Historical Diary of Lubbock County
by Clifford E. Hunt
The dates listed in this diary have not
been confirmed by the staff of the Southwest Collection/Special Collections Library
First Post Master was:
First building in Lubbock was moved here from South Town and located on the corner of
Main Street and Ave. H. It was known as the G. W. Singer Store. It was moved here in the
Fall of 1890.
The First Restaurant in Lubbock was built in October or November, 1890 and was located
on Ave. G between 14th and 15th Streets. It was owned and operated by Geo. M. Hunt.
The first Post Office was located in the G.W Singer Store building located at the
corner of Main Street and Ave. H. North side of Main and east side of Ave. H.
The first lawyers:
W. F. Hendrix
W. C. Henderson
These two lawyers were here at the time the county was organized.
The first doctors:
Dr. J. S. Lenox
Dr. C. G. Austin
These two doctors came here about the time the county was organized.
The first doctor to practice medicine in Lubbock county was Dr. William Hunt. He lived
at Estacado in Crosby County, and looked after the sick people in Lubbock County several
years before the county was organized.
The first hotel built in Lubbock County was a three story frame building, built by F.
E. Wheelock at North Town in the Spring of 1890. It was complete in August , 1890. North
Town was located about three miles North East of the present city of Lubbock. This hotel
was torn down later that Fall and rebuilt in Lubbock and was located on the corner of
Broadway and Ave. H. It was known as the, NICOLETT HOTEL. It was operated by Geo. M. Hunt.
This building remained at this location for fifty years and was only recently moved to the
North East part of the city where it is now being used as a Community Center.
The first Drug Store:
Lee K. Auton opened the first drug store here in January or February, 1891. It was
located on the corner Broadway and Ave. H. just across the street east from the Nicolett
The first barber shop was opened here in the Spring of 1891 by Ed. T. Cox. (909
The first black smith shop:
W. P. Phoenix was the first black smith in Lubbock County. He opened a shop here in
March 1891. (909 Broadway?)
The first Livery Stable:
Geo. C. Wolffarth and Van Sanders opened the first livery stable here in Jan. or Feb.
1891. It was located on Avenue H and 10th Street.
The first Real Estate Office:
J.B. Jones and Geo. M. Hunt opened the first real estate office here in February 1891.
These two men were surveyors so in addition to their real estate business they did
abstract work and surveying.
Lubbock County was organized Tuesday, March 10, 1891.
The first officers of the county were:
G. W. Shannon---------Judge
Geo. C. Wolffarth-------Clerk
W. M. Lay------------- Sheriff
U. G. Moore------------Treasurer
W. S. Clark-------------Tax Assessor
J. B. Jones---------------Surveyor
W. F. Hendrix-----------County Atty.
The first County Commissioners were:
J. D. Caldwell--------Prec. No. 1
F. E. Wheelock------- " " 2
L. D. Hunt------------ " " 3
Van Sanders---------- " " 4
The following persons conducted the first election of officers and the organization of
Lubbock County, March 10, 1891, which had been attached to Crosby County for judicial
Geo. M. Hunt, J. B. Mobley, W. F. Cobb and J. D. Caldwell.-- Precinct No. 1
R. C. Burns, Mat Burts, J. J. Reynolds, G. M. Boles and E. J. Pruitt -- Precinct No. 2
W. V. Marshburn, Mr. Malin, Ben Johnson, M. L. Hadley and T. R. Hunt -- Precinct No. 3
G. W. Shannon and W. A. Carlisle -- Precinct No. 4
The first Newspaper:
Robt. L. Rogers was the editor of the first paper, the Lubbock Leader. Vol. 1 No. 1 was
dated, July 31, 1891. The building in which the paper was published was located on Ave. G.
between Main and Broadway, or to be more exact it was located about 1107 Ave. G.
The first Bicycle:
The first bicycle was owned by F. E. Wheelock. He bought it in August 1891. This was a
news item appearing in the Lubbock Leader September 11, 1891.
The first School Teacher:
Miss Minnie Tubbs was the first school teacher in Lubbock County. She taught school in
the jail building in the fall of 1891.
