History & Facts of Texas Counties

Texas County records can vary widely from county to county in either quality and also quantity. Some are already carefully maintained while some have been significantly misused and overlooked. A number of Texas records have simply vanished. For genealogists undertaking research in Texas there's no valuable replace to have an on-site research of county court house records.

The Texas legislature created a uniform statewide record preservation system in 1972. That led to historical depositories across the state receiving copies of important Texas records. The act led to the Local Records Division of the Texas State Library collecting and maintaining local government records, including city and county records. All of those records are available to researchers.

Each county has a designated repository for county records. Those records include probate, property, and naturalization records, as well as marriage records, wills, and district court minutes. Since each county keeps its own records, there is no complete collection of those records available at the state level.

There are 26 depositories across the state. They all contain some manuscripts and original records. Many county records have been microfilmed, but some have not. Out of 254 county courthouses, approximately 80 have had inventories of their records done. It is also worth noting that thefts, fires, and floods have destroyed many courthouse records in Texas. So, availability dates may vary.

There were 27 more counties formed by the legislature at later dates. Also, certain counties were organized and then organized again later, often due to boundary changes. The 27 additional counties, which included Foley, Buchel, and Encinal, were never officially organized. Only records for those three exist. Later, Buchel and Foley counties were merged into Brewster County. Encinal county was absorbed by Webb County. The county clerk holds deeds, while probate records may be found at the probate clerk's office or the county clerk's office, depending on the size of the county. County or district court clerk offices hold court records.

Some counties were organized twice. Although twenty-seven additional counties were created by the legislature, none were organized. Of these only Buchel, Encinal, and Foley counties had records. Buchel and Foley were incorporated into Brewster County, while Encinal was included in Webb County. Deeds are located through the county clerk, probates at the county clerk’s or the probate clerk’s office in larger counties, and court records through the county or district court clerk. Letters should be addressed to the appropriate clerk. So, researchers must address inquiries to the appropriate offices

Texas Counties

Texas divided into 254 counties. Each county serves as the local level of government within its borders.

