History and Facts of Texas Counties
Today’s Texas counties did not always exist in the present form. They went through many different changes in the space of a few short years.
Texas was originally divided into municipalities, a unit of local government under Spanish and Mexican rule. When the Republic of Texas gained its independence on March 2, 1836, the 23 municipalities became the original Texas counties.
The State of Texas entered the union as the 28th state on December 29, 1845. The Republic of Texas officially transfered of power to the new state of Texas on February 19, 1846.
Each county serves as the local level of government within its borders. Texas counties have eminent domain power and control all unincorporated land within their boundaries but they have don’t have home-rule authority or zoning power.
At least 32 counties that were established by Texas law no longer exist. These defunct counties were either
- Judicial counties
- Counties established by declaration of the Constitutional Convention of 1868-69
- Counties established by legislative act but never organized and later abolished by legislative act
- Counties established outside the present boundaries of Texas
- Counties whose names have been changed.
Fun Facts about Texas Counties
Counties by Year
- The Republic of Texas established former Mexican municipalities of Austin, Brazoria, Bexar, Colorado, Goliad, Gonzales, Harrisburg, Jackson, Jasper, Jefferson, Liberty, Matagorda, Milam, Mina, Nacogdoches, Red River, Refugio, Sabine, San Augustine, San Patricio, Shelby, Victoria and Washington Counties as the Republic’s original 23 counties created on March 17, 1836.
- Kenedy County was the last county created on April 2, 1921.
- Loving County was the last county organized in 1931.
County Size Facts
- Brewster County (6,192 sq mi) is the largest county in Texas.
- Rockwall County (149 sq mi) is the smallest county in Texas.
County Population Facts
- Loving County (134) is the least populated county in Texas.
- Harris County (4,652,980) is the most populated county in Texas.
Texas City Facts
Texas’s 10 largest cities (2017 est.) are:
- Houston (2,312,717) is in Harris, Fort Bend and Montgomery Counties
- San Antonio (1,511,946) is in Bexar, Medina and Comal Counties
- Dallas (1,341,075) is in Dallas, Collin, Denton, Rockwall and Kaufman Counties
- Austin (950,715) is in Hays, Travis, and Williamson Counties
- Fort Worth (874,168) is in Tarrant, Denton, Parker, and Wise Counties
- El Paso (683,577) is in
El Paso County
- Arlington (396,394) is in
- Corpus Christi (325,605) is in Nueces, Kleberg, San Patricio and Aransas Counties
- Plano (286,143) is in Collin and
- Laredo (260,654) is in Webb County
Boundary Changes of Texas Counties from 1834 to 1931
This Interactive Map of Texas Counties show the historical boundaries, names, organization, and attachments of every county, extinct county and unsuccessful county proposal from the creation of Texas from 1834-1931.
List of Texas Counties
|County||Created||Created From||Named For||County Seat||Notes|
|Anderson County||24 Mar 1846||Houston County||Kenneth Lewis Anderson (1805–1845), the last vice president of the Republic of Texas||Palestine|
|Andrews County||21 Aug 1875||Young Territory||Richard Andrews (1800–1835), the first Texan soldier to die in the Texas Revolution||Andrews|
|Angelina County||21 Apr 1846||Nacogdoches County||A Hainai Native American woman who assisted early Spanish missionaries, whom they called "Little Angel" (Spanish: Angelina)||Lufkin|
|Aransas County||18 Sep 1871||Refugio County||Aransas Bay, named in turn for an early Spanish fort; this support was supposedly named in turn for a Spanish palace Aránzazu, possibly related to the Sanctuario de Aránzazu. (Arantzazu is Basque for "place of thorns")||Rockport|
|Archer County||22 Jan 1858||Unorganized Territory||Branch Tanner Archer, a commissioner for the Republic of Texas||Archer City|
|Armstrong County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||One of several Texas pioneer families, although it is not certain which one||Claude|
|Atascosa County||25 Jan 1856||Bexar County||The Spanish word for "boggy"||Jourdanton|
|Austin County||18 Sep 1829||Original County||Stephen F. Austin (1793–1836), known as the Father of Texas||Bellville|
|Bailey County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||Peter James Bailey III, a soldier and defender of the Alamo||Muleshoe|
|Bandera County||25 Jan 1856||Non-County Area, Bexar and Uvalde Counties||Bandera Pass, named in turn for the Spanish word for "flag"||Bandera|
|Bastrop County||18 Sep 1829||Original County||Baron Felipe Enrique Neri de Bastrop, the Dutch settler who provided essential help to Stephen F. Austin in obtaining his original land grants||Bastrop|
|Baylor County||01 Feb 1858||Young Territory||Henry Weidner Baylor, a surgeon in the Texas Rangers during the Mexican–American War||Seymour|
|Bee County||08 Dec 1857||Live Oak, Goliad, Refugio, San Patricio and Karnes Counties||Barnard Elliott Bee, Sr. (1787–1853), a secretary of state of the Republic of Texas||Beeville|
|Bell County||22 Jan 1850||Milam County||Peter Hansborough Bell, the third governor of Texas (1849–1853)||Belton|
|Bexar County||20 Dec 1836||Original County||San Antonio de Béxar, the major presidio in Mexican Texas, named in turn for the San Antonio River and the Spanish viceroy's family, who were Dukes of Béjar in Spain||San Antonio|
|Blanco County||12 Feb 1858||Gillespie, Burnet, Comal and Hays Counties||The Blanco River. (Blanco is Spanish for "white")||Johnson City|
|Borden County||21 Aug 1876||Bosque County||Gail Borden, Jr. (1801–1874), businessman, publisher, surveyor, and inventor of condensed milk||Gail|
|Bosque County||04 Feb 1854||MeLennan County||The Bosque River. (Bosque is Spanish for "wooded")||Meridian|
|Bowie County||17 Dec 1840||Red River County||James Bowie (1796–1836), the legendary knife fighter who died at the Battle of the Alamo||Boston|
|Brazoria County||18 Sep 1829||Original County||Brazoria, Texas, an early port on the Brazos River||Angleton|
|Brazos County||28 Jan 1842||Washington and Robertson Counties||The Brazos River||Bryan|
|Brewster County||02 Feb 1887||Presidio County||Henry Percy Brewster (1816–1884), a secretary of war for the Republic of Texas and soldier in the Civil War||Alpine|
|Briscoe County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||Andrew Briscoe (1810–1849), a signatory of the Texan Declaration of Independence and soldier during the Texan Revolution||Silverton|
|Brooks County||11 Mar 1911||Starr, Hildalgo and Zapata Counties||James Abijah Brooks, a Texas Ranger and state legislator||Falfurrias|
|Brown County||27 Aug 1856||Travis County and Non-County Area||Henry Stevenson Brown, a commander at the Battle of Velasco||Brownwood|
|Burleson County||24 Mar 1846||Milam and Washington Counties||Edward Burleson (1798–1851), a general of the Texas Revolution and Vice President of the Republic of Texas||Caldwell|
|Burnet County||05 Feb 1852||Bell, Williamson and Travis Counties||David Gouverneur Burnet, the first president of the Republic of Texas (1836)||Burnet|
|Caldwell County||06 Mar 1848||Gonzales County||Mathew Caldwell, a signer of the Texas Declaration of Independence and soldier during the Texas Revolution||Lockhart|
|Calhoun County||04 Apr 1846||Jackson and Victoria Counties||John C. Calhoun, the seventh vice president of the United States (1825–1832)||Port Lavaca|
|Callahan County||01 Feb 1858||Non-County Area, Travis and Bexar Counties||James Hughes Callahan, a soldier during the Texas Revolution||Baird|
|Cameron County||12 Feb 1848||Nueces County||Ewen Cameron, a soldier during the Texas Revolution killed during the Black Bean Episode||Brownsville|
|Camp County||06 Apr 1874||Upshur County||John Lafayette Camp (1828–1891), a Texas state senator||Pittsburg|
|Carson County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||Samuel Price Carson, the first secretary of state of the Republic of Texas (1836–1838)||Panhandle|
|Cass County||25 Apr 1846||Bowie County||Lewis Cass (1782–1866), a senator from Michigan, who had favored the annexation of Texas to the United States. Named Davis County 1861-1871||Linden|
|Castro County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||Henri Castro (1786–1865), a French consul general for the Republic of Texas and founder of a colony in Texas||Dimmitt|
|Chambers County||12 Feb 1858||Liberty and Jefferson Counties||Thomas Jefferson Chambers, lawyer and surveyor who helped to resolve land disputes for Americans in Mexican Texas||Anahuac|
|Cherokee County||11 Apr 1846||Nacogdoches County||The Cherokee Native American tribe||Rusk|
|Childress County||11 Apr 1876||Hardeman County and Young Territory||George Campbell Childress (1804–1841), one of the authors of the Texas Declaration of Independence||Childress|
|Clay County||24 Dec 1857||Cooke County||Henry Clay, U.S. Senator from Kentucky and ninth secretary of state of the United States (1825–1829)||Henrietta|
|Cochran County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||Robert E. Cochran (1810–1836), a defender of the Alamo||Morton|
|Coke County||13 Mar 1889||Tom Green County||Richard Coke, the 15th governor of Texas (1874–1876)||Robert Lee|
|Coleman County||01 Feb 1858||Brown and Travis Counties||Robert M. Coleman, a signer of the Texas Declaration of Independence and soldier at the Battle of San Jacinto||Coleman|
|Collin County||03 Apr 1846||Fannin County||Collin McKinney (1766–1861), an author of the Texas Declaration of Independence and the oldest person to sign it||McKinney|
|Collingsworth County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||James Collinsworth, a signer of the Texas Declaration of Independence and first chief justice of the Republic of Texas. (spelling differs due to an error in the bill creating the county)||Wellington|
|Colorado County||18 Sep 1829||Old Mexican Municipalities and Counties of Mina and Matagorda. Original County||The Colorado River of Texas (Colorado is Spanish for "red")||Columbus|
|Comal County||24 Mar 1846||Bexar, Travis and Gonzales Counties||The Comal River. (Comal is Spanish for "basin")||New Braunfels|
|Comanche County||25 Jan 1856||Non-County Area, Coryell and Bosque Counties||The Comanche Native American tribe||Comanche|
|Concho County||01 Feb 1858||Bexar County||The Concho River. (Concho is Spanish for "shell")||Paint Rock|
|Cooke County||20 Mar 1848||Fannin County||William Gordon Cooke, a soldier during the Texas Revolution||Gainesville|
|Coryell County||04 Feb 1854||Bell and McLennan Counties||James Coryell, a frontiersman and Texas Ranger who was killed by Native Americans||Gatesville|
|Cottle County||11 Aug 1876||Hardeman County and Young Territory||George Washington Cottle, who died defending the Alamo||Paducah|
|Crane County||26 Feb 1887||Tom Green County||William Carey Crane, a president of Baylor University||Crane|
|Crockett County||22 Jan 1875||Bexar Land District||David Crockett (1786–1836), the legendary frontiersman who died at the Battle of the Alamo||Ozona|
|Crosby County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||Stephen Crosby, a Texas Land Commissioner||Crosbyton|
|Culberson County||10 Mar 1911||El Paso County||David Browning Culberson, a lawyer, U.S. Congressman, and soldier in the Civil War||Van Horn|
|Dallam County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||James Wilmer Dallam, a lawyer and newspaper publisher who had a close association with the Supreme Court of Texas||Dalhart|
|Dallas County||20 Mar 1846||Nacogdoches and Robertson Counties||George Mifflin Dallas, the eleventh vice president of the United States (1845–1849) (Disputed)||Dallas|
|Dawson County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||Nicholas Mosby Dawson, a soldier of the Texan Revolution and victim of the Dawson Massacre||Lamesa|
|Dewitt County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||Erastus "Deaf" Smith (1787–1837), a scout during the Texan Revolution||Hereford|
|Deaf Smith County||29 Jul 1870||Lamar and Hopkins Counties||Its triangular shape, much like the Greek letter Delta||Cooper|