The first Marriage License:
The first marriage license was issued to Frank E. Wheelock and Sylvia B. Hunt, December
News items taken from the Lubbock Leader, published September 11, 1891 by Robert L.
In this issue the paper is trying to get the people to build a school house. It also
mentions the fact that Lubbock County has no grave yard, not withstanding the fact, we
have two physicians- Dr. J. S. Lennox and Dr. C. G. Austin.
Misses Katie and Ivy Conroe of Estacado, are visiting the Misses Hunts of the
Mr. M. A. Wood has gone to Colorado for lumber for his new home.
Mr. F. E. Wheelock lets the boys amuse themselves by riding his new bicycle. Sometimes
U. G. Moore rides the bicycle all and sometimes the bicycle rides him.
News Items cont...
Judge Shannon informs us that he has heard nothing from the Comptroller in regard to
the court house bonds
Miss Janie Mobley is celebrating her fourteenth birthday with a
nice party given in honor of the event by her Aunt, Mrs. J. C. Coleman.
J. D. Caldwell, is advertising himself as a dealer in groceries, hardware, Cutlery,
Tinware, Farming Implements, Machinery, Windmills, Etc.
G. W. Singer & Co. advertised, Dry goods, Groceries and cutlery.
The Nicolett Hotel was advertised, Geo. M. Hunt, Proprietor & Owner.
The above items appeared in the Lubbock Leader, September 11, 1891.
First death after county was organized:
Henry Jenkins, a cowboy, age about 32, died in the Nicolett Hotel, March 10, 1892, and
was the first person buried in the Lubbock Cemetery.
Joseph R. Coleman was the second person to be buried in the Lubbock Cemetery. He was
born October 30, 1884 and died, June 23, 1892.
Church Directory, as carried June 27, 1896, in the Press-Leader
All services held in the Court House
Christian Church: Services on Saturday night before the First Sunday in each month
Friends Church: Dr. Wm. Hunt preaches the Second Sunday each month.
Baptist Church: Rev. J. W. Winn preaches Third Sunday each month.
Methodist Church: Rev. Adams preaches Fourth Sunday each month
Sunday School: every Sunday at 3 p.m.
Singing: every Sunday 7:30 p.m.
P. F. Brown------------------Judge
Geo. C. Wolffarth------------Co. & District Clerk
Wm. Lay---------------------Sheriff and Tax Col
G. M. Boles------------------Tax Assessor
J. B. Mobley-----------------Treasurer
J. B. Jones-------------------County Surveyor
Press-Leader; June 27, 1896
J.C. Coleman--------Precinct 1
R.C. Burns----------- " 2
G.F. Stevenson------- " 3
G.O. Groves--------- " 4
Geo. C. Wolffarth-------Clerk
Irvin L. Hunt
Dry Good & Groceries
Hardware & Saddlery
Farm & Ranch Supplies
Press Leader- June 27, 1896:
E. M. Harp, M.D.- Physician & Surgeon, office 10 miles south of Hale Center on
Geo. L. Beatty- Lawyer, Land & Collecting Agent
City Drug Store- Dr. Wm. Hunt, Proprietor; fine candies, soap, perfumery, toilet
articles and notions. Prescriptions made and filled.
The Nicolett Hotel- Proposes to PLEASE the public. Nice soft clean beds. Table
furnished with the best the market affords. J.B. Green, Proprietor.
Locust Grove Sociable:
Thursday evening, December 30, 1897, in the Court house.
Games: chess, Crokinole, Table Croquet, dominoes, Authors, Etc.
Supper at 10 oclock
At the Nicolett
Recitation------------------Miss Blanche Taylor Charade
Vocal duet-----------------Misses Nora & Myrta Hunt
Poem, "The Occasion"-----Winford Hunt
Guitar Solo-----------------Miss Lottie Hunt
Declaration-----------------Master Clifford Hunt
Guitar Solo-----------------John F. Raley
Recitation-------------------Miss Lottie Hunt
Salmagundi with Spanish sauce
Bubble & Speak
Spider legs pickled
Phoebes Poverty Cake
The first Bank:
The first bank was opened for business in the summer of 1899. It was a private bank
owned by Light Knight and Henry Slayton and was located on the corner of Texas Avenue and
Main Street where the First National Bank is now located.
