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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

Orange County, Texas

Orange County Education, Geography, and History

Orange County, Texas Courthouse

Orange County is a county in the state of Texas. Based on the 2010 census, its population was 81,837. The county seat is Orange.

Orange County is included in the Beaumont-Port Arthur, TX Metropolitan Statistical Area. It is located in the very southeastern corner of Texas, with a boundary with Louisiana, within the Golden Triangle of Texas.

Etymology - Origin of Orange County Name

uncertain; most sources attribute the name to an orange grove planted by early settlers at the mouth of the Sabine River


County QuickFacts: CensusBureau Quick Facts

Orange County History

Orange County was formed in 1852 from portions of Jefferson County. It was named after the orange fruit, the common citrus fruit grown by the early settlers of this County near the mouth of the Sabine River. Due to periodic spells of quite cold winter weather (frosts) in Orange County, it is no longer the home of orange trees and citrus orchards. The production of those fruits in Texas long ago was moved a long way southwest into the Rio Grande Valley, where the weather is almost always warm all winter long. Citrus trees produce their fruit in the wintertime, which makes them especially vulnerable to frost and icy weather.

A similar thing has happened in Florida, where orchards of citrus trees no longer exist in either Citrus County or Orange County because of bad winter freezes in some years. In both Florida and Texas, the citrus agriculture has been moved farther south in search of milder winters, and away from the periodic frosts.

Handbook of Texas Online
Orange County was carved from Jefferson County on January 5, 1852, and its county seat was located at Madison. Confusion with Madisonville prompted the name change to Orange in 1858 at the time of the town's incorporation. Orange had been known by a variety of names; Strong's Bluff, Huntley, Green's Bluff, Jefferson, and Madison. Most sources cite the orange grove planted by early settlers at the mouth of the Sabine River for explanation of the town's name. County growth centered around Orange. Because of its proximity to the Gulf and serving as gateway to Texas and the West, the city quickly developed as both a maritime and cultural center. Although only a small percentage of land was devoted to cotton farming, by 1861 over 20,000 bales of cotton were shipped from this growing port city. In 1857 the population was 1,277, including 282 slaves and twenty-six freed blacks. True to its predominantly southern majority, Orange County voters supported the Democratic party in the elections just prior to the Civil War. More at
Alan S. Mason, "ORANGE COUNTY," Handbook of Texas Online (http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/hco03), accessed January 24, 2016. Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

Geography: Land and Water

The county is bordered on the east by the Sabine River and on the southwest by the Neches River. The geography of Orange County varies considerably, with saltwater marshes in much of the southwestern part of the county that borders Sabine Lake, and Piney Woods in the north. Elevation rarely reaches 30 feet above sea level.

As reported by the Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 380 square miles (983 km2), of which, 356 square miles (923 km2) of it is land and 23 square miles (60 km2) of it (6.10%) is water.

Neighboring Counties

Bordering counties are as follows:

  • Jasper County (north)
  • Newton County (north)
  • Calcasieu Parish, Louisiana (east)
  • Cameron Parish, Louisiana (southeast)
  • Jefferson County (south & west)
  • Hardin County (northwest)


The county is served by 5 school districts:

Bridge City ISD
Little Cypress-Mauriceville Consolidated ISD
Orangefield ISD
Vidor ISD
West Orange-Cove Consolidated ISD

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