Terrell County Memorial Museum

Sanderson, Texas

Terrell Hotel and Raysor Mercantile, across the street from the depot in Sanderson, Texas, about 1915. Raysor's sat on the present US Post Office site and the Terrell Hotel was demolished and a small park was put in its place, after the Kerr Hotel was finished in 1920. The low building behind the Terrell in this photo was the restaurant, run by the Chinese Sam Sing and Company for years.


This hotel was built by Charlie Wilson, founder of Sanderson, and completed around 1900.  Until 1907-08 it was known as the Wilson Hotel, and housed the first offices of Terrell County when the county was founded in 1905, until the new courthouse was finished in 1906-07.  Around 1908 Wilson sold all of his Sanderson holdings to Ed McGinley, a Galveston, Harrisburg and San Antonio Railroad locomotive engineer.  At that time the building was renamed the Terrell Hotel.


The Wilson/Terrell Hotel was the center of social life in Sanderson in its hey-day and was the site of many dances, parties and public meetings.  The hotel had the US Post Office downstairs, along with a “Racket Store” (like a dime store) and a doctor’s office.  Rooms and a meeting hall were located upstairs, with access from an outdoor stairway at the back of the building. It as a frame and adobe building, and the pole sticking up from the roof was a lightning rod.