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Deaf Smith County, Texas facts for kids

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Deaf Smith County
Deaf Smith County Courthouse in Hereford, Texas
Deaf Smith County Courthouse in Hereford, Texas
Map of Texas highlighting Deaf Smith County
Location within the U.S. state of Texas
Map of the United States highlighting Texas
Texas's location within the U.S.
Country  United States
State  Texas
Founded 1890
Named for Deaf Smith
Seat Hereford
Largest city Hereford
 • Total 1,498 sq mi (3,880 km2)
 • Land 1,497 sq mi (3,880 km2)
 • Water 1.5 sq mi (4 km2)  0.1%%
 • Total 19,372
 • Density 13/sq mi (5/km2)
Time zone UTC−6 (Central)
 • Summer (DST) UTC−5 (CDT)
Congressional district 13th

Deaf Smith County is a county located in the U.S. state of Texas. As of the 2010 census, the population was 19,372. The county seat is Hereford, which is known as the "Beef Capital of the World". The county was created in 1876 and later organized in 1890.

The Hereford, TX Micropolitan Statistical Area includes all of Deaf Smith County.


In 1876 the state legislature identified and named the county, but it was not organized until 1890, with the town of LaPlata as the original county seat. The county was named for Erastus "Deaf" Smith (1787–1837), a partially deaf scout and soldier who served in the Texas Revolution and was the first to reach the Alamo after its fall. The pronunciation of "Deaf", like that of Smith himself, is DEEF; however most residents pronounce it DEFF.

This county was also selected as an alternate site for a possible nuclear waste disposal repository but was later dropped. Jesse Frank Ford, founder of Arrowhead Mills, led the opposition to the Deaf Smith site on grounds of contamination of the Ogallala Aquifer, the source of much of the water supply for West Texas.


According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 1,498 square miles (3,880 km2), of which 1,497 square miles (3,880 km2) is land and 1.5 square miles (3.9 km2) (0.1%) is water.

Major highways

  • I-40.svg Interstate 40
  • US 60.svg U.S. Highway 60
  • US 385.svg U.S. Highway 385
  • Texas 214.svg State Highway 214

Adjacent counties


Historical population
Census Pop.
1880 38
1890 179 371.1%
1900 843 370.9%
1910 3,942 367.6%
1920 3,747 −4.9%
1930 5,979 59.6%
1940 6,056 1.3%
1950 9,111 50.4%
1960 13,187 44.7%
1970 18,999 44.1%
1980 21,165 11.4%
1990 19,153 −9.5%
2000 18,561 −3.1%
2010 19,372 4.4%
Est. 2015 18,952 −2.2%
U.S. Decennial Census
1850–2010 2010–2014

As of the census of 2000, there were 18,561 people, 6,180 households, and 4,832 families residing in the county. The population density was 12 people per square mile (5/km²). There were 6,914 housing units at an average density of 5 per square mile (2/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 72.28% White, 1.51% Black or African American, 0.80% Native American, 0.25% Asian, 0.13% Pacific Islander, 22.92% from other races, and 2.11% from two or more races. 57.40% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There were 6,180 households out of which 41.00% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 61.00% were married couples living together, 12.60% had a female householder with no husband present, and 21.80% were non-families. 19.70% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.00% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.96 and the average family size was 3.41.

In the county, the population was spread out with 33.30% under the age of 18, 9.60% from 18 to 24, 25.50% from 25 to 44, 19.40% from 45 to 64, and 12.10% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 31 years. For every 100 females there were 95.50 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 91.90 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $29,601, and the median income for a family was $32,391. Males had a median income of $26,090 versus $19,113 for females. The per capita income for the county was $13,119. About 19.30% of families and 20.60% of the population were below the poverty line, including 26.30% of those under age 18 and 15.70% of those age 65 or over.



Unincorporated communities

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