McLean, on Interstate Highway 40 in southeastern Gray County, is the second largest town in the county. In 1901 the Choctaw, Oklahoma and Texas Railroad Company dug a water well and built a switch and section house three miles inside Gray County. Around this switch the following year Alfred Rowe, an area rancher, laid out a townsite. The town was named for a Texas legislator and railroad commissioner, William P. McLean, and was granted a post office in 1902 with C. C. Cooke as postmaster. By 1904 McLean had three general stores, a bank, two wagonyards and livery stables, a lumberyard, and a newspaper, the McLean News. A windmill pumped water from a well drilled in the middle of Main Street, and citizens hauled the water in barrels and buckets. The town was incorporated in 1909 with C. S. Rice as mayor. Soon McLean became a center for area agriculture. Several hundred carloads of hogs and watermelons were shipped annually. Four telegraph operators were required to handle the messages of the railroad business.
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McLEAN by the Numbers
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|665||2020||United States Census Bureau|
|747||2019||Texas Demographic Center|
|778||2010||United States Census Bureau|
|830||2000||United States Census Bureau|
|849||1990||United States Census Bureau|