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Mills County, Texas facts for kids

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Mills County, Texas
Map of Texas highlighting Mills County
Location in the state of Texas
Map of the USA highlighting Texas
Texas's location in the U.S.
Founded 1887
Seat Goldthwaite
Largest City Goldthwaite
 - Total
 - Land
 - Water

750 sq mi (1,942 km²)
748 sq mi (1,937 km²)
1.5 sq mi (4 km²), 0.2%
 - (2010)
 - Density

6.6/sq mi (3/km²)
Time zone Central: UTC-6/-5
Named for: John T. Mills

Mills County is a county located on the Edwards Plateau in Central Texas. As of the 2010 census, its population was 4,936. The county seat is Goldthwaite. The county is named for John T. Mills, a justice of the Texas Supreme Court.


Confederate statue in Goldthwaite IMG 0778
Confederate statue in front of Mills County Courthouse
  • Among first inhabitants were the Apache and Comanche.
  • 1786–1789: Pedro Vial explores a route from San Antonio to Santa Fe for Spain and passes through the county.
  • 1828: Capt. Henry Stevenson Brown passes through the county to recover stock stolen by Indians.
  • 1852: Dick Jenkins becomes the county's first permanent settler.
  • 1857: A Methodist circuit rider holds the county's first religious service in the cabin of Charles Mullin.
  • 1858: Mr. and Mrs. Mose Jackson and two of their children are killed by Indians at Jackson Springs, while two other children were carried into captivity. After a force of settlers rout the Indians at Salt Gap, their pursuers and a company of Texas Rangers recover the captive Jackson children.
  • 1869–1897: Lawlessness is rampant in post–Civil War Mills County. Vigilante committees create a reign of terror. The Texas Rangers are brought in to restore law and order.
  • 1885: Goldthwaite is established as the Gulf, Colorado and Santa Fe Railway builds tracks into the region.
  • 1887: The Texas state legislature forms Mills County from Brown, Comanche, Hamilton, and Lampasas counties. Goldthwaite becomes the county seat.
  • 1890: The county courthouse is erected.
  • 1905: A Confederate Reunion is held in Goldthwaite.
  • 1912: The courthouse burns down arson suspected.
  • 1913: A new brick, stone and concrete courthouse is erected in the Classical Revival style by architect Henry Phelps.
  • 1915: The Confederate Memorial Monument is placed on the courthouse grounds in Goldthwaite. The statue was funded by public donations, the civic organization Self Culture Club, Jeff Davis Camp 117, and United Confederate Veterans.
  • 1982: Oil is discovered in Mills County.


According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 750 square miles (1,900 km2), of which 748 square miles (1,940 km2) is land and 1.5 square miles (3.9 km2) (0.2%) is water.

Adjacent counties

Major highways

  • US 84.svg U.S. Highway 84
  • US 183.svg U.S. Highway 183
  • Texas 16.svg State Highway 16


Historical population
Census Pop.
1890 5,493
1900 7,851 42.9%
1910 9,694 23.5%
1920 9,019 −7.0%
1930 8,293 −8.0%
1940 7,951 −4.1%
1950 5,999 −24.6%
1960 4,467 −25.5%
1970 4,212 −5.7%
1980 4,477 6.3%
1990 4,531 1.2%
2000 5,151 13.7%
2010 4,936 −4.2%
Est. 2015 4,900 −0.7%
U.S. Decennial Census
1850–2010 2010–2014

As of the census of 2000, there were 5,151 people, 2,001 households, and 1,398 families residing in the county. The population density was 7 people per square mile (3/km²). There were 2,691 housing units at an average density of 4 per square mile (1/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 89.24% White, 1.26% Black or African American, 0.27% Native American, 0.08% Asian, 0.08% Pacific Islander, 7.73% from other races, and 1.34% from two or more races. Of the population, 13.03% were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There were 2,001 households out of which 27.50% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 60.20% were married couples living together, 7.00% had a female householder with no husband present, and 30.10% were non-families. Of all households, 27.80% were made up of individuals and 17.10% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.43 and the average family size was 2.90.

In the county, the population was spread out with 25.50% under the age of 18, 4.70% from 18 to 24, 20.50% from 25 to 44, 26.10% from 45 to 64, and 23.10% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 44 years. For every 100 females there were 102.40 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 98.20 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $30,579, and the median income for a family was $37,519. Males had a median income of $25,933 versus $20,076 for females. The per capita income for the county was $15,915. About 12.70% of families and 18.40% of the population were below the poverty line, including 22.40% of those under age 18 and 17.80% of those age 65 or over.




Unincorporated communities

Ghost Town

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