HOME OF “THE REGULATORS”
In the mid-1800s, the city of Pilot Point, strategically located along a high ridge, offered a vital waypoint for both settlers and Native Americans traversing the region. The route, in fact, was later used for the Butterfield Stagecoach, making Pilot Point an official stop along the way. It also placed the community at the edge of the Texas frontier, making Pilot Point a focus for outlaws and cattle thieves. Local citizens took matters into their own hands at one point, forming a posse named “The Regulators” to combat crime.
Fortunately, tourism has replaced cattle thievery as Pilot Point’s main attraction today. This Texas Main Street City sits near the shores of Lake Ray Roberts, a 30,000-acre reservoir, and the surrounding region provides a home for over three hundred equestrian ranches, serving as the northern starting point for the North Texas Horse Country Tour, a self-guided driving tour through rolling hills and horse-filled pastures. Also, access to the twenty-mile multi-use Ray Roberts Greenbelt is located at the Isle du Bois State Park just outside of town.
In town, Pilot Point’s commercial district, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, offers a look at early American architecture like the Farmers & Merchants Bank, a dominating Richardsonian Romanesque behemoth built in 1896 and serving locals until it closed during the Depression. Across the square, the Pilot Point Police Station occupies a structure built in 1892. Nearby, the Pilot Point Community Opera House once housed R. T. Evans Hardware along with the Queen Theatre, a 300-seat performance palace. Today, several of the historic buildings are occupied by contemporary businesses offering services known only to modern age. But alongside them, Pilot Point’s historic town square still offers an old-fashioned cup of coffee and a nice slice of pie.