Medicine Mound, Texas
Medicine Mound is a ghost town in southeastern Hardeman County in West Texas. It consists of two buildings, the former Hicks-Cobb general store and the W.W. Cole Building, a combination bank, drugstore, gasoline station (with rusty pumps still standing), and post office. The Hicks-Cobb building has been turned into a regional history and cultural museum by its former owner, Myna Potts (born 1927), of nearby Chillicothe, the daughter of store co-owner Ira Lee Hicks (1886-1966). The museum is a personal testimony of Potts' life. It contains a large collection of photographs of area pioneers. Potts considers the preservation a way to honor the contributions of rural Americans.
A sign proclaims: “Medicine Mound: Population Zero”, but the Texas road map claims fifty individuals live in the general area. Medicine Mound can be accessed southward from Chillicothe via Farm to Market Road 91, which connects with F-M Road 1167 at the ghost town and proceeds northward to U.S. Highway 287 several miles west of Chillicothe. The ghost town is southeast of the county seat of Quanah. southeast of Lake Pauline, and north of the Pease River.
Medicine Mound has received non-profit status and has been placed in the domain of the newly established Downtown Medicine Mound Preservation Group, a 501(c)(3) public charity. Potts operates the museum on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., and by appointment through her Chillicothe telephone. There are four historical markers in Medicine Mound to commemorate the community itself, the Hicks-Cobb store, a Works Progress Administration sanitation project in the 1930s, and a small 19th century cemetery.
Medicine Mound (singular) is named for four nearby cone-shaped dolomite hills called "Medicine Mounds" (plural), which rise some 350 feet above the surrounding plains. They were named by the Comanche Indians, who maintained that the mounds are the dwelling place of powerful, benevolent spirits, which can cure ills, assure successful hunts, and protect in battle. In an annual ritual the Comanche came to Medicine Mound with cedar incense taken from nearby Cedar Mound. The mounds are on private property but can be observed some five miles in the distance by vehicle.
- Myna Potts, Texas Country Reporter, syndicated television series narrated by Bob Phillips, September 1, 2007: http://www.texascountryreporter.com/show.htm
- Guidestar, Downtown Medicine Mound Preservation Group:http://www.guidestar.org/pqShowGsReport.do?partner=justgivews&ein=11-3788422
- The Comanche Language and Cultural Preservation Committee newsletter, 1999:http://www.comanchelanguage.org/November%201999%20Newsletter.pdf
- "Quanah: Medicine Mounds", Texas State Travel Guide, 2008, pp. 129-130
- Climate Summary for Medicine Mound, Texas
- Medicine Mound photo gallery at Flickr