Stockdale Texas History:
The Stockdale area was first settled in the 1830's, but it was not until the 1860's and 1870's that a village formed. A town committee named the town Stockdale after F.S. Stockdale, a former governor of Confederate Texas. In 1872, J.R. King, William Palm and John Wheeler platted the town on land they owned. The first business was the 1870s Wheeler’s Mill. The San Antonio and Gulf Railroad built a line to Stockdale in 1898. Cotton was a big crop in the early years. In 1915, watermelons became a cash crop; peanuts followed in the 1930s. Stockdale is located at the intersections of U.S. 87/SH 97 (Main Street), SH 123, SH 119 and FM 1107, 23.5 miles south of Seguin, 41 miles southwest of Gonzales, 12.5 miles southwest of Nixon, 29 miles north of Karnes City, 39 miles northeast of Pleasanton, 19 miles northeast of Poth, 16 miles northeast of Floresville, 7 miles north of Kosciusko, 15 miles northwest of Cestohowa, 29 miles east of Elmendorf, 14.5 miles southeast of La Vernia, 7 miles southeast of Sutherland Springs, and 39 miles southeast of San Antonio, Texas.
Historic Governor F.S. Stockdale, Texas Historical Marker Text:
“Last governor of Confederate Texas. Legal scholar and statesman. Born in Kentucky. Admitted to the bar there. Came to Texas in the 1840s. Developed extensive lands and resources. President of Indianola Railroad, 1859. Counsel for the Southern Pacific R. R. Member of Texas Senate 1857-61, and of State Secession Convention, which placed him on Committee on Federal Relations, to draw up the Ordinance of Secession, and on the committee to draft Constitution. Served in 1861 as military aide to Gov. F. R. Lubbock, and as a major on the staff of Gen. T. H. Holmes, Commander of the Confederate Armies west of the Mississippi River, in 1862-63. Stood for state election in 1863 and was elevated from office of lieutenant-governor when on June 11, 1865, Gov. Pendleton Murrah left state with other southern leaders for Mexico in the hope of making a later fight for independence. Served as chief executive until August 2 deposed by A. J. Hamilton. Pioneered after the war the refrigerated shipping of Texas beef, to help restore state economy. Aided moves to end Reconstruction. Was a leader in the 1875 Texas Constitutional Convention. Died at his home in Cuero Feb. 4, 1890. Buried in Kentucky.”
Old Stockdale Jail:
Future plans include restoring this tiny jail which is located at 700 West Main Street, adjacent to the Stockdale City Hall.
Sutherland Springs Historical Museum, Sutherland Springs, TX:
The museum collection began in 1990 when locals raised money to buy two pieces of furniture from the Polley Mansion, an 1848 plantation home. 6556 U.S. 87 West, Sutherland Springs, Texas 78161. Sutherland Springs is located on U.S. 87, 13 miles northeast of Floresville, and 7 miles northwest of Stockdale, Texas. Contacts
The library provides traditional library programs, children, youth and adult programs, summer programs, audiobooks, DVDs, children’s movies, public access computers with internet connections, and free Wi-Fi. Open Tue-Thu, 10am-4:30pm; closed noon-1pm. (830) 996-3114. 700 West Main Street. Email
Kosciusko Hall, Kosciusko, TX:
Amenities include a ball field, campsites, washer pits, a 4,000 square foot wood dance floor, a full kitchen, walk-in coolers, an ice machine, a bar area, an outdoor pavilion, large barbeque pits with gas burners, and large stainless steel picnic tables. The hall hosts live music concerts and dancing. It is available private party rentals. (830) 745-2836. The hall is located at 2975 FM 541 East. Email
Annual Watermelon Jubilee, 3rd Weekend in June:
Activities at this three day festival include live music (2010 included Robert Earl Keen), a carnival, rodeo, parade, volleyball, horseshoe and washers tournaments, kids games, Jubilee Olympics, Watermelon Rumble wrestling on Thursday evening, a calf scramble and mutton bustin, wiener dog and Chihuahua races, best dressed dog contest, food booths, arts and crafts, the Watermelon Crawl 5K run, a Kids Crawl and a largest watermelon contest. Any variety of melon may be entered. This event is held at Stockdale City Park on SH 123 North.