|Delta County||11 Apr 1846||Fannin County||John Bunyan Denton (1806–1841), a preacher, lawyer, and soldier killed during a raid on a Native American camp||Denton|
|Denton County||24 Mar 1846||Gonzales County, Goliad County and Victoria County||Green DeWitt, an empresario who founded an early colony in Texas||Cuero|
|Dickens County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||J.A. Dickens, who died at the Battle of the Alamo||Dickens|
|Dimmit County||01 Feb 1858||Bexar, Maverick, Webb, Uvalde Counties||Philip Dimmitt, a major figure in the Texas Revolution||Carrizo Springs|
|Donley County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||Stockton P. Donley, a frontier lawyer and Texas Supreme Court justice||Clarendon|
|Duval County||01 Feb 1858||Nueces and Live Oak Counties||Burr Harrison DuVal (1809–1836), a soldier in the Texas Revolution who died in the Goliad Massacre||San Diego|
|Eastland County||01 Feb 1858||Non-County Area and Palo Pinto County||William Mosby Eastland, a soldier during the Texas Revolution||Eastland|
|Ector County||26 Feb 1887||Tom Green County||Mathew Ector (1822–1879), a Confederate general during the Civil War||Odessa|
|Edwards County||01 Feb 1858||Bexar Land District||Haden Edwards (1771–1849), empresario and filibuster who led the Fredonian Rebellion||Rocksprings|
|El Paso County||20 Dec 1849||Navarro County||Richard Ellis (1781–1846), president of the convention that produced the Texas Declaration of Independence||Waxahachie|
|Ellis County||03 Jan 1850||Non-County Area||Neighboring Ciudad Juárez, Mexico, formerly called El Paso del Norte as it served as the pass north from central Mexico to the settlements of New Mexico||El Paso|
|Erath County||25 Jan 1856||Bosque and Coryell Counties||George Bernard Erath, an early surveyor and a soldier at the Battle of San Jacinto||Stephenville|
|Falls County||28 Jan 1850||Milam and Limestone Counties||The Falls on the Brazos||Marlin|
|Fannin County||14 Dec 1837||Nacogdoches County||James Walker Fannin, Jr. (1805–1836), the commander of the Texans killed in the Goliad Massacre||Bonham|
|Fayette County||14 Dec 1837||Colorado and Bastrop Counties||Gilbert du Motier, marquis de La Fayette (1757–1834), the French-born general and hero of the American Revolutionary War||La Grange|
|Fisher County||21 Aug 1876||Jones County and Young Territory||Samuel Rhoads Fisher (1794–1839), a signer of the Texas Declaration of Independence and secretary of the Navy under the Republic of Texas||Roby|
|Floyd County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||Dolphin Ward Floyd, who died defending the Alamo||Floydada|
|Foard County||03 Mar 1891||Knox, Hardeman and Cottle Counties||Robert Levi Foard, an attorney and Confederate major in the Civil War||Crowell|
|Fort Bend County||29 Dec 1837||Austin, Harris and Brazoria Counties||A blockhouse positioned in a bend of the Brazos River||Richmond|
|Franklin County||06 Mar 1875||Titus County||Benjamin Cromwell Franklin (1805–1873), a judge and Texas State Senator||Mount Vernon|
|Freestone County||06 Sep 1850||Limestone County||A type of peach grown in the area||Fairfield|
|Frio County||01 Feb 1858||Uvalde and Atascosa Counties||The Frio River (Frío is Spanish for "cold")||Pearsall|
|Gaines County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||James Gaines, merchant and signer of the Texas Declaration of Independence||Seminole|
|Galveston County||15 May 1838||Brazoria and Liberty Counties||Bernardo de Gálvez, Spanish governor of the Louisiana Territory (1777–1785)||Galveston|
|Garza County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||José Antonio de la Garza, pioneering settler and first Mayor of San Antonio||Post|
|Gillespie County||23 Feb 1848||Bexar County||Robert Addison Gillespie, a merchant, Mexican–American War soldier, and Texas Ranger||Fredericksburg|
|Glasscock County||04 Apr 1887||Tom Green County||George Washington Glasscock (1810–1868), an early Texian settler, businessman, soldier, and state representative||Garden City|
|Goliad County||18 Sep 1829||Old Mexican Municipality. Original County||Its county seat, named in turn as an anagram of Miguel Hidalgo, the inspirational figure behind the Mexican War of Independence||Goliad|
|Gonzales County||18 Sep 1829||Old Mexican Municipality. Original County||Its county seat, named in turn for Coahuila y Tejas governor Rafael Gonzales||Gonzales|
|Gray County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||Peter W. Gray (1819–1874), a lawyer, state senator, and soldier in the Civil War||Pampa|
|Grayson County||17 Mar 1846||Fannin County||Peter Wagener Grayson, an attorney general of the Republic of Texas||Sherman|
|Gregg County||12 Apr 1873||Upshur County||John Gregg (1828–1864), a Confederate general during the Civil War||Longview|
|Grimes County||06 Apr 1846||Montgomery County||Jesse Grimes (1788–1866), a signer of the Texas Declaration of Independence and early settler of the future county||Anderson|
|Guadalupe County||30 Mar 1846||Gonzales and Bexar Counties||The Guadalupe River, named in turn for the Mexican spiritual icon Our Lady of Guadalupe||Seguin|
|Hale County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||John C. Hale, a lieutenant killed in action at the Battle of San Jacinto||Plainview|
|Hall County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||Warren DeWitt Clinton Hall, a secretary of war for the Republic of Texas (1836)||Memphis|
|Hamilton County||22 Jan 1842||Comanche, Bosque and Lampasas Counties||James Hamilton Jr., governor of South Carolina (1830–1832) who gave financial aid to the Republic of Texas||Hamilton|
|Hansford County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||John M. Hansford, a Texas state representative and judge||Spearman|
|Hardeman County||21 Feb 1858||Young Territory||Bailey Hardeman, the first secretary of the treasury for the Republic of Texas, and his brother Thomas Jones Hardeman, state representative and judge||Quanah|
|Hardin County||22 Jan 1858||Liberty, Tyler and Jefferson Counties||The Hardin family, earliest settlers of Liberty County||Kountze|
|Harris County||28 Dec 1839||Old Mexican Municipalities and Counties of Austin and Liberty. Original County||John Richardson Harris, early settler and founder of Harrisburg, Texas, which eventually became known as Houston. Named Harrisburg County until 1839||Houston|
|Harrison County||28 Jan 1839||Shelby County||Jonas Harrison, a lawyer and soldier in the Texas Revolution||Marshall|
|Hartley County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||Oliver C. and Rufus K. Hartley, brothers and original reporters for the Texas Supreme Court||Channing|
|Haskell County||01 Feb 1858||Young Territory||Charles Ready Haskell, Texas revolutionary soldier killed in the Goliad Massacre||Haskell|
|Hays County||01 Mar 1847||Travis County||John Coffee Hays (1817–1883), a leading Texas Ranger and Mexican–American War officer||San Marcos|
|Hemphill County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||John Hemphill (1803–1862), U.S. Senator and Chief Justice of the Texas Supreme Court||Canadian|
|Henderson County||27 Apr 1846||Houston and Nacogdoches Counties||James Pinckney Henderson, the first governor of Texas (1846–1847)||Athens|
|Hidalgo County||24 Jan 1852||Cameron County||Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla (1753–1811), the priest who raised the call for Mexico's independence from Spain||Edinburg|
|Hill County||07 Feb 1853||Navarro County||George Washington Hill, a secretary of war and secretary of the navy under the Republic of Texas||Hillsboro|
|Hockley County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||George Washington Hockley (1802–1854), Chief of Staff of the Texas Army during the Texas Revolution and secretary of war of the Republic of Texas||Levelland|
|Hood County||02 Nov 1865||Erath, Johnson and Palo Pinto Counties||John Bell Hood (1831–1879), a Confederate lieutenant general and the commander of Hood's Texas Brigade||Granbury|
|Hopkins County||25 Mar 1846||Lamar and Nacogdoches Counties||David Hopkins, an early settler in the future county||Sulphur Springs|
|Houston County||08 Jan 1837||Nacogdoches County||Sam Houston (1793–1863), general of the Texan Revolution, commander at the Battle of San Jacinto and later president of the Republic of Texas, U.S. Senator and governor of the state of Texas||Crockett|
|Howard County||21 Aug 1876||Tom Green County and Young Territory||Volney Eskine Howard, U.S. Representative from Texas (1849–1853)||Big Spring|
|Hudspeth County||15 May 1917||El Paso County||Claude Benton Hudspeth, a U.S. Congressman (1919–1931), rancher, and newspaper publisher||Sierra Blanca|
|Hunt County||11 Apr 1846||Fannin and Nacogdoches Counties||Memucan Hunt, Jr. (1807–1856), a secretary of the navy under the Republic of Texas||Greenville|
|Hutchinson County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||Andrew Hutchinson, an early settler and attorney||Stinnett|
|Irion County||07 Mar 1889||Tom Green County||Robert Anderson Irion (1804–1861), a secretary of state in the Republic of Texas||Mertzon|
|Jack County||27 Aug 1856||Cooke County||Patrick and William Jack, brothers, participants in the Anahuac Disturbance, and veterans of the Texas Revolution||Jacksboro|
|Jackson County||17 Mar 1836||Old Mexican Municipality Matagorda County. Original County||Andrew Jackson, hero of the Battle of New Orleans and the seventh president of the United States (1829–1837)||Edna|
|Jasper County||17 Mar 1836||Old Mexican Municipality Liberty County. Original County||William Jasper (1750–1779), an American Revolutionary War hero||Jasper|
|Jeff Davis County||15 Mar 1887||Presidio County||Jefferson Davis, president of the Confederate States of America (1861–1865)||Fort Davis|
|Jefferson County||17 Mar 1836||Old Mexican Municipality Jasper County. Original County||Thomas Jefferson, the third president of the United States and the principal author of the Declaration of Independence (1801–1809)||Beaumont|
|Jim Hogg County||31 Mar 1913||Brooks and Duval Counties||James Stephen Hogg, the twentieth (and first native-born) governor of Texas (1891–1895)||Hebbronville|
|Jim Wells County||11 Mar 1911||Nueces County||James Babbage Wells Jr., judge and Democratic party boss in southern Texas||Alice|
|Johnson County||04 Feb 1854||McLennan County||Middleton Tate Johnson, a Texas Ranger, soldier in the Mexican–American War, and senator for the Republic of Texas||Cleburne|
|Jones County||01 Feb 1858||Young Territory||Anson Jones, the fifth president of the Republic of Texas (1844–1846)||Anson|
|Karnes County||04 Feb 1854||Bexar, Dewitt, Goliad and San Patrico Counties||Henry Karnes (1812–1840), a soldier in the Texas Revolution||Karnes City|
|Kaufman County||26 Feb 1848||Henderson County||David Spangler Kaufman, a Jewish Texas state senator and the second Jewish member of the United States House of Representatives||Kaufman|
|Kendall County||10 Jan 1862||Kerr and Blanco Counties||George Wilkins Kendall, an early journalist and sheep rancher who gained national fame as a war correspondent during the Mexican–American War||Boerne|
|Kenedy County||02 Apr 1921||Hidalgo and Willacy Counties||Mifflin Kenedy, an early rancher and land speculator||Sarita|
|Kent County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||Andrew Kent, who died at the Battle of the Alamo||Jayton|
|Kerr County||25 Jan 1856||Bexar County||James Kerr (1790–1850), an early colonist in Texas and soldier in the Texas Revolution||Kerrville|
|Kimble County||22 Jan 1858||Bexar County||George C. Kimbell, who died at the Battle of the Alamo (spelling differs due to an error in the bill creating the county)||Junction|
|King County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||William Phillip King, who died at the Battle of the Alamo||Guthrie|
|Kinney County||28 Jan 1850||Bexar County||Henry Lawrence Kinney, a Texas state senator and unsuccessful land speculator||Brackettville|
|Kleberg County||27 Feb 1913||Nueces County||Robert Justus Kleberg (1803–1888), an early German settler and soldier at the Battle of San Jacinto||Kingsville|
|Knox County||01 Feb 1858||Young Territory||Henry Knox, the first secretary of war of the United States (1785–1794)||Benjamin|
|La Salle County||01 Feb 1858||Young Territory||René Robert Cavelier, Sieur de La Salle (1643–1687), the French explorer who traveled through Texas||Cotulla|
|Lamar County||17 Dec 1840||Bell and Travis Counties||Mirabeau Buonaparte Lamar, the third president of the Republic of Texas (1838–1842)||Paris|
|Lamb County||21 Aug 1876||Nueces, Bexar and Webb Counties||George A. Lamb, who died at the Battle of San Jacinto||Littlefield|
|Lampasas County||01 Feb 1856||Red River County||The Lampasas River (Lampasas is Spanish for "lilies")||Lampasas|
|Lavaca County||06 Apr 1846||Colorado, Gonzales, Jackson and Fayette Counties||The Lavaca River (La vaca is Spanish for "the cow")||Hallettsville|
|Lee County||14 Apr 1874||Burleson, Bastrop, Fayette and Washington Counties||Robert Edward Lee (1807–1870), the commanding general of the Confederate forces during the Civil War||Giddings|
|Leon County||17 Mar 1846||Robertson County||Disputed: Either Mexican empresario Martín De León, who founded Victoria, Texas; or the león, a local variety of yellow wolf||Centerville|
|Liberty County||17 Mar 1836||Old Mexican Municipality Nacogdoches County. Original County||Its county seat, which was named either for the recent success of the Mexican War of Independence or for Liberty, Mississippi||Liberty|
|Limestone County||11 Apr 1846||Robertson County||The limestone deposits in the region||Groesbeck|
|Lipscomb County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||Abner Smith Lipscomb, justice of the Texas Supreme Court (1846–1856) and secretary of state of the Republic of Texas (1840)||Lipscomb|
|Live Oak County||12 Feb 1856||San Patrico and Nueces Counties||The Texas live oak tree under which the petition for a new county was signed||George West|
|Llano County||01 Feb 1856||Bexar and Gillespie Counties||The Llano River (Llano is Spanish for "plains")||Llano|
|Loving County||26 Feb 1887||Tom Green County||Oliver Loving (1812–1867), a cattle rancher and pioneer of the cattle drive who, with Charles Goodnight, developed the Goodnight–Loving Trail||Mentone|
|Lubbock County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||Thomas Saltus Lubbock (1817–1862), a Texas Ranger and Confederate colonel during the Civil War||Lubbock|
|Lynn County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||William Lynn, a soldier in the Texas Revolution from Massachusetts who is believed to have died defending the Alamo||Tahoka|
|Madison County||27 Jan 1842||Grimes, Walker and Leon Counties||James Madison, the fourth president of the United States (1809–1817)||Madisonville|
|Marion County||08 Feb 1860||Cass and Titus Counties||Francis Marion (1732–1795), American Revolutionary War general||Jefferson|
|Martin County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||Wylie Martin, a Texas Revolutionary soldier and legislative representative for the Republic of Texas||Stanton|
|Mason County||22 Jan 1858||Bexar Land District||Fort Mason, which was named for either Lt. George T. Mason, killed during the Mexican–American War in fighting near Brownsville, or for Gen. Richard Barnes Mason, military governor of California||Mason|
|Matagorda County||17 Mar 1836||Old Mexican Municipality Nacogdoches County. Original County||The canebrakes which once grew along the coast (Mata gorda is Spanish for "fat bush")||Bay City|
|Maverick County||02 Feb 1856||Kinney County||Samuel Augustus Maverick (1803–1870), a rancher, signer of the Texas Declaration of Independence, and representative in the Republic of Texas legislature||Eagle Pass|
|McCulloch County||27 Aug 1856||Bexar Land District||Benjamin McCulloch (1811–1862), veteran of San Jacinto, Texas Ranger, and Confederate general||Brady|
|McLennan County||22 Jan 1850||Milam, Navarro and Limestone Counties||Neil McLennan, an early settler in the future county||Waco|
|McMullen County||01 Feb 1858||Nueces, Atascosa and Live Oak Counties||John McMullen (1832–1883), an Irish-born empresario in Texas||Tilden|
|Medina County||12 Feb 1848||Bexar County||The Medina River, named for Spanish engineer Pedro Medina||Hondo|
|Menard County||22 Jan 1858||Bexar Land District||Michel Branamour Menard, the founder of Galveston, Texas||Menard|
|Midland County||04 Mar 1885||Tom Green County||Its county seat, which was named for its location halfway between Fort Worth and El Paso on the Texas and Pacific Railway (and "Midway, Texas", being already in use)||Midland|
|Milam County||17 Mar 1836||Old Mexican Municipality. Original County||Benjamin Rush Milam (1788–1835), an early Texas colonizer and soldier in the Texas Revolution||Cameron|
|Mills County||18 Jul 1887||Brown, Lampasas, Hamilton and Comanche||John T. Mills (1817–1871), a Texas Supreme Court judge||Goldthwaite|
|Mitchell County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||Asa and Eli Mitchell, two early settlers and soldiers in the Texas Revolution||Colorado City|
|Montague County||24 Dec 1857||Cooke County||Daniel Montague, a state senator and early surveyor in the future county||Montague|
|Montgomery County||14 Dec 1837||Washington County||Montgomery, Texas, which in turn was named for Montgomery County, Alabama, which was in turn named for Lemuel P. Montgomery||Conroe|
|Moore County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||Edwin Ward Moore (1810–1865), commodore of the Texan Navy||Dumas|
|Morris County||13 Mar 1875||Titus County||William Wright Morris, a planter and state legislator||Daingerfield|
|Motley County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||Junius William Mottley, a signer of the Texas Declaration of Independence||Matador|
|Nacogdoches County||17 Mar 1836||Old Mexican Municipality. Original County||Its county seat, which was named for the Nacogdoche Native American tribe||Nacogdoches|
|Navarro County||25 Apr 1846||Robertson County||José Antonio Navarro (1795–1871), a leading Tejano participant in the Texan Revolution and signer of the Texan Declaration of Independence||Corsicana|
|Newton County||22 Apr 1846||Jasper County||John Newton (1755–1780), a veteran of the Revolutionary War||Newton|
