South Texas Plains
2010 Census - 925
2000 Census - 1,013
Skidmore, Texas
Skidmore Texas History:
In 1857, Samuel Cyle Skidmore moved to Texas and settled on Aransas Creek. The first post office opened in 1860 under the name of River Side; it closed within months. A second post office opened under the name Lattington and operated from late 1860 to 1866. In 1886, Skidmore’s son donated a right-of-way and every other block of land to the San Antonio and Aransas Pass Railroad; the town grew up around the train depot. In 1887 the Skidmore Post Office was established. By 1914 the town had 1,000 residents. In the lake 1980s and early 1990s the town had 500 residents. Skidmore is located in farming and ranching country at the intersections of U.S. 181, SH 359 and FM 888, 11 miles south of Beeville, 34.5 miles southeast of George West, 14.5 miles northeast of Mathis and Lake Corpus Christi, 19 miles northwest of Sinton, 42 miles northwest of Corpus Christi, and 40 miles southeast of Goliad, Texas.
Historic Aransas Creek Settlers, Texas Historical Marker Text:
“Earliest known residents were Karankawa Indians who named the creek. On this stream was one of the most famous ranches in early Texas, occupied in 1805 by Don Martin de Leon, who in 1824 founded Victoria. In 1830’s, Irish colonists came by way of Copano Bay, settling down creek. Anglo-Americans from older settlements came by road and trail, stopping mainly up creek. Stock raising, trucking and freighting provided livelihoods in the rich, new prairie land. In 1850 Patrick Fadden sold to Fort Merrill corn and vegetables from 1835 land grant of his uncle, Father John Thomas MaIloy. Fadden and W. R. Hayes freighted supplies to settlers in 1860s. Hayes had early post office in his home, 1870; was county judge 1876-1892. John Wilson, an 1850s up creek settler, brought first Durham cattle to country; built one of first wooden fences, enclosing 600 acres of home site with rough heart pine plank. On creek’s north bank stood the ranch of Frank O. Skidmore, founder of Skidmore, who gained fame for building first barbed-wire fence and windmill in county. He promoted breeding of registered Herefords and in 1886 gave much right of way to San Antonio & Aransas Pass Railroad.”
Karankawa Indians:
The nomadic Karankawa Indians lived along the Texas Gulf Coast from the western end of Galveston Island to Corpus Christi. Many warriors were over 6 feet tall. Men wore their hair to their waists. They were heavily tattooed and wore shell ornaments. They pierced each nipple and their bottom lip with small pieces of cane. They greased their bodies with shark liver oil to ward off mosquitoes and other insects. During the summer months they survived by moving inland and hunting with long bows. During the winters they fished and crabbed the coastal bays in dugouts. They lived in round huts made with thatch and animal skins. The Indians had varied experiences with Anglos though in the end their population was decimated through warfare and diseases caught from Anglos. The Indians helped Spanish explorer Cabeza de Vaca when he was shipwrecked on Galveston Island in 1528. After French explorers under LaSalle stole two canoes from the Karankawa and refused to return them, the Karankawa engaged them in battle; the Indians won. The Karankawa were not cannibals. Though they did sometimes eat captured enemies, they did not do this for food, but rather to absorb the magic powers of the enemy.
Skidmore Historical Society Museum:
Museum buildings include the main building and the 1898 Skidmore Calaboose (jail). Vintage farm equipment is located on the grounds. The Aransas Creek Settlers Texas Historical Marker is located in front of the main building. Open Sundays 3-5pm.
