Gregg County, Texas

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Gregg County
The Gregg County Courthouse of Art Deco design in Longview designed by architects Voelcker and Dixon.[1] William R. Hughes was the county judge when the structure was completed in 1932.
The Gregg County Courthouse of Art Deco design in Longview designed by architects Voelcker and Dixon.[1] William R. Hughes was the county judge when the structure was completed in 1932.
Official seal of Gregg County
Map of Texas highlighting Gregg 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°29′N 94°49′W / 32.48°N 94.81°W / 32.48; -94.81
Country United States
State Texas
Founded1873
Named forGen. John Gregg
SeatLongview
Largest cityLongview
Area
 • Total276 sq mi (710 km2)
 • Land273 sq mi (710 km2)
 • Water2.5 sq mi (6 km2)  0.9%
Population
 (2020)
 • Total124,239
 • Estimate 
(2019)
123,945
 • Density450/sq mi (170/km2)
Time zoneUTC−6 (Central)
 • Summer (DST)UTC−5 (CDT)
Congressional district1st
Websitehttp://www.co.gregg.tx.us

Gregg County is a county located in the eastern part of the U.S. state of Texas. As of the 2020 census, its population was 124,239.[2] Its county seat is Longview.[3] The county is named after John Gregg, a Confederate general killed in action during the American Civil War.[4]

Gregg County is part of the Longview, Texas Metropolitan Statistical Area and the Longview–Marshall, Texas combined statistical area. Discovery of oil near Kilgore, Texas, in October 1930 was the beginning of an oil boom that attracted workers to the county and expanded the population by more than 500% by 1940, according to the census. By that time, the economy had stabilized but the East Texas Oil Field, extending in five counties, has continued to be important to the county and region's economy.

History[edit]

This area was among early sections settled by United States immigrants before Texas became an independent republic, and after 1845, a state of the United States. It was an area developed as cotton plantations dependent on slave labor of African Americans. Lumbering of the pine forests was also pursued, especially in the early years of clearing the land for cultivation.

Gregg County was organized in 1873 after the American Civil War from portions of existing counties. When the Texas State Legislature convened in January 1873, Democratic representative B. W. Brown of Upshur County introduced a bill to create a new county from parts of Harrison, Rusk, and Upshur Counties. He was likely trying to break up the black majority that dominated county politics in Harrison County. Under Brown's proposal, the county was to be named Roanoke, and Longview was to be the county seat. The proposed name was later changed to honor Texas leader and Confederate General John Gregg, and the county seat was determined by popular election.

Harrison and Rusk Counties resisted efforts to have portions of their territory assigned to Gregg County. When Gregg County was created, it first consisted of about 143 square miles (370 km2) taken from Upshur County, and the Sabine River was its southern boundary. In April 1874, about 141 square miles (370 km2) south of the Sabine River in Rusk County was added to Gregg County. The third portion, of about 145 square miles (380 km2) to be taken from Harrison County, was never realized. Many of its voters continued to elect Republicans to county offices.

By 1919, the county population was 16,700, of which 8,160, or 48%, were black. Most were sharecroppers or tenant farmers raising cotton as a commodity crop. Members of the Negro Business League set up a cooperative store in Longview to compete with white merchants and offer African-American residents more choices for purchases. Beginning July 10, the town had a short-lived Longview Race Riot in which one black man was killed, and several black homes and properties were burned. It was quelled when the sheriff asked for Texas National Guard and other law enforcement. They established a curfew and military occupation.[5][6]

Agricultural work declined during the Great Depression of the 1930s, and many African Americans continued to leave in the Great Migration north to find other work. In October 1930, oil was discovered in Henderson, Texas, near Kilgore. Suddenly, the county economy was booming, and the East Texas Oil Field attracted so many workers that county population increased by more than 500% by 1940. Growth stabilized, but oil has continued to be important. County demographics changed as other workers were attracted to the area. In the early 21st century, slightly less than 20% of the population is African American.

Texas Attorney General John Ben Shepperd, who served from 1953 to 1957, maintained a ranch in Gregg County near his native Gladewater. He also served on the Gregg County Commissioners Court for a brief period in 1949.[7]

Geography[edit]

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 276 square miles (710 km2), of which 273 square miles (710 km2) are land and 2.5 square miles (6.5 km2) (0.9%) are covered by water.[8]

Major highways[edit]

Adjacent counties[edit]

Communities[edit]

Cities[edit]

Census-designated places[edit]

Other unincorporated communities[edit]

Former communities[edit]

Demographics[edit]

Historical population
Census Pop.
18808,530
18909,40210.2%
190012,34331.3%
191014,14014.6%
192016,76718.6%
193015,778−5.9%
194058,027267.8%
195061,2585.6%
196069,43613.4%
197075,9299.4%
198099,48731.0%
1990104,9485.5%
2000111,3796.1%
2010121,7309.3%
2020124,2392.1%
U.S. Decennial Census[11]
1850–2010[12] 2010[13] 2020[14]

2020 Census[edit]

Demographic Profile of Gregg County, Texas
(NH = Non-Hispanic)
Race / Ethnicity Pop 2010[13] Pop 2020[14] % 2010 % 2020
  White alone (NH) 74,005 68,050 60.79% 54.77%
  Black or African American alone (NH) 24,068 24,974 19.77% 20.10%
  Native American or Alaska Native alone (NH) 497 424 0.41% 0.34%
Asian alone (NH) 1,316 1,614 1.08% 1.30%
Pacific Islander alone (NH) 35 47 0.03% 0.04%
Some Other Race alone (NH) 119 298 0.10% 0.24%
Mixed Race/Multi-Racial (NH) 1,672 4,792 1.37% 3.86%
Hispanic or Latino (any race) 20,018 24,040 16.44% 19.35%
Total 121,730 124,239 100.00% 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.

According to the 2020 census, 124,239 people resided in the county.[14]

2000 Census[edit]

According to the 2000 census, 111,379 people, 42,687 households, and 29,667 families residing in the county at the 2000 census.[15] The population density was 406 people per square mile (157/km2) in 2000; the 46,349 housing units averaged 169 per square mile (65/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 72.89% White, 19.86% African American, 0.52% Native American, 0.68% Asian, 4.57% from other races, and 1.49% from two or more races; about 9.14% of the population was Hispanic or Latino of any race. In 2020, its racial and ethnic makeup was 54.77% non-Hispanic white, 20.10% Black or African American, 0.34% Native American, 1.30% Asian alone, 0.04% Pacific Islander, 0.24% some other race, 3.86% multiracial, and 19.35% Hispanic or Latino of any race, reflecting nationwide demographic diversification.[16][17]

In 2000, median income for a household in the county was $35,006, and for a family was $42,617. Males had a median income of $33,186 versus $21,432 for females. The per capita income for the county was $18,449. About 12.00% of families and 15.10% of the population were below the poverty line, including 20.50% of those under age 18 and 11.40% of those age 65 or over. By 2020, its median household income was $52,027 with a mean income of $73,022.[18]

Education[edit]

These school districts serve Gregg County:

Media[edit]

Gregg County is part of the Tyler/Longview/Jacksonville DMA. Local media outlets are: KLTV, KTRE-TV, KYTX-TV, KFXK-TV, KCEB-TV, and KETK-TV.

The Longview News-Journal is the primary newspaper in the county, published in Longview. Coverage of the area can also be found in the Tyler Morning Telegraph, based in Tyler, in Smith County. The Gladewater Mirror has been published since 1949, first as a daily newspaper[19] and then as a weekly newspaper.[20]

Gallery[edit]

Politics[edit]

Before the complete disfranchisement of rural freedmen, Gregg County's black freedmen allowed it to vote for William McKinley twice, and for several other Republicans during the Third Party System.

Gregg subsequently became a classic “Solid South” Democratic county between 1904 and 1948, but has since become solidly Republican at a Presidential level, although the presence of a sizeable black population has permitted the Democrats to gain a quarter of the countywide total at virtually every election. Nonetheless, Gregg was one of only 16 Texas counties to vote for Barry Goldwater in his 1964 definitive loss, and the last Democrat to carry the county was Harry S. Truman in 1948.

