Brownsville Entrance Sign

ALTHOUGH THIS SIGN was almost certainly created as a playful welcome sign for the Brown family, it got us thinking about small towns and how small populations can get. After doing a little research, we came up with some very interesting stories. We discovered not only ‘one-horse’ towns, but ‘one-person’ towns as well. The following is just a smattering of examples:

The road sign at Monowi, Nebraska says a population of 2, though it is actually 1 since 2004, when Elsie Eiler’s husband, Rudy, died. Elsie is also the mayor, librarian and bartender (she grants her own liquor license), who manages the town’s annual budget of $500 at an old desk in the Monowi Tavern.<.p>

Lost Springs, Wyoming was incorporated in 1911, when 200 mainly coalminers lived there. It was named by railroad workers who weren’t ever able to locate the springs. The town sign announces a population of 1 based on the 2000 census, though this is hotly contested by the mayor, who says she has lived there for 37 years and there has always been more than one person.

Tortilla Flat, Arizona is the last surviving stagecoach stop on the Apache Trail, and has six people registered. Alvin and Pam Ross bought the town in 1988, but they are willing to sell it for the right price. (Check it out on eBay!)

Don Sammons is the last remaining citizen in Buford, Wyoming. Having left Los Angeles in 1980 looking for a quieter lifestyle, he now runs a gas station and convenience store that gets about 1,000 visitors a day in the summer.

And last but not least is Weeki Wachee, Florida – home to four residents. This town’s claim to fame is being the only town in the world with more mermaids than people. The name is Seminole for ‘little spring’, and the spring here is so deep that no one has ever located the bottom. A former US Navy SEAL trainer saw a business opportunity here in 1946, and built an underwater theater in the spring, training women as mermaids, and turning Weeki Wachee into a tourist hotspot in the 1960’s. A former mermaid now resides over the town as mayor.

But back to the Brownsville sign – the artwork is hand painted and text is carved with hand chisels. A population of 6 doesn’t sound that small after all!

Carved & Gilded
Flat Painted
Sign Size
30 " x 30 "