South Texas Trail Riders Ride, Corpus Christi toSan Antonio, Feb 4 – Feb 12, 2016:
This group hosts an annual covered wagon trail ride from Corpus Christi to the San Antonio Livestock & Rodeo. This annual trail ride begins with registration in Edroy, Texas. On Thursday, February 4, riders register at Ed Cot Co-Op Gin in Edroy (5019 CR 51, 78370). On Friday the group rides 19.9 miles from Edroy to Tynan. Lunch is at Hartzendorf Gin on FM 796. They will spend the night in Tynan at the recreation center. On Saturday they ride 19 miles and lunch at the Skidmore Fire Department on the corner of 4th and East Refugio Streets. They spend the night at the Beeville Coliseum, 214 South FM 351. On Sunday they ride 21 miles to Pettus. Monday’s 22.5-mile ride takes them to Kenedy. Lunch is at the Waylon Rouse Ranch on CR 743. They spend the night at the Karnes County Show Barn, located on U.S. 181, between Kenedy and Karnes City, and adjacent to Otto Kaiser Memorial Hospital. On Tuesday, they ride 15.5 miles to Falls City. Wednesday’s 18.1-mile ride takes them to Floresville where they will overnight at the Wilson County Show Barn, 435 SH 97 East. They lunch in Poth, Texas. On Thursday, they ride 13.8 miles to the Bexar County Sheriff’s Posse Arena, 11755 South Foster Road, 78223. Various organizations host meals, dances and live entertainment in each host city. The group also hosts shorter trail rides to other small Texas towns. Current contact information is available on their website.
Birding - Great Texas Coastal Birding Trail, Central Gulf Coast Region:
Guadalupe Loop: Ottine, Gonzales, Hochheim, Cuero, Bloomington, Placedo, Victoria, Palmetto State Park
La Bahia Loop: McFaddin, Bloomington, Goliad, Refugio, Aransas NWR, Austwell, Woodsboro, Bayside, Sinton to Fulton, and Rockport
Texas Birds Checklist
Bird Checklist for the South Texas Brushland
Barnhart Ranch & Nature Retreat Bird Checklist, Berclair & Goliad
Goliad State Park Bird Checklist Available from Park Headquarters
Coastal Bend Audubon Society Bird Checklists
Texas Wildflowers:
Due to budget constraints, TX-DOT no longer maintains a website offering spring wildflower sightings. Information is available at the Texas Highways Magazine.
Jag Ranch Hunting, Mineral, Texas:
They offer hunting for white-tailed deer and exotics. The 6,500 square foot lodge has 7 bedrooms and a swimming pool. The overflow guest house sleeps six. Additional amenities include a lighted skeet range, an archery range, a rifle range, and a skinning barn with a TV room and a game cooler. (409) 835-3000. (409) 781-6146. 7937 Mineral Cemetery Road, Mineral, Texas, 15 miles northwest of Beeville, 21 miles northeast of Three Rivers, 26 miles northeast of George West, 8 miles southwest of Pettus, and 24 miles south of Kenedy and Karnes City, Texas.  Email 
Rattlemasters of TexasDeer Hunting Contest:
This is a rattle (catch) and release video deer tournament. Rattle up a deer, video the deer and submit the video in the contest. Trophies and prizes go to the winners. Several onsite contests are also held at various south Texas ranches during the rutting season. Contact Jim Carpenter at (361) 362-2620. 3026 Old St. Mary's Road, Beeville, 78102.
Aransas River:
The Aransas River rises at the confluence of Olmos, Aransas, and Poesta Creeks, two miles north of Skidmore in south central Bee County. It flows southeast for forty miles, forming the boundary between San Patricio and Refugio counties and continuing into Aransas County where it empties into Copano Bay, ten miles northwest of Rockport, Texas.    
