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Roberts County is a county located in the state of Texas. Based on the 2010 census, its population was 929, making it the seventh-least populous county in Texas. Its county seat is Miami. The county was created in 1876 and organized in 1889. It is named for Oran Milo Roberts, a governor of Texas.
Oran Milo Roberts, the seventeenth governor of Texas, and John S. Roberts, a signer of the Texas Declaration of Independence
County QuickFacts: CensusBureau Quick Facts
Plains Apaches inhabited the Texas Panhandle until they were displaced by the Comanches who dominated the area until
the 1870s. The Comanches hunted the large herds of Buffalo, which grazed on the prairie. In the Red River War of 1874-75, United States Army
troops led by Ranald S. Mackenzie drove out the Comanches. Simultaneously, buffalo hunters killed the large herds in the area, making way for
In 1876, Roberts County was carved from Bexar County and the Clay Land District. Roberts is named for Oran Milo Roberts, governor of Texas, and for John S. Roberts, a signer of the Texas Declaration of Independence.
Handbook of Texas Online
In 1887 the Southern Kansas Railway built a line from the Oklahoma border into the Panhandle, passing through Roberts County and linking up with Panhandle City the following year. Settlers followed in the wake of the railroad, and the town of Miami was platted out along the railroad in the southeastern part of the county in the summer of 1887. Settlers around Miami petitioned for county government, while cattlemen and settlers along the Canadian River in the northern part of the county framed a counter petition with Parnell, a small settlement in the northwestern part of the county, as proposed county seat. The county was organized in January of 1889, and Miami was chosen as the county seat, but the election was declared fraudulent in December, and Parnell was chosen county seat instead. Parnell remained the county seat until 1898, after another election relocated the seat of county government back to Miami. By 1890 Roberts County had a population of 326 and thirty-four farms and ranches. Among the important ranches were the Cresswell Ranch, the Turkey Track Ranch, and the Cross Bar Ranch. Miami prospered as the shipping point for cattle. The county population slowly grew to 620 in 1900, 950 in 1910, and a peak of 1,469 in 1920. The county economy centered on cattle raising, and the number of cattle increased from 30,259 in 1900 to a peak of 48,959 in 1930. During the same period the county developed a modest farming economy, increasing from 3,576 improved acres in 1900 to 44,751 in 1930. Wheat was by far the most important crop, increasing from 1,423 acres in 1910 to 29,350 acres in 1920, to a peak of 34,102 acres, over three quarters of the cropland harvested that year, in 1930. Corn, oats, and cotton were also grown at different times. The Dust Bowl and the Great Depression dealt hard blows to the farming industry of Roberts County, as the number of acres in cultivation declined by a quarter during the 1930s, and the value of county farms dropped by a third. Roberts County's population was relatively static in the 1920s, with 1,457 inhabitants in 1930. Thereafter a long term decline set in, as the county population fell to 1,289 in 1940, 1,031 in 1950, and 967 in 1970 and then recovered slightly to 1,025 in 1990; there were 887 people living in the county in 2000. Throughout its history Roberts County has remained one of the most sparsely populated counties in the state. Most of the inhabitants of the county have been white of English, Irish, and German descent; in 2000 blacks comprised 0.34 percent of the county's residents and Hispanics made up less than 4 percent of the population More at
Mark Odintz, "ROBERTS COUNTY," Handbook of Texas Online (http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/hcr08), accessed January 24, 2016. Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.
As reported by the Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 924 square miles (2,394 km2), virtually all
of which is land.
Bordering counties are as follows: