Denton County, Texas

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Denton County, Texas
Denton County Courts Building.jpg
The new Denton County Courthouse, built 1998
Map of Texas highlighting Denton County
Location in the U.S. state of Texas
Map of the United States highlighting Texas
Texas's location in the U.S.
Founded April 11, 1846
Named for John B. Denton
Seat Denton
Largest city Denton
 • Total 953 sq mi (2,468 km2)
 • Land 878 sq mi (2,274 km2)
 • Water 75 sq mi (194 km2), 7.8%
Population (est.)
 • (2015) 780,612
 • Density 858/sq mi (331/km²)
Congressional districts 24th, 26th
Time zone Central: UTC-6/-5

Denton County is a county in the U.S. state of Texas. As of the 2010 census, its population was 662,614,[1] making it the ninth-most populous county in Texas. The county seat is Denton.[2] The county, which was named for John B. Denton, was established in 1846.

Denton County is included in the Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, TX Metropolitan Statistical Area. In 2007, it was one of the fastest-growing counties in the United States.[3]


Before the arrival of white settlers, various Native American peoples, including the Kichai and the Lenape, infrequently populated the area.[4] The area was settled by Peters Colony landowners in the early 1840s.[5] Until the annexation of Texas, the area was considered part of Fannin County.[6] On April 11, 1846, the First Texas Legislature established Denton County.[7] The county was named for John B. Denton, who was killed while raiding a Native American village in Tarrant County in 1841.[8] Originally, the county seat was set at Pickneyville. This was later changed to Alton, where the Old Alton Bridge currently stands, and then moved finally to Denton.

By 1860, the population of the county had increased to 5,031.[9] On March 4, 1861, residents of the county narrowly voted for secession from the Union, with 331 votes cast for and 264 against.[10] The Missouri–Kansas–Texas Railroad reached Lewisville, located in the southern portion of the county, by the early 1880s.[5] The Denton County Courthouse-on-the-Square was built in 1896, and today the building currently houses various government offices as well as a museum.[11]

A 2010 documentary, Gasland, claims that DISH, a small town in Denton County, has been polluted extensively by natural gas drilling.


Denton, Texas
Climate chart (explanation)
Average max. and min. temperatures in °F
Precipitation totals in inches
Source: [12]

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 953 square miles (2,470 km2), of which 878 square miles (2,270 km2) is land and 75 square miles (190 km2) (7.8%) is water.[13] Denton County is located in the northern part of the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex, approximately 35 miles south of the border between Texas and Oklahoma.[14] It is drained by two forks of the Trinity River.[15] The largest body of water in Denton County is Lewisville Lake, which was formed in 1954 when the Garza–Little Elm Reservoir was merged with Lake Dallas. The county is on the western edge of the Eastern Cross Timbers and also encompasses parts of the Grand Prairie portion of the Texas blackland prairies. Portions of Denton County sit atop the Barnett Shale, a geological formation believed to contain large quantities of natural shale gas. Between 1995 and 2007, the number of natural gas wells in the county increased from 156 to 1,820, which has led to some controversy over the pollution resulting from hydraulic fracturing.[16]

Adjacent counties[edit]


Historical population
Census Pop.
1850 641
1860 5,031 684.9%
1870 7,251 44.1%
1880 18,143 150.2%
1890 21,289 17.3%
1900 28,318 33.0%
1910 31,258 10.4%
1920 35,355 13.1%
1930 32,822 −7.2%
1940 33,658 2.5%
1950 41,365 22.9%
1960 47,432 14.7%
1970 75,633 59.5%
1980 143,126 89.2%
1990 273,525 91.1%
2000 432,976 58.3%
2010 662,614 53.0%
Est. 2015 780,612 [17] 17.8%
U.S. Decennial Census[18]
1850–2010[19] 2010–2014[1]