Goliad State Park Information, Goliad:
This 188-acre park is in a historical area of Texas on the San Antonio River near the town of Goliad. Located within the park is the recently restored replica of the Mission Nuestra Senora del Espiritu Santo de Zuniga, which was reconstructed by the Civilian Conservation Corps in the 1930s. The restored mission houses a museum. The General Ignacio Seguin Zaragoza Birthplace Historic Site and 300-person capacity amphitheater is located ½ mile from the park. In 1931, the parkland was donated to Texas by the City and County of Goliad. The land was transferred to the State Parks Board in 1949. Through April the park grounds and fields along U.S. 59 are awash with blooming bluebonnets, Indian paintbrushes, phlox, lantana, and wine cups. Park entrance and camping fees apply. For more information read the Park Brochure and watch the Park Video.  From Goliad take U.S. 183/77A 0.25 mile to the park entrance. GoliadState Park Facilities Map
Fannin Battleground State Historic Site Information, Goliad:
After the Battle of Coleto on March 20, 1836, Col. J.W. Fannin and 284 of his men surrendered to the Mexican forces of General Jose Urrea with the understanding they would be treated as prisoners of war. They were held at the Presidio La Bahia, located 1.4 miles south of the present-day Goliad State Park. Colonel Fannin and the other wounded men were held in the fort’s chapel. Fannin’s room, now called the Flag Room, was in the south extension of the chapel. On the evening of March 26, Mexican Colonel Portilla received orders from Mexican General Santa Anna to execute all the men he held at the fort. An hour after he received Santa Anna’s order, Portilla received an order from General Urrea requesting that Colonel Portilla, “Treat the prisoners with consideration, particularly their leader, Fannin, and to employ them in the rebuilding of Goliad.” On Palm Sunday morning, March 27, 1836, Portilla had 330 of the prisoners divided into three groups and taken to three different locations approximately 0.5 miles from the fort. All were then massacred, except for 17 men whose lives were spared, and the 28 who escaped. The 40 wounded prisoners being held in the Chapel were taken outside and laid in front of the chapel doors. Colonel Fannin was blindfolded, taken outside and seated on a chair located adjacent to a trench by the Watergate. He made three requests; to have his possessions sent to his family, to not be shot in the face, and that he be given a Christian burial. He was shot last, and in the face, a Mexican officer took his possessions, and his body was burned with many of the other bodies in a mass grave. Francita Alavez, the Angel of Goliad and traveling companion of General Urrea, was one of the most compassionate people involved in the Texas Revolution. Prior to the Goliad Massacre she is credited with convincing Mexican Colonel Garay to spare the lives Major William P. Miller’s men, and she was able to save some men from being killed in the Goliad Massacre either by persuading some of the Mexican officers to bring her a few of the men from the fort, or going into the fort herself to rescue and hide some of the men. At Victoria she assisted in the escape of Isaac Hamilton after he escaped the Goliad Massacre. A beautiful stone obelisk honors Fannin and his men. Park amenities include a covered picnic pavilion, a picnic area, benches, a small bandstand with interpretive exhibits, and a playground. The majority of this historic site is ADA compliant. The park hosts special events. For more park information read the brochure and watch the park video.  Fannin, Texas is located on U.S. 59, 9.5 miles northeast of Goliad, Texas. (512) 463-7948. 734 FM 2506, Fannin, Texas 77960.  Email
Angel of Goliad:
The Angel of Goliad was Francita Alavez, traveling companion of General Urrea, was one of the most compassionate people involved in the Texas Revolution. Prior to the Goliad Massacre she is credited with convincing Mexican Colonel Garay to spare the lives Major William P. Miller’s men, and she was able to save some men from being killed in the Goliad Massacre either by persuading some of the Mexican officers to bring her a few of the men from the fort, or going into the fort herself to rescue and hide some of the men. A statue of her is located on the Angel of Goliad Hike and Bike Trail near the Presidio and the Fannin Memorial Monument. (361) 645-3504.     
Coleto Creek Reservoir Information, Goliad & Victoria:
The 3,100-surface acre lake was impounded in 1980 on Coleto and Perdido Creeks. It has a maximum depth of 46 feet. The lake water tends to stay very clear due to the lack of agriculture in the area. The park offers exceptional bass fishing and birding. It is located on the Great Texas Coastal Birding Trail. The reservoir and park are managed by the Guadalupe-Blanco River Authority. Call (361) 575-6366 for camping reservations. The lake is located 15 miles southwest of Victoria off U.S. 59 at 365 Coleto Park Road, midway between Goliad and Victoria, Texas.
