|• Total||1,176 sq mi (3,050 km2)|
|• Land||1,158 sq mi (3,000 km2)|
|• Water||18 sq mi (50 km2) 1.5%|
|• Density||78/sq mi (30/km2)|
|Time zone||UTC−6 (Central)|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC−5 (CDT)|
Liberty County is a county in the U.S. state of Texas. As of the 2020 census, its population was 91,628. The county seat is Liberty. It was founded in 1831, as a municipality in Mexico as Villa de la Santísima Trinidad de la Libertad by commissioner José Francisco Madero and organized as a county of the Republic of Texas in 1836. Its name was anglicized as Liberty based on the ideal of American liberty.
Liberty County is included in the Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land, TX metropolitan statistical area.
The Trinity River flows through this county, dividing the county roughly in half. The river begins on the northern border of Liberty County, forming the San Jacinto - Polk County line through the Liberty County line. The east fork of the San Jacinto River flows through far northeast parts of the county, flowing through Cleveland. Tarkington Bayou begins in the Sam Houston National Forest in San Jacinto County, working its way south through northeast and east Liberty County and joining other feeders, before traveling into Harris County and emptying into Galveston Bay. The highest point in Liberty County is "Davis Hill", the roof of a salt dome in the northern part of the county.
- Polk County (north)
- Hardin County (east)
- Jefferson County (southeast)
- Chambers County (south)
- Harris County (southwest)
- Montgomery County (west)
- San Jacinto County (northwest)
National protected areas
|U.S. Decennial Census|
1850–2010 2010 2020
|Race / Ethnicity||Pop 2010||Pop 2020||% 2010||% 2020|
|White alone (NH)||52,321||50,044||69.17%||54.62%|
|Black or African American alone (NH)||8,074||7,024||10.67%||7.67%|
|Native American or Alaska Native alone (NH)||289||291||0.38%||0.32%|
|Asian alone (NH)||337||466||0.45%||0.51%|
|Pacific Islander alone (NH)||23||12||0.03%||0.01%|
|Some Other Race alone (NH)||120||329||0.16%||0.36%|
|Mixed Race/Multi-Racial (NH)||877||2,665||1.16%||2.91%|
|Hispanic or Latino (any race)||13,602||30,797||17.98%||33.61%|
Note: the U.S. Census Bureau 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 census of 2000, 70,154 people, 23,242 households, and 17,756 families resided in the county. The population density was 60 people per square mile (23 people/km2). The 26,359 housing units averaged 23 units per square mile (8.9/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 78.90% White, 12.82% African American, 0.47% Native American, 0.32% Asian, 6.06% from other races, and 1.43% from two or more races. About 10.92% of the population was Hispanic or Latino of any race.
Of the 23,242 households, 38.10% had children under 18 living with them, 60.50% were married couples living together, 11.40% had a female householder with no husband present, and 23.60% were not families. About 20.40% of all households were made up of individuals, and 8.90% had someone living alone who was 65 or older. The average household size was 2.80 and the average family size was 3.23.
In the county, the population was distributed as 27.60% under18, 9.20% from 18 to 24, 31.60% from 25 to 44, 21.40% from 45 to 64, and 10.30% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34 years. For every 100 females, there were 95.70 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 92.40 males.
The median income for a household in the county was $38,361, and for a family was $43,744. Males had a median income of $37,957 versus $22,703 for females. The per capita income for the county was $15,539. About 11.10% of families and 14.30% of the population were below the poverty line, including 18.30% of those under age 18 and 15.00% of those age 65 or over.
Of Liberty County's residents, 8.8% have a college degree, the lowest percentage of any U.S. county with a population exceeding 50,000.
Government and politics
Liberty County, formerly strongly Democratic like much of the rest of Texas before the mid-20th century, has trended sharply Republican in recent years. As is the case with most rural Texas counties, the Republican margin of victory has largely increased since Bill Clinton won the county in the 1990s.
United States Congress
|Senate Class 1||John Cornyn||Republican||2002||Senior Senator|
|Senate Class 2||Ted Cruz||Republican||2012||Junior Senator|
|Representatives||Name||Party||First Elected||Area(s) of Liberty County Represented|
|District 36||Brian Babin||Republican||2014||Countywide|
Texas House of Representatives
District 18: Ernest Bailes (R) - first elected in 2016
Liberty County elected officials
|County Judge||Jay Knight||Republican|
|County Commissioner Precinct 1||Bruce Karbowski||Republican|
|County Commissioner Precinct 2||Greg Arthur||Republican|
|County Commissioner Precinct 3||David Whitmire||Republican|
|County Commissioner Precinct 4||Leon Wilson||Republican|
|County Attorney||Matthew Poston||Republican|
|County Clerk||Lee Haidusek Chambers||Republican|
|District Attorney||Jennifer Bergman||Republican|
|District Clerk||Donna Brown||Republican|
|County Treasurer||Kim Harris||Republican|
|Constable Precinct 1||Tammy Bishop||Republican|
|Constable Precinct 2||Leslie Hulsey||Democrat|
|Constable Precinct 3||Mark "Mad Dog" Davison||Republican|
|Constable Precinct 4||Robbie Thornton||Republican|
|Constable Precinct 5||David Hunter||Republican|
|Constable Precinct 6||Zack Harkness||Republican|
|Justice Of The Peace Precinct 1||Stephen Hebert||Republican|
|Justice Of The Peace Precinct 2||Ronnie E. Davis||Democrat|
|Justice Of The Peace Precinct 3||Cody Parrish||Democrat|
|Justice Of The Peace Precinct 4||Larry Wilburn||Republican|
|Justice Of The Peace Precinct 5||Wade Brown||Republican|
|Justice Of The Peace Precinct 6||Ralph Fuller||Republican|
Around 1995, the economy of Liberty County was mainly focused on agriculture and oil. As of that year, the economy of Liberty County was struggling. At that time, the Texas Department of Criminal Justice had established four correctional facilities (Cleveland, Henley, Hightower, and Plane) in the county within a six-year span. As of 1995, the facilities employed 1,045 employees and contributed $22 million in the county's annual payroll. Since Cleveland is a privately operated facility, the county receives tax revenue from the prison's operation.
School districts include:
- Cleveland ISD (portions of the district extends into other counties)
- Dayton Independent School District (ISD) (portions of the district extends into another county)
- Devers ISD
- Hardin ISD
- Hull-Daisetta ISD
- Liberty ISD
- Tarkington ISD
Sections in Dayton, Devers, Hardin, Hull-Daisetta, and Liberty school districts are assigned to Lee College. Sections in the Cleveland and Tarkington school districts are assigned to Lone Star College.
The Sam Houston Regional Library and Research Center, operated by the Texas State Library and Archives Commission, is located 3 miles (4.8 km) north of Liberty in an unincorporated area. Judge and Mrs. Price Daniel donated 114 acres (46 ha) of land for the purpose of establishing a library on September 27, 1973. Construction began in the fall of 1975; by then, $700,000 had been raised through private donations. The library opened on May 14, 1977.
Outside of the city limits, ambulance services are provided by contract through Allegiance EMS. Fire protection is provided mostly through volunteer fire departments, four of which in Liberty County are funded by emergency services districts.
The headquarters of the Liberty County Sheriff's Office, which serves unincorporated areas and supplements police forces of incorporated areas, is within the city of Liberty. Most incorporated areas operate their own police departments, including Cleveland, Daisetta, Dayton, Kenefick, and Liberty.
Liberty County also has a constable for each of its six precincts and deputies assigned to each.
Incorporated cities of Cleveland and Liberty operate their own fire departments staffed by a combination of paid and volunteer members. Both departments cover territory outside their respective city limits.
Fire departments serving unincorporated areas:
- Ames VFD 1 station
- Cleveland VFD 2 stations (Covering areas inside the City of Cleveland and North Cleveland, and unincorporated Liberty County)
- Cypress Lakes VFD 1 station
- Dayton VFD 2 stations (covering areas inside the City of Dayton, and unincorporated Liberty County)
- Devers VFD 1 station
- Hardin VFD 1 station (covering areas inside the City of Hardin, and unincorporated Liberty County)
- Highway 321 VFD 1 station
- Hull-Daisetta VFD 1 station (covering areas inside the City of Daisetta, and unincorporated Liberty County)
- Kenefick VFD 1 station (covering areas inside the City of Kenefick, and unincorporated Liberty County)
- Liberty VFD 1 station (covering areas inside the City of Liberty, and unincorporated Liberty County)
- Moss Bluff VFD 1 station
- North Liberty County VFD 1 station
- Plum Grove VFD 1 station (covering areas inside the City of Plum Grove, and unincorporated Liberty County)
- Raywood VFD 1 Station
- Tarkington VFD 2 stations
- Westlake VFD 1 station
- Woodpecker VFD 1 station
Emergency medical services
Emergency medical services are provided by Allegiance EMS, with the only exception being inside the City of Liberty, for which service is provided by the City of Liberty Fire and EMS Department.
The Texas Department of Criminal Justice operates one women's prison and two women's state jails, all co-located in an unincorporated area. The L.V. Hightower Unit prison and the Dempsie Henley Unit and Lucille G. Plane Unit jails are 4 miles (6.4 km) north of Dayton. The Cleveland Unit, a prison for men privately operated by the GEO Group, Inc. on behalf of the TDCJ, is in Cleveland.
Cleveland opened in September 1989. Hightower opened in March 1990. Henley and Plane opened in May 1995. Also, in 1992 Community Education Centers opened a private detention center under federal contract with the United States Marshals Service for 372 beds, co-located at the old decommissioned Liberty County Jail.
- U.S. Highway 59
- Interstate 69 is currently under construction and will follow the current route of U.S. 59 in most places.
