"Damned Dam" In Bosque County, Texas, Nothing To Sing About After Torrential Rains
Songwriter and current Texas Poet Laureate, Steven Fromholz, wrote about tiny Kopperl, Bosque County, Texas, in his epic song The Texas Trilogy.
"They dammed up the Brazos to build Lake Whitney. Brought some fishermen down from Dallas and Ft. Worth. Town sure has been quiet since they closed down the depot and built that new trestle out west of town."
Residents of Bosque County, and particularly the small town of Kopperl are wondering if damming up the Brazos was such a good idea after all! When Whitney Dam was built it was also necessary to construct a smaller dam around Kopperl, which involved moving their cemetery with graves dating back to the 1800's. The smaller dam is now over 50 years old, and some residents are apprehensive about the condition of the dam in view of recent torrential rains.
Flooding in parts of Bosque County, according to an article in the Bosque County News has been severe enough to cause Emergency Management Coordinator Dewey Ratliff to enable residents, and the county, to receive disaster assistance from the flooding rains that began on Father's Day weekend, June 17. This declaration only includes the damages throughout the State of Texas for that weekend, Ratliff said, but does not include the damages of $1.1 million incurred in Bosque County from the downpours Memorial Day weekend. Although a formidable sum, even combined with surrounding counties, it did not amount to enough for a disaster declaration.
County Road 3194, just south of Valley Mills, in Bosque County, has come to be called the "Damned Dam" due to inadequate drainage. On Father's Day weekend, the rains caused the roadway to begin acting as a dam holding a 10-acre, 60-foot deep lake. The road began to collapse and the Texas Dept. of Transportation used over 300 yards of road base to shore the area up. Some families evacuated the area and Highway 6 was closed in both directions for about four hours on Father's Day.
Later, four culverts were installed and the base of the road repaired with a material that hardens under water. The same day, Bosque County Judge Cole Word contacted the State to request County Road 3194, County Road 3125 in Clifton and County Road 1105 in Meridian, the County Seat, be declared a disaster, and it's still raining! One Bosque County rancher recently commented that he'd shod his horses for the last time until the rain stopped because the mud "just sucked 'em off!"
Another notable line from Fromholz's Texas Trilogy song laments the fact that "the train just don't stop here anymore!" According to folks in Bosque County that's a good thing...unless it floats!
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Boerne, Texas, United States