Notrees, Texas: A Small Texas Town with a Strange Name

Notrees, Texas: A Small Texas Town with a Strange Name

Ever want to visit a really small town? Notrees, Texas has you covered.

Right now, the town has around 300 people. In its heyday, Notrees had 500 people. There were liquor stores and a school here. People could even socialize at the local recreation hall. Maybe the place wasn’t a bustling metropolis, but Notrees had a pulse.

Of course, the reason why the town existed in the first place is because Shell Oil built a natural gas plant and needed folks to run it. So, they traveled out to Notrees to live in camps. The one and only tree in the area was cut down in order to build the Shell plant. That’s where the name “Notrees” came from.

Charlie Brown came up with that name. He ran the first general store in Notrees, which also served as a post office. When the post office asked him what the name of the town was, he didn’t want to name it after himself. So, he decided on Notrees. It’s definitely distinctive.

By the way, even though Charlie Brown himself had a famous name, he was no relation. At least, none that we know of.

Notrees, Texas: A Small Texas Town with a Strange Name

Photo: @mikepricephotography via Twenty20

After the oil boom of the 1950s ended, a lot of small towns died back, and Notrees was no exception. The Shell plant closed and people drifted away. Some folks call this community a ghost town now. The approximately 300 people who live there may take exception to that.

If you want to visit, the town is located about 20 miles NW of Odessa. There are no hotels or motels in town, so you may want to make arrangements to stay in Odessa.

There isn’t too much to see in town. An old 1938 fire truck is on display. Apparently, it was one of the first trucks to serve in the Notrees fire department, and it was kept around for sentimental reasons.

Some folks go biking here. The bike trails there are pretty good, and you may even find some shade when you’re biking in the area. Residents have planted some trees around town, so the name “Notrees” is no longer accurate. Guess you can’t sue a town name for false advertising.

Written by Paul Ehrlich