Texas is home to the world's largest bat colony. The Bracken Bat Cave, near San Antonio, is home to millions of Mexican free-tailed bats.
Eastland County, located in central Texas, has a rich and diverse history dating back thousands of years. The area was first inhabited by various Native American tribes, including the Comanche and Apache. The arrival of Spanish explorers in the 16th century brought about changes in the region, with conflicts arising between the Native Americans and European settlers.

The county's official establishment came in 1858, when Texas Legislature recognized it as a separate entity. The county was named after William M. Eastland, who fought in the Texan Revolution and served as a Texas Ranger. During the late 19th and early 20th centuries, Eastland County experienced significant growth and development thanks to the arrival of railroads, making it a crucial transportation hub for the surrounding regions.

The discovery of oil in the early 20th century also brought prosperity to Eastland County. The oil boom led to a population increase, as well as the growth of industrial and commercial sectors. However, the Great Depression of the 1930s had a devastating impact on the county, leading to a decline in population and economic activity.

In recent decades, Eastland County has worked to revive its economy and preserve its rich heritage. Today, the county is known for its thriving agricultural sector, including cattle farming and crop cultivation. The county also attracts tourists with its natural beauty, offering outdoor recreational activities such as fishing, hunting, and camping. Eastland County continues to embrace its history while looking towards a promising future.

This timeline provides a condensed summary of the historical journey of Eastland County, Texas.

  • 1850 - Eastland County is established as a county in Texas.
  • 1854 - The town of Palo Pinto is designated as the county seat.
  • 1858 - Palo Pinto is abandoned, and the county seat is moved to Merriman.
  • 1875 - Merriman loses the county seat status to Eastland.
  • 1890 - The Texas Central Railroad arrives in Eastland, fueling growth and economic development.
  • 1907 - The first oil well in Eastland County is drilled, leading to the rise of the oil industry in the area.
  • 1920 - The Eastland City Dam is built, creating Lake Leon and providing a water source for the region.
  • 1930 - The population of Eastland County reaches its peak, with over 30,000 residents.
  • 1938 - Eastland County is severely affected by the devastating tornado outbreak known as the "Wichita Falls–East Texas Tornado Outbreak."
  • 1950s - The decline of the oil industry and changes in agriculture lead to a population decrease in Eastland County.
  • Today, Eastland County is a rural area with a diverse economy, including agriculture, oil and gas production, and tourism.