Coleto Creek Reservoir Location Map
Coleto Creek Reservoir TPWD Public Access Facilities Map
Coleto Creek Reservoir Park Facilities Map
Current Coleto Creek Reservoir Lake Level
Coleto Creek Reservoir Clear Sky Chart
Hunting Coleto Creek Reservoir, 1,500 Acres:
The area is divided into five separate hunting compartments. Bow hunting for white-tailed deer and feral hogs is by permit. Hunters may apply for permits as individuals or as a group of 2, 4, 6, 8, or 10 hunters. The application deadline is mid-August. Bow hunts are held for 15 consecutive weekends beginning the last weekend in September and ending early January. The first week of hunting season is restricted to Saturday and Sunday. During the following weeks, hunters selected by random drawings are permitted to pre-scout and begin hunting the assigned areas Friday through Sunday of their hunting weekend. (361) 575-6366.  Email   2017 Coleto Creek Bow Hunting Information
Lake Corpus Christi Information, Mathis:
The La Fruita Dam, the original dam, washed out in November of 1929. Lake Corpus Christi, originally known as Lake Lovenskiod, was reformed by damming the Nueces River in 1935. Because of water leakage, the dam was replaced in 1958 with the Wesley E. Seale Dam which has a height of 75 feet. The 19,251-surface acre reservoir (lake) has a maximum depth of 60 feet. The lake provides water for the City of Corpus Christi. The reservoir provides good largemouth bass and catfish fishing. Lake maps are available at the Lake Corpus Christi State Park office on Park Road 25. The lake is owned by the City of Corpus Christi. It is located 4 miles west of Mathis, and approximately 20 miles northwest of Corpus Christi, Texas.  
Lake Corpus Christi Location Map
Current Lake Corpus Christi Lake Level
Lake Corpus Christi TPWD Public Access Facilities Map
Lake Corpus Christi State Park Information, Mathis:
This 356-acre park is in San Patricio, Jim Wells and Live Oak Counties, southwest of Mathis, Texas. The TPWD leased the land from Corpus Christi in 1934. The lease runs until 2032. Many of the park's facilities were built by the CCC (Civilian Conservation Corps), Company 886. The CCC was part of the New Deal Program under President FDR during the depression. This program was designed to provide jobs for out of work citizens. The CCC was involved in building many state park facilities across the nation, and some of the CCC's work is outstanding. Of the original CCC facilities at Lake Corpus Christi State Park, only the refectory and old pavilion remain. The Mediterranean style refectory was built of cast blocks of local caliche, and features a large terrace, a pavilion, a lookout tower, and a cast stone staircase leading to the lake trails. The park is in a cove where the counties of San Patricio, Jim Wells, and Live Oak meet. The site of the park overlooks an area on the Nueces River which was a disputed boundary between Texas and Mexico. After the war the Rio Grande River became the official boundary. During the spring the park is a riot of bluebonnets and other wildflowers. Park entrance and camping fees apply. For more park information watch the Park Video and read the Park BrochureFrom Mathis: Take FM 1068 south approximately 4 miles to Park Road 25. Turn right on Park Road 25, and drive to the park entrance. The park is located approximately 30 miles northwest of Corpus Christi.  Lake Corpus Christi State Park Facilities Map
Fort Lipantitlan State Historic Site Information, Mathis:
Mexican forces constructed the wooden fort in 1831 in preparation of potential conflicts with Texians.
In 1835, the small Mexican guard force surrendered to Texan forces without a shot being fired. Today, there is nothing left of the fort. The only amenities are 6 picnic tables and Texas Historical markers. Activities include picnicking and birding. Hours and fees do not apply. For more information read Texas Forts History and an article by Charles M. Yates.The fort site is managed by Corpus Christi State Park. It is located 9 miles east of Orange Grove, off Texas State Road 359, FM 624 and FM 70. It is hard to find; call the Corpus Christi State Park for directions.(361) 547-2635.. 
Choke Canyon Reservoir Information, Tilden & Three Rivers:
The 141-foot-tall Choke Canyon Dam was built in 1981 and 1982. The 25,670-surface acre Choke Canyon Reservoir was impounded on the Frio River in 1982. The lake has a maximum depth of 95.5 feet. The lake is owned by the Bureau of Reclamation. It is one of the City of Corpus Christi’s water sources and is managed by the city. The lake is located four miles west of Three Rivers, and 65 miles south of San Antonio, Texas.  
