Athens

Athens, Texas

Athens, Texas

The City Hall in the Athens, the seat of Henderson County, Texas. Photograph by Billy Hathorn.

Athens, the "Black-Eyed Pea Capital of the World," is located thirty-five miles west of Tyler on State highways 19 and 31 and U.S. Highway 175 at the center of Henderson County. The county seat of Henderson County was first Buffalo (1846), then Centerville by election (1848), and finally Athens (1850); neither of the first two county seats was within the new county boundaries delineated in 1850. The earliest settlers, E. J. Thompson and Joab McManus, arrived early in 1850. Matthew Cartwright donated 160 acres for a county seat, and the commissioners had Samuel Huffer survey the streets, the city square, and 112 lots. The district court first met in October 1850 under an oak in the square, with Oran Milo Roberts presiding. The first courthouse, a sixty-five-dollar log building, was ready the next month. A jail of hewn logs was built in 1856 on the same site and cost $500. Dulcina A. Holland suggested the name Athens, hoping that the town would become a cultural center.

Adapted from the official Handbook of Texas, a state encyclopedia developed by the Texas State Historical Association (TSHA). It is an authoritative source of trusted historical records.

Belongs to

Athens is part of or belongs to the following places.

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Adoption Status: ⭐
This place has been adopted and will not be available until May 1, 2024
Adopted by:
Afred Smith, Marine Smith & Donald Lyles
Dedication Message:
In memory of Alfred Smith, Junior & Earl Lawrence

Currently Exists

Yes

Place type

Athens is classified as a Town

Associated Names

  • (Alvin)

Locations

  • Latitude
    32.20551740
    Longitude
    -95.83483400

Has Post Office

Yes

Is Incorporated

Yes

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Athens by the Numbers

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Population Counts

Athens
Pop. Year Source
13,571 2019 Texas Demographic Center
12,710 2010 Texas Demographic Center
11,297 2000 Texas Demographic Center
10,982 1990 Texas Demographic Center
10,197 1980 Texas Demographic Center
9,582 1970 Texas Demographic Center
7,086 1960 Texas Demographic Center
5,194 1950 Texas Demographic Center
4,765 1940 Texas Demographic Center
4,342 1930 Texas Demographic Center
3,176 1920 Texas Demographic Center
2,261 1910 Texas Demographic Center
500 1870 Texas Demographic Center
177 1850 Texas Demographic Center