County Date Formed Parent County County Seat
Anderson March 24, 1846 Houston County Palestine
Andrews August 21, 1876 Young Territory Andrews
Angelina April 22, 1846 Nacogdoches County Lufkin
Aransas September 18, 1871 Refugio County Rockport
Archer January 22, 1858 Unorganized Territory Archer City
Armstrong August 21, 1876 Young Territory Claude
Atascosa January 25, 1856 Bexar County Jourdanton
Austin March 17, 1836 Original County Bellville
Bailey August 21, 1876 Young Territory Muleshoe
Bandera January 26, 1856 Non-County Area, Bexar and Uvalde Counties Bandera
Bastrop March 17, 1836 Original County Bastrop
Baylor Feb 1, 1858 Young Territory Seymour
Bee December 8, 1857 Live Oak, Goliad, Refugio, San Patricio and KarnesCounties Beeville
Bell Jan 22, 1850 Milam County Belton
Bexar March 17, 1836 Original County San Antonio
Blanco Febuary 12, 1858 Gillespie, Burnet, Comal and Hays Counties Johnson City
Borden November 19, 1876 Bosque County Gail
Bosque Febuary 4, 1854 MeLennan County Meridian
Bowie December 17, 1840 Red River County Boston
Brazoria May 1, 1832 Original County Angleton
Brazos January 30, 1841 Washington and Robertson Counties Bryan
Brewster Febuary 2, 1887 Presidio County Alpine
Briscoe November 19, 1876 Young Territory Silverton
Brooks March 11, 1911 Starr, Hildalgo and Zapata Counties Falfurrias
Brown August 27, 1856 Travis County and Non-County Area Brownwood
Burleson January 15, 1842 Milam and Washington Counties Caldwell
Burnet February 5, 1852 Bell, Williamson and Travis Counties Burnet
Caldwell March 6, 1848 Gonzales County Lockhart
Calhoun April 4, 1846 Jackson and Victoria Counties Port Lavaca
Callahan Febuary 1, 1858 Non-County Area, Travis and Bexar Counties Baird
Cameron Febuary 12, 1848 Nueces County Brownsville
Camp April 6, 1874 Upshur County Pittsburg
Carson November 19, 1876 Young Territory Panhandle
Cass April 25, 1846 Bowie County Linden
Castro November 19, 1876 Young Territory Dimmitt
Chambers Febuary 12, 1858 Liberty and Jefferson Counties Anahuac
Cherokee April 11, 1846 Nacogdoches County Rusk
Childress November 19, 1876 Hardeman County and Young Territory Childress
Clay December 24, 1857 Cooke County Henrietta
Cochran August 21, 1876 Young Territory Morton
Coke March 13, 1889 Tom Green County Robert Lee
Coleman February 1, 1858 Brown and Travis Counties Coleman
Collin April 3, 1846 Fannin County McKinney
Collingsworth August 21, 1876 Young Territory Wellington
Colorado March 17, 1836 Old Mexican Municipalities and Counties of Mina and Matagorda. Original County Columbus
Comal March 24, 1846 Bexar, Travis and Gonzales Counties New Braunfels
Comanche January 25, 1856 Non-County Area, Coryell and Bosque Counties Comanche
Concho February 1, 1858 Bexar County Paint Rock
Cooke March 20, 1848 Fannin County Gainesville
Coryell February 4, 1854 Bell and McLennan Counties Gatesville
Cottle August 21, 1876 Hardeman County and Young Territory Paducah
Crane February 26, 1887 Tom Green County Crane
Crockett January 22, 1875 Bexar Land District Ozona
Crosby August 21, 1876 Young Territory Crosbyton
Culberson March 10, 1911 El Paso County Van Horn
Dallam August 21, 1876 Young Territory Dalhart
Dallas March 30, 1846 Nacogdoches and Robertson Counties Dallas
Dawson February 1, 1858 Young Territory Lamesa
Dewitt March 24, 1846 Gonzales County, Goliad County and Victoria County Cuero
Deaf Smith August 21, 1876 Young Territory Hereford
Delta July 29, 1870 Lamar and Hopkins Counties Cooper
Denton April 11, 1846 Fannin County Denton
Dickens August 21, 1876 Young Territory Dickens
Dimmit February 1, 1858 Bexar, Maverick, WebbUvalde Counties Carrizo Springs
