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Cherokee County, Texas
The name of Alto comes from the Spanish word for high. The area is the highest point between the Angeline and Neches Rivers.
Alto was first known as Branchtown in its early years. It was founded about 1849 by Robert F. Mitchell who gained the land by winning a lawsuit. It was once part of a large land grant to William Barr and Samuel Davenport. The first post office opened in 1850 with the name of Branchtown, but by 1852, it was renamed Alto as suggested by Henry Berryman. The community quickly grew because of its good location on the Old San Antonio Road. By 1885, there were many businesses along with a school, a sawmill and a church. The town was incorporated in 1909. The community was hurt by the Great Depression of the 1930's and has continued to lose population since that time.
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The area is well-known for its tomato growing!
Ross's Steel Yard & Antiques
Located 4 miles West of Alto on Hwy. 21 Ross's Steel Yard has been an attraction for the city of Alto for over 40 years. The owner is R.J.Ross,and he started his business over 40 years ago by selling hubcaps. His business grew intoAntiques, and many other interesting items. People come from all over the world to visit the "Biggest Little Junk Yard in Texas". Ross later moved into Sawmill parts, where his clientele grew even bigger. R.J. Ross is married and has six children and is an upstanding citizen in the Alto community. If you visit the country town of Alto, you must stop by and talk to Ross. He won't be hard to find for he will be the man wearing the smile. Ross has made friends all over the world and has been photographed in some of the world's major magazine, including Texas Monthly.
Caddoan Mounds State Historic Site
RR 2 Box 85C
Alto TX 75925
This is a 93.8-acre park which includes two temple mounds, a burial mound and a village area from about 500 A.D.