Schleicher County, Texas

Schleicher County is a county located on the Edwards Plateau in the U.S. state of Texas. As of the 2010 census, its population was 3,461.[1] Its county seat is Eldorado.[2] The county was created in 1887 and organized in 1901.[3] It is named for Gustav Schleicher, a German immigrant who became a surveyor and politician.[4]

Schleicher County was home to the YFZ Ranch, the past headquarters of the FLDS movement headed by Warren Jeffs.

Schleicher County, Texas
Schleicher County, TX, Courthouse IMG 1382
Schleicher County Courthouse in Eldorado
Map of Texas highlighting Schleicher County

Location within the U.S. state of Texas
Map of the United States highlighting Texas

Texas's location within the U.S.
Named forGustav Schleicher
Largest cityEldorado
 • Total1,311 sq mi (3,395 km2)
 • Land1,311 sq mi (3,395 km2)
 • Water0.03 sq mi (0 km2), 0%
 • (2010)3,461
 • Density2.6/sq mi (1.0/km2)
Congressional district23rd
Time zoneCentral: UTC−6/−5
FLDS Eldorado hi
FLDS Temple at the YFZ Ranch in Schleicher County
Schleicher County Public Library, Eldorado, TX IMG 1387
Schleicher County Public Library in Eldorado


Around 8000 BC, by estimation, the first inhabitants in the area were probably Jumano Indians. Later inhabitants were Lipan Apaches and Comanches.[5] In 1632, Fray Juan de Salas and Father Juan de Ortega did missionary work among the Jumanos.[6] Soldier Francisco Amangual led an expedition across the area in 1808.[7] In 1882, Christopher Colombus Doty became the first permanent citizen of Schleicher County.[8]

The Texas legislature established Schleicher County in April 1887 from Crockett County, and named it in honor of Gustav Schleicher.[5] By 1890, the population was 155, of whom 134 were listed as white, four were Black, and 17 were American Indian.[5]

In 1894, the county’s first public school opened at Verand, and later moved to Eldorado.[5] The next year, W. B. Silliman founded the Eldorado community and named it after the mythical city. To populate it, he offered free town lots to residents of nearby Verand.[9] In 1930, the Panhandle and Santa Fe Railway Company resumed work on a previous railroad, making access possible to San Angelo and Sonora.[5] On February 27, 1941, the West Texas Woolen Mills plant in Eldorado held a grand opening, with a parade and BBQ lunch. About 5000 people attended. Governor "Pappy" W. Lee O'Daniel was the guest speaker.[10]

Oilfield discoveries on school lands in the 1950s enabled Schleicher County to build new library and gymnasium facilities for its students.[5]


According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 1,311 square miles (3,400 km2).[11]

Major Highways

Adjacent counties


Historical population
Census Pop.
Est. 20163,056[12]−11.7%
U.S. Decennial Census[13]
1850–2010[14] 2010–2014[1]

As of the census[15] of 2000, 2,935 people, 1,115 households, and 817 families resided in the county. The population density was about two people per square mile (1/km²). The 1,371 housing units averaged about one per square mile (<1/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 76.59% White, 1.53% African American, 0.07% Native American, 0.17% Asian, 0.03% Pacific Islander, 18.98% from other races, and 2.62% from two or more races. About 43.54% of the population was Hispanic or Latino of any race.

Of the 1,115 households, 34.30% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 62.60% were married couples living together, 7.50% had a female householder with no husband present, and 26.70% were not families; 25.40% of all households were made up of individuals, and 12.80% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.59 and the average family size was 3.12.

In the county, the population was distributed as 27.90% under the age of 18, 7.30% from 18 to 24, 24.00% from 25 to 44, 24.40% from 45 to 64, and 16.40% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39 years. For every 100 females, there were 98.80 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 94.90 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $29,746, and for a family was $37,813. Males had a median income of $28,412 versus $22,250 for females. The per capita income for the county was $15,969. About 16.00% of families and 21.50% of the population were below the poverty line, including 29.00% of those under age 18 and 19.90% of those age 65 or over.



