Ward County, Texas

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Ward County
The Ward County Courthouse in Monahans
The Ward County Courthouse in Monahans
Map of Texas highlighting Ward County
Location within the U.S. state of Texas
Map of the United States highlighting Texas
Texas's location within the U.S.
Coordinates: 31°31′N 103°06′W / 31.51°N 103.1°W / 31.51; -103.1
Country United States
State Texas
Founded1892
Named forThomas W. Ward
SeatMonahans
Largest cityMonahans
Area
 • Total836 sq mi (2,170 km2)
 • Land836 sq mi (2,170 km2)
 • Water0.2 sq mi (0.5 km2)  0.03%
Population
 (2020)
 • Total11,644
 • Density14/sq mi (5.4/km2)
Time zoneUTC−6 (Central)
 • Summer (DST)UTC−5 (CDT)
Congressional district23rd
Websitewww.co.ward.tx.us

Ward County is a county located in the U.S. state of Texas. As of the 2020 census, its population was 11,644.[1] The county seat is Monahans.[2] The county was created in 1887 and organized in 1892.[3] It is named for Thomas W. Ward, a soldier in the Texas Revolution.

History[edit]

Native Americans[edit]

Archeological investigations conducted in northwestern Ward County have found evidence of prehistoric man in the form of occupational debris, petroglyphs, and pictographs. Tribes occupying the area include Suma-Jumano, Apache, and Comanche. The sand hills have contained native artifacts.[4]

Growth[edit]

The Butterfield Overland Mail in 1858 used Emigrant's Crossing, where exposed rocks afford one of the few places safe for fording the Pecos River. The stage line had an adobe station and a high-walled adobe corral there.[5]

In 1881, the Texas and Pacific Railway crossed the region and established stations at Sand Hills, Monahans, Aroya, Pyote, Quito, Quito Quarry, and Barstow.[6]

The Texas State Legislature carved Ward County from a portion of Tom Green County in 1887. The county was organized in 1892. Barstow became the county seat. Barstow became a farming and ranching trade center by 1904. Drought plagued the area in the early part of the 20th century.

Ward County benefitted from the opening of the Hendrick oilfield Winkler County in 1926. Pipelines and railroad loading tanks were constructed at Wickett, Pyote,[7] and Monahans. Oil was discovered at Grandfalls[8] in 1929, and the nearby community of Royalty was established. Shell Oil Company constructed an 8-acre (32,000 m2) tank that would hold a million barrels.[9][10] By January 1, 1991, 668,715,000 barrels (106,317,200 m3) of oil had been produced in the county since 1928.

On May 10, 1938, Monahans won a contested election to move the county seat from Barstow. The election was upheld in 1939, and the county seat moved to Monahans that year.

Pyote Air Force Station [11] opened in 1942, becoming the largest bomber installation in the United States. The plane Enola Gay, which dropped the atomic bomb on Hiroshima, was later stored here. The base became inactive during the Korean War.[12]

Monahans Sandhills State Park opened in 1957. The Sealy-Smith Foundation leased much of the land to the state in 1956 until 2056. An additional 900 acres (3.6 km2) were leased from the Williams family of Monahans.[13][14][15]

Geography[edit]

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 836 square miles (2,170 km2), of which 836 sq mi (2,170 km2) are land and 0.2 sq mi (0.52 km2) (0.03%) is covered by water.[16]

Major highways[edit]

Adjacent counties[edit]

Demographics[edit]

Historical population
Census Pop.
189077
19001,4511,784.4%
19102,38964.6%
19202,6159.5%
19304,59975.9%
19409,575108.2%
195013,34639.4%
196014,91711.8%
197013,019−12.7%
198013,9767.4%
199013,115−6.2%
200010,909−16.8%
201010,658−2.3%
202011,6449.3%
U.S. Decennial Census[17]
1850–2010[18] 2010[19] 2020[20]

2020 census[edit]

Ward County, Texas - Demographic Profile
(NH = Non-Hispanic)
Race / Ethnicity Pop 2010[19] Pop 2020[20] % 2010 % 2020
White alone (NH) 4,922 4,506 46.18% 38.70%
Black or African American alone (NH) 474 415 4.45% 3.56%
Native American or Alaska Native alone (NH) 48 41 0.45% 0.35%
Asian alone (NH) 31 69 0.29% 0.59%
Pacific Islander alone (NH) 0 2 0.00% 0.02%
Some Other Race alone (NH) 9 22 0.08% 0.19%
Mixed Race/Multi-Racial (NH) 100 264 0.94% 2.27%
Hispanic or Latino (any race) 5,074 6,325 47.61% 54.32%
Total 10,658 11,644 100.00% 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.

2000 Census[edit]

As of the census[21] of 2000, 10,909 people, 3,964 households, and 2,929 families were residing in the county. The population density was 13 people per square mile (5/km2). The 4,832 housing units averaged 6 per sq mi (2/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 79.79% White, 4.61% African American, 0.66% Native American, 0.28% Asian, 12.55% from other races, and 2.11% from two or more races. About 41.98% of the population were Hispanics or Latinos of any race.

Of the 3,964 households, 36.60% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 58.80% were married couples living together, 11.60% had a female householder with no husband present, and 26.10% were not families. About 23.60% of all households were made up of individuals, and 12.30% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.66, and the average family size was 3.15.

