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Wheeler County, Texas facts for kids

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Wheeler County
Wheeler County Courthouse
Wheeler County Courthouse
Map of Texas highlighting Wheeler 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 1879
Seat Wheeler
Largest city Shamrock
 • Total 915 sq mi (2,370 km2)
 • Land 915 sq mi (2,370 km2)
 • Water 1.0 sq mi (3 km2)  0.1%%
 • Total 4,990
 • Density 5.454/sq mi (2.106/km2)
Time zone UTC−6 (Central)
 • Summer (DST) UTC−5 (CDT)
Congressional district 13th
Wheeler County, TX, Veterans Memorial IMG 6129
Wheeler County Veterans Memorial
Religious sign in Shamrock, TX IMG 6137
John 14:6 sign along U.S. Route 66 in Wheeler County

Wheeler County is a county located in the U.S. state of Texas. As of the 2020 census, its population was 4,990. Its county seat is Wheeler. The county was formed in 1876 and organized in 1879. It is named for Royall Tyler Wheeler, a chief justice of the Texas Supreme Court.

Wheeler County was formerly one of 30 entirely dry counties in the state of Texas. However, around 2010, the community of Shamrock, located in Wheeler County at the intersection of Interstate 40 and U.S. Highway 83, voted to allow liquor sales. Within the city limits of Shamrock is the only place to purchase liquor in Wheeler County.

The Pioneer West Museum, the Wheeler County historical museum, is located in Shamrock off U.S. Highway 83.


In 1876, the Texas State Legislature established Wheeler County. In 1879, Mobeetie was named the county seat. Mobeetie was then known as "Sweetwater," but this name should not be confused with the Sweetwater, which is the seat of Nolan County west of Abilene. A stone courthouse was erected from locally quarried materials in 1880 but was replaced by a wooden structure in 1888. The town of Wheeler was designated as the county seat in 1908. The wooden courthouse was moved to the current site but was replaced by the existing structure as a result of a 1925 bond election. The previous building was sold to a sheriff, Riley Price, who dismantled it and used it to build barns on his nearby ranch. The structure was designed by E. H. Eads of Shamrock and built by local contractors Hughes and Campbell. It features Palladian windows and Corinthian columns, characteristic of the Greek revival style of architecture.

In the 1880s, Temple Lea Houston, the youngest son of Sam Houston, was the district attorney of the 35th Judicial District of Texas, when then encompassed twenty-six counties in the Texas Panhandle. The district was based at the time in the courthouse at Mobeetie in Wheeler County. Houston was also a member of the Texas State Senate from 1885 to 1889 and later moved to Oklahoma, where he worked for statehood. An NBC television series, Temple Houston, which aired from 1963 to 1964, is loosely based on his life, with Jeffrey Hunter in the starring role.

The Pioneer West Museum, the Wheeler County historical museum, is located in Shamrock off U.S. Highway 83.


According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 915 square miles (2,370 km2), of which 915 square miles (2,370 km2) is land and 1.0 square mile (2.6 km2) (0.1%) is water.

Major highways

U.S. Highway 66 is no longer officially commissioned or signed, but has special brown historic signage at various points along its former routing.

Adjacent counties


Historical population
Census Pop.
1880 512
1890 778 52.0%
1900 636 −18.3%
1910 5,258 726.7%
1920 7,397 40.7%
1930 15,555 110.3%
1940 12,411 −20.2%
1950 10,317 −16.9%
1960 7,947 −23.0%
1970 6,434 −19.0%
1980 7,137 10.9%
1990 5,879 −17.6%
2000 5,284 −10.1%
2010 5,410 2.4%
2020 4,990 −7.8%
U.S. Decennial Census
1850–2010 2010 2020

2020 census

Wheeler County, Texas - Demographic Profile
(NH = Non-Hispanic)
Race / Ethnicity Pop 2010 Pop 2020 % 2010 % 2020
White alone (NH) 3,847 3,469 71.11% 69.52%
Black or African American alone (NH) 112 81 2.07% 1.62%
Native American or Alaska Native alone (NH) 20 33 0.37% 0.66%
Asian alone (NH) 23 24 0.43% 0.48%
Pacific Islander alone (NH) 0 2 0.00% 0.04%
Some Other Race alone (NH) 3 12 0.06% 0.24%
Mixed Race/Multi-Racial (NH) 61 142 1.13% 2.85%
Hispanic or Latino (any race) 1,344 1,227 24.84% 24.59%
Total 5,410 4,990 100.00% 100.00%

Note: the US Census treats Hispanic/Latino as an ethnic category. This table excludes Latinos from the racial categories and assigns them to a separate category. Hispanics/Latinos can be of any race.



Unincorporated communities

See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Condado de Wheeler (Texas) para niños

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