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Bandera County Texas
In February 1855 sixteen Polish families arrived in Bandera to work in James and DeMontel's sawmill, and in August of the same year August Klappenbach opened the first store and post office. On January 25, 1856, the legislature marked off Bandera County from portions of Bexar County; the new county was formally organized on March 10, 1856.
Because of its distance from the battlefields and the fact that there were so few slaves in the county, Bandera County was spared much of the trauma of the war and Reconstruction. The population continued to grow slowly, and by 1870 the number of residents in the county was still only 649, most of whom lived in or near the settlement of Bandera. The decade of the 1870s, however, brought signs that Bandera County was slowly losing its frontier character. Indian attacks became less and less frequent, new stores opened, and stone increasingly replaced cedar logs as a building material..
The lack of good roads, however, kept the county relatively isolated. Because of the county's hilly terrain, the railroads bypassed it to the north or south, and ranchers were forced to use the arduous overland road to ship their products to market in San Antonio.
Despite the relative hardships, numerous new settlers arrived during the 1870s. In 1880 the population had grown to 2,158, and by 1890 the number of residents stood at 3,795. As before, the great majority of new settlers came from the South, though recent immigrants, especially Germans, formed an increasingly larger portion of the county's residents.
[Excerpted from Christopher Long, "BANDERA COUNTY," Handbook of Texas Online. Published by the Texas State Historical Association]
CITIES AND MUNICIPALITIES
Bandera * Bandera Falls * Pipe Creek * Tarpley * Lakehills * Vanderpool * Medina
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- Website Updates:May 2016: County Records: 1916 County OfficersFeb 2016: World War I Casualties Honor RollNov 2015: County Records: 1888 County OfficersAug 2015: 1904 BirthsJun 2015: News: Newspapers of Bandera CountyFeb 2015: Death News; CLARK, DOROW, IRELAND, LABROCHE, MOORE, TARDEY: Weather News: 1900 heavy rain; Calamity news; TAIT grist mill burned, HERRERA items burned; Community News: Bandera county place for Texas pioneers to settle
Jan 2015: Book: History of Bandera County (partial) - Transcribed by Camilla Jackson and proofed by Rebekah Matzke
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