First Church Building:
The Baptist built the first church here in the Spring of 1901. It was located on Avenue
G and 13th St. The dedication was Sunday, June 2, 1901.
From the time the county was organized up to this time, all denominations held their
church services in the court house.
First Cotton grown:
W. P. Florence planted the first cotton in Lubbock County in 1901. He planted 10 acres
on his farm southwest of Lubbock and gathered 3 bales. He had it hauled to a gin near Big
Spring, Texas to have it ginned.
First Cotton Gin:
The first cotton gin was built 1903 by F. E. Wheelock. It was located on Avenue A and
First Electric Light Plant:
The first electric light plant in Lubbock was located on the alley between 14th and
15th streets and between Texas Avenue and Avenue J. The building was of frame construction
and was about 12 X 18 ft. in size. It was built by Harry S. Graham in the Spring of 1902,
and the lights were turned on about July 1, 1902. Clifford E. Hunt assisted Harry Graham
in the installation of all machinery. He also dug all the holes, set all the poles, strung
all the wire from the plant to the houses that were to be served and did most of the
wiring in the houses which numbered about 30 in all.
City Electric light plant was built in 1909, and the lights were turned on about
January 1, 1910. A Mr. Ellis was the first manager of the plant.
First Automobile Line:
In April 1905, F.E. Wheelock brought four Jackson two cylinder automobiles and started
passenger service between Lubbock and Plainview. Andy Wilson, Dock Auld, Will Wheelock and
Clifford Hunt were the drivers of four cars. F.E. Wheelock operated this line for about 2
years, having sold out to R.C. Burnes in the spring of 1907. Clifford Hunt was a driver of
one of these cars from May 1, 1905 to July 1, 1905.
A big Snow Storm:
It began snowing at noon on Thursday, November 15, 1906, and continued to snow without
letup until the following Sunday morning. The snow was 20 inches on a level in Lubbock
County. 100 miles to the north of us in Randal County the snow was 30 inches on a level.
Many thousand of sheep and cattle froze to death during the storm. The snow drifted badly,
in some places it drifted as high as the house tops.
Clifford E. Hunt started the first dairy in the fall of 1907 on his farm 2 1/2 miles
south of the court house. In addition to the two milk cows he had on the farm at the time
he decided to start a dairy, he bought ten durham cows from Isham Tubbs who lived seven
miles west of Lubbock and twelve registered Kentucky jerseys from Julian Bassett of Crosby
County. J.A. Hyatt, living at about Avenue E and Broadway, was the first customer.
First delivery of Ice & Ice Cream:
This dairy was the first to deliver ice and ice cream to the trade in the summer of
1908. The ice was hauled by wagon from Plainview.
First Concrete Building:
R.A. Rankin & Sons built the first concrete building in Lubbock. It was completed
September 1, 1908. Mr. Kyle was the contractor. It is located 1110 Texas Avenue, and is
now occupied by the Hungarian Cafe.
First Automobile Agency:
Dillard and Marshall established the first Automobile Agency here in the Fall of 1908.
They sold the Jackson automobile.
December 18, 1908:
Clifford E. Hunt announces the sale of one half interest in his Dairy South of town to
G.R. Bean and E.L Klett forms partnership, January 15, 1909.
About the last of January, 1909, a prairie fire started in New Mexico. A hard wind was
blowing from the West and the fire swept across the Plains and was not under control until
it went off the Caprock East of Crosbyton. The fire went in North of Lubbock between
Abernathy and Hale Center.
November 1, 1909:
Hunt Brothers buy out the Spikes Grocery Company.
December 1, 1909:
Hunt Brothers have moved their grocery store into the Lubbock Mercantile Building which
has just been completed. It is of concrete block construction.
