Mason, seat of Mason County, Texas
Mason, the county seat of Mason County, is on Comanche Creek at the junction of Interstate Highway 87/State Highway 29 and Ranch roads 1871 and 386, in the central part of the county. It grew up around Fort Mason, established in 1851, although some settlers were already in the area before that date. One of the first, William S. Gamel, is thought to have arrived around 1846. Peter Birk and Henry Hick were among the first German settlers who moved west from Fredericksburg. Near the site of present Mason is Gamel Spring, where John O. Meusebach is thought to have signed a treaty with Comanche Chief Ketemoczy in 1847. The area was a favorite Indian campsite, and Gamel Spring was later used as a source of water by Fort Mason. Early settlers gathered around the fort, attracted by the opportunities for employment and protection from Indian attacks. Other settlers were soldiers from the fort whose terms of enlistment had expired. A sutler's store and blacksmith shop formed the nucleus of the early town when they were moved from the actual fort on Post Hill to the nearby community of Mason.
Shortly after the fort was occupied, mail service was established from San Antonio to Mason, and then on to the west. Supplies were also shipped from San Antonio by mule wagon. The Fort Mason post office, one of the county's first, was established three miles from the fort in March 1858 by George W. Todd. The name was changed to Mason in June of that year, and the office was eventually moved into the town itself. One of the first stores in Mason was a picket building erected by W. C. Lewis, who sold ammunition, groceries, and whiskey to soldiers and settlers. A second store was opened around 1860 by James E. Ranck, known as the "father of Mason" because of his efforts to develop the town and draw settlers to the area. He and Ben F. Gooch bought 5,000 acres of nearby land to lease to sharecroppers for cotton growing. In March 1861 the fort was surrendered to Confederate authorities, but it remained virtually unmanned during the Civil War, except for local militia and rangers. During the war years settlers suffered severe Indian attacks, and most of the families in the area congregated in or near the fort for protection. Mason was made the county seat by election on May 20, 1861. In 1866 the fort was reoccupied by federal troops, and there was a resurgence of settlers into the area. The federal government built the first telegraph line in the county through Mason to the western forts; the line was made available to the public until 1868, when the fort was permanently abandoned. When the fort was deserted, both during and after the Civil War, nearby residents appropriated equipment and building materials to use in Mason, until eventually almost all traces of the installation had disappeared. An election was held confirming Mason as county seat, on August 26, 1869, and land within the town was donated for county purposes on July 13, 1870, by William and Caroline Lockhart and John and Kate Gamel.
- ✅ Adoption Status:
- This place is available for adoption! Available for adoption!
Mason is part of or belongs to the following places:
Mason is classified as a Town
Has Post Office
Mason 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..."
|2,121||2020||United States Census Bureau|
|2,293||2019||Texas Demographic Center|
|2,114||2010||United States Census Bureau|
|2,134||2000||United States Census Bureau|
|2,041||1990||United States Census Bureau|
|2,153||1980||United States Census Bureau|
|1,806||1970||United States Census Bureau|
|1,815||1960||United States Census Bureau|
|2,448||1950||United States Census Bureau|
|1,500||1940||United States Census Bureau|
|2,000||1930||United States Census Bureau|
|1,200||1920||United States Census Bureau|
|1,137||1900||United States Census Bureau|
|575||1880||United States Census Bureau|