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Celeste, Texas

Coordinates: 33°17′37″N 96°11′44″W / 33.29361°N 96.19556°W / 33.29361; -96.19556
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Celeste, Texas
U.S. Route 69 in Celeste
U.S. Route 69 in Celeste
Location of Celeste, Texas
Location of Celeste, Texas
Coordinates: 33°17′37″N 96°11′44″W / 33.29361°N 96.19556°W / 33.29361; -96.19556
CountryUnited States
 • Total1.34 sq mi (3.48 km2)
 • Land1.34 sq mi (3.48 km2)
 • Water0.00 sq mi (0.00 km2)
669 ft (204 m)
 • Total809
 • Density600/sq mi (230/km2)
Time zoneUTC-6 (Central (CST))
 • Summer (DST)UTC-5 (CDT)
ZIP code
Area code903
FIPS code48-13672[2]
GNIS feature ID1354174[3]

Celeste (Light Blue, in Spanish) is a city in Hunt County, in the U.S. state of Texas. The population was 809 at the 2020 census.


Like many towns in Hunt County, Celeste[4] was a product of railroad development. The townsite was platted in 1886 by the Gulf, Colorado and Santa Fe Railway 3 miles (5 km) north of Kingston, on open prairie already crossed by the Missouri, Kansas and Texas line. This location was chosen in order to ensure that Kingston, whose elected officials had refused to offer incentives to attract the Gulf, Colorado and Santa Fe to build through their community, would be bypassed by the line as it put down tracks from Paris through Farmersville to Dallas.

Sanger Street (circa 1905–09)

Celeste was named for the wife of a Santa Fe official. The two rail lines stimulated rapid growth. A post office opened in Celeste in 1886, and a number of merchants moved their businesses from Kingston to Celeste. By 1888 three churches were holding services in the settlement. The population by the mid-1890s stood at 600, and the community maintained three gristmills and cotton gins, a bank, a weekly newspaper, and a graded public school. Celeste was incorporated in 1900, and its population increased from 671 that year to 850 on the eve of World War I.

By 1914 the community had two banks, three cotton gins, a water works, an ice factory, and a weekly newspaper, as well as some thirty-five other businesses. It reported a population of 1,022 by 1926. Its high school and two elementary schools registered 500 students. Some fifty business establishments, including two banks and a newspaper, were in operation. After the 1920s, however, the population of Celeste fell from 803 in 1933 to 518 in the mid-1960s; businesses correspondingly declined, from thirty to sixteen. After the 1960s the town revived; in 1976 its population was 745. In 1982 the community, where World War II hero Audie Murphy once lived, had a bank, four churches, ten stores, and a school that enrolled 300 students. The population was 733 in 1990 and 817 in 2010.


Celeste is in northwestern Hunt County along U.S. Route 69, which leads northwest 40 miles (64 km) to Denison and southeast 12 miles (19 km) to Greenville the Hunt county seat. According to the United States Census Bureau, Celeste has a total area of 1.1 square miles (2.9 km2), all land.[5]


Historical population
U.S. Decennial Census[6]
Celeste racial composition as of 2020[7]
(NH = Non-Hispanic)[a]
Race Number Percentage
White (NH) 620 76.64%
Black or African American (NH) 34 4.2%
Native American or Alaska Native (NH) 4 0.49%
Mixed/Multi-Racial (NH) 56 6.92%
Hispanic or Latino 95 11.74%
Total 809

As of the 2020 United States census, there were 809 people, 320 households, and 252 families residing in the city.


The city is served by the Celeste Independent School District and is home to the Celeste High School Blue Devils.

Notable people[edit]

  • Clint Lorance (born 1984), Army officer convicted of second-degree murder for battlefield deaths; pardoned
  • Audie Murphy, the most decorated soldier in World War II, was born four and a half miles south of Celeste on June 20, 1924. Audie Murphy lived for a short period of time in Celeste, Texas with his family and at one point, the Murphy family stayed in an abandoned railroad box car. While at Celeste, Murphy was enrolled in the local school through the eighth grade


  1. ^ Note: the US Census treats Hispanic/Latino as an ethnic category. This table excludes Latinos from the racial categories and assigns them to a separate category. Hispanics/Latinos can be of any race.[8]


  1. ^ "2019 U.S. Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved August 7, 2020.
  2. ^ "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 31, 2008.
  3. ^ "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. October 25, 2007. Retrieved January 31, 2008.
  4. ^ Texas State Historical Association, CELESTE, TX The Handbook of Texas Online
  5. ^ "Geographic Identifiers: 2010 Census Summary File 1 (G001): Celeste city, Texas". American Factfinder. U.S. Census Bureau. Archived from the original on February 13, 2020. Retrieved March 19, 2018.
  6. ^ "Census of Population and Housing". Census.gov. Retrieved June 4, 2015.
  7. ^ "Explore Census Data". data.census.gov. Retrieved May 22, 2022.
  8. ^ "About the Hispanic Population and its Origin". www.census.gov. Retrieved May 18, 2022.