Mason, on the western side of the Hill Country offer’s a beautiful combination of rugged Texas landscape, historic and recreational and cultural opportunities for any visitor or resident. The first thing people notice is the town square, which is considered one of the five most beautiful squares in Texas by Texas Monthly, you’ll know why we’re the “Gem of the Hill Country”.
Mason has been a significant place on the road from here to there. Its proximity to water and strategic location caused the US government to establish Ft. Mason. From 1851-1869 we were the edge of the “civilized” world. Twenty six generals, including Robert E. Lee, served at Ft. Mason before the Civil War – more than any other post.
The fertile land around Mason brought attracted settlers from Europe and in the 1920’s Mason was known for the quality beef and mohair produced. This same landscape also holds a treasure trove of Pre-Cambrian fossils, pink granite, and blue topaz which bring rock hounds, 4x4er’s and geologists from around the world.
Wildlife is an abundant recourse in Mason, with an average of 40-50 deer annually scoring higher than 135-140 on the Boone & Crockett scale. Those deer graze upon the same road sides and pastures which are filled with wildflowers from April to July. But Mason’s most populace animal can be seen every night from 6-8 from May to October when 4 million bats emerge from the James River Bat Preserve.
German heritage and Texas pride have allowed Mason to not only prosper financially but culturally for over 150 years. Mason’s Odeon Theater was built in 1928 and is West Texas’ longest running theater. It was here, in 1957, where the movie Old’ Yeller premiered, written by Mason native Fred Gipson. Today this icon boasts high-definition digital projection and dolby surround sound.
Through the years Mason has been the home of may famous individuals including writers, statesmen, craftsmen, and artists. Two famous artists who have called Mason home for many years are Gene Zesch and Bill Worrell. In recent years Mason County has become home to a handful of vineyards and the award winning wines of Sandstone Cellars Winery.
Once you’ve seen the history, bought some antiques, ogled a star-cut topaz, viewed some art, tasted some wine, and seen the wildflowers, well, your Mason adventure is just beginning. Now, slow down, stay a while, soak up a sunset and enjoy the “Gem of the Hill Country”.