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Gaines County, Texas

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Gaines County
The Gaines County Courthouse in Seminole
The Gaines County Courthouse in Seminole
Map of Texas highlighting Gaines County
Location within the U.S. state of Texas
Map of the United States highlighting Texas
Texas's location within the U.S.
Coordinates: 32°44′N 102°38′W / 32.74°N 102.64°W / 32.74; -102.64Coordinates: 32°44′N 102°38′W / 32.74°N 102.64°W / 32.74; -102.64
Country United States
State Texas
Founded1905
SeatSeminole
Largest citySeminole
Area
 • Total1,503 sq mi (3,890 km2)
 • Land1,502 sq mi (3,890 km2)
 • Water0.5 sq mi (1 km2)  0.03%
Population
 (2020)
 • Total21,598
 • Density14/sq mi (5.5/km2)
Time zoneUTC−6 (Central)
 • Summer (DST)UTC−5 (CDT)
Congressional district19th
Websitewww.co.gaines.tx.us

Gaines County is a county in the U.S. state of Texas. As of the 2020 census, its population was 21,598.[1] The county seat is Seminole.[2]

History[edit]

The county is named for James Gaines,[3] a merchant who signed the Texas Declaration of Independence and was born in Culpeper County, Virginia in 1779. During the 19th century, the land had been occupied solely by Comanche and Mexican Comancheros, traders who had a thriving business with the Plains Indians. In October 1875, Lt. Bullis, who commanded the 24th Infantry Regiment, encountered a large group of Indians at Cedar Lake. Lt. Bullis captured them for food, supplies, utensils, and buffalo hides. It was then that Col. Shafter established a camp at Cedar Lake and continued to scout the area as far south as the Pecos River. That November he came across a draw where he found a water development. He discovered over 70 wells that reached levels 4 to 15 feet deep. This area became a regular place to trade goods.

In 1887 the northern part of the county was occupied by the Mallet Ranch. The foreman, Dave Ernest, sold the ranch to a merchant from San Antonio who used the land for driving cattle towards Kansas. On October 24, 1905, Gaines County became an organized county in Texas.[4] Land was donated by non-resident landowners which would become the town of Seminole, Texas, the county seat. In 1912 a small post office opened up east of Seminole that was named after a local ranch brand that would later become Loop, Texas. In 1917 the Santa Fe Railroad came through Blythe, Texas, but its name was changed to Seagraves, Texas after the company discovered they had a town by the same name already located on the line.

A great addition to Gaines County came in 1977 when a group of Mennonites arrived to start farming and ranching. In 2005 Gaines County became the number one oil producing, cotton producing, and peanut producing county in Texas.[5]

Geography[edit]

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 1,503 square miles (3,890 km2), of which 1,502 square miles (3,890 km2) is land and 0.5 square miles (1.3 km2) (0.03%) is water.[6]

Major highways[edit]

Adjacent counties[edit]

Demographics[edit]

Historical population
Census Pop.
18808
189068750.0%
190055−19.1%
19101,2552,181.8%
19201,018−18.9%
19302,800175.0%
19408,136190.6%
19508,9099.5%
196012,26737.7%
197011,593−5.5%
198013,15013.4%
199014,1237.4%
200014,4672.4%
201017,52621.1%
202021,59823.2%
U.S. Decennial Census[7]
1850–2010[8] 2010[9] 2020[10]
Gaines County, Texas - Demographic Profile
(NH = Non-Hispanic)
Race / Ethnicity Pop 2010[9] Pop 2020[10] % 2010 % 2020
White alone (NH) 10,628 12,554 60.64% 58.13%
Black or African American alone (NH) 261 241 1.49% 1.12%
Native American or Alaska Native alone (NH) 46 42 0.26% 0.19%
Asian alone (NH) 37 72 0.21% 0.33%
Pacific Islander alone (NH) 0 3 0.00% 0.01%
Some Other Race alone (NH) 17 46 0.10% 0.21%
Mixed Race/Multi-Racial (NH) 124 239 0.71% 1.11%
Hispanic or Latino (any race) 6,413 8,401 36.59% 38.90%
Total 17,526 21,598 100.00% 100.00%

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.

As of the 2020 United States census, there were 21,598 people, 5,812 households, and 4,545 families residing in the county.

As of the census[11] of 2000, there were 14,467 people, 4,681 households, and 3,754 families residing in the county. The population density was 10 people per square mile (4/km2). There were 5,410 housing units at an average density of 4 per square mile (1/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 80.28% White, 2.28% Black or African American, 0.76% Native American, 0.15% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 14.17% from other races, and 2.35% from two or more races. 35.77% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There were 4,681 households, out of which 45.30% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 67.70% were married couples living together, 8.80% had a female householder with no husband present, and 19.80% were non-families. 18.20% of all households were made up of individuals, and 8.60% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.07 and the average family size was 3.53.

In the county, the population was spread out, with 35.00% under the age of 18, 9.50% from 18 to 24, 26.80% from 25 to 44, 18.40% from 45 to 64, and 10.30% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 30 years. For every 100 females there were 97.00 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 94.00 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $30,432, and the median income for a family was $34,046. Males had a median income of $29,580 versus $16,996 for females. The per capita income for the county was $13,088. About 17.30% of families and 21.70% of the population were below the poverty line, including 29.20% of those under age 18 and 15.70% of those age 65 or over.

Media[edit]

The county is served by a twice-a-week newspaper publication, the Seminole Sentinel, as well as local radio stations KIKZ (AM) and KSEM-FM.

Communities[edit]

Cities[edit]

Town[edit]

Census-designated place[edit]

Politics[edit]

United States presidential election results for Gaines County, Texas[12]
Year Republican Democratic Third party
No.  % No.  % No.  %
2020 5,355 89.31% 576 9.61% 65 1.08%
2016 3,907 84.57% 597 12.92% 116 2.51%
2012 3,484 85.69% 535 13.16% 47 1.16%
2008 3,385 83.23% 650 15.98% 32 0.79%
2004 3,540 85.01% 608 14.60% 16 0.38%
2000 2,691 77.80% 723 20.90% 45 1.30%
1996 1,812 56.73% 1,012 31.68% 370 11.58%
1992 2,138 54.36% 1,095 27.84% 700 17.80%
1988 2,265 62.81% 1,310 36.33% 31 0.86%
1984 2,714 76.82% 797 22.56% 22 0.62%
1980 2,390 65.37% 1,182 32.33% 84 2.30%
1976 1,643 46.36% 1,880 53.05% 21 0.59%
1972 1,923 73.26% 669 25.49% 33 1.26%
1968 1,401 39.68% 1,087 30.78% 1,043 29.54%
1964 1,153 36.02% 2,045 63.89% 3 0.09%
1960 1,520 49.98% 1,498 49.26% 23 0.76%
1956 1,244 44.76% 1,527 54.95% 8 0.29%
1952 1,350 46.47% 1,540 53.01% 15 0.52%
1948 207 11.54% 1,465 81.66% 122 6.80%
1944 173 11.76% 1,173 79.74% 125 8.50%
1940 197 11.53% 1,509 88.30% 3 0.18%
1936 42 5.79% 680 93.66% 4 0.55%
1932 44 7.83% 510 90.75% 8 1.42%
1928 312 69.03% 140 30.97% 0 0.00%
1924 37 8.39% 342 77.55% 62 14.06%
1920 9 6.29% 134 93.71% 0 0.00%
1916 0 0.00% 80 95.24% 4 4.76%
1912 0 0.00% 68 95.77% 3 4.23%

Education[edit]

School districts serving Gaines County include:[13]

Most of Gaines County is assigned to South Plains College's service area. The portion of the county in Seminole ISD is assigned to the Odessa College service area.[14]

Notable people[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Gaines County, Texas". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved February 23, 2021.
  2. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Archived from the original on May 31, 2011. Retrieved June 7, 2011.
  3. ^ Gannett, Henry (1905). The Origin of Certain Place Names in the United States. Govt. Print. Off. pp. 133.
  4. ^ "Texas: Individual County Chronologies". Texas Atlas of Historical County Boundaries. The Newberry Library. 2008. Archived from the original on December 11, 2017. Retrieved May 23, 2015.
  5. ^ "Seminole Texas Chamber of Commerce |".
  6. ^ "2010 Census Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. August 22, 2012. Retrieved April 27, 2015.
  7. ^ "Decennial Census of Population and Housing by Decade". US Census Bureau.
  8. ^ "Texas Almanac: Population History of Counties from 1850–2010" (PDF). Texas Almanac. Archived (PDF) from the original on October 9, 2022. Retrieved April 27, 2015.
  9. ^ a b "P2 HISPANIC OR LATINO, AND NOT HISPANIC OR LATINO BY RACE - 2010: DEC Redistricting Data (PL 94-171) - Gaines County, Texas". United States Census Bureau.
  10. ^ a b "P2 HISPANIC OR LATINO, AND NOT HISPANIC OR LATINO BY RACE - 2020: DEC Redistricting Data (PL 94-171) - Gaines County, Texas". United States Census Bureau.
  11. ^ "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved May 14, 2011.
  12. ^ Leip, David. "Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections". uselectionatlas.org. Retrieved July 23, 2018.
  13. ^ "2020 CENSUS - SCHOOL DISTRICT REFERENCE MAP: Gaines County, TX" (PDF). U.S. Census Bureau. Archived (PDF) from the original on October 9, 2022. Retrieved June 28, 2022. - Text list
  14. ^ "Sec. 130.193. ODESSA COLLEGE DISTRICT SERVICE AREA. Sec. 130.198. SOUTH PLAINS COLLEGE DISTRICT SERVICE AREA".

External links[edit]