Toyah, a name derived from the indian word for "Flowing Water" and apparently comes from the many artesian wells nearby. Toyah began as a trading post and gathering spot for the owners and employees of the large ranches that surrounded the site.
In 1881, the railroad arrived to Toyah and things grew quickly as the town was now a named stop on the infamous Overland Stage route. Toyah had four stores, two banks, four churches, and two hotels with a population at 1100 people by the year 1914.
Soon therafter, a competing town named itself Toyahvale and the shipping routes were changed to there instead, thus causing the decline of the original town of Toyah.
Today, Toyah sits empty, a complete shell of a town in all respects. Driving through the streets it feels post-apocalyptic and other than the howls of marauding bands of coyotes, you truly feel alone while standing in the middle of this town in west Texas.
The Chata Ortega's Bar and Grill is now one of Toyah's most famous spots, having Kevin Costner filmed here in the movie Fandango in 1984 put Toyah on the map, so to speak, only having done so over a hundred years later.