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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

Leon County, Texas

Leon County Education, Geography, and History

Leon County, Texas Courthouse

Leon County is a county located in the state of Texas. Based on the 2010 census, its population was 16,801. Its county seat is Centerville

Etymology - Origin of Leon County Name

uncertain, either Martin De Leon, the founder of Victoria, Texas, or a yellow wolf which lived in the area which was nicknamed "lion"; Leon is Spanish for lion


County QuickFacts: CensusBureau Quick Facts

Leon County History

The legislature of the Republic of Texas authorized Leon County in 1846 from part of Robertson County, and named it in honor of Martín De Leon, the founder of Victoria, Texas. However, local tradition holds that it is named for a yellow wolf of the region commonly called the leon ("lion" in Spanish). The county was organized that same year with its first county seat at Leona. In 1851 the county seat was moved to Centerville since Leona was in the far southern part of the county.

The 1886 Leon County Courthouse was designed by architect George Edwin Dickey of Houston, incorporating remnants of an earlier 1858 courthouse that was destroyed by fire. The courthouse was rededicated on July 1, 2007 following a full restoration to a 1909 date.

Handbook of Texas Online
Leon County was officially formed from Robertson County by the First Texas Legislature in 1846. The first meeting of the county court was held on October 16, 1846, with R. E. B. Baylor as presiding judge. The naming of the county is the subject of much controversy. Some maintain that it was named for Martin De Leon, founder of Victoria. However, many residents insist that the name ("lion" in Spanish) came from the nickname of a yellow wolf of the region commonly called the leon. The first county seat, Leona, on the southern boundary near the Old San Antonio Road, was picked in 1846. The first chief justice was David M. Brown; William B. Middleton served as sheriff for the first term in 1846. Centerville became county seat in 1851, as a result of a state requirement that county offices be as close to the geographical center of a county as possible. The first newspaper was published there in 1851, the Leona Signal, under the ownership of Judge W. D. Wood. More at
James L. Hailey and Christopher Long, "LEON COUNTY," Handbook of Texas Online (http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/hcl07), accessed January 24, 2016. Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Modified on November 24, 2015. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

Geography: Land and Water

As reported by the Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 1,080 square miles (2,798 km2), of which, 1,072 square miles (2,777 km2) of it is land and 8 square miles (21 km2) of it (0.77%) is water.

Neighboring Counties

Bordering counties are as follows:

  • Freestone County (north)
  • Anderson County (northeast)
  • Houston County (east)
  • Madison County (south)
  • Robertson County (west)
  • Limestone County (northwest)


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