Wilson County Birding:
Texas Bird Checklist with Photos
Wilson County Bird Checklist with Photos
John William Helton San Antonio River Nature Center, 98 Acres:
As of 2012 this new nature center was being developed by the San Antonio River Authority (SARA) at the confluence of the San Antonio River and Calaveras Creek. The master plan includes developing trails, campsites and an education center. The San Antonio River Saspamco Paddling Trail
has been developed. The nature center is the take-out point for this 12 mile paddling trail. Nature Center events include SARA hosted bird walks and geocaching. Reservations for hikes may be made by calling (210) 302-3625. The nature center opened in 2011 for day use only on weekends, 7am-8pm. The park is located in Wilson County near the town of Calaveras, a few miles southeast of Elmendorf and a few miles northwest of Floresville, Texas at 15662 FM 775.For more nature center information call (210) 302-3280. SARA Event Calendar Calaveras Texas Map
Jackson Nature Park, 50 Acres:
Amenities include unpaved parking, pedestrian only trails, picnic tables, benches, potable water and a toilet. Activities include hiking, birding, nature study and picnicking. SARA periodically hosts free nature programs including rock formation information hikes and wildflower walks. This park is owned by Wilson County and is managed by the San Antonio River Authority (SARA). Reservations for hikes may be made by calling (210) 302-3625. The park is located between the towns of Floresville and Stockdale on Wilson County Road 401 at Cibolo Creek. The park is located at 10422 Old Floresville Road, Stockdale, Texas. Location Map SARA Event Calendar
Stockdale City Park:
Amenities include tennis, volleyball and basketball courts, a rodeo arena, softball and little league fields, a playground, picnic tables, reservable picnic pavilions and restrooms. (830) 996-3128. The park is located on SH 123 North. Email
Picosa Ranch Hunting:
Greg and Bekki Kowalski offer guided hunts for deer, hogs, turkey, upland birds and exotics on the former ranch of former Governor John B. Connelly. Lodging in a 6,000 square foot hunting lodge, and gourmet meals prepared by the Kowalski family’s catering company are included in hunting packages. (830) 393-9262. Email
Sunset Outfitter Hunting:
Ken (Butch) Scarborough offers several guided hunts including Texas and Mexico deer hunts, Rio Grande turkey, and wild boar in south and central Texas. (830) 393-7709. Email
Keith Johnson Outdoors Hunting:
Keith Jones offers fishing trips and guided hunts for deer, hogs, and exotics. The ranch is located near Floresville. Lodging is available in an eight person capacity bunk house featuring a BBQ pit with wood, a cooler, and a lighted skinning area. (210) 857-2195.
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 up, 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
Hunting Season by Animal
Texas Parks & Wildlife Department Donations
Cibolo Creek rises at Turkey Knob, ten miles north of Boerne in southwestern Kendall County, and flows southeast for almost a 100 miles, forming the Bexar-Comal and the Bexar-Guadalupe County lines. The creek is a tributary of the San Antonio River. It crosses Wilson County to its mouth on the San Antonio River 5 miles north of Karnes City in Karnes County. Communities located along the creek include Boerne, Bulverde, Bracken, Selma, Universal City, Cibolo, La Vernia, Panna Maria, and Sutherland Springs, Texas.
Victor Braunig Lake & Park (formerly East Lake), 1350 Acres, Elmendorf, TX:
This reservoir is located on Calaveras and Chupaderas Creeks just east of IH-35 near Elmendorf, 15 miles south of downtown San Antonio on. The reservoir was formed in 1962 by the construction of a dam to provide a cooling pond for a power plant supplying power to San Antonio. The lake has 1,350 surface acres and a maximum depth of 50 feet. Together with nearby Calaveras Lake, Braunig Lake was one of the first projects in the nation to use treated wastewater for power plant cooling. Lake recreation includes boating and fishing. The lake has been stocked with red drum, hybrid striped bass, catfish and largemouth bass, and is popular for its trophy size bass. Amenities include boat ramps, lighted fishing piers, a fish cleaning station, boat rentals, tent campsites, RV sites, sheltered picnic tables, a playground and restrooms. A 75 person capacity picnic pavilion with electricity and restrooms is available for rent. Open daily, 6am-8pm for day users. (210) 635-8291. The park is located at 17500 Donop Road, SA, 78223. From IH-37 south; take Exit 130 (Donop Road) and follow the signs. Email Fish Stocking History Lake Records Current Fishing Report
Calaveras Lake & Park, 3,624 Acres, Elmendorf, TX:
The lake was impounded in 1969 and has a maximum depth of 45 feet. The park serves both Calaveras Lake and Braunig Lake near Elmendorf. Amenities include a nature trail, campsites, RV sites, shaded picnic tables, a fishing pier and boat ramp, playgrounds, paddleboat rentals, restrooms and parking. Activities include birding, fishing, camping, picnicking, boating and water sports. Fish species include blue and channel catfish, hybrid striped bass, largemouth bass and red fish (red drum. Spring wildflowers are stunning! Park fees apply. Open daily, 6am-8pm for day users. (210) 635-8359. The park is located at 12991 Bernhardt Road. The lake is located 20 miles southeast of downtown San Antonio. From Loop 410, proceed southeast on U.S. Highway 181 south, then turn left on Loop 1604 and proceed for two miles; turn left on Stuart Road and proceed for 1/2 mile to the park entrance. Email Fish Stocking History Lake Records Current Fishing Report TPWD Public Access Facilities Map
Topcat Canyon Lake Fishing Guide Service:
Offers guided fishing trips on Lake Dunlap, Lake McQueeney, Lake Placid, Choke Canyon, Pecos River, Lake Braunig, Lake Calaveras, Granger Lake, the Highland Lakes and Canyon Lake (bass). (512) 663-7166. Email
Bret Fisher Fishing on Braunig & Calaveras Lakes:
Offers guided fishing trips on Braunig & Calaveras Lakes near San Antonio, Choke Canyon, Falcon Lake, Canyon Lake and Coleto Creek Lake. (210) 394-3925.
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