“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”

Odessa, Texas Historical Markers

Comanche War Trail Marker image, Touch for more information
By Richard Denney, April 18, 2014
Comanche War Trail Marker
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 996 — Comanche War Trail
A barbed, bristling flying wedge—the Comanches—rode into 18th century Texas, driving the Wichitas and Caddoes east, the Apaches west, becoming lords of the south plains. Harassed the Spanish and Anglo-Americans along frontier from Corpus . . . — Map (db m73339) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 16 — E.G. Rodman, Sr. (1896 – 1976) Walk of the Entrepreneurs
Worked as roughneck, oilfield salesman before founding Rodman Supply of Odessa, 1935. Opened stores throughout Permian Basin. Legendary wildcatter completed hundreds of producing wells during 40-year career. With partners founded refineries, gas . . . — Map (db m86321) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 1379 — Ector County
Created February 26, 1887 from Tom Green County Organized January 15, 1891 Named in honor of Matthew Duncan Ector 1822-1879 Member of the Texas Legislature A Confederate Officer and outstanding jurist Odessa, The County . . . — Map (db m86704) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 1380 — Ector County Courthouse
Seat of justice for Ector, created out of Tom Green County in 1887 and organized in 1891. The 1891 courthouse was frame, the remodelled town sanitarium, moved to the present square. Its first floor had rooms for the sheriff, court clerks and . . . — Map (db m85782) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 1382 — Ector County Land Rush
Here in 1904 a fight involved almost every man in Ector County, over filing a claim for 4 sections of public land. Elias Dawson and Charlie Lewis each brought friends to help him file. Before courthouse doors opened, several men had clothes or boots . . . — Map (db m85781) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 1383 — Ector County Newspapers
In 1895, William C. "Uncle Billy" Griffin came to Odessa from Midland and began publishing Ector County's first Newspaper, the Odessa "Weekly News". The "Weekly News" lasted only a year, and was followed by six other short-lived weekly publications . . . — Map (db m85785) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 3 — Ector County Public Schools
Earliest public schools in county met in land office, courthouse and church 1890-99. First school building in Odessa at 6th & Texas used 1899-1909. Baker and Judkins districts also had early school buildings. In 1909 new school built at 10th & Lee. . . . — Map (db m85888) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 1384 — Ector County's First Dry Hole
Drilled in 1924 near this site. Geologists were forecasting oil and urgently needed potash, but Pennsylvania experts (using a chilled shop core drill) gave up the well at 900 feet, on "Red Bed" Rock--A substance new to them. Loss in this and a . . . — Map (db m86854) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 16767 — Emmet V. Headlee, M.D
Emmet V. Headlee was a fourth-generation physician; his great-grandfather, Elisha Headlee, was a Civil War surgeon. His grandfather and father practiced medicine in Teague (Freestone Co.), and Emmet was born there in 1900. At age thirteen, he saved . . . — Map (db m86705) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 2137 — General Matthew D. Ector Ector County
County Named for Texas Confederate General Matthew D. Ector 1822-1879 Enlisted 1861. Lieutenant 3rd Texas Cavalry. Fought in Arkansas, Missouri and Indian territory. As colonel led 14th Texas Cavalry Kentucky invasion. Made brigadier general . . . — Map (db m85779) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 17 — M.O. Boring, Jr. Walk of the Entrepreneurs
Founded Dixilyn Corporation, 1945. Operator of contract oil drilling rigs in Texas, Mississippi, Louisiana. Went public 2 March 1961, first Odessa business on American Stock Exchange. Developed technology, built off-shore rigs and high-pressure . . . — Map (db m86324) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 3511 — Mrs. John L. Morris (Marjorie)
Originator, promoter of the Globe of the Great Southwest, world's most nearly authentic replica of the Globe theater in England made famous by the plays of William Shakespeare. Mrs. Morris was educated at North Texas State University and joined . . . — Map (db m85890) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 3670 — Odessa
After the Texas and Pacific Railway extended its line to the South Plains of Texas in 1881, the Odessa Land and Townsite Company of Zanesville, Ohio, began promotional efforts to attract settlers to its property along the rail line. Regular . . . — Map (db m85786) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 19 — Odessa Chuck Wagon Gang “50 Years and Still Cooking”
Famous for pit cooked barbeque, community spirit, western hospitality. Founded March 1940 by 33 Chamber of Commerce members as Odessa goodwill ambassadors. Served 350 plates in Andrews at first feed. During next 5 decades volunteer cookers traveled . . . — Map (db m86334) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 3667 — Odessa Land & Townsite Company
The Texas & Pacific Railroad transferred 640 acres of its land grants here in 1886 to John Hoge of Zanesville, Ohio. He formed the Odessa Land & Townsite Company to promote sale of town lots. Prime house lots sold for $150 and business lots for . . . — Map (db m85642) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 3668 — Odessa Meteor Crater
The Odessa Meteor Crater, second largest in the United States and sixth in the world, was formed some 20,000 years ago when an iron meteorite believed to weigh 1,000 tons crashed into the earth near this site. Impact was so great that 4.3 million . . . — Map (db m73340) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 3668 — Odessa Meteor Craters
East and South (route marked) is located the Odessa Meteor Craters, formed in prehistoric time when a great shower of nickel-iron meteorites collided with the earth. Geologists estimate that the time of the meteor fall was about 20,000 years ago. . . . — Map (db m86923) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 3697 — Old Buffalo Wallow
The nearby depression survives from an epoch when great buffalo herds migrated through west Texas, many moving between present Canada and Mexico over two major trails in the Odessa area. Wallows began with individual buffalo rolling in the dirt to . . . — Map (db m86803) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 43 — Permian Basin Fair & Exposition
Founded in 1976 as the Ector County Fair, concept sprang from previous year's fun-of-a-gun activities held during local observance of U.S. Bicentennial. Fair's early years drew contestants to chili cook-offs, cow chip tossings and an annual beauty . . . — Map (db m86329) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 14 — Permian Basin Oil Show
Organized by Jerry Debenport as Little International Oil Show in June 1940. First held at West County Park with 53 exhibitors. Suspended during WWII but resumed in 1950 as Permian Basin Oil Show. In 1953 reorganized as non-profit sponsor of biennial . . . — Map (db m86330) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 13490 — Site of Blackshear High School
In early 1890, Inez Rathbun earned money teaching area students at the Ector County Courthouse. About the same time, Ector County organized a public school system. Over the next decades, the number of students in the area steadily increased. In . . . — Map (db m85636) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 4853 — Site of Livery Stable and Wagon Yard
In 1897, rancher and county official Francis M. Tallant opened Odessa's first livery stable and wagon yard on West 2nd Street, approximately 80 feet southwest of this site. Built close to the railroad station and to downtown, the stable was used by . . . — Map (db m85644) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 4845 — Site of Odessa College 1889-1891
Established through efforts of Odessa Townsite Co., which gave $12,000; a northern Methodist group matched this fund in 1888. Rev. M. A. Daugherty, Pittsburgh, Pa., was placed in charge, and a 20-acre plot was alloted to the college. Erection . . . — Map (db m85892) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 4894 — Site of The Dawson Saloon (of the 1890's)
Frontier business of S.T. (Tol) and E.F. (Lish) Dawson, brothers. Lish Dawson, 1891-92 Sheriff of Ector County, had a barber chair in the Saloon, and helped tend bar. Liquor was in 40-gallon barrels. Ice for drinks was hauled from Great Lakes by . . . — Map (db m85893) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 4898 — Site of The Odessa Sanitarium
Established in 1886 by Odessa Townsite Company, the Odessa Medical and Surgical Sanitarium was directed by Dr. R.E. Haughton, a former railroad physician from Indiana. It was located in a two-story wooden structure of twenty rooms. By March 1890 . . . — Map (db m85645) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 5298 — The Cable Tool Rig
Equipment that replaced the spring pole drilling method used in America's earlier oil fields. The cable tool rig used a bit suspended on a steel drilling cable. The bit is dropped in the hole and the impact breaks up the formation. The broken pieces . . . — Map (db m86316) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 5299 — The Caprock
A range of flat-topped ridges and cliffs stretching from Texas panhandle to 20 miles south of this point and extending into New Mexico. The name also refers to tough limestone that caps ridges. Rising sharply 200 to 1,000 ft. above plains. This . . . — Map (db m86921) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 47 — The Henderson House 915 N. Alleghaney
Built in 1916 at Grant and Pearl Streets by pioneer drug store owner and postmaster W.T. Henderson, Sr. (1886-1960) and his wife Burmah Adele Lambert (1887-1964). In 1925 the house was moved to this address in the first neighborhood developed north . . . — Map (db m85889) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 5362 — The Jackrabbit (1964)
True plains rabbit. Lives only in the west. Burro-like ears gave him his name. Color is protective, blending with sand and dry grass. Very long legs make him a swift runner, clocked at speeds to 45 miles and hour. Object of hunts with Greyhounds. . . . — Map (db m85885) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 3669 — The Odessa Telephone Exchange
Began operation about 1897, with Edna Fielding as "central" (operator). After Miss Fielding's death in 1902, the Rev. G. B. Ely, a baptist minister, purchased the exchange. Pioneer rancher A. Quincy Cooper bought the system in 1911, and extended . . . — Map (db m85639) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 32 — The Parker Family
In 1907 James Early “Jim” Parker, Jr. (1876-1954) acquired his first land: two sections divided by the Andrews and Ector County line. He and Bessie Ola Lindley (1887-1974) married in 1908 and had six children: Jackson, Ray, James Walter, . . . — Map (db m86813) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 3988 — The Permian Basin
One of the two richest oil fields in the world. Discovery began in 1920 at a Mitchell County Well. Next came the 1923 Big Lake Strike, then the wild 1925 boom in Upton County, followed by production in Andrews, Crane, Ector, Martin, Midland, Pecos, . . . — Map (db m86326) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 5697 — The Waddell Pecan Tree
A few years after Odessa was founded in 1881, a squirrel stole a pecan from a neighbor's porch, and buried it in the yard of W. T. Malone, planting this tree. A rarity in the downtown area, it became a well-known landmark. When R. T. ("Cotton") . . . — Map (db m85784) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 5786 — The White-Pool House
Charles White (1824-1905) moved his family here from Indiana seeking new business opportunities and a drier climate for his wife's health. With the aid of his sons Wilfred Walton White and Herbert Haughton White, he constructed this two-story brick . . . — Map (db m85637) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 45 — Tom “Pinkie” Roden (1911-1989) Walk of the Entrepreneurs
Founder of Pinkie's Inc., which at its peak was Texas' largest chain of retail liquor stores. Established first store in Sweetwater after repeal of prohibition. Initial Odessa site followed in 1938 at 312 E. 2nd Street. Expanded to 26 locations in . . . — Map (db m86322) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 18 — W.D. Noel (1914 – 1987) Walk of the Entrepreneurs
Formed Trebol Oil, 1940; As operating partner drilled 52 producing wells in McCamey region before hitting first dry hole. With partner acquired Odessa Gasoline plant, founded gas gathering system, drilled discovery wells in Upton County, brought . . . — Map (db m86318) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 5750 — Well's Point Texas & Pacific Railroad Wells
In 1879 railroad headed west out of Fort Worth. Preceding construction-on land later in town of Odessa-water wells were dug in July, 1881. Town section was thereafter called "Well's Point". One well was unusable because of alkali; other two wells . . . — Map (db m86856) HM
Texas (Ector County), Odessa — 12 — World's First Championship Jackrabbit Roping
Contest began as “hare-brained” publicity stunt during 1932 annual Odessa Rodeo. Held at 3rd and Grant Street site despite objections from out-of-town do-gooders. Local sheriff opposed event but mayor and judge ruled no violation of . . . — Map (db m85887) HM

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