A contract was signed January 29, 1909 with the Santa Fe R.P. Co. to extend their line
from Plainview to Lubbock. The Road was completed into Lubbock some time in the fall of
1909. The first Agent for the Santa Fe was W.L. Ketchum, he came here in October 1909.
L.B. Ewing was Chief Clerk and R.F. Bayless was Express Cashier. Mr. Byless is still with
First Wreck on the new Railroad occurred, Sunday, November 28, 1909 about four miles
north of Lubbock. The writer has a picture of this wreck.
First Volunteer Fire Department:
The first volunteer fire Dept. was organized here on Friday, November 5, 1909.
C.E. Parks-----------------Vice President
S.R. Pierce-----------------Secy / Treasurer
H. Frederick----------------Fire Chief
S.C. Wilson-----------------Assistant Fire Chief
The first chemical fire engine arrived here, Tuesday, November 23, 1909.
First house to burn:
Probably the first house to burn after the fire department was organized, was a house
owned by Geo. L. Beatty and occupied by, Lon Tinker. This house burned Friday, November
12, and was a complete loss. The fire engine had not yet arrived at this time.
First Experimental Station:
The first State Experimental Farm was established here, November 25, 1909. The City
purchased 160 acres of land from F.E. Wheelock, located 2 1/2 miles East of Lubbock for
this purpose. W.S. Hotchkiss was the first Agent. He came here from Troup, Texas.
First Loaf of Bread:
The first loaf of bread ever to be sold by a grocery store in Lubbock was sold by the
Hunt Grocery Company, Monday, December 6, 1909. The bread was made by, C.N. Kent owner of
the City Bakery which was opened here in the summer of 1909. R.H. Martin bought this
bakery January 6, 1910 and is still in the bakery business here in Lubbock, 32 years
Doctors Geo. S. Murphy and J.N. Stoops built the first hospital here in 1909. The
contract for the building was let, February 10, 1909. It was located at 2304 Main Street.
Dr. & Mrs. M.C. Overton gave a Bachelor Dinner in their home in the West part of
town, Thursday evening, December 30, 1909. The following guests were present:
J.E. Vickers, Fred Robbins, Frank Faulk, Fred McDonald, Sam Williamson, V.E. Seitz,
F.C. Pierce, Dr. M.C. Ballenger, Carl Goodman, Patty Swift, Henry Mount, R.F. Bayless, and
First Telegraph Service:
The Western Union Company opened an office here January 1, 1910. H.J. Heintzlman, Mgr.
First Passenger Train Service:
The Santa Fe started regular passenger service between here and Amarillo Sunday,
January 9, 1910. No 28 left 11:10 A.M. No. 27 arrived 3:30 P.M.
First Railroad Mail Service:
The Santa Fe Company was the first to carry the mail to and from Lubbock, Monday ,
February 21, 1910. Over 1100 pounds of mail that day.
First Bottling Works:
Lubbock Bottling Works opens for business on April 28, 1910. On East Broadway
First Steam Laundry:
A Mr. Palmer started the first steam laundry here about February 1, 1910. The building
was located about Avenue F and 13th St.
First Brick School Building:
The first brick school building was completed in February 1910. It was and still is
located between 13th and 14th streets and between Avenue O and Avenue Q.
News Item: April 2, 1910
Warren Bacon sells his ranch in the North East Corner of the County, to L.E. Dow for a
cash consideration of $35,244. He sold 1958 acres.
News Item : February 3, 1910
Mrs. I.I. Hunt left today for Canyon, where she will join her husband who is cashier of
the Canyon National Bank.
A.P. Smith, Janitor for the Lubbock Mercantile Company, was found dead in his bed in
the basement of the Hunt Grocery Company, Saturday morning, February 5, 1910.
February 6, 1910- E.Y. Lee went to Plainview on the Train where he is to meet his wife
March 10, 1910- Mrs. F.E. Wheelock is in the Murphy & Stoors Hospital where she
underwent an operation today.
February 10, 1910- Geo. M. Hunt has purchased the building formerly owned by W.A.
Bacon, and has moved it on the lots just West of Dr. Stoops residence, and has just
rented it to J.F. Turner.
