Electra, Texas

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Electra, Texas
Liberty Theater, Electra, showing a Mary Pickford movie in 1919.
Liberty Theater, Electra, showing a Mary Pickford movie in 1919.
"Wichita County's Best Kept Secret"
Location of Electra, Texas
Location of Electra, Texas
Wichita County Electra.svg
Coordinates: 34°1′51″N 98°55′2″W / 34.03083°N 98.91722°W / 34.03083; -98.91722Coordinates: 34°1′51″N 98°55′2″W / 34.03083°N 98.91722°W / 34.03083; -98.91722
CountryUnited States
 • Total3.08 sq mi (7.98 km2)
 • Land3.08 sq mi (7.97 km2)
 • Water0.00 sq mi (0.01 km2)
1,220 ft (372 m)
 • Total2,791
 • Estimate 
 • Density887.23/sq mi (342.54/km2)
Time zoneUTC-6 (Central (CST))
 • Summer (DST)UTC-5 (CDT)
ZIP code
Area code940
FIPS code48-22984[3]
GNIS feature ID1356894[4]
55, 000 bbl Oil Tank struck by lightning. Aug. 5, 1912, Electra, Texas

Electra is a city in Wichita County, Texas, United States. It is part of the Wichita Falls metropolitan statistical area. The population was 2,791 at the 2010 census.,[5] down from 3,168 in 2000. Electra claims the title of Pump Jack Capital of Texas, a title made official by the state in 2001,[6] and has celebrated an annual Pump Jack Festival since 2002.[7] It was named in honor of Electra Waggoner, an heiress to the Waggoner Ranch.[8]


Daniel Waggoner started a ranch in present-day Electra in 1852. Around 30 years later, the Fort Worth and Denver Railway was built, and its railroad tracks ran through the area. In 1885, Waggoner's son, William Thomas Waggoner, successfully lobbied railroad executives to build a railroad station at the site. By this time, the Waggoner ranch covered a half-million acres. Until this time, the town was called Waggoner, but following the building of the station and a post office in 1889, it was dubbed Beaver Switch, after the nearby Beaver Creek. The opening of 56,000 acres (230 km2) of land north of the railroad station brought more farmers to the area. The town was renamed again in 1907, this time after Waggoner's daughter, Electra Waggoner.

Water can be scarce in this region of Texas, so Waggoner started drilling for water for the town's new residents. Most of these drilling sites were befouled by crude oil, which made the water unfit for drinking. Three years later, a developer from Fort Worth named Solomon Williams bought the land from Waggoner. Soon thereafter, he annexed nearby land, subdivided the land, and placed advertisements in national media trying to increase the population. His efforts were successful, and the town grew from a population of 500 to 1,000 between 1907 and 1910. The Waggoner family still owns much of the same land they did in the beginning and still drills for oil there.

In 1911, the Electra Independent School District was created.

On 1 April 1911, the Clayco Oil gusher brought in an oil strike at a depth of 1,600 feet (490 m), producing 260 BOPD. Word spread quickly, and the population increased to over a 1000, with many more oil workers commuting from Wichita Falls. The town soon had brick buildings, cement sidewalks, and a telephone exchange.[9]

In 1936, Electra had well over 6,000 residents, but by the 1960s, the population had decreased to just over 5,000. The Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex was growing, and many people moved away. By 2000, Electra's population had fallen to about 3,000.


Electra is located at 34°1′51″N 98°55′2″W / 34.03083°N 98.91722°W / 34.03083; -98.91722 (34.030809, –98.917281).[10] According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 2.4 mi2 (6.3 km2), all of it land.


Historical population
Census Pop.
2019 (est.)2,730[2]−2.2%
U.S. Decennial Census[11]

2020 census[edit]

Electra racial composition[12]
(NH = Non-Hispanic)[a]
Race Number Percentage
White (NH) 1,722 75.13%
Black or African American (NH) 114 4.97%
Native American or Alaska Native (NH) 12 0.52%
Asian (NH) 11 0.48%
Some Other Race (NH) 5 0.22%
Mixed/Multi-Racial (NH) 119 5.19%
Hispanic or Latino 309 13.48%
Total 2,292

As of the 2020 United States census, there were 2,292 people, 1,253 households, and 606 families residing in the city.

