Joseph Ehlinger, born in France, served in Napoleons army before its defeat. He received a grant of land and built a house in Fayette County. After returning from Europe with his family, Mr. Ehlinger drowned near Houston. His son, Charles Ehlinger became a surveyor and laid the original town plat, which was then known as Live Oak Hill, just north of the present day Ellinger. The son was the first postmaster and became a merchant, farmer and Board member on the First State Bank of Ellinger. The Southern Pacific Railroad came to the area in 1873 and missed Live Oak Hill by two miles. In 1880, land was donated for its present location. The name changed from Ehlinger to Ellinger when the railroad came through. In 1954 citizens joined together to acquire the building and land from the school to have a community hall. The school had just disbanded to join La Grange. This hall, which is still available for rent for different functions, can be found just a few blocks from Highway 71. Through many economic cycles the area produced cotton, tomatoes and other agricultural items. The economy has shifted to ranching and grain. Today there are just a few business downtown with convenience stores on Highway 71. The unincorporated rural community is about 12 miles east of La Grange.
ELLINGER, TEXAS HISTORY
Ellinger Chamber of Commerce