Donley August 21, 1876 Young Territory Clarendon
Duval February 1, 1858 Nueces and Live Oak Counties San Diego
Eastland February 1, 1858 Non-County Area and Palo Pinto County Eastland
Ector February 26, 1887 Tom Green County Odessa
Edwards February 1, 1858 Bexar Land District Rocksprings
El Paso January 3, 1850 Non-County Area El Paso
Ellis December 20, 1849 Navarro County Waxahachie
Erath January 25, 1856 Bosque and Coryell Counties Stephenville
Falls January 28, 1850 Milam and Limestone Counties Marlin
Fannin December 14, 1837 Nacogdoches County Bonham
Fayette December 14, 1837 Colorado and Bastrop Counties La Grange
Fisher August 21, 1876 Jones County and Young Territory Roby
Floyd August 21, 1876 Young Territory Floydada
Foard March 3, 1891 Knox, Hardeman and Cottle Counties Crowell
Fort Bend December 29, 1837 Austin, Harris and Brazoria Counties Richmond
Franklin March 6, 1875 Titus County Mount Vernon
Freestone September 6, 1850 Limestone County Fairfield
Frio February 1, 1858 Uvalde and Atascosa Counties Pearsall
Gaines August 21, 1876 Young Territory Seminole
Galveston May 15, 1838 Brazoria and Liberty Counties Galveston
Garza August 21, 1876 Young Territory Post
Gillespie February 23, 1848 Bexar County Fredericksburg
Glasscock April 4, 1887 Tom Green County Garden City
Goliad March 17, 1836 Old Mexican Municipality. Original County Goliad
Gonzales March 17, 1836 Old Mexican Municipality. Original County Gonzales
Gray August 21, 1876 Young Territory Pampa
Grayson May 17, 1846 Fannin County Sherman
Gregg April 12, 1873 Upshur County Longview
Grimes April 6, 1846 Montgomery County Anderson
Guadalupe March 30, 1846 Gonzales and Bexar Counties Seguin
Hale August 21, 1876 Young Territory Plainview
Hall August 21, 1876 Young Territory Memphis
Hamilton June 22, 1858 Comanche, Bosque and Lampasas Counties Hamilton
Hansford August 21, 1876 Young Territory Spearman
Hardeman February 1, 1858 Young Territory Quanah
Hardin January 22, 1858 Liberty, Tyler and Jefferson Counties Kountze
Harris March 17, 1836 Old Mexican Municipalities and Counties of Austin and Liberty. Original County Houston
Harrison January 28, 1839 Shelby County Marshall
Hartley August 21, 1876 Young Territory Channing
Haskell February 1, 1858 Young Territory Haskell
Hays March 1, 1848 Travis County San Marcos
Hemphill August 21, 1876 Young Territory Canadian
Henderson April 27, 1846 Houston and Nacogdoches Counties Athens
Hidalgo January 24, 1852 Cameron County Edinburg
Hill February 7, 1853 Navarro County Hillsboro
Hockley August 21, 1876 Young Territory Levelland
Hood November 3, 1865 Erath, Johnson and Palo Pinto Counties Granbury
Hopkins March 25, 1846 Lamar and Nacogdoches Counties Sulphur Springs
Houston June 12, 1837 Nacogdoches County Crockett
Howard August 21, 1876 Tom Green County and Young Territory Big Spring
Hudspeth February 16, 1917 El Paso County Sierra Blanca
Hunt April 11, 1846 Fannin and Nacogdoches Counties Greenville
Hutchinson August 21, 1876 Young Territory Stinnett
Irion March 7, 1889 Tom Green County Mertzon
Jack August 27, 1856 Cooke County Jacksboro
Jackson March 17, 1836 Old Mexican Municipality Matagorda County. Original County Edna
Jasper March 17, 1836 Old Mexican Municipality Liberty County. Original County Jasper
Jeff Davis March 15, 1887 Presidio County Fort Davis
Jefferson March 17, 1836 Old Mexican Municipality Jasper County. Original County Beaumont
Jim Hogg March 13, 1913 Brooks and Duval Counties Hebbronville
Jim Wells March 25, 1911 Nueces County Alice
Johnson February 13, 1854 McLennan County Cleburne
Jones February 1, 1858 Young Territory Anson