|Nolan County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||Philip Nolan (1771–1801), a mustanger who was killed by Spanish troops while on a mission into Texas||Sweetwater|
|Nueces County||11 Apr 1846||San Patrico County||The Nueces River (Nueces is Spanish for "nuts")||Corpus Christi|
|Ochiltree County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||William Beck Ochiltree (1811–1867), secretary of the treasury for the Republic of Texas and legislator for the state of Texas||Perryton|
|Oldham County||25 Aug 1876||Young Territory||Williamson Simpson Oldham, a Confederate Senator for Texas||Vega|
|Orange County||05 Feb 1852||Jefferson County||An orange grove planted by early settlers at the mouth of the Sabine River||Orange|
|Palo Pinto County||27 Aug 1856||Bosque and Navarro Counties||The Palo Pinto Creek (Palo Pinto is Spanish for "painted stick")||Palo Pinto|
|Panola County||20 Mar 1846||Harrison and Shelby Counties||A Native American word for cotton.||Carthage|
|Parker County||02 Dec 1855||Bosque and Navarro Counties||Isaac Parker, legislator for both the Republic of Texas and the state of Texas||Weatherford|
|Parmer County||26 Aug 1876||Young Territory||Martin Parmer (1778–1850), a Republic of Texas legislator, judge, and signer of the Texas Declaration of Independence||Farwell|
|Pecos County||03 May 1871||Presidio County||The Pecos River, which was named for the Pecos Pueblo, which is of unknown etymology||Fort Stockton|
|Polk County||30 Mar 1846||Liberty County||James Knox Polk, the eleventh president of the United States (1845–1849)||Livingston|
|Potter County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||Robert Potter (1800–1842), secretary of the navy for the Republic of Texas, and signer of the Texas Declaration of Independence||Amarillo|
|Presidio County||03 Jan 1850||Bexar County||Presidio del Norte, an eighteenth-century fort and settlement on the south side of the Rio Grande||Marfa|
|Rains County||09 Jun 1870||Hopkins, Hunt and Wood Counties||Emory Rains (1800–1878), a state senator and surveyor of the future county||Emory|
|Randall County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||Horace Randal, a Confederate brigadier general in the Civil War||Canyon|
|Reagan County||07 Mar 1903||Tom Green County||John H. Reagan (1818–1905), Confederate postmaster general, U.S. Congressman, and Governor of Texas||Big Lake|
|Real County||03 Apr 1913||Edwards, Kerr and Bandera Counties||Julius Real, a rancher and state senator||Leakey|
|Red River County||17 Mar 1836||Old Mexican Municipality Nacogdoches County. Original County||The Red River of Texas||Clarksville|
|Reeves County||14 Apr 1883||Pecos County||George Robertson Reeves, a Texas state representative and colonel in the Confederate army||Pecos|
|Refugio County||17 Mar 1836||Old Mexican Municipality. Original County||Its county seat, which was named for the Spanish mission Nuestra Señora del Refugio, "Our Lady of Refuge"||Refugio|
|Roberts County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||John S. Roberts, a signer of the Texan Declaration of Independence, and his brother Oran Milo Roberts, attorney general for the Republic of Texas and the seventeenth governor of Texas||Miami|
|Robertson County||14 Dec 1837||Milam and Nacogdoches Counties||Sterling Clack Robertson, an empresario in Mexican Texas||Franklin|
|Rockwall County||01 Mar 1873||Kaufman County||Its county seat, which was named for a submerged stone wall found by its initial settlers||Rockwall|
|Runnels County||01 Feb 1858||Bexar Land District||Hiram Runnels, the ninth governor of Mississippi (1833–1835) and planter in Texas||Ballinger|
|Rusk County||16 Jan 1843||Nacogdoches County||Thomas Jefferson Rusk (1803–1857), a general in the Texas Revolution||Henderson|
|Sabine County||14 Dec 1837||Old Mexican Municipality San Augustine County. Original County||The Sabine River, which forms its eastern border (Sabina is Spanish for "cypress")||Hemphill|
|San Augustine County||17 Mar 1836||Old Mexican Municipality Nacogdoches County. Original County||Presumably Augustine of Hippo (354–430)||San Augustine|
|San Jacinto County||13 Aug 1870||Polk, Liberty, Montgomery and Walker Counties||The Battle of San Jacinto, which won Texas its independence from Mexico||Coldspring|
|San Patricio County||17 Mar 1836||Old Mexican Municipality. Original County||Its former county seat San Patricio de Hibernia, an Irish colony named for Saint Patrick||Sinton|
|San Saba County||01 Feb 1856||Bexar County||The San Saba River, discovered on the Catholic feast of Saint Sabbas||San Saba|
|Schleicher County||01 Apr 1887||Crockett County||Gustav Schleicher, engineer and U.S. Congressman from Texas||Eldorado|
|Scurry County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||William Read Scurry (1821–1864), a Texas state legislator and Confederate general||Snyder|
|Shackelford County||01 Feb 1856||Young Territory and Non-County Area||Jack Shackelford, a soldier of the Texas Revolution||Albany|
|Shelby County||17 Mar 1836||Old Mexican Municipality Nacogdoches County and San Augustine County. Original County||Isaac Shelby, a Revolutionary War soldier from Tennessee and governor of Kentucky (1792–1796) (1812–1816)||Center|
|Sherman County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||Sidney Sherman (1805–1873), a soldier in the Texas Revolution||Stratford|
|Smith County||11 Apr 1846||Nacogdoches County||James Smith, a general during the Texas Revolution||Tyler|
|Somervell County||13 Mar 1875||Hood County||Alexander Somervell, a soldier in the Texas Revolution and leader of the Somervell Expedition||Glen Rose|
|Starr County||10 Feb 1848||Nueces County||James Harper Starr (1809–1890), a treasurer for the Republic of Texas and Confederate official||Rio Grande City|
|Stephens County||22 Jan 1858||Young Territory and Non-County Area||Alexander Hamilton Stephens, the only vice-president of the Confederate States of America (1861–1865)||Breckenridge|
|Sterling County||04 Mar 1891||Tom Green County||W. S. Sterling, an early rancher, buffalo hunter, and Native American fighter||Sterling City|