Unincorporated communities

See also


  1. ^ a b "State & County QuickFacts". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved December 24, 2013.
  2. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07.
  3. ^ "Texas: Individual County Chronologies". Texas Atlas of Historical County Boundaries. The Newberry Library. 2008. Retrieved May 26, 2015.
  4. ^ Lyman Wight's Mormon Colony in Texas excerpt from "Mormon Trails" chapter in Hill Country travel guide by Richard Zelade. Accessed August 6, 2007.
  5. ^ a b c d e f Smyrl, Vivian Elizabeth. "Schleicher County". Handbook of Texas Online. Texas State Historical Association. Retrieved 30 November 2010.
  6. ^ Kessell, John L (1995). Kiva, Cross, & Crown: The Pecos Indians and New Mexico, 1540-1840. Southwest Parks & Monuments Association. p. 142. ISBN 978-1-877856-56-3.
  7. ^ Kenner, Charles L (1994). The Comanchero Frontier: A History of New Mexican-Plains Indian Relations. University of Oklahoma Press. p. 57. ISBN 978-0-8061-2670-8.
  8. ^ "Christopher Columbus Doty". Texas Historical Markers. William Nienke, Sam Morrow. Retrieved 30 November 2010.
  9. ^ "Eldorado, Texas". Texas Escapes. Texas Escapes - Blueprints For Travel, LLC. Retrieved 30 November 2010.
  10. ^ "West Texas Woolen Mills". Texas Historical Markers. William Nienke, Sam Morrow. Retrieved 30 November 2010.
  11. ^ "2010 Census Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. August 22, 2012. Retrieved May 10, 2015.
  12. ^ "Population and Housing Unit Estimates". Retrieved June 9, 2017.
  13. ^ "U.S. Decennial Census". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved May 10, 2015.
  14. ^ "Texas Almanac: Population History of Counties from 1850–2010" (PDF). Texas Almanac. Retrieved May 10, 2015.
  15. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2011-05-14.
  16. ^ Leip, David. "Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections". Retrieved 2018-07-30.

External links

Coordinates: 30°54′N 100°32′W / 30.90°N 100.54°W

Adams, Texas

Adams is an unincorporated community in Schleicher County, Texas, United States. Its elevation is 2,300 feet (701 m). It lies northeast of Eldorado, the county seat of Schleicher County.

Concho River

The Concho River is a river in the U.S. state of Texas.Concho is Spanish for "shell"; the river was so named due to its abundance of freshwater mussels, such as the Tampico pearly mussel (Cyrtonaias tampicoensis).

Eldorado, Texas

Eldorado ( EL-də-RAH-doh, -RAY-doh) is a city in and the county seat of Schleicher County, Texas, United States. The population was 1,951 at the 2010 census. Eldorado is located on U.S. Highway 277 some 21 miles (34 km) north of Sonora and 43 miles (69 km) south of San Angelo, Texas.

Fisher–Miller Land Grant

The Fisher–Miller Land Grant was part of an early colonization effort of the Republic of Texas. Its 3,878,000 acres covered 5,000 square miles (13,000 km2) between the Llano River and Colorado River. Originally granted to Henry Francis Fisher and Burchard Miller, the grant was sold to the German colonization company of Adelsverein. Very few colonizations resulted from the land grant, as most settlers preferred Fredericksburg and New Braunfels, which lay outside the land grant boundaries. Designated a Recorded Texas Historic Landmark in 1964, Marker number 9438.

Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints

The Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (FLDS Church) is one of the largest of the fundamentalist Mormon denominations and one of the largest organizations in the United States whose members practice polygamy. The FLDS Church emerged in the early 20th century when its founding members left The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church). The split occurred largely because of the LDS Church's suspension of the practice of polygamy and its decision to excommunicate members who continued the practice.

Gustav Schleicher

Gustav Schleicher (sometimes spelled Gustave) (November 19, 1823 – January 10, 1879) was a German-born Democratic United States Representative from Texas. He was an engineer who served briefly in the Texas legislature, and was a veteran of the Confederate Army.

