Details for Albion E. Shepard House (Atlas Number 5507017696)

Historical Marker — Atlas Number 5507017696


Marker Number 17696
Atlas Number 5507017696
Marker Title Albion E. Shepard House
Index Entry Shepard, Albion E., House
Address North Avenue D
City Marathon
County Brewster
UTM Zone 13
UTM Easting 668898
UTM Northing 3343090
Subject Codes
Marker Year 2013
Designations Recorded Texas Historic Landmark
Marker Location NW corner of North Avenue D and North 2rd Street
Marker Size 27" x 42" without post
Marker Text In 1883, completion occurred of the extension of tracks by the Galveston, Harrisburg and San Antonio Railway (G.H. & S.A. Ry.) Line located between El Paso and San Antonio. Retired sea captain Albion E. Shepard arrived in the region as a railroad surveyor. He acquired much land in the area, including Section 18, Block 4 of the G.H. & S.A. Railway survey. Tradition documents the naming of Marathon to Captain Shepard’s observations of the similarity of the valley and its encircling hills to Marathon, Greece, where the mountains meet the waters of the Mediterranean Sea. At this site, Captain Shepard applied for a post office in September 1882 where he became the first postmaster. He deeded Section 18 to his son Ben Shepard for the creation of the Marathon townsite on December 6, 1885 on an existing siding of the railroad. Captain Shepard established “Iron Mountain Ranch” on 58 sections of ranchland bought from F. W. Folts on March 10, 1882, located in the Glass Mountains along the north line of the Marathon Basin. The ranch was stocked with as many as 25,000 sheep, managed by herders with no fences. Prior to 1887, Shepard built a large two-story adobe home facing Marathon’s public square located at North Avenue “D” and North Second Street. The square plan Colonial Revival home contains four large rooms on each floor and features a hipped roof and full-length double gallery with square porch supports. An original carriage house is also part of the historic homestead. Adobe blocks were made locally, while lumber and furnishings were delivered by rail. The house was later acquired by the Hess family, owners of a mercantile and hardware store and ranching neighbors of Shepard. The house, which remained in the Hess family until the 1980s, evokes the ranching and civic contributions of pioneer settlers of the community. Recorded Texas Historical Landmark – 2013