Karnes February 4, 1854 Bexar, Dewitt, Goliad and San Patrico Counties Karnes City
Kaufman February 26, 1848 Henderson County Kaufman
Kendall January 10, 1862 Kerr and Blanco Counties Boerne
Kenedy April 2, 1921 Hidalgo and Willacy Counties Sarita
Kent August 21, 1876 Young Territory Jayton
Kerr January 26, 1856 Bexar County Kerrville
Kimble January 22, 1858 Bexar County Junction
King August 21, 1876 Young Territory Guthrie
Kinney  January 28, 1850 Bexar County Brackettville
Kleberg February 27, 1913 Nueces County Kingsville
Knox February 1, 1858 Young Territory Benjamin
La Salle December 17, 1840 Red River County Lampasas
Lamar August 21, 1876 Young Territory Cotulla
Lamb February 1, 1856 Bell and Travis Counties Paris
Lampasas February 1, 1858 Nueces, Bexar and Webb Counties Littlefield
Lavaca April 6, 1846 Colorado, Gonzales, Jackson and Fayette Counties Hallettsville
Lee April 14, 1874 Burleson, Bastrop, Fayette and Washington Counties Giddings
Leon  March 17, 1846 Robertson County Centerville
Liberty March 17, 1836 Old Mexican Municipality Nacogdoches County. Original County Liberty
Limestone April 11, 1846 Robertson County Groesbeck
Lipscomb August 21, 1876 Young Territory Lipscomb
Live Oak Feburary 2, 1856 San Patrico and Nueces Counties George West
Llano February 1, 1856 Bexar and Gillespie Counties Llano
Loving February 26, 1887 Tom Green County Mentone
Lubbock August 21, 1876 Young Territory Lubbock
Lynn August 21, 1876 Young Territory Tahoka
Madison February 2, 1853 Grimes, Walker and Leon Counties Madisonville
Marion February 6, 1860 Cass and Titus Counties Jefferson
Martin August 21, 1876 Young Territory Stanton
Mason January 22, 1858 Bexar Land District Mason
Matagorda March 17, 1836 Old Mexican Municipality Nacogdoches County. Original County Bay City
Maverick February 2, 1856 Kinney County Eagle Pass
McCulloch August 27, 1856 Bexar Land District Brady
McLennan  January 22, 1850 Milam, Navarro and Limestone Counties Waco
McMullen February 11, 1858 Nueces, Atascosa and Live Oak Counties Tilden
Medina February 12, 1848 Bexar County Hondo
Menard January 22, 1858 Bexar Land District Menard
Midland March 14, 1885 Tom Green County Midland
Milam March 17, 1836 Old Mexican Municipality. Original County Cameron
Mills March 15, 1887 Brown, Lampasas, Hamilton and Comanche Goldthwaite
Mitchell August 21, 1876 Young Territory Colorado City
Montague December 24, 1857 Cooke County Montague
Montgomery December 14, 1837 Washington County Conroe
Moore August 21, 1876 Young Territory Dumas
Morris March 6, 1875 Titus County Daingerfield
Motley August 21, 1876 Young Territory Matador
Nacogdoches March 17, 1836 Old Mexican Municipality. Original County Nacogdoches
Navarro April 25, 1846 Robertson County Corsicana
Newton April 26, 1846 Jasper County Newton
Nolan August 21, 1876 Young Territory Sweetwater
Nueces April 18, 1846 San Patrico County Corpus Christi
Ochiltree August 21, 1876 Young Territory Perryton
Oldham August 21, 1876 Young Territory Vega
Orange February 5, 1852 Jefferson County Orange
Palo Pinto August 26, 1856 Bosque and Navarro Counties Palo Pinto
Panola March 30, 1846 Harrison and Shelby Counties Carthage
Parker December 12, 1855 Bosque and Navarro Counties Weatherford
Parmer August 21, 1876 Young Territory Farwell
Pecos May 3, 1871 Presidio County Fort Stockton
Polk March 30, 1846 Liberty County Livingston
Potter August 21, 1876 Young Territory Amarillo
Presidio January 3, 1850 Bexar County Marfa
Rains June 9, 1870 Hopkins, Hunt and Wood Counties Emory
Randall August 21, 1876 Young Territory Canyon
Reagan March 7, 1903 Tom Green County Big Lake
Real April 3, 1913 Edwards, Kerr and Bandera Counties Leakey
Red River March 17, 1836 Old Mexican Municipality Nacogdoches County. Original County Clarksville
Reeves April 14, 1883 Pecos County Pecos
Refugio March 17, 1836 Old Mexican Municipality. Original County Refugio
Roberts August 21, 1876 Young Territory Miami
Robertson December 14, 1837 Milam and Nacogdoches Counties Franklin
Rockwall March 1, 1873 Kaufman County Rockwall
Runnels February 1, 1858 Bexar Land District Ballinger
Rusk  January 16, 1843 Nacogdoches County Henderson
Sabine March 17, 1836 Old Mexican Municipality San Augustine County. Original County Hemphill
San Augustine March 17, 1836 Old Mexican Municipality Nacogdoches County. Original County San Augustine
San Jacinto August 13, 1869 Polk, Liberty, Montgomery and Walker Counties Coldspring
San Patricio March 17, 1836 Old Mexican Municipality. Original County Sinton
San Saba February 1, 1856 Bexar County San Saba
Schleicher April 1, 1887 Crockett County Eldorado
Scurry August 21, 1876 Young Territory Snyder
Shackelford February 1, 1858 Young Territory and Non-County Area Albany
Shelby March 17, 1836 Old Mexican Municipality Nacogdoches County and San Augustine County. Original County Center
Sherman August 21, 1876 Young Territory Stratford
Smith April 11, 1846 Nacogdoches County Tyler
Somervell March 13, 1875 Hood County Glen Rose
Starr February 10, 1848 Nueces County Rio Grande City
Stephens January 22, 1858 Young Territory and Non-County Area Breckenridge
Sterling March 4, 1891 Tom Green County Sterling City
Stonewall August 21, 1876 Young Territory Aspermont
Sutton April 1, 1877 Crockett County Sonora
Swisher August 21, 1876 Young Territory Tulia
Tarrant December 20, 1849 Navarro County Fort Worth
Taylor February 1, 1858 Bexar Land District Abilene
Terrell April 8, 1905 Pecos County Sanderson
Terry August 21, 1876 Young Territory Brownfield
Throckmorton January 13, 1858 Young Territory and Non-County Area Throckmorton
Titus May 11, 1846 Bowie and Red River Counties Mount Pleasant
Tom Green March 13, 1874 Bexar Land District San Angelo
Travis January 25, 1840 Bastrop County Austin
Trinity February 11, 1850 Houston County Groveton
Tyler April 3, 1846 Liberty County Woodville
Upshur April 27, 1846 Harrison and Nacogdoches Counties Gilmer
Upton February 26, 1867 Tom Green County Rankin
Uvalde February 8, 1850 Bexar County Uvalde
Val Verde February 20, 1885 Kinney, Pecos and Crockett Counties Del Rio
Van Zandt March 20, 1848 Henderson County Canton
Victoria March 17, 1836 Old Mexican Municipality. Original County Victoria
Walker April 6, 1846 Montgomery County Huntsville
Waller April 28, 1873 Austin and Grimes Counties Hempstead
Ward February 26, 1887 Tom Green County Monahans
Washington March 17, 1836 Old Mexican Municipality Austin County and Liberty County. Original County Brenham
Webb January 28, 1848 Bexar and Nueces Counties Laredo
Wharton April 3, 1846 Brazoria, Colorado, Jackson and Matagorda Counties Wharton
Wheeler August 21, 1876 Young Territory Wheeler
Wichita February 1, 1858 Young Territory Wichita Falls
Wilbarger February 1, 1858 Cooke County Vernon
Willacy March 11, 1911 Hildigo and Cameron Counties Raymondville
Williamson March 13, 1848 Milam County Georgetown
Wilson February 13, 1860 Bexar and Karnes Counties Floresville
Winkler February 26, 1887 Tom Green County Kermit
Wise January 23, 1856 Cooke County Decatur
Wood February 5, 1850 Van Zandt County Quitman
Yoakum August 21, 1876 Young Territory Plains
Young February 2, 1856 Bosque County Graham
Zapata January 22, 1858 Starr and Webb Counties Zapata
Zavala February 1, 1858 Uvalde and Maverick Crystal City

