Postcard From Medicine Mound, Texas - Ghost Town


In southeastern Hardeman County in West Texas is the interesting little ghost town of Medicine Mound. The town was named after the four nearby cone-shaped dolomite hills which rise 350 feet above the prairie and were called Medicine Mounds by the Comanche Indians. The hills have flat tops which the Indians considered to be the home of powerful, but benevolent spirits and they used these hill tops to hold sacred ceremonies and to mix medicinal herbs so the spirits would make the curative powers even stronger.

Medicine Mound once had a population of 500 with 22 businesses, including a newspaper called "The Citizen." A devastating fire in 1932 destroyed most of the buildings in downtown and with the exodus of people already started for better job opportunities in larger towns, few of the burned-out businesses rebuilt. By 1940, there were only 6 business properties still open to serve the remaining 210 residents. 

The Medicine Mound school was closed in 1955 and the handful of students traveled to Quanah to continue their formal education. With a population less than 100, the post office and all but one store, the Hicks-Cobb General Store, closed down in the late 1950's. In 1980 there were still 50 residents in the vicinity, but these were mostly older people who still lived and worked on the farms and ranches around the area. 

Bluebonnets and cactus in Medicine Mound
Today the population is zero. The dilapidated remains of an old house and the shell of the W.W. Cole building, a combination drug store, bank, and gas station remain somewhat standing. The Hicks-Cobb General Store also remains, but it was turned into a regional history and cultural museum by the now aged daughter (born in 1927) of the former owner and is not in much better shape than the other 2 buildings. The museum was supposed to be open every Saturday from 10:00 - 2:00, but during my visit on a Saturday during those hours, it wasn't open, not a single person was anywhere in sight, and judging by the deep layer of dust which covered everything viewable through the window, it hadn't been opened or attended to in a good long while.

The old W. W. Cole building with the gas pumps still
standing sentinel


Medicine Mound doesn't have much of an interesting history. No bad men robbed the bank, nobody was murdered there, it had no notorious residents and there aren't even any mysterious ghost stories about the small cemetery where a few of its residents remain resting in peace. It was just a quiet little town where normal everyday people lived and dreamed and died. And then, having served its purpose, Medicine Mound died too.

The town "Necessary Room"
The only remaining house in Medicine Mound has
seen better days




I wonder what happened to the people who
lived here. Did they live full, happy lives
until death took them to a new home or did
their dreams die and they simple pack up
and leave without looking back?

At one time this was someone's pride and joy. Iris flowers
were lovingly planted around the property.