Located on US Highway 87 in the Texas panhandle, just 35 miles south of Amarillo, Happy was established in 1891 when homesteader Hugh Currie built a home and post office near a gulch known as Happy Draw, so named by cattlemen who were elated to find water in this area for their herds of thirsty and hard-driven cattle. In the early days the town served as a site for a stagecoach station, but later suffered when in 1906 the Santa Fe Railroad bypassed Happy and located tracks south of town.
Travelers passing through Happy on their way to Amarillo or Santa Fe, New Mexico are greeted by towering grain elevators and a water tower ushering in a charming town full of nostalgic buildings like the first brick building in Happy -- an auto repair shop built in 1913 -- and a marker of the First Methodist Church. The church was established in the early 1900s and was used by other congregations, moved by wagon from its original location to the new town, eventually to be damaged by a fire and remodeled again in 1974.
Happy offers travelers a glimpse of the life of pioneer men and women who were strong and independent, lonely and isolated, yet started the communities and businesses in this remote region. The historic significance is not the only attraction for this area; the region itself sits upon wide-open spaces dotted with ravines, streams, along with big skies and breath-taking sunsets.
Happy (TX) Homes and Real Estate Market
The town is just over 30 miles from Amarillo, less than 5 miles from Canyon and Palisades, and just under 250 miles from Oklahoma City. The estimated cost for home or condo in the area is slightly more than $90,000 which is about triple the average value in 2000 of just over $30,000. Average rental costs for 2009 ran just slightly over $500 per month. The mean real estate property tax paid for housing in 2009 was $1227. The average low in winter is around 20 degrees and the average high in summer months in the low 90s. The community is near three medical facilities within 30 miles and closest universities are West Texas A&M University and Amarillo College, a distance of 17 miles and 30 miles respectively.
As of 2011, the population of Happy was just over 680 persons, with a 5.6% increase from 2000. The median age for residents for males and females ranges between 35 and 40 years old. The median household income is approximately $45,000 a year. According to the March 2012 cost of living index, Happy is lower than the national average. Residents are primarily Caucasian and of European ancestry. Most of the population has a high school or higher education and are married. The unemployment rate is under the rate for Texas. The most common occupations include: agriculture, retail, and transportation, along with manufacturing and other services like public administration.
Happy, TX profile by Texas State Historical AssociationTexas Escapes Online MagazineHappy, Texas City Data