Texas Extinct Counties

Texas has counties that no longer are in existence. They were organized by the state, provincial, or territorial governing administration. Most of these counties were established and disbanded in the Nineteenth century; county boundaries have evolved little since Nineteen hundred in the vast most of states. These counties needs to be researched when you are conducting family history and genealogy research. Pay attention where the courthouse records went to if the county was abolished or joined with a different county.

At least thirty-two counties that were established by Texas law no longer exist. These defunct counties were either (1) Judicial counties, (2) Counties established by declaration of the Constitutional Convention of 1868-69, (3) Counties established by legislative act but never organized and later abolished by legislative act (4) Counties established outside the present boundaries of Texas or (5) Counties whose names have been changed.

  • Bexar Territory - That part of Bexar Land District north of Young Territory became known as Bexar Territory or Unorganized Territory on contemporary maps.
  • Bexar Land District
  • Buchanan County: - Formed in 1858, Renamed Stephens County in 1861
  • Buchel County: Buchel County, along with Foley, & Jeff Davis County were formed out of Presidio County on 15 March 1887. In March of 1889, a legislative act passed attaching the county to Brewster County. Although the then governor did not sign it into law, in 1897, Buchel County was abolished.
  • Cibilo County: Between 1869 and 1874 Wilson County was called Cibilo County
  • Davis County: Formed as Cass County, Called Davis County from 1861-May 1871, Renamed Cass County
  • Denton Land District created 13 Feb 1854, eliminated 19 Aug 1856
  • Encinal County: Formed in 1856 never organized. Abolished in 1899 and incorporated into Webb County
  • Foley County: Created in March 1887 out of Presidio County. The Texas legislature passed an act that created Foley, Buchel, and Jeff Davis counties out of part of Presidio County on March 15, 1887, shortly after passing a similar act making Brewster County from Presidio County. The original Brewster County occupied the northwestern portion of what is now Brewster County, and Foley County occupied most of the southern part. Foley and Buchel counties were not organized, however, and on March 22, 1889, the legislature passed an act attaching them to Brewster County for surveying purposes. Foley County had only twenty-five residents in 1890; thus it was one of the most sparsely settled counties in Texas. Seven years later the legislature passed a bill abolishing Foley and Buchel counties and attaching their territory to Brewster County. With the addition of the territory of Foley and Buchel counties, Brewster County became the largest county in Texas.
  • Fannin Land District created 14 Mar 1846, eliminated 13 Feb 1854.
  • Greer County: Formed in 1860 from Young County, Organized in 1886. Now located in Oklahoma
  • Harrisburg County: Harrisburg County, evolved from and named for the Municipality of Harrisburg, was established in 1836. In 1839 the name was changed to Harris County.
  • La Baca County: In January 1842 the Sixth Congress of the Republic of Texas establish and organize the county of La Baca. On January 12 President Sam Houston vetoed the resolution. On January 29 the House voted to reconsider the resolution. At the same time the legislature attached the new county to the fourth judicial district of the republic. According to the resolution, the County of La Baca would contain parts of Fayette, Gonzales, Victoria, Jackson and Colorado counties. The Supreme Court of the Republic of Texas in its 1842 term ruled that La Baca and all other "judicial counties" were unconstitutional. Four years later, the County of La Vaca was established in place of La Baca, and, on July 13, 1846, immediately after the entrance of Texas into the Union, La Vaca County was formally organized.
  • Mina County
  • Miller County was created on April 1, 1820, included most of what is now Miller County, Arkansas, and the Texas counties of Bowie, Red River, Lamar, Fannin, Cass, Morris, Titus, Franklin, Hopkins, Delta, and Hunt. In December 1874 Miller County was created out of that part of Lafayette County lying west and south of the Red River, and Texarkana, Arkansas, was made the county seat.
  • Navasota County: Created January 1841 from Washington & Robertson Counties, the name changed to Brazos County in 1842
  • Neches County was established for judicial and other purposes on January 29, 1841. Its area included all of what is now Orange County, the south half of the future Jasper County, and the south half of what is now Newton County; Madison was to be the county seat. It was abolished by a Texas Supreme Court decision, in 1842.
  • Paschal County was established for judicial and other purposes on January 28, 1841, included all of the area of future Hopkins, Franklin, Titus, Morris, and Cass counties and most of future Marion County. The county seat, to be selected by county commissioners, was to be named Dangerfield. It was abolished by a Texas Supreme Court decision, in 1842.
  • Santa Fe County: established on March 15, 1848, it was abolished by a Texas Supreme Court decision, in 1842.
  • Travis Land District created  05 Feb 1852, eliminated  05 Feb 1858
  • Waco County: established for judicial and other purposes on January 29, 1842. Viesca was named the county seat. It was abolished by a Texas Supreme Court decision, in 1842.
  • Wegefarth County: Wegefarth County, established on June 2, 1873 and it was abolished by the act of legislature on August 21, 1876, which established the other Panhandle counties.
  • Young Territory created 19 Aug 1856, eliminated  19 Nov 1876

Texas Counties with Burned Courthouses

The damage to Texas courthouses drastically has a impact on genealogists in just about every way. Not only are these kinds of historic buildings ripped from our lifetimes, so are the documents they stored: marriage, wills, probate, land records, among others. Once destroyed they are lost forever. Despite the fact that they have been placed on mircofilm, computers and film burn as well. The most tragic aspect of this is the reason that almost all of our courthouses are destroyed at the hands of arsonist. Though, don't assume all records were damaged or lost. Many Texas counties have dealt with a loss of records due to courthouse fires, floods, and theft.

