Turkey Texas

Originally called Turkey Roost for Turkey Creek and the roosting turkeys there, settlers began arriving in the 1890's. The name was shortened to Turkey when the post office (the dug-out of Alfred P. Hall, postmaster) was granted in 1893. The town plat was recorded in 1907 and in 1927, the Fort Worth and Denver Railroad arrived. The town became a shipping point for cattle, grain and cotton. The Turkey Volunteer Fire Department was organized in February of 1928 after two disastrous fires destroyed most of downtown Turkey. Major crops are cotton, watermelons, peanuts, and sweet potatoes.

Turkey is best known as the home of Bob Wills, the King of Western Swing.

In the early 1920's, Bob Wills mother and father, "Uncle John" and Emma Wills, moved their family to a 600 acre ranch/farm between the Big Red and The Little Red Rivers, just North of Turkey Texas. Jim "Bob" Wills was the oldest child in the family. He was not born in, but raised in Turkey Texas. The little yellow house between the rivers" was home to him and his family for decades and it is fitting that the town calls him son. Bob grew up in Turkey, working the mules in the cotton fields and then, eventually he became a barber so as to save his hands from the hard labor of the fields. It was a trade that many musicians shared, since the day work of barbering never interfered with dances and holiday celebrations.

He learned mandolin and fiddle like his Dad, "Uncle John" Wills, and eventually he came to be one of the greatest musicians and performers of all time playing his fiddle and leading his legendary band The Texas Playboys. Their music introduced a new offshoot of county-western music known as “Western Swing.” He traveled the country for more than 50 years entertaining in his unique style. Elvis, Satchmo, Bing and the rest had nothing on Bob Wills. He was their equal in every way.

An annual event, on the last Sunday in April, is the Bob Wills Reunion. The famous musician is recognized with a monument at the west end of Main Street. Although the town's population is small, crowds range from ten to fifteen thousand during the festival.

Visitors come from all over the United States and many foreign countries each year to attend this annual event. It features a parade, BBQ lunch, fiddle contest, free outdoor concert and lots of friends to share it with. There are camp spots for motorhomes.