Taylor County, Texas
New Taylor County Courthouse in Abilene
Location within the U.S. state of Texas
Texas's location within the U.S.
|Named for||Edward, George, and James Taylor|
|• Total||919.3 sq mi (2,381 km2)|
|• Land||915.6 sq mi (2,371 km2)|
|• Water||3.8 sq mi (10 km2) 0.4%%|
|• Density||144/sq mi (56/km2)|
|Time zone||UTC−6 (Central)|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC−5 (CDT)|
Taylor County is a county located in the U.S. state of Texas. As of the 2010 census, its population was 131,506. Its county seat is Abilene. The county was created in 1858 and later organized in 1878. It is named for Edward Taylor, George Taylor, and James Taylor, three brothers who died at the Battle of the Alamo.
Among first inhabitants of the area were the Penteka. In 1849, Capt. Randolph Marcy, a U. S. Army engineer, passed through, scouting out West Texas-to-California routes. The Texas legislature established Taylor County in 1858 from Bexar and Travis Counties. The county is named for Alamo defenders Edward, James, and George Taylor. The Butterfield Overland Mail established the Mountain Pass Station at Merkel; it was in continual use until 1861.
By 1872, the first cattlemen had ventured into present Taylor County. Six years later, Taylor County was organized. Buffalo Gap was named county seat. In 1880, the Texas & Pacific Railroad signed an agreement to run tracks through the future city of Abilene. Abilene was established in 1882, and named after Abilene, Kansas. It Abilene became the county seat in 1883. A wagon train of 10 Baptist families arrived in the county that year.
The Abilene Board of Trade was organized in 1890, when 587 farms and ranches were in the county. The next tear, Hardin-Simmons University was established as Abilene Baptist College by the Sweetwater Baptist Association. Lytle Lake ws created in 1897.
The State Epileptic Colony opened in Abilene in 1904. In 1906, Abilene Christian University opened its doors as Childers Classical Institute. In the 1920s, Hendricks Medical Center opened in Abilene as West Texas Baptist Sanitarium (1924) and the West Texas Historical Association was chartered in Abilene. The first senior class of McMurry University graduated (1926). Oil was discovered in the county a few years later (1929).
Dyess Air Force Base was established as Abilene AFB in 1942; it is named in honor of Texas native and Bataan Death March survivor Lieutenant Colonel William Dyess. The Abilene Philharmonic Orchestra was created, with Jay Dietzer as the first conductor, in 1950. The Buffalo Gap Historic Village opened in 1956.
- Interstate 20
- Interstate 20 Business
- U.S. Highway 83
- U.S. Highway 84
- U.S. Highway 277
- State Highway 36
- State Highway 153
- State Highway 351
- Loop 322
- Jones County (north)
- Shackelford County (northeast)
- Callahan County (east)
- Coleman County (southeast)
- Runnels County (south)
- Nolan County (west)
- Fisher County (northwest)
|U.S. Decennial Census|
As of the census of 2000, 126,555 people, 47,274 households, and 32,524 families resided in the county. The population density was 138 people per square mile (53/km2). The 52,056 housing units averaged 57 per mi2 (22/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 80.61% White, 6.73% Black or African American, 0.58% Native American, 1.25% Asian, 0.07% Pacific Islander, 8.35% from other races, and 2.42% from two or more races. About 17.64% of the population was Hispanic or Latino of any race.
Of the 47,274 households, 34.70% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 53.80% were married couples living together, 11.50% had a female householder with no husband present, and 31.20% were not families. About 25.70% of all households were made up of individuals, and 9.70% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.54 and the average family size was 3.07.
In the county, the age distribution was as 26.60% under 18, 13.80% from 18 to 24, 27.80% from 25 to 44, 19.30% from 45 to 64, and 12.40% who were 65 or older. The median age was 32 years. For every 100 females, there were 94.10 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 91.10 males.
The median income for a household in the county was $34,035, and for a family was $40,859. Males had a median income of $28,964 versus $21,021 for females. The per capita income for the county was $17,176. About 10.40% of families and 14.50% of the population were below the poverty line, including 17.60% of those under age 18 and 9.20% of those age 65 or over.
- Abilene State Park, recreational facility
- Horse Hollow Wind Energy Center, the world's largest wind farm
- Gary D. McCaleb, former mayor of Abilene
- List of museums in West Texas
- National Register of Historic Places listings in Taylor County, Texas
- Recorded Texas Historic Landmarks in Taylor County
- Charles Perry, member of the Texas Senate from Lubbock, was born in Taylor County in 1962.
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- Hundell, Ken and Sharon (2005). Spirits of the Border V: The History and Mystery of the Lone Star State. Omega Press. pp. 118–119. ISBN 978-0-9626087-9-7.
- "Buffalo Gap, Texas". Texas Escapes. Texas Escapes - Blueprints For Travel, LLC. Retrieved 29 November 2010.
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- Early Jr, Joseph E; McBeth, Harry Leon (2004). A Texas Baptist History Sourcebook: A Companion to McBeth's Texas Baptists. University of North Texas Press. p. 139. ISBN 978-1-57441-176-8.
- "Epileptic Colony Open". The Journal of the American Medical Association. 41: 973. 1903.
- Foster, Douglas A; Blowers, Paul M; Dunnavant, Anthony L; Williams, D Newell (2005). The Encyclopedia of the Stone-Campbell Movement. Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company. p. 1. ISBN 978-0-8028-3898-8.
- Downs, Fane (2010-06-15). "McMurry University". Handbook of Texas Online. Texas State Historical Association. Retrieved 30 November 2010.
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- Ebeling, Walter (1990). Fruited Plain: The Story of American Agriculture. University of California Press. p. 249. ISBN 978-0-520-03751-9.
- Leatherwood, Art (2010-06-12). "Dyess Air Force Base". Handbook of Texas Online. Texas State Historical Association. Retrieved 30 November 2010.
- Aston, B W; Taylor, Ira Donathon (1997). Along the Texas Forts Trail. University of North Texas Press. p. 49. ISBN 978-1-57441-035-8.
- "2010 Census Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. August 22, 2012. Retrieved May 11, 2015.
- "Population and Housing Unit Estimates". United States Census Bureau. May 24, 2020. Retrieved May 27, 2020.
- "U.S. Decennial Census". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved May 11, 2015.
- "Texas Almanac: Population History of Counties from 1850–2010" (PDF). Texas Almanac. Retrieved May 11, 2015.
- "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2011-05-14.
- Leip, David. "Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections". uselectionatlas.org. Retrieved 2018-07-31.
- Taylor County Official Site
- Central Appraisal District of Taylor County
- Taylor County from the Handbook of Texas Online
- Taylor at Curlie