2000 census[edit]

As of the census[3] of 2000, 3,168 people, 1,279 households, and 860 families resided in the city. The population density was 1,299.0 people per square mile (501.3/km2). The 1,529 housing units averaged 626.9 per mi2 (241.9/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 87.66% White, 4.58% African American, 1.10% Native American, 0.06% Asian, 4.29% from other races, and 2.30% from two or more races. Hispanics or Latinos of any race were 8.68% of the population.

Of the 1,279 households, 32.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 51.4% were married couples living together, 12.2% had a female householder with no husband present, and 32.7% were not families; 30.1% of all households were made up of individuals, and 16.4% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.46 and the average family size was 3.03.

In the city, the population was distributed as 27.7% under the age of 18, 7.9% from 18 to 24, 25.7% from 25 to 44, 20.8% from 45 to 64, and 17.8% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females, there were 90.0 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 82.1 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $24,022, and for a family was $30,116. Males had a median income of $25,610 versus $17,292 for females. The per capita income for the city was $13,213. About 17.8% of families and 20.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 24.3% of those under age 18 and 15.4% of those age 65 or over.


The City of Electra is served by the Electra Independent School District, which is composed of 210 sq mi (540 km2).

The three public schools are: B.M. Dinsmore Elementary School, with 225 students enrolled in prekindergarten through fourth grade; Electra Junior High with 172 students in grades five through eight; and Electra High School with 149 students enrolled in ninth through 12th grades. Electra High School's athletic teams are called the Tigers. The student/teacher ratio at each of the schools is 14:1, 13:1, and 9:1, respectively.

Notable people[edit]

  • Ace Reid, An artist and humorist, he grew up and lived in Electra until 1943, when he joined the Navy[15]


The climate in this area is characterized by hot, humid summers and generally mild to cool winters. According to the Köppen climate classification system, Electra has a humid subtropical climate, Cfa on climate maps.[16]


  1. ^ "2019 U.S. Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2020-08-07.
  2. ^ a b "Population and Housing Unit Estimates". United States Census Bureau. May 24, 2020. Retrieved May 27, 2020.
  3. ^ a b "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
  4. ^ "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
  5. ^ "Population and Housing Unit Counts, 2010 Census of Population and Housing" (PDF). Texas: 2010. Retrieved 2017-01-05.
  6. ^ Bernadette Pruitt."A fading town's liquid legacy: Once-thriving Electra hopes 'Pump Jack' title brings new fortune," The Dallas Morning News, September 23, 2001. Retrieved December 30, 2007.
  7. ^ First Pump Jack Festival, photographs of the April 20, 2002, festival. Retrieved December 30, 2007.
  8. ^ "Waggoner Ranch: History". Archived from the original on 2016-10-25. Retrieved 2018-03-13.
  9. ^ Olien, Diana; Olien, Roger (2002). Oil in Texas, The Gusher Age, 1895-1945. Austin: University of Texas Press. p. 78. ISBN 0292760566.
  10. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23.
  11. ^ "Census of Population and Housing". Census.gov. Retrieved June 4, 2015.
  12. ^ "Explore Census Data". data.census.gov. Retrieved 2022-05-20.
  13. ^ https://www.census.gov[not specific enough to verify]
  14. ^ "About the Hispanic Population and its Origin". www.census.gov. Retrieved 18 May 2022.
  15. ^ *Asa Elmer (Ace) Reid, Jr. (1925-1991) at Handbook of Texas OnLine]
  16. ^ "Electra, Texas Köppen Climate Classification (Weatherbase)". Weatherbase. Retrieved 2018-03-13.
  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.[13][14]

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]