- U.S. Highway 90
- State Highway 61
- State Highway 99 (Grand Parkway)
- State Highway 105
- State Highway 146
- State Highway 321
Two general aviation airports are located in unincorporated sections of the county.
- Liberty Municipal Airport is located east of Liberty.
- Cleveland Municipal Airport is located east of Cleveland.
|Jurisdiction||Liberty County, Texas|
|Headquarters||Liberty County Commissioners Court|
The Liberty County Toll Road Authority does not operate any toll roads at present. In July, 2007, Liberty County created the Liberty County Toll Road Authority to have a say in any and all future toll-road projects located within the county.
This section needs expansion. You can help by adding to it. (October 2023)
- List of museums in the Texas Gulf Coast
- National Register of Historic Places listings in Liberty County, Texas
- Recorded Texas Historic Landmarks Liberty County
- "Liberty County, Texas". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 30, 2022.
- "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Archived from the original on May 31, 2011. Retrieved June 7, 2011.
- "TSHA | Liberty County". www.tshaonline.org. Retrieved March 7, 2023.
- "Texas: Individual County Chronologies". Texas Atlas of Historical County Boundaries. The Newberry Library. 2008. Archived from the original on April 12, 2017. Retrieved June 20, 2015.
- "Liberty County". Texas Almanac. Texas State Historical Association. Retrieved June 20, 2015.
- Gannett, Henry (1905). The Origin of Certain Place Names in the United States. U.S. Government Printing Office. p. 186.
- "2010 Census Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. August 22, 2012. Retrieved May 3, 2015.
- "Decennial Census of Population and Housing by Decades". US Census Bureau.
- "Texas Almanac: Population History of Counties from 1850–2010" (PDF). Texas Almanac. Archived (PDF) from the original on October 9, 2022. Retrieved May 3, 2015.
- "P2 HISPANIC OR LATINO, AND NOT HISPANIC OR LATINO BY RACE - 2010: DEC Redistricting Data (PL 94-171) - Liberty County, Texas". United States Census Bureau.
- "P2 HISPANIC OR LATINO, AND NOT HISPANIC OR LATINO BY RACE - 2020: DEC Redistricting Data (PL 94-171) - Liberty County, Texas". United States Census Bureau.
- "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved May 14, 2011.
- Silver, Nate. "Education, Not Income, Predicted Who Would Vote For Trump". FiveThirtyEight. November 22, 2016.
- Lozano, Juan A.; Weber, Paul J. (October 6, 2023). "A Texas neighborhood became a target of the right over immigration. Locals are pushing back". Associated Press. Retrieved October 29, 2023.
- Leip, David. "Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections". uselectionatlas.org. Retrieved July 26, 2018.
- Horswell, Cindy. "For hard-hit economy of Liberty County, crime officially pays." Houston Chronicle. Thursday June 29, 1995. A30. Retrieved on July 23, 2010.
- "2020 CENSUS - SCHOOL DISTRICT REFERENCE MAP: Liberty County, TX" (PDF). U.S. Census Bureau. Archived (PDF) from the original on October 9, 2022. Retrieved June 29, 2022. - Text list
- Texas Education Code, Sec. 130.186. LEE COLLEGE DISTRICT SERVICE AREA. Sec. 130.191. LONE STAR COLLEGE SYSTEM DISTRICT SERVICE AREA.
- "Sam Houston Center." Texas State Library and Archives Commission. Retrieved on April 5, 2010.
- What is an Emergency Services District?.
- "Hightower Unit Archived 2010-07-25 at the Wayback Machine." Texas Department of Criminal Justice. Retrieved on May 10, 2010.
- "Henley Unit Archived 2010-07-25 at the Wayback Machine." Texas Department of Criminal Justice. Retrieved on May 10, 2010.
- "Plane Unit Archived 2010-07-25 at the Wayback Machine." Texas Department of Criminal Justice. Retrieved on May 10, 2010.
- "Cleveland Unit Archived 2010-07-25 at the Wayback Machine." Texas Department of Criminal Justice. Retrieved on May 10, 2010.
- "CEC". Archived from the original on October 15, 2014. Retrieved January 31, 2014.
- "Master Plan Executive Summary Archived July 11, 2011, at the Wayback Machine." George Bush Intercontinental Airport Master Plan. [[Houston Airport System]]. December 2006. 2-1 (23/130). Retrieved on December 14, 2010.
- Mike George (October 1, 2007). "Creation of local toll authority set in motion". Chron.com. Retrieved May 24, 2017.
- Wilder, Forrest (October 16, 2023). "What's Behind the Fact-Challenged Freak-out Over Colony Ridge?". Texas Monthly. Retrieved October 29, 2023.
- Liberty County government's website
- Liberty County in Handbook of Texas Online from The University of Texas at Austin
- The Liberty Courier – Conservative Twist, Local news Mainly focuses on politics in Liberty County Texas.
- Cleveland Advocate Cleveland Area Newspaper, covers north east Liberty County.
- Liberty County, TXGenWeb Focuses on genealogical research of Liberty County.
- Liberty County Libertarian Party