First Old Settlers Association:
On Saturday April 2, 1910 a group of Old Timers met in the Courthouse for the purpose
of organizing an Old Settlers Association. Geo M. Hunt was elected Temporary chairman.
Andy Wilson, J.H. Mobley and Mrs. E. Boyd were appointed to serve on a committee to draft
bylaws for the new organization. A few meetings were held as a result of this new
organization, but it was not until in the year 1925 that the Lubbock County Pioneers
Association was formed.
First Concrete Sidewalk:
The City Council let contract to Willmering & Mullen of Amarillo July 10, 1911, for
the first concrete sidewalk in Lubbock. It extended from the Santa Fe Depot on Main Street
to the West side of the Sq. and then South on Texas Avenue to Broadway.
First Sewer line:
The City Council let contract on Wednesday, July 19, 1911 to Dalton & Campbell to
construct the first sewer line in Lubbock.
News Item: May 1, 1912
City Ice Plant starts delivering ice.
News Item: May 4, 1912
C.E. Hunt opens new grocery store in Martins Bakery Building, 1310 Texas Avenue.
News Item: May 17, 1912
Graduation exercises of Lubbock High School were held Friday evening, 8:30 p.m. 5, 10,
and 15 cent admission was charged. Graduating Class:
News Item: August 22, 1912
Mrs. Overton & Clayton announce the opening of a sanitarium in the old hotel
First mass meeting ever held in Lubbock to discuss the organization of a county fair,
was held at 3:00 p.m. in the courthouse, Saturday May 1, 1912.
The first carnival in Lubbock was sponsored by the Fire Department July 8 to July 14,
First Brick Hotel:
Merrill & Roberds built the first brick hotel in 1912. It was open for business
Sunday, September 1, 1912. A Mr. Ralph was manager. It was located on the corner of Main
St. and Texas Avenue, where the Hilton Hotel now stands.
September 2, 1912:
C.E. Hunt moves his grocery store to the Chas. Burrus building, two doors west of
Citizens National Bank.
Big Fire on West Side of Square:
A little after midnight on January 1, 1913 a fire started on the West side of the
Square and destroyed five buildings.
News Item: August 7, 1913
Hunt Grocery Company and Martin Bakery consolidates.
News Item: September 11, 1913
Dr. M.C. Overton closed a deal for the Tremont Hotel Building.
First County Fair:
The first County Fair was held Monday, October 6, 1913. V.L. Cory, L.O. Burford and
P.F. Brown were the judges. The fair was held in a large frame building that had been used
as a skating rink. It was located at 1112 Broadway. The building was owned by, B.O.
The Santa Fe Railway Company began passenger service between Lubbock and Clovis New
Mexico, Sunday March 1, 1914.
J.C. (Callie) Dean opened the first Floral shop in Lubbock, April 3, 1917.
First Street Pavement:
Two blocks on Broadway, just south of the Courthouse Square was the first pavement in
Lubbock. It was completed in September, 1920.
First Daily Newspaper:
James L. Dow was the editor who published the first daily newspaper. Vol. 1. No. 1 came
off the press, Wednesday, November 1, 1922.
First Earth Tremor:
The first earthquake ever to be recorded as having been felt in Lubbock, was Thursday,
July 30, 1925, 6:30 A.M. A second earth tremor was recorded as having been felt in Lubbock
on Sunday, August 16, 1931.
J.C. Penney Company:
J.C. Penney has opened a store in the Temple Ellis Building. August 7, 1925 Jack
West Texas Gas Company supplied the first natural gas here in Lubbock, Saturday,
October 1, 1927. The gas was piped from the north of Amarillo.
First Talking Pictures:
First talking pictures were shown at the Palace, Sunday, February 17, 1929. John R.
Oxford was the operator.
First Radio Broadcasting Station:
K.F.Y.O. was the first broadcasting station in Lubbock. It came on the air, 4:45 A.M.,
Saturday, April 23, 1932. It was located in Hotel Lubbock.
First Dial Telephone:
Dial Telephone went into use in Lubbock for the first time at midnight, August 2, 1941.