|Stonewall County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||Thomas Jonathan "Stonewall" Jackson (1824–1863), the famous Confederate General||Aspermont|
|Sutton County||01 Apr 1887||Crockett County||John Schuyler Sutton, a Texas Ranger and soldier in the Texas Revolution and Mexican–American War||Sonora|
|Swisher County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||James Gibson Swisher, a soldier of the Texas Revolution||Tulia|
|Tarrant County||20 Dec 1849||Navarro County||Edward H. Tarrant, a U.S. Army general who drove the Native Americans out of the future county||Fort Worth|
|Taylor County||01 Feb 1858||Bexar Land District||Edward Taylor (1812–1836), George Taylor (1816–1836), and James Taylor (1814–1836), three brothers who died at the Alamo||Abilene|
|Terrell County||08 Apr 1905||Pecos County||Alexander Watkins Terrell, attorney, judge, state legislator, diplomat, and Confederate cavalry officer||Sanderson|
|Terry County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||Frank Terry, a Confederate colonel and commander of Terry's Texas Rangers||Brownfield|
|Throckmorton County||19 Jan 1858||Young Territory and Non-County Area||William Edward Throckmorton, an early Collin County settler||Throckmorton|
|Titus County||11 May 1846||Bowie and Red River Counties||Andrew Jackson Titus, planter and Texas state representative||Mount Pleasant|
|Tom Green County||13 Mar 1874||Bexar Land District||Thomas Green (1814–1864), a Confederate brigadier general||San Angelo|
|Travis County||25 Jan 1840||Bastrop County||William Barret Travis (1809–1836), the commander of the Texan forces at the Alamo||Austin|
|Trinity County||11 Feb 1850||Houston County||The Trinity River, named for the spiritual concept of the Trinity||Groveton|
|Tyler County||03 Apr 1846||Liberty County||John Tyler, the tenth president of the United States (1841–1845)||Woodville|
|Upshur County||27 Apr 1846||Harrison and Nacogdoches Counties||Abel Parker Upshur, the fifteenth secretary of state of the United States (1843–1844)||Gilmer|
|Upton County||26 Feb 1867||Tom Green County||John C. & William F. Upton, brothers and lieutenant colonels in the Confederate army during the Civil War||Rankin|
|Uvalde County||08 Feb 1850||Bexar County||The Cañón de Ugalde, a nearby battlefield where Spanish General Juan de Ugalde was victorious in a skirmish with over 300 Apaches||Uvalde|
|Val Verde County||24 Mar 1885||Kinney, Pecos and Crockett Counties||Civil War Battle of Val Verde (Val Verde is Spanish for "green valley")||Del Rio|
|Van Zandt County||20 Mar 1848||Henderson County||Isaac Van Zandt (1813–1847), attorney, Texas state representative, and diplomat||Canton|
|Victoria County||17 Mar 1836||Old Mexican Municipality. Original County||Its county seat, which was named for Guadalupe Victoria, Mexican revolutionary and its first president (1824–1829)||Victoria|
|Walker County||06 Apr 1846||Montgomery County||Samuel Hamilton Walker (1815–1847), a Texas Ranger and soldier in the Mexican–American War||Huntsville|
|Waller County||28 Apr 1873||Austin and Grimes Counties||Edwin Waller (1800–1881), a signer of the Texas Declaration of Independence and the first mayor of Austin, Texas||Hempstead|
|Ward County||26 Feb 1887||Tom Green County||Thomas William Ward, a commissioner for the General Land Office of Texas and mayor of Austin, Texas||Monahans|
|Washington County||17 Mar 1836||Old Mexican Municipality Austin County and Liberty County. Original County||George Washington, the first president of the United States (1789–1797)||Brenham|
|Webb County||28 Jan 1848||Bexar and Nueces Counties||James Webb, who served as secretary of the Treasury, secretary of State, and Attorney General of the Republic of Texas||Laredo|
|Wharton County||03 Apr 1846||Brazoria, Colorado, Jackson and Matagorda Counties||William Harris Wharton (1802–1839) and John Austin Wharton (1828–1865), brothers and officers in the Texas Revolution||Wharton|
|Wheeler County||21 Apr 1876||Young Territory||Royal Tyler Wheeler, the second Chief Justice of the Texas Supreme Court||Wheeler|
|Wichita County||01 Feb 1858||Young Territory||The Wichita Native American tribe||Wichita Falls|
|Wilbarger County||01 Feb 1858||Cooke County||Josiah P. (1801–1845) and Mathias Wilbarger, brothers and early settlers; Josiah became a mythical figure for living 11 years after being scalped||Vernon|
|Willacy County||11 Mar 1911||Hildigo and Cameron Counties||John G. Willacy, Texas state senator who was the author of the bill that established the county||Raymondville|
|Williamson County||13 Mar 1848||Milam County||Robert McAlpin Williamson, a leader and veteran of the Battle of San Jacinto||Georgetown|
|Wilson County||13 Feb 1860||Bexar and Karnes Counties||James Charles Wilson, a Texas state senator (1851–1853)||Floresville|
|Winkler County||26 Feb 1887||Tom Green County||Clinton Winkler, an appeals court judge, Texas state representative, and Confederate colonel||Kermit|
|Wise County||23 Jan 1856||Cooke County||Henry Alexander Wise, the U.S. Congressman and future thirty-eighth governor of Virginia (1856–1860) who supported the annexation of Texas||Decatur|
|Wood County||05 Feb 1850||Van Zandt County||George Tyler Wood, the second governor of Texas (1847–1849)||Quitman|
|Yoakum County||21 Aug 1876||Young Territory||Henderson King Yoakum (1810–1856), soldier, attorney, and Texas historian||Plains|
|Young County||02 Feb 1856||Bosque County||William Cocke Young, early Texas settler, attorney, sheriff, and United States Marshal||Graham|
|Zapata County||22 Jan 1858||Starr and Webb Counties||José Antonio Zapata, a local rancher and colonel of the short-lived Republic of the Rio Grande||Zapata|
|Zavala County||01 Feb 1858||Uvalde and Maverick||Lorenzo de Zavala (1788–1836), signer of the Texas Declaration of Independence and the first Vice-President of the Republic of Texas||Crystal City|
List of Old Former / Extinct Texas Counties
Texas contains some counties that no longer exist because they were discontinued, renamed or merged with another county. These are important for genealogy research purposes.
