girvin by way of Big Lake, and a post office was established. By fall of 1915 forty to fifty people lived in the community.

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.

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Big Lake by the Numbers

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Population Counts

Big Lake
Pop. Year Source
3,591 2019 Texas Demographic Center
2,936 2010 Texas Demographic Center
2,885 2000 Texas Demographic Center
3,672 1990 Texas Demographic Center
3,404 1980 Texas Demographic Center
2,489 1970 Texas Demographic Center
2,668 1960 Texas Demographic Center
2,152 1950 Texas Demographic Center
763 1940 Texas Demographic Center
832 1930 Texas Demographic Center