  • Angelina County Courthouse burned on November 19, 1891.  Many of the county records - including those in the assessor's office and the justice of the peace office were destroyed.
  • Austin County Courthouse was built in 1888, was destroyed by fire on April 5, 1960. Courthouse records were saved
  • Cass County Courthouse - damaged by fire in August 1933. Courthouse rebuilt and enlarged.
  • Crosby County Courthouse in Estacado caught fire on October 9, 1889 and destroyed the judges', treasurer's and county clerk's offices.
  • Delta County Courthouse at Cooper was destroyed by fire on 9 March 1899. Nearly all of the county records were stored in a fireproof vault and were saved. Records in the district clerk's office, probably records on current cases, were destroyed.
  • Denton County Courthouse and almost all county records were destroyed by fire in December 1875.
  • Eastland County Courthouse, a three-story stone building, burned on November 29, 1896.  The records are believed to have been saved.
  • Erath County Courthouse and most of the county records were destroyed by fire in the summer of 1866.
  • Gillespie County Courthouse and many county records were destroyed by fire in July 1850.
  • Galveston County Courthouse was destroyed by the Galveston Hurricane in September 1900, swept the island clean, therefore, it is likely the record was destroyed in the hurricane. Check in nearby counties for any such replications of any records from the Galveston area prior to 1900.
  • Goliad County Courthouse and almost all county records were destroyed by fire in June 1870.
  • Gray County Courthouse Annex destroyed by tornado in 1970.
  • Grayson County Courthouse was burned by a mob on May 9, 1930. However ALL of the vital records, land records, and most court records were saved from this fire. The courthouse had records in fire proof rooms and storage areas.
  • Grimes County Courthouse records were destroyed by fire in late 1848.
  • Hamilton County Courthouse and many county records were destroyed by fires in September 1863, March 1877, and February 1886.
  • Hardin County Courthouse burned about August 8, 1886. Early county records were destroyed in the conflagration. Some records were destroyed including the assessment rolls of the county, surveyor's records, and the county judge's records, including the probate records. The only records that may have been saved were those that were stored in an iron safe. 
  • Hill County Courthouse caught fire on 18 Sept 1872.  Many county records were destroyed. Courthouse, built in 1890, caught fire on 1 Jan 1993, destroying most of the building.
  • Hood County Courthouse and most of the county records, if not all, were destroyed by fire in March 1875.
  • Hopkins County Courthouse built in 1882, was destroyed on Feb. 11, 1894 by a fire that also burned the jail and several nearby structures. Nearly all of the records were saved.  Those destroyed were in the office of Judge Morris.  The fire additionally destroyed the jail, part of the Courthouse square and the offices of the Hopkins County Echo newspaper.
  • Houston County Courthouse , a brick building, which replaced the first courthouse in 1851, was destroyed by a fire of mysterious origin in February 1865 . The third courthouse and jail burned in November 1882 . Most early records were destroyed
  • Hunt County Courthouse , built in 1883, was destroyed by a fire on August 17, 1884 which heavily damaged the town's commercial district. Some early records destroyed. (more).
  • Jackson County Courthouse was destroyed by fire on June 15, 1900.  Records of the County Judge, Assessor and Justice of the Peace were lost. The Jackson County Progress Newspaper plant and offices (along with part of the Edna business district) were destroyed by fire, 12 November 1906.
  • Jasper County Courthouse and all county records were destroyed by fire in October 1849.
  • Karnes County Courthouse and most records of the county clerk were destroyed by fire in July 1865.
  • King County Courthouse destroyed by a Tornado in 1905, again destroyed by fire in 1914.
  • Kent County Courthouse in Clairemont, built in 1893, was burned in April 1955.  The building was vacant because the county seat moved to Jayton in 1954.  No record loss.
  • Lamar County Courthouse was destroyed in a courthouse fire in March 1916, most records of the district clerk were destroyed. Birth, death and marriage records were not lost.
  • Lee County Courthouse, built in 1878, burned in 1897
  • Leon County Courthouse fire on the night of November 9, 1885 destroyed the courthouse. Many records were lost. Most of the records for the county were destroyed.
  • Liberty County Courthouse, built in 1857, was destroyed on December 28, 1872.  County records were destroyed
  • Limestone County Courthouse destroyed by fire in October 1873 at Springfield and most county records were destroyed. A fire at Groesbeck on February 1, 1891, records were stored in vaults and were not lost. The Old Courthouse, built in 1891, was destroyed by fire in May 1954.
  • Llano County Courthouse was destroyed and many county records were destroyed by fire in December 1873. Again courthouse was entirely consumed by fire in Oct of 1880, destroying the office of the district and county clerk, containing all the county records, etc (more). Courthouse, built in 1885, was destroyed by fire on January 23, 1892. Papers and records of the clerks office were the only records saved. The tower and parts of the interior of the Llano County Courthouse, built in 1893, was damaged by fire in Sept 1932. Also fire destroyed the courthouse Dec, 17, 1951, county's oldest records were destroyed. (more)
  • Madison County Courthouses and county records were destroyed by fire in June 1865 and January 1873.

