Texas Counties
Texas County map
Click Image to Enlarge

Texas Counties

Texas is divided into two hundred and fifty-four counties, more than any other state. Texas was originally divided into municipalities, a unit of local government under Spanish and Mexican rule. When the Republic of Texas gained its independence in 1836, there were 23 municipalities, which became the original Texas counties. Many of these would later be divided into new counties. The most recent county to be created was Kenedy County in 1921. The most recent county to be organized was Loving County in 1931

Cherokee County, Texas

Cherokee County Education, Geography, and History

Cherokee County, Texas Courthouse

Cherokee County is a county located in the state of Texas. Based on the 2010 census, its population was 50,845 . The county seat is Rusk. The county was named for the Cherokee, who lived in the area before being expelled in 1839. Rusk, the county seat, is 130 miles southeast of Dallas and 160 miles north of Houston.

Cherokee County comprises the Jacksonville, TX Micropolitan Statistical Area, which is also included in the Tyler-Jacksonville, TX Combined Statistical Area.

Etymology - Origin of Cherokee County Name

the Cherokee Native American tribe


County QuickFacts: CensusBureau Quick Facts

Cherokee County History

The Hasinai group of the Caddo tribe built a village in the area about 800 A.D. and continued to live in the area until the 1830s, when they migrated to the Brazos River. The Federal government moved them to the Brazos Indian Reservation in 1855 and later to Oklahoma.

The Cherokee, Delaware, Shawnee, and Kickapoo Native American people began settling in the area circa 1820. The Texas Cherokee tried unsuccessfully to gain a grant to their own land from the Mexican government.

Sam Houston, adopted son of Chief Oolooteka (John Jolly) of the Cherokee, negotiated the January 14, 1836, treaty between Chief Bowl of the Cherokee and the Republic of Texas. On December 16, 1837, the Texas Senate declared the treaty null and void, and encroachment of Cherokee lands continued. On October 5, 1838, Indians massacred members of the Isaac Killough family at their farm northwest of the site of present Jacksonville, leading to the Cherokee War of 1839 and the expulsion of all Indians from the land which was to become the county of Cherokee.

Domingo Teran de los RĂ­os and Father Damian Massanet explored the area on behalf of Spain in 1691. Louis Juchereau de St. Denis began trading with the Hasinais in 1705. Nuestro Padre San Francisco de los Tejas Mission was originally established in 1690 but was re-established in 1716 by Captain Domingo Ramon. It was abandoned again because of French incursions and re-established in 1721 by the Marques de San Miguel de Aguyao.

In 1826, empresario David G. Burnet received a grant from the Coahuila y Tejas legislature to settle 300 families.

Cherokee County was formed from land given by Nacogdoches County in 1846. It was organized the same year. The town of Rusk became the county seat. It is named for the Cherokee Native American tribe.

Handbook of Texas Online
Rapid settlement began in 1834. The Houston-Forbes treaty (see FORBES, JOHN) of February 23, 1836, seemingly assured Cherokee neutrality, but the rejection of the treaty by the Texas Senate and the increased encroachment of settlers on Indian land led to violence. On October 5, 1838, Indians massacred members of the Isaac Killough family at their farm northwest of the site of present Jacksonville (see KILLOUGH MASSACRE). This led directly to the Cherokee War of 1839 and the expulsion of all Indians from the county. White settlers quickly occupied the abandoned Indian farms, and the communities of Pine Town, Lockranzie, Linwood, and Cook's Fort developed. Cherokee County was marked off from Nacogdoches County on April 11, 1846, and was organized on July 13 of that year, with the town of Rusk as the county seat. Only one family lived at Rusk then. More at
John R. Ross, "CHEROKEE COUNTY," Handbook of Texas Online (http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/hcc10), accessed January 23, 2016. Uploaded on June 12, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

Geography: Land and Water

As reported by the Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 1,062 square miles (2,750 km2), of which, 1,052 square miles (2,725 km2) of it is land and 10 square miles (25 km2) of it (0.92%) is water.

Neighboring Counties

Bordering counties are as follows:

  • Smith County (north)
  • Rusk County (northeast)
  • Nacogdoches County (east)
  • Angelina County (southeast)
  • Houston County (southwest)
  • Anderson County (west)
  • Henderson County (northwest)


Compare More Colleges and Universities
Find the Right School

Find more schools to match to your needs.

County Resources
US Counties
Click Image to Enlarge