As of the 2010 United States Census,[20] there were 662,614 people, 224,840 households and 256,139 housing units in the county. The population density was 754.3 people per square mile. The racial makeup of the county was 75% White, 8.4% Black or African American, 0.7% Native American, 6.6% Asian, 0.1% Pacific Islander, and 2.9% from two or more races. 18.2% of the population were of Hispanic or Latino origin.[1] Denton County ranked twenty-ninth on the US Census Bureau's list of fastest-growing counties between 2000 and 2007, with a 41.4% increase in population.[3]

A Williams Institute analysis of 2010 census data found there were about 5.2 same-sex couples per 1,000 households in the county.[21]


County Commissioners[edit]

Office Name Party
  County Judge Mary Horn Republican
  Commissioner, Precinct 1 Hugh Coleman Republican
  Commissioner, Precinct 2 Ron Marchant Republican
  Commissioner, Precinct 3 Bobby Mitchell Republican
  Commissioner, Precinct 4 Andy Eads Republican

County government[edit]

Office Name Party
  District Attorney Paul Johnson Republican
  County Clerk Juli Luke Republican
  District Clerk Sherri Adelstein Republican
  Sheriff Will Travis Republican
  Tax Assessor Michelle French Republican
  Treasurer Cindy Yeatts Brown Republican


Denton County, like most suburban counties in Texas, votes reliably for Republican candidates in statewide and national elections.

Texas gubernatorial election, 2014: Denton County
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Greg Abbott 93,506 65.1
Democratic Wendy Davis 47,134 32.8
United States presidential election, 2012: Denton County
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Mitt Romney 157,579 64.9
Democratic Barack Obama 80,978 33.5


The following school districts lie entirely within Denton County:

The following private educational institutions serve Denton County:

The following higher education institutions serve Denton County:


The northern intersection of Interstate 35 East and West, which branches the two portions of the highway towards Dallas and Fort Worth, is located in Denton County, in the city of Denton near the campus of the University of North Texas. In 1931, the paving of US Highway 77 through Lewisville, which connected Denton and Dallas, was finished.[22] The entirety of Farm to Market Road 3040 is located in Denton County, running from its intersection with Farm to Market Road 2499 in Flower Mound to Hebron Parkway in Carrollton.

The Denton County Transportation Authority (DCTA) operates a bus service in the county that includes Denton, Lewisville, and Highland Village. SPAN Transit covers areas outside of Denton and Lewisville.

DCTA also operates the A-train, a commuter rail service runs from Denton to Carrollton, at which station passengers can switch to the Green Line train owned and operated by Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART). Passengers can transfer to other DART lines (denominated by different colors) at the downtown Dallas DART station.

The county is home to the Denton Municipal Airport and the Northwest Regional Airport in Roanoke. Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport is located a few miles south of the county.


Notable People[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Quickfacts 2012.
  2. ^ Naco 2011.
  3. ^ a b Census 2007.
  4. ^ Bridges 1978, pp. 1–26.
  5. ^ a b Odom 2010.
  6. ^ Bates 1918, p. 2.
  7. ^ Bolz & Bolz 2010, p. 7.
  8. ^ Bates 1918, pp. 18–24.
  9. ^ Hervey 2002, p. 9.
  10. ^ Bridges 1978, p. 96.
  11. ^ Bolz & Bolz 2010, p. 9.
  12. ^ Weather 2012.
  13. ^ Gazetteer 2010.
  14. ^ Cowling 1936, p. 1.
  15. ^ Wikisource-logo.svg Ripley, George; Dana, Charles A., eds. (1879). "Denton". The American Cyclopædia. 
  16. ^ Sales 2007, pp. 4–5.
  17. ^ "County Totals Dataset: Population, Population Change and Estimated Components of Population Change: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2015". Retrieved July 2, 2016. 
  18. ^ Census.
  19. ^ Almanac 2010.
  20. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2011-05-14. 
  21. ^ Where Same-Sex Couples Live, June 26, 2015, retrieved July 6, 2015 
  22. ^ Odom 1996, p. 69.




External links[edit]

Coordinates: 33°12′N 97°07′W / 33.20°N 97.12°W / 33.20; -97.12