Choke Canyon Reservoir Area Map
Current Choke Canyon Reservoir Level
Choke Canyon Reservoir TPWD Public Access Facilities Map
Choke Canyon State Park Information, Tilden & Three Rivers:
This 1,485-acre park is located on the 26,000-surface acre Choke Canyon Reservoir, part of Corpus Christ's water supply source. The reservoir was formed when the Frio River was dammed a few miles upstream from where the Rio, Atascosa, and Nueces Rivers merge near Three Rivers, Texas. Ghost trees are still visible on some portions of the lake. The park consists of two units. The 1,100-acre Calliham Unit is located on a peninsula on SH 72, eleven miles west of Three Rivers in McMullen County. The 385-acre day use only South Shore Unit is in Live Oak County below the dam on SH 72, 4 miles west of Three Rivers, Texas. Camping and other amenities are available in the Calliham Unit. Amenities at the South Shore consist of a day use area. Park habitat consists mainly of thick mesquite forest. The South Shore unit features a 75-surface acre man-made lake. Each unit entrance has a park headquarters. Wildlife sightings include turkey, whitetail deer, javelin, coyote, opossum, fox squirrel, armadillo, raccoon, alligators and skunks. Park entrance and camping fees apply.For more park information, read the Park Brochure and view the Park Video. The South Shore Unit is located 3.5 miles west of Three Rivers, Texas, on SH 72. The Calliham Unit is located 12 miles west of Three Rivers on SH 72 (to Tilden).
Choke Canyon State Park Facilities Map
Hunting the North Shore Unit at Choke Canyon State Park:
The 1,700-acre North Shore Unit is undeveloped. This unit offers archery hunting of white-tailed deer and feral hogs. Hunting is by compartment; baiting is permitted. There are no blinds. Hunters are encouraged to bring portable blinds. Multi-purpose campsites are available at Choke Canyon State Park South Shore Unit. Call the South Shore Park for further information. (361) 786-3868). Access to the North Shore Unit is limited to hunter use during hunting season. The hunter check-in station is located at the James E. Daughtrey Wildlife Management Area headquarters between Tilden and Three Rivers. From Jourdanton go approximately 29 miles south on SH 16 to FM 3445 located 3 miles north of Tilden. Go east (left) on FM 3445 and drive 5.5 miles to the WMA entrance.   2017-2018 Hunting Details
James E. Daughtrey Wildlife Management Area Information, Tilden & Three Rivers:
This 4,400-acre WMA is located on the Choke Canyon Reservoir. The WMA occupies five noncontiguous parcels adjacent to the lake. TPWD took over management of the property in 1981. The land is rough with habitat consisting of thorny scrub brush. Activities include hunting and nature study. Amenities include an interpretive nature trail, and a primitive campground used only for those hunting with Special Permits. The campground will open the evening prior to scheduled hunts. WMA access is limited. It is closed for Special Permit Hunts. Bring your own potable water. The WMA is located between Tilden and Three Rivers, Texas. From Jourdanton go approximately 29 miles south on SH 16 to FM 3445 located 3 miles north of Tilden. Go east (left) on FM 3445 and drive 5.5 miles to the WMA entrance.  James E. Daughtrey WMA Hunting Information & Map
Hunting the James E. Daughtrey Wildlife Management Area:
The Choke Canyon Reservoir is considered part of the WMA for purposes of waterfowl hunting. Alligator hunting is by compartment. Archery and gun hunts for white-tailed deer, feral hogs, and coyote are by compartment. Some permanent box blinds available; hunters may bring portable blinds. The WMA offers special youth only hunts and special javelina hunts. Spring turkey hunts are available. The San Miguel boat ramp is closed during flooding and closed to the during hunting dates. Primitive camping is available on the WMA, and camping is also available at the Calliham Unit of the Choke Canyon State Park.  Information & Map
Fulton Mansion State Historic Site Information, Rockport: 