In the county, the age distribution was 30.60% under 18, 7.80% from 18 to 24, 25.10% from 25 to 44, 22.20% from 45 to 64, and 14.30% who were 65 or older. The median age was 36 years. For every 100 females, there were 99.80 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 92.30 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $29,386, and for a family was $36,014. Males had a median income of $31,373 versus $18,198 for females. The per capita income for the county was $14,393. About 15.80% of families and 17.90% of the population were below the poverty line, including 20.30% of those under age 18 and 20.10% of those age 65 or over.

Government and infrastructure[edit]

An unincorporated area near Pyote is the site of the former Pyote Air Force Base. The facility housed the West Texas State School, operated by the Texas Youth Commission, until the youth detention facility closed in 2010.[22][23][24]

Politics[edit]

United States presidential election results for Ward County, Texas[25]
Year Republican Democratic Third party
No.  % No.  % No.  %
2020 3,241 79.83% 764 18.82% 55 1.35%
2016 2,547 73.93% 783 22.73% 115 3.34%
2012 2,366 72.91% 841 25.92% 38 1.17%
2008 2,667 74.04% 899 24.96% 36 1.00%
2004 2,856 75.80% 901 23.91% 11 0.29%
2000 2,534 65.41% 1,256 32.42% 84 2.17%
1996 1,620 43.41% 1,644 44.05% 468 12.54%
1992 1,769 40.00% 1,695 38.33% 958 21.66%
1988 2,709 59.02% 1,858 40.48% 23 0.50%
1984 3,474 74.03% 1,188 25.31% 31 0.66%
1980 2,912 66.24% 1,405 31.96% 79 1.80%
1976 2,123 50.33% 2,046 48.51% 49 1.16%
1972 2,687 70.86% 1,049 27.66% 56 1.48%
1968 1,552 36.39% 1,331 31.21% 1,382 32.40%
1964 1,730 43.75% 2,221 56.17% 3 0.08%
1960 1,763 45.77% 2,018 52.39% 71 1.84%
1956 1,772 51.63% 1,638 47.73% 22 0.64%
1952 1,994 51.98% 1,840 47.97% 2 0.05%
1948 414 15.58% 2,119 79.72% 125 4.70%
1944 268 14.73% 1,448 79.60% 103 5.66%
1940 281 12.62% 1,931 86.71% 15 0.67%
1936 98 8.08% 1,113 91.76% 2 0.16%
1932 70 9.27% 678 89.80% 7 0.93%
1928 216 45.76% 256 54.24% 0 0.00%
1924 42 15.33% 206 75.18% 26 9.49%
1920 79 29.81% 181 68.30% 5 1.89%
1916 23 10.90% 178 84.36% 10 4.74%
1912 6 3.14% 147 76.96% 38 19.90%


Communities[edit]

Cities[edit]

Towns[edit]

Census-designated place[edit]

Unincorporated community[edit]

Ghost town[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Ward County, Texas". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved February 23, 2021.
  2. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved June 7, 2011.
  3. ^ "Texas: Individual County Chronologies". Texas Atlas of Historical County Boundaries. The Newberry Library. 2008. Retrieved May 27, 2015.
  4. ^ Texas Handbook, Ward County
  5. ^ Fort Tours
  6. ^ Texas and Pacific Railway Home Page
  7. ^ Texas Escapes, Pyote
  8. ^ Texas Escapes, Grandfalls
  9. ^ Texas Historical Markers, Million Barrel Tank
  10. ^ Rootsweb, Million Barrel Tank and Museum
  11. ^ Texas Escapes, Pyote Air Force Station
  12. ^ Texas Historical Markers, Rattlesnake Bomber Base
  13. ^ TPWD Monahans
  14. ^ Handbook of Texas, Monahans Sandhills State Historic Park
  15. ^ State Parks, Monahans
  16. ^ "2010 Census Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. August 22, 2012. Retrieved May 12, 2015.
  17. ^ "Decennial Census of Population and Housing by Decades". US Census Bureau.
  18. ^ "Texas Almanac: Population History of Counties from 1850–2010" (PDF). Texas Almanac. Retrieved May 12, 2015.
  19. ^ a b "P2 HISPANIC OR LATINO, AND NOT HISPANIC OR LATINO BY RACE - 2010: DEC Redistricting Data (PL 94-171) - Ward County, Texas". United States Census Bureau.
  20. ^ a b "P2 HISPANIC OR LATINO, AND NOT HISPANIC OR LATINO BY RACE - 2020: DEC Redistricting Data (PL 94-171) - Ward County, Texas". United States Census Bureau.
  21. ^ "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved May 14, 2011.
  22. ^ "Facility Address List Archived 2001-11-10 at the Wayback Machine." Texas Youth Commission. Retrieved on May 23, 2010.
  23. ^ Ward, Mike. "Report: school "did not provide a safe environment" Archived 2011-06-07 at the Wayback Machine." Austin American-Statesman. Saturday March 17, 2007. Retrieved on May 23, 2010.
  24. ^ "TYC Facility in Pyote Officially Closes Their Doors." Newswest 9. Retrieved on June 3, 2010.
  25. ^ Leip, David. "Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections". uselectionatlas.org. Retrieved August 1, 2018.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 31°31′N 103°06′W / 31.51°N 103.10°W / 31.51; -103.10