Canyon, Texas

Canyon, Texas

Downtown view of Cayon, the seat of Randall County, Texas. Photograph by Renelibrary.
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Promotion: Nearby Map of Randall County

Canyon is at the junction of U.S. Highway 60 and Interstate Highway 27, near the center of Randall County and southwest of the old T Anchor Ranch headquarters. In December 1887 Lincoln Guy Conner surveyed and settled at the site. He laid out the town in the spring of 1889, his dugout serving as home, general store, and post office. A. L. Hammond established the second business and a blacksmith shop, and suggested the name Canyon City, after nearby Palo Duro Canyon, when Conner refused to have the settlement named after himself. When Randall County was organized in July 1889 Conner's home was the voting place for that precinct, and Canyon City was chosen as the county seat. Lumber for commercial buildings was hauled from Quanah by mule-drawn freight wagons. A temporary, two-room frame building served as a courthouse, where church services and other community gatherings were held. Conner established the town's first real estate office and built the Victoria Hotel. Beginning in August 1890 several newspapers, the Echo, the Keystone, the Headlight, and the Battleship, appeared briefly. In 1896 Mrs. R. W. Morgan began publishing the Stayer; George A. Brandon renamed this paper the Canyon City News after buying it in 1903. The first telephone line reached Canyon City from Amarillo in 1896.

The arrival of the Pecos and Northern Texas Railway in 1898 made Canyon City a major shipping point for cattle and cotton and a receiving center for such necessities as coal and lumber. Acres of cattle pens were built on land donated by Conner; W. C. Kenyon ran a wagonyard and seven saloons. The population reached 530 by 1904. That year L. T. Lester opened the Stockman's National Bank, later the First National Bank of Canyon. A telephone exchange was installed in 1902, and construction boomed in anticipation of further rail service. By 1910 ten real estate firms, including the Texas Land Company and Keiser Brothers and Phillips, were operating in Canyon City. A brick school building and several churches were built, and on September 29, 1906, residents voted to incorporate, with Jasper N. Haney as first mayor. The Commercial Club and other civic and social organizations were begun at that time. In 1907 the completion of the Santa Fe line from Canyon City to Plainview marked the retirement of the mail hack and stage line between the two towns. The following year a volunteer fire department was organized and an electricity and ice plant installed. C. O. Keiser purchased the Canyon City News and began calling it the Randall County News; R. A. Terrill was editor. In 1909 a waterworks and sewer system were installed, and a brick courthouse replaced the original frame building. Since many of Canyon City's settlers were Confederate veterans, annual reunions of the Stonewall Jackson Camp of United Confederate Veterans were staged there for ten years.

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Claire R. Kuehn, H. Allen Anderson | © TSHA

Handbook of Texas Logo

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

Belongs to

Canyon is part of or belongs to the following places:

Currently Exists


Place type

Canyon is classified as a Town

Associated Names

  • [-City]


Latitude: 34.98759640
Longitude: -101.91978000

Has Post Office


Is Incorporated


Population Count, 2021 View more »


Place Type Population (Year/Source) Currently Exists
College or University Yes

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