About 90 miles east of El Paso, Texas sits the forgotten town of Salt Flat, Texas. The town was established in 1928 when Ed Hammack learned a new highway was to be built between El Paso and Carlsbad Caverns, New Mexico and it would pass through the area. However, today it’s a ghost town with abandoned buildings that time hasn’t forgotten about.
There is still a cafe (Salt Flat Cafe) which appears to be the only remaining intact building that we could see. It looked like it had been open recently, however, was closed when we arrived in July 2016.
It wasn’t until after we got back from our trip did we learn that the cafe is typically open, however, the owner has had some health issues and is not sure when she will be opening back up.
There was also a house just a little further down from it that had a for sale sign. We stopped and without hesitation, I asked my husband to buy me that house.
According to the internet, the population is 56, however, I find that pretty hard to believe! We didn’t see a single soul while we were there!
Mr. Hammack built a store (which also doubled as a bus station) and gas station which opened for business in 1929, shortly after traffic on the new highway began.
Arthur Grable built a store and gas station just a short distance down the road as well and eventually both men also opened cafes.
An airstrip was built in the early 1930s after an American Airlines plane crashed in the nearby Guadalupe Mountains. The airfield was used for emergency landings when fog rolled into the mountains. It shut down in the early 1960s when new navigational equipment was developed which allowed planes to fly even in the most horrific of weather.
In the 1960’s at the height of it’s population, Salt Flat had a population of 125. By 1970 the population dropped to thirty-five.
Salt Flat gets its name from the Salt Flats it sits near: