History of Shamrock: from small beginnings to national fame

History of Shamrock: from small beginnings to national fame

Shamrock, TX - From small beginnings, to national fame. Shamrock has become a tourist destination for many. Though it's not the biggest city in the area, everyone knows its name.

Shamrock has become quite the place to shop, take pictures, and enjoy a piece of Texas, but it didn't always start out this way.

Long before The U Drop Inn, The St. Patrick's Day celebrations or anything Shamrock, this part of the Texas Panhandle was known for just having a post office in the late 1800's. George and Dora Nickel, who both had Irish roots, were the postmasters for the office.

"George longed for Ireland and so he is the one that named it Shamrock. That's where it actually got the name," said city manager David Rushing.

Like most small Texas towns, Shamrock was built on ranching, farming, and agriculture. In 1926, the oil and gas industry helped spur the city's continued growth. As the oil and gas industry has it's up's and down's, the city's population fluctuated.

Not long after I-40 and Route 66 were established, Shamrock became a tourism city.

"We want to make people feel welcomed. We want to give them information about Shamrock," said EDC director, Larry Clonts.

Something the city continues to be proud of is their St. Patrick's Day Celebration. The event brings in anywhere from 15,000 to 20,000 people every year and has been an economic boom for the city.

"It's huge. It's family-friendly, we've got events for everyone. That's why it's so popular," Rushing said.

"In 2014, we tripled the documented visitors over 2013. This year we are doubling last year. For example, In June this year we had 2,400 visitors," said Clonts.

Although the city has gone through some changes, most of the officials can agree on one thing.

"Everything is hanging on pretty good right now," Rushing said.

Another bragging point for Shamrock is they lobby to make Route 66 running through Texas a historic corridor. This will take effect September 1st.