The town of Bug Tussle, Texas has a small population (less than 50 people?) and is at the junction of FM 1550 and State HWY 34, ten miles south of Honey Grove and five miles north of Ladonia in southeastern Fannin County. You won’t find this town on the GPS, it can be found on Bing Maps and Google Maps.
In the 1890s the town was founded by John Settler and had a post office from post office in 1893–94. For some reason the name of Truss, Texas was changed to Bug Tussle. There are three popular stories to how the town got its new name. They all involve bugs invading or fighting. For each story told, the people involved were watching the bugs fight and using the term while looking at the bugs and said “Look at those bugs tussle.”
By the early 1960s only six residents were left in town (census records). But the David Graham Hall foundation took a fifteen year lease on the down area to restore it. The downtown area was commonly know as West Bug Tussle and had a population of thirty and used its name to bring in tourists and money to the town. According to a census report in 1990, the population was down to fifteen. From what I can tell, there are more people living in the area, but I’m not sure what the official resident count is now.
When I drove through the area, I couldn’t find downtown or at least I didn’t know where to look. I did find the welcome to Bug Tussle, Texas sign.
The Abandoned Bug Tussle General Store
The only building left in town except for a few local houses scattered around is the abandoned Bug Tussle general store. It has been abandoned for years and is a hot spot for photographers and road trippers. Recently I found out that someone living in Bug Tussle is now making a very tasty salsa called Bug Tussle Burn Texas Salsa. I can’t remember where I tried or when, but I had the chance in the last year or so and loved it.
If you look at older abandoned photos of the building taken around 2004, you will see hanging from the attic window a sign that says Bug Tussle, Texas. The sign was stolen or fell off several years ago.
In 2014, I found the interior empty except for the old general store counter and a small amount of trash left behind be previous explores.
Sometime in 2015 the current owner added metal siding and rocked the drive way and area around the building. I’m not a big fan of the new look, but I am happy to see they are trying to preserve the old building. I’m next trip out I will stop by and take some pictures of the current condition.
In order to complete the article and to get a more complete history of the town, I’m looking for more information about the town, where the downtown area was, current population, Vintage photos of the town/general store that I can share on here and VanishingTexas.com, and personal/ancestral accounts of the town and the general store that I can use in the article.
Please Note: This article was originally written on my personal site on May 24th, 2015 and the images were taken in September 2014. That article will no longer be updated. This article will be updated as new images are added and more information is found. New images coming soon. If interested in purchasing any of these images for prints or using these images in any way, please contact us.
Gallery -About the Images
The images were shot by hand early in the afternoon on a gloomy day with my Sony Nex-3N and a Sony SEL16F28 16mm f/2.8 lens. I then edited the images in Adobe Lightroom. Next, I post processed with Topaz Clarity to add texture, brighten, and bring out the details in the images. Then I removed the dust spots. Finally, I used Topaz DeNoise to remove the noise from the images.