The below Texas counties no longer exist:
Bexar Land District, Texas
Created on January 26, 1856 from the Bexar County. Buchanan County was divided into Young Territory and Bexar Territory on August 19, 1856.
Bexar Territory, Texas
Created on August 19, 1856 from the Bexar Land District. That part of Bexar Land District north of Young Territory became known as Bexar Territory or Unorganized Territory on contemporary maps.
The Bexar Territory County was eliminated when
Carson, Dallam, Gray, Hansford, Hartley, Hemphill, Hutchinson, Lipscomb, Moore, Ochiltree, Oldham, Potter, Roberts, Sherman and Wheeler Counties were created on December 17, 1861.
Young Territory, Texas
Created on August 19, 1856 from the Bexar Land District.
Young Territory was eliminated when Armstrong, Bailey, Borden, Briscoe, Carson, Castro, Childress, Cochran, Cottle, Crosby, Dawson, Deaf Smith, Dickens, Fisher, Floyd, Gaines, Garza, Hale, Hall, Hockley, Howard, Kent, King, Lamb, Lubbock, Lynn, Martin, Mitchell, Motley, Nolan, Oldham, Parmer, Potter, Randall, Scurry, Stonewall, Swisher, Terry and Yoakum Counties were created on November 19, 1876.
Buchanan County, Texas
Created on January 22, 1858 from Young Territory and Unorganized Areas, not fully organized, attached to Palo Pinto County for administrative and judicial purposes.
Buchel County, Texas
It was named after German soldier and war hero Augustus Buchel. Buchel County merged into Brewster County on April 21, 1897.
Cibilo County (Proposed), Texas
Proposed to be renamed from Wilson County on January 19, 1869. The changes were never recognized or legalized by the Legislature.
Cooke Land District, Texas
Created on February 13, 1854. Cooke Land District was eliminated and became part of Young Territory on August 19, 1856.
Davis County, Texas
Denton Land District, Texas
Created on February 13, 1854. Denton Land District was eliminated and became part of Young Territory on August 19, 1856.
Encinal County, Texas
Abolished on March 12, 1899 and incorporated into Webb County
Foley County, Texas
Foley County had only twenty-five residents in 1890; thus it was one of the most sparsely settled counties in Texas.
On April 21, 1897 the legislature passed a bill abolishing Foley County and attaching its territory to Brewster County.
Fannin Land District, Texas
Created on March 14, 1846. Fannin Land District was eliminated and became part of Cooke Land District and Denton Land District when those districts were reorganized and expanded on February 13, 1854.
Travis Land District, Texas
Created on February 5, 1852. Travis Land District was eliminated and became part of Brown County on February 5, 1858.
Greer County, Texas
Created on February 8, 1860 from Young Territory, not fully organized, attached to Montague County for administrative and judicial purposes. Greer County was located entirely in present Oklahoma.
Greer County eliminated from Texas when U.S. Supreme Court ruled that Greer was not within the boundaries of Texas, but was under the jurisdiction of the United States. on March 16, 1896.
Harrisburg County, Texas
Established in January 1, 1836 as a municipality by the Provisional Government of Texas from Austin and Liberty. Harrisburg became a county in the Republic of Texas on March 17, 1836.
Harrisburg County was renamed to Harris County on December 28, 1839.
La Baca County (Judicial), Texas
Created as a Judicial County on January 29, 1842 by the Republic of Texas from Colorado, Fayette, Gonzolas, Jackson, and Victoria Counties.
On June 27, 1842 it was eliminated when Republic of Texas Supreme Court ruled judicial counties unconstitutional.
Mina County, Texas
Established in April 1834 as a municipality by Mexico from Austin County and unorganized area in Mexico. Mina became a county in the Republic of Texas on March 17, 1836.
Mina County was renamed to Bastrop County on December 18, 1837.
Miller County, Arkansas Territory
Created on April 1, 1820 from Hempstead County, Arkansas, not fully organized. Survey of boundary between the Republic of Texas and the United States began.
Miller County officially became extinct as Texas claims to the area were upheld, on May 21, 1840.
Created on January 30, 1841 from Robertson and Washington Counties, not fully organized. Navasota County was renamed to Brazos County on January 28, 1842.
Neches County (Judicial), Texas
Created as a Judicial County on January 29, 1842 by the Republic of Texas from Jasper and Jefferson Counties. It included all of the area of future Orange County, the south half of the future Jasper County, and the south half of what is now Newton County.
The county seat was to be Madison. On June 27, 1842 it was eliminated when Republic of Texas Supreme Court ruled judicial counties unconstitutional.
Paschal County (Judicial), Texas
Created as a Judicial County on January 29, 1841 by the Republic of Texas from Milam and Robertson Counties. It included all of the area of future Hopkins, Franklin, Titus, Morris, and Cass counties and most of future Marion County.
The county seat, to be selected by county commissioners, was to be named Dangerfield. On June 27, 1842 it was eliminated when Republic of Texas Supreme Court ruled judicial counties unconstitutional.
Santa Fe County, Texas
Created on March 15, 1848 from unorganized area, not fully organized. On December 13, 1850, the State of Texas sold part of Santa Fe County to the United States. The rest of Santa Fe County was merged into Bexar County.
Waco County (Judicial), Texas
Created as a Judicial County on January 29, 1842 by the Republic of Texas from Milam and Robertson Counties. Viesca was named the county seat.
OnJune 27, 1842 it was eliminated when Republic of Texas Supreme Court ruled judicial counties unconstitutional.
Wegefarth County, Texas
Created on June 2, 1873 from Bexar Territory and Young Territory, not fully organized. On November 19, 1876 it was abolished by the act of legislature, which established the other Panhandle counties.
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