The Mansion was built in French second empire style in the late 1870s in the Rockport-Fulton area overlooking Aransas Bay. It had the most modern facilities available at the time, including interior gas lighting, running water, flush-toilets, and central heating. Owners engineer George Fulton and his wife Harriet Fulton, eldest daughter of Texas Provisional Governor Harry Smith (1835), spared no expense in building and furnishing their home. The house was restored in the 1880s. A wheelchair lift provides access to the first floor of the mansion. For visitors unable to climb stairs, a full-color notebook illustrates the second-floor rooms. This SHS has an Education and History Center, and hosts school programs and special events. Volunteer positions are available. Guided tours begin on the hour. Admission fees apply. Open Tue-Sat, 9:30am-4:30pm; Sun, 12:30pm-4:30pm; closed major holidays. (361) 729-0386. 317 S. Fulton Beach Road, Fulton, Texas 78358.For more information read the Fulton Mansion State Historic Site BrochureEmail  
Guadalupe Delta Wildlife Management Area Information, Tivoli & Victoria:
This 6,200-acre Wildlife Management Area was established in 1984 along the Texas coast between Houston and Corpus Christi. It consists of 6,200 acres of freshwater marsh which is subject to flooding from the Guadalupe River and its adjacent bayous. The WMA is divided into 4 units. Habitat includes natural and manmade coastal wetlands, riparian areas, and the adjacent uplands located near the delta of the Guadalupe and San Antonio Rivers. Due to the discharge of fresh water from the Guadalupe River, the bay salinity is extremely low compared to the salinity levels of other Texas bays. Endangered or threatened species inhabiting the WMA include the Brown Pelican, Reddish Egret, White-faced Ibis, Wood Stork, American Bald Eagle, White-tailed Hawk, Peregrine Falcon, Whooping Crane, and the Texas Diamondback Terrapin. The area provides excellent forage for Neotropical songbirds and serves as a breeding ground and nursery for red drum, Atlantic croaker, spotted seatrout, brown shrimp, white shrimp, blue crab, and other marine species. Activities include hunting, fishing, crabbing and birding. From Victoria, take SH 185 southeast to SH 35. Go right on SH 35 and drive 1 mile to the entrance. The WMA is located 3 miles northeast of Tivoli.
Guadalupe Delta Wildlife Management Area Hunting:
The Guadalupe Delta WMA offers bow hunting for alligator by drawn permit. It also offers youth and adult hunts for feral hogs, rabbits/hares, squirrel, coyotes, dove, waterfowl and migratory game birds on the San Antonio Unit. Hunters may camp on the WMA. The Mission Lake Unit has several designated signed public hunting roads which provide access to the numbered hunting sites. The Guadalupe River Unit and the Hynes Bay Unit have limited access points. During hunting season, boats must be hand launched; only electric motors are permitted. Airboats and trailers are prohibited.The hunter check-in station is on the south side of SH 35, 1 mile west of the U.S. 185 intersection.  2017-2018 Hunting Details
Hunt Texas Online Connection:
More than 95% of Texas land is privately owned, making it hard for hunters to find affordable hunting opportunities. The Texas Parks and Wildlife has a huge public hunting program and has developed a new service to help hunters find hunting places. This new service is provided free by the TPWD. It allows landowners to list available hunting leases or spots that have opened and allows hunters to find private hunting leases according to their preferences. 
Hunting, Texas Parks and Wildlife, General Hunting Information
Hunting, Public Hunting on State Lands, TPWD
Hunter Education
Hunting Season by Animal
Texas Parks & Wildlife Department Donations
Learn to Camp at Texas Parks & Wildlife State Parks' Outdoor Family Camping Workshops:
Theseworkshops are family camping sessions designed to teach camping skills to those who do not know how to camp; everything is provided from tent to broom. Gear includes a coffee pot, dishes, cooking pots, a camp stove, a battery-operated fan and lantern, air mattresses, and a tent. Basic skills taught include pitching a tent, making a campfire, cooking on a propane camp stove, geocaching and using a GPS. Wildlife viewing, fishing and kayaking are available depending on the park and its facilities. After making reservations, families will be sent a packet of information which includes a grocery list. Those interested in this program may sign up for E-Mail Updates on Currently Scheduled Workshops. (512) 389-8903. Calendar