2000 Census - 957
Bandera Texas History:
In 1853, the town founders formed a partnership to establish the town and build a water-powered lumber mill. They recruited Polish immigrants as laborers. Each family received purchase rights to town lots and farmland. Bandera was platted along the Medina River in 1856 when Bandera was made the county seat of the newly established Bandera County. The town and the county were named for the nearby Bandera Pass. The town grew due to the nearby presence of the U.S. Cavalry at Camp Verde. After the Civil War the town boomed due to its importance as a staging area for cattle drives up the Western Trail. Cotton became a major crop, and sheep and goats were found to be more suitable than cattle for the shallow limestone soil. The local economy declined after 1900 because a series of floods destroyed sawmills, gins, and businesses, and the cattle drives ceased. Until the San Antonio Highway was constructed in 1936, Bandera remained relatively inaccessible. Other Bandera roads remained unpaved as late as the 1950s. Bandera is known for its dude ranches (some date to the 1930s), B & Bs, campgrounds and cabins, and its abundance of activities from everything cowboy to fishing and tubing, birding and hiking, horseback riding, rodeos, golf, live music, and dance halls. It is the hometown of Bruce and Charlie Robison, and a past home of Robert Earl Keen. Bandera incorporated in 1964. The town’s population has remained around 1,000 since 1928. Bandera is located on the Medina River at the intersections of RR 3240, SH 173 (RR 689/Main Street) and SH 16, 70 miles northeast of Concan, 50 miles east of Leakey, 38 miles east of Vanderpool, 38 miles southeast of Hunt, 24.5 miles southeast of Kerrville, 28.5 miles southwest of Comfort, 27 miles southeast of Waring, 26 miles southwest of Boerne, 50 miles northwest of San Antonio, 30 miles northwest of Helotes, 11.5 miles northwest of Pipe Creek, 42 miles northwest of Castroville, 25 miles northwest of Mico, 20 miles northwest of Lakehills, 30 miles north of Hondo, and 13 miles southeast of Medina, Texas.
Bandera County Courthouse, 1890:
This native stone courthouse was designed in Renaissance revival style by architect B.F. Trester, Jr. The stone was quarried locally and laid by Russian stonemasons. The courthouse is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and is a Texas Historical Landmark. A Texas Historical Marker honoring Mormon settlers is in front of the courthouse. The 2010 Bandera County census was 20,245. (830) 796-3781. 504 Main Street.
Bandera County Courthouse, 1868:
This native stone courthouse is located on Maple Street, 1 block from the 1890 courthouse.
Bandera County Jail, 1881:
The jail was designed by famous courthouse architect Alfred Giles, who also designed several Texas courthouses, several buildings in Comfort where he owned the Laurels Ranch, and many buildings at Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio. The jail is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. It is located across from the 1890 Bandera County Courthouse at the corner of Main and Pecan Streets.