History of Friona

When established by the XIT Ranch in 1898, this community was originally called Frio, after the Frio (cold) draw, and it served as the shipping point on the recently built Pecos and Northern Texas Railroads. In 1906, The George G. Wright Land CO. took options on area lands and initiated a colonization project, promising fertile land and a healthful climate to attract prospective settlers from Ohio to Kansas. The company erected a hotel, livery stable, and a bank. The town's name changed to Friona when a post office was opened on March 16, 1907. Sarah D. Olson served as the community's first postmaster. That same year, Parmer County organized, and the Union Congregational Church became Friona's first church. A school opened the following year. 

A controversy between Friona and Farwell over the location of the county seat led to an election in 1913. Voters chose Farwell and Friona residents contested the results, but a court ruled in 1916 in favor of Farwell. That year, S.A. Harris began publishing a local newspaper, The Friona Sentinel. It later became the Friona Star in 1925. Residents voted to incorporate the city in 1928, electing John W. White as Mayor. 

In the later part of the 20th century, Friona served as a regional marketing center for agricultural and beef products, and claimed the distinction of "Grain Sorghum Capital of the World."

Although Friona has changed, our core values have remained steadfast and consistent; a strong and helpful communitiy in any circumstance. With a growing population and new opportunities everyday, the town of Friona will continue to provide a loving, supportive, and safe community. 


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