United States presidential election results for Gregg County, Texas[21]
Year Republican Democratic Third party
No.  % No.  % No.  %
2020 32,493 67.72% 14,796 30.84% 693 1.44%
2016 28,764 68.90% 11,677 27.97% 1,308 3.13%
2012 28,742 69.25% 12,398 29.87% 367 0.88%
2008 29,203 68.54% 13,166 30.90% 241 0.57%
2004 29,939 70.61% 12,306 29.02% 153 0.36%
2000 26,739 69.57% 11,244 29.26% 450 1.17%
1996 21,611 57.66% 13,659 36.45% 2,208 5.89%
1992 20,542 49.11% 12,797 30.59% 8,490 20.30%
1988 26,465 67.19% 12,486 31.70% 436 1.11%
1984 29,697 73.07% 10,700 26.33% 246 0.61%
1980 23,399 68.44% 10,219 29.89% 572 1.67%
1976 17,582 63.68% 9,827 35.59% 203 0.74%
1972 19,927 77.49% 5,325 20.71% 464 1.80%
1968 9,278 40.13% 5,733 24.80% 8,109 35.07%
1964 11,761 57.14% 8,741 42.47% 82 0.40%
1960 10,679 56.99% 7,765 41.44% 293 1.56%
1956 9,440 65.02% 4,881 33.62% 198 1.36%
1952 10,583 56.31% 7,969 42.40% 242 1.29%
1948 2,477 23.45% 5,104 48.31% 2,984 28.24%
1944 1,412 15.56% 6,401 70.52% 1,264 13.93%
1940 1,584 14.41% 9,391 85.45% 15 0.14%
1936 621 8.72% 6,489 91.12% 11 0.15%
1932 341 6.13% 5,204 93.51% 20 0.36%
1928 646 39.29% 996 60.58% 2 0.12%
1924 177 10.59% 1,286 76.96% 208 12.45%
1920 257 16.89% 1,050 68.99% 215 14.13%
1916 159 15.81% 820 81.51% 27 2.68%
1912 129 16.52% 590 75.54% 62 7.94%


See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Gregg County Courthouse, Longview, Texas". www.texasescapes.com. Retrieved March 16, 2018.
  2. ^ "Gregg County, Texas". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 30, 2022.
  3. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Archived from the original on May 31, 2011. Retrieved June 7, 2011.
  4. ^ Gannett, Henry (1905). The Origin of Certain Place Names in the United States. Govt. Print. Off. pp. 144.
  5. ^ Tuttle, William M. Jr. (1972). "Violence in a "Heathen" Land: The Longview Race Riot of 1919". Phylon. Clark Atlanta University. 33 (4): 324–333. doi:10.2307/273678. ISSN 0031-8906. JSTOR 273678.(subscription required)
  6. ^ Kenneth R. Durham Jr. (1980). "THE LONGVIEW RACE RIOT OF 1919" (PDF). East Texas Historical Journal. Archived from the original (PDF) on May 17, 2013. Retrieved February 23, 2013.
  7. ^ George E. Christian. "John Ben Shepperd". The Handbook of Texas. tshaonline.org. Retrieved July 21, 2009.
  8. ^ "2010 Census Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. August 22, 2012. Retrieved April 27, 2015.
  9. ^ Long, Chistopher (June 15, 2010). "GREGGTON, TX". tshaonline.org. Retrieved March 18, 2018.
  10. ^ LONG, CHROSTOPHER (June 15, 2010). "SPRING HILL, TX [GREGG COUNTY]". tshaonline.org. Retrieved March 18, 2018.
  11. ^ "Decennial Census of Population and Housing by Decades". US Census Bureau.
  12. ^ "Texas Almanac: Population History of Counties from 1850–2010" (PDF). Texas Almanac. Retrieved April 27, 2015.
  13. ^ a b "P2 HISPANIC OR LATINO, AND NOT HISPANIC OR LATINO BY RACE - 2010: DEC Redistricting Data (PL 94-171) - Gregg County, Texas". United States Census Bureau.
  14. ^ a b c "P2 HISPANIC OR LATINO, AND NOT HISPANIC OR LATINO BY RACE - 2020: DEC Redistricting Data (PL 94-171) - Gregg County, Texas". United States Census Bureau.
  15. ^ "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved May 14, 2011.
  16. ^ "Census shows US is diversifying, white population shrinking". AP NEWS. August 12, 2021. Retrieved May 22, 2022.
  17. ^ Frey, William H. (July 1, 2020). "The nation is diversifying even faster than predicted, according to new census data". Brookings. Retrieved May 22, 2022.
  18. ^ "Explore Census Data". data.census.gov. Retrieved May 22, 2022.
  19. ^ "Gladewater Mirror @ Gladewater". Texas Press Association. Retrieved December 19, 2019.
  20. ^ "About The Gladewater mirror. (Gladewater, Tex.) 1968-current". United States Library of Congress. Retrieved December 20, 2019.
  21. ^ Leip, David. "Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections". uselectionatlas.org. Retrieved April 8, 2018.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 32°29′N 94°49′W / 32.48°N 94.81°W / 32.48; -94.81