Nineteenth-century stagecoach operations in Texas were closely tied to mail delivery, and contracts with the U.S. Postal Service more often than not made the transportation of passengers and freight by stage economically feasible. As an early community on the transportation routes between Houston and San Antonio and between Houston and Austin, Columbus saw many stage lines travel its streets in the years between Texas Independence and the end of the Civil War.
The Brown and Tarbox Stage Service was underway by 1847, carrying mail from Houston to San Antonio, passing through Columbus. Prominent stagecoach operators Sawyer and Risher (later Risher and Hall) utilized several lines that began in Eagle Lake and traveled through Columbus to San Antonio, Austin and Wharton.
By November 1861, the Confederate States Mail Service replaced U.S. mail operations in Texas, and the stage lines continued to carry this mail as well. Traffic also developed between the Buffalo Bayou, Brazos and Colorado railroad terminus at nearby Alleyton and the cotton shipping points of Brownsville and Matamoros. Stages from Brownsville connected with stage lines from Corpus Christi, Goliad and Victoria to San Antonio via Columbus.
After the Civil War, Risher and Hall resumed operations of their stage lines to San Antonio, but the coming of the railroad soon signaled the end of the stagecoach era in this part of Texas. As a stop on many of the stage routes, Columbus played a significant role in this early transportation network.