Palmer is on Interstate Highway 45 and U.S. Highway 75, twelve miles northeast of Waxahachie in northeastern Ellis County. It was settled after the arrival of the Houston and Texas Central Railway in 1872 and was named for D. S. Palmer, a Houston physician and stockholder of the railroad company. The community quickly became a shipping point for area cotton and grain farmers. In 1874 a post office branch opened at the community. By 1885 the town had 250 residents and twenty-eight businesses, including a hotel, a bank, a school, and two steam gristmills and cotton gins. Before the construction of separate churches, the town's four major religious denominations, the Methodists, Baptists, Disciples of Christ, and Cumberland Presbyterians, all worshipped in the Cumberland Presbyterian church. In 1890 Palmer was incorporated. By 1896 it had a weekly paper, the Palmer Times. In 1902 the Palmer Press Brick Company (later the Barron Brick Company) built a plant in the town. On the eve of World War I Palmer had 750 residents, four churches, two banks, a weekly newspaper (the Palmer Rustler), and more than forty other businesses. Its population was 758 in the early 1930s and 601 in the mid-1970s. By 1988 Palmer had 1,505 residents and fourteen businesses. In 1990 its population was 1,659. By 2000 the population was 1,774.

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.

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Palmer is classified as a Town


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Palmer by the Numbers

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Population Counts

Pop. Year Source
2,393 2020 United States Census Bureau
2,234 2019 Texas Demographic Center
2,000 2010 United States Census Bureau
1,774 2000 United States Census Bureau
1,659 1990 United States Census Bureau