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Physical Features: South central county; rolling, rich bottom soils along Guadalupe River and its tributaries; Lake Gonzales; some sandy areas; many oaks, pecans.
Economy: Agribusiness, hunting leases.
History: Coahuiltecan area. Among the first Anglo-American settlements was the DeWitt colony in the late 1820s. County created in 1836; organized in 1837; named for Coahuila y Texas Gov. Rafael Gonzales.
Race/Ethnicity: (In percent) Anglo, 43.68; Black, 6.64; Hispanic, 48.40; Asian, 0.41; Other, 0.87.
Vital Statistics, annual: Births, 292; deaths, 210; marriages, 147; divorces, 94.
Recreation: Historic sites, homes, Pioneer Village Living History Center, state park, museums, Independence Park.
Minerals: Gas, oil, clay, gravel.
Agriculture: Major poultry county, cattle; hay, corn, sorghum, pecans, mushrooms. Market value $404 million.
GONZALES (7,237) county seat; first shot in Texas Revolution fired here; agriculture, oil & gas; hospital, college extension; pioneer village; “Come and Take It” festival in October.
Other towns include: Belmont (55); Cost (84) First Shot monument; Harwood (118); Leesville (152); Nixon (2,385) poultry-processing plant, Feather Fest in September; Ottine (80); Smiley (549); Waelder (1,065) Guacamole Fest in September; Wrightsboro (10).
Palmetto State Park. Photo by Larry D. Moore (CC).