• Welcome to the Two Wheeled Texans community! Feel free to hang out and lurk as long as you like. However, we would like to encourage you to register so that you can join the community and use the numerous features on the site. After registering, don't forget to post up an introduction!

Whiteflat, TX

Joined
Apr 1, 2007
Messages
5,174
Reaction score
14
Location
Terlingua Tx
First Name
Ed
Last Name
Hegarty
DSC00222.jpg


Whiteflat

Motley County, TX

Historical marker N 34.10607 W 100.88982


DSC00216.jpg


The story of Whiteflat TX begins and ends with Matador. The Matador Ranch was founded in 1882 by Scottish investors buying up ranching operations for $1.25 million. For that sum in 1882 they acquired 1.5 million deeded and fenced acres plus 1 million more in unfenced range land in Motley, Floyd, Dickens, and Cottle counties. A simple line camp was placed between Willow Creek and Tom Ball Canyon, and folks began living there full time. By 1890 a community had sprouted. There are conflicting records as to when the name Whiteflat actually was given, and it is unclear just who coined it. Credit in all of my research points to one of two people, Bill Tilson, or Mrs. H. H. Campbell. It either happened in 1890, or 1899. Whoever, and whenever it was, there is no dispute that the name reflected the tall white needlegrass that was abundant on that prairie between the creek and the canyon.

The young town grew rapidly. By 1910 parts of the Matador Ranch had been sold off to individual families as farms, and the town of Whiteflat had several businesses, a school and a few hundred residents. In 1922 a new two story school was erected and still stands today.

DSC00217.jpg


It is a mere shell of its former self.

By the mid twenties the town was at its peak, with four grocery stores, three service stations, three garages, two cafes, a hardware store, two gins, and three churches.

The dust bowl and depression saw the folding of many family farms, and the major highway U.S. 70 went through Matador, some ten miles south of Whiteflat. Matador is a study in its own right, having obvious roots in the Matador Ranch, and a colorful if checkered past... but back to Whiteflat....

By 1948 the population had declined to a mere 50 people. The school was closed and consolidated with Matador. The building continued to host elections, Halloween haunted houses, and dances. The post office closed in 1966 with the death of its last postmaster Ida Morris, and the last business closed in 1968. The 1980 census showed a population of twenty, and that declined to three by the 2000 census.

This is the last habitable house in Whiteflat.

DSC00223.jpg


The rest of the town looks like this:

DSC00224.jpg


DSC00226.jpg


DSC00227.jpg


There is one more building that I did not get a good shot of... it is a white building that looks as if it were a commercial building at one time. My research shows that it was the parsonage of the Methodist Church.

Anyone that has ridden or driven TX 70 from matador to Turkey has passed through Whiteflat. It is easy to miss unless you are looking for it. Matador is famous for its landmark service station:

DSC00228.jpg


While looking at the map in Matador I chuckled when I realized that the main intersection is 70 at 70.....

DSC00231.jpg


U.S. 70 runs east/west while TX 70 runs north/south. From the Oil Well station you take 70 any direction you need to go!

The Matador ranch is still in business, having dwindled to a 'mere' 800,000 acres by 1952 when it was bought by Fred C. Koch, co-founder of what has become Koch Industries, Inc. It is a subsidiary of Koch Industries which runs ranches in Texas, Montana, and Kansas. Their 7,000 square foot headquarters was originally built to host the visiting Scottish investors, and still houses the ranch manager in one side, while the business office is in the other.
 

Janet

Forum Supporter
Joined
Dec 9, 2005
Messages
3,405
Reaction score
4
Location
Midlothian, TX
First Name
Janet
The little gas station / BBQ house has the best jalapeno cheese sausage....:eat:
 
Joined
Apr 1, 2007
Messages
5,174
Reaction score
14
Location
Terlingua Tx
First Name
Ed
Last Name
Hegarty
Is that in Matador? The gas station we stopped into had a food counter, but there were some local women at the tables smoking away. After days outdoors in the cool Texas air that cigarette smoke tore into my lungs, and I did not look around for the food. Even being hungry I could not stay in that place. Just east, still in Matador we found the Jaybird Kitchen open on a Sunday. The food was good, the coffee, eh, not so good. I bet the morning shift makes better coffee. I overheard the waitress and cook wondering aloud where the coffee was and how the machine worked. I will try them again sometime.
 
Joined
May 29, 2007
Messages
45
Reaction score
0
Location
Lubbock, TX
First Name
Christopher
Last Name
Ross
That BBQ spot is in Dickens, not Whiteflat. They offer an excellent BBQ sandwich.

3122819363_c6b236cf73.jpg


Interesting to note the gas prices. My pic is from 2 weekends ago. When was your pic taken?
 
Joined
Aug 1, 2007
Messages
9,205
Reaction score
270
Location
Fort Worth
First Name
Dan
Last Name
Gill
We saw Bob's Oil Well twice last week, once on the way out to Plainview, and once on the way back. The section of US 70 between Paducah and a few miles west of Matador is the only one that has much visual interest. There's not much in the way of food on that stretch of road, either. Someone said the restaurant in Floydada that has the gorilla in front is pretty good. Leonards? I can't remember. We're close to our destination by the time we get there, so we don't stop.
 
Joined
Dec 28, 2008
Messages
384
Reaction score
0
Location
Little Elm, TX
First Name
Steve
That BBQ spot is in Dickens, not Whiteflat. They offer an excellent BBQ sandwich.

3122819363_c6b236cf73.jpg


Interesting to note the gas prices. My pic is from 2 weekends ago. When was your pic taken?

I have a deer lease about 10 miles North of Dickens and eat at that BBQ place a lot. It's really good.
 
Top