Rankin was originally Upland, Texas

The old Upland Courthouse can still be found in 11 miles north of Rankin. Photo by Michaela Sawyers
The old Upland Courthouse can still be found in 11 miles north of Rankin.

By Michaela Sawyers

Going out eleven miles north from Rankin you would see a bowl shaped valley. That was once known as the town of Upland. Upland was a part of the Upton County, and they were actually the county seat because of the courthouse.

The area plot of what Rankin is today was actually F. E. Rankin’s ranch. That’s right; this whole area was just a ranch.

This ranch was built here mostly because of the Orient Railroad track that’s found down by the old Yates Motel. Upland residents decided that they wanted to live closer to the railroad to get more money.
So, some Upland folks went down to the Rankin’s ranch and asked if they could come live down there. The Rankins accepted, and everyone from Upland moved to the ranch. Since it was the Rankin’s land, they decided to take control and call the town Rankin. When they became Rankin and finished rebuilding, on March 20, 1921, they finally made Rankin the county seat.

Therefore, if the railroad were not there, Rankin wouldn’t have existed, and we would be called the Upland Red Devils.

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