    Courthouse, built 1896, was destroyed by fire on May 14, 1967. Some county records may have been destroyed.
  • Mason County Courthouse burned on 22 January 1877 during the Mason County HooDoo War.
  • Milam County Courthouse and all county records were destroyed by fire in April 1874.
  • Mills County Courthouse, built in 1889, burned on May 5, 1912.  No records were lost in the fire.
  • Montague County Courthouse and many county records were destroyed by fire in February 1873.
  • Motley County Courthouse, built about 1904, was destroyed by fire Sept 1944.  No vital records were lost, but some were damaged by water.
  • Navarro County Courthouse Records of the district clerk were destroyed by fire in October 1855.
  • Newton County Courthouse, built in 1902, burned on August 4, 2000.  The Courthouse was rebuilt and restored in 2002.
  • Orange County Courthouse, built in 1884, destroyed by fire, April 14, 1898.  All county records were stored in a vault and were not harmed by the fire.
  • Parker County Courthouse and almost all county records were destroyed by fire in May 1874.
  • Rains County Courthouse, built in 1871, burned; All county records were destroyed.Courthouse, built in 1884, burned. County records were save in a fireproof vault.
  • Refugio County Courthouse fire in January 1879, many records were destroyed.
  • Rockwall County Courthouse and most, if not all, county records were destroyed by fire in March 1875. Courthouse again caught fire on January 27, 1892.  All records were saved.
  • Rusk County Courthouse and many county records were destroyed by fire in March 1878.
  • Sabine County Courthouse and all county records were destroyed by fire in November 1875.
  • San Patricio County Courthouse records were destroyed by fires in 1846, 1867 and 1888.
  • Shelby County Courthouse burned May 31, 1882 destroying all records. Tax lists were forwarded to Austin so still exist. Deed records were "reconstructed" by the county commissioners.
  • Somervell County Courthouse and many, if not all, court records were destroyed by fire in February 1893.
  • Stonewall County Courthouse burned on August 9, 1910. Records of the county judge, sheriff, tax collector, and some of the surveyors office were lost in the fire. 
  • Tarrant County Courthouse burned in a fire in 1876 which destroyed all county documents
  • Titus County Courthouse and all county records were destroyed by fire in September 1895.
  • Tom Green County Courthouse in Ben Flicken, then the county seat, was destroyed by flood in 1882. The second floor of the Tom Green County Courthouse caught fire on June 28, 1886, possibly from mice eating matches. The fire started in the office of the Clerk of District Courts. Many of the records in the clerk's office were destroyed.
  • Trinity County Courthouses and most county records were destroyed by fire in December 1872 and February 1876.
  • Wise County Courthouse and many county records were destroyed by fire.
  • Wood County Courthouse and all county records were destroyed by fire in December 1878.
  • Yoakum County Courthouse destroyed by fire in December 1926.  All county records were stored in a vault and were saved.
  • Zapata County Courthouse lost most, if not all, county records were destroyed during military action in 1863.

Further Reading

  • Resources of Texas Libraries. Austin, Tex.: Texas State Library, 1968.
  • Inventory of County Records. Austin, Tex.: Texas State Library, 1973.
  • Texas County Records: A Guide to the Holdings of the Local Records Division of the Texas State Library of County Records on Microfilm (1978; 2d ed., Austin, Tex.: Texas State Library, 1990), is a valuable guide.
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