Ranger Oaks

Historical Period: Republic of Texas (1836-1845)
Historical Topic: Frontier Settlements, Law & Order
Species: Live Oak (Quercus virginiana)
County: Guadalupe
Public Access: Yes

Near the corner of Gonzales and Travis streets in the city of Seguin stand several large live oak trees which, as early as 1828, provided shelter to some of the forerunners of today's famed Texas Rangers. Even before the first company of Texas Rangers was commissioned in 1837, a group of hardy men called the Gonzales Rangers, under the command of Captain Matthew Caldwell, used this shady spot as a campground. The live oak, walnut, and pecan trees which grew prolifically in the area were landmarks to early settlers and a lodging area to these roving defenders of the frontier as they patrolled the area between Gonzales and San Antonio de Bexar.

Captain Caldwell and thirty-two others, most of whom were Gonzales Rangers, moved to Walnut Springs in 1838 and purchased the first lots in Joseph Martin's townsite near the oxbow bend of the Guadalupe River. They first named their town Walnut Springs but less than four months later changed it to Seguin in honor of the native-born Texan of Spanish ancestry who served the Texas cause.

John Coffee “Jack” Hays, a resident of Seguin and one of Texas' most illustrious Ranger commanders, also camped in the shade of these trees. In 1840, Hays is believed to have been appointed a Captain of the first permanent Ranger Company.

The Ranger Oaks are located at the southeast corner of Gonzales and Travis Streets, in Seguin.