Howard College

Howard College is a community college with its main campus in Big Spring, Texas and branch campuses in San Angelo and Lamesa.

Hulldale, Texas

Hulldale is an unincorporated community in Schleicher County, Texas, United States. Its elevation is 2,201 feet (671 m). It lies north of Eldorado, the county seat of Schleicher County.

Kickapoo Creek

Kickapoo Creek is a stream in Schleicher, Tom Green and Concho counties in west central Texas. It is a tributary of the Concho River.

Merril Jessop

Merril Jessop (born December 27, 1935) is the son of Richard Seth Jessop and Ida Johnson. He was believed to be the de facto leader of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (FLDS Church) after its former leader, Warren Jeffs, resigned when he was convicted as an accomplice to rape in 2007, until his removal by Jeffs in February 2011. Jessop was also head of the YFZ Ranch.Jessop has been a lifelong member of the church, as his father and grandfathers were former high-ranking FLDS officials. Jessop is connected by a nebulous series of marriages to the Jeffs family; several of Jessop's daughters and at least one of his wives were previously the plural wives of Rulon Jeffs while at least eleven of Jessop's daughters and two of his granddaughters became plural wives to Warren Jeffs, several of them while they were underage. One of his daughters, Merrianne, was married to Jeffs three weeks after her twelfth birthday, while another, Naomie, was one of Jeffs' favorite wives and was with him at the time of his capture by police.While he was imprisoned, Warren Jeffs reportedly designated William E. Jessop as the rightful successor to the FLDS Church presidency. However, William Jessop remained at official church headquarters in Hildale, Utah. News reports suggested a possible shift of the church's headquarters to Eldorado, Texas, where a temple has been built by FLDS Church members at the YFZ Ranch. As the bishop of the church at YFZ, it appeared that Merril Jessop was the de facto president and the most powerful person in the FLDS Church, until February 2011.One of Jessop's former wives, Carolyn Jessop, wrote a memoir in 2007 about their 17-year marriage, which had begun when she was 18 and he was 50. The book includes dozens of allegations of spousal and child abuse, both emotional and physical. Carolyn Jessop left the FLDS Church in 2003 and, after a custody battle with Merril Jessop, won full custody of their 8 children. She is the second woman to leave an FLDS community and gain full custody of all her children, although her eldest daughter Betty decided, after turning 18, to return to her father at the Yearning for Zion Ranch in Texas. Betty Jessop vehemently denies her mother's accusations. In 2009 Carolyn Jessop also won a child-support judgment against Merril Jessop in the approximate amount of $148,000 for support he failed to provide his children from 2003-2009. As of February 2010, Merril Jessop had still not paid any of the child support he owed. According to Carolyn's attorney, Natalie Malonis, he can be jailed for contempt for this failure.According to his former wife's memoir, Jessop is the father of more than 50 biological children, all by his first six wives. His senior wife Faunita, mother of 10 of Jessop's children, suffered from mental illness; she was literally abandoned by the roadside when the group moved to Texas, and she became a ward of one of her grandchildren who was living in the mainstream-Mormon community. Jessop is believed to have taken many more wives since Carolyn's departure. According to his ex-wife's book, Jessop has nebulous business interests that include construction and hotels and has suffered from major heart problems in recent years.In a National Geographic article published in February 2010, Jessop both praised and discussed his troubled relationship with Faunita (spelled 'Foneta' in the article). Over 5,000 people were in attendance at Faunita Jessop's funeral. "My hand is a bit sore today," Merril was quoted as saying at the end of the funeral after greeting all those who came.

National Register of Historic Places listings in Schleicher County, Texas

This is a list of the National Register of Historic Places listings in Schleicher County, Texas.

This is intended to be a complete list of properties and districts listed on the National Register of Historic Places in Schleicher County, Texas. There is one property listed on the National Register in the county.

This National Park Service list is complete through NPS recent listings posted May 17, 2019.

San Saba River

The San Saba River (San Sabá) is a river in the U.S. state of Texas. It is an undeveloped and scenic waterway located on the northern boundary of the Edwards Plateau.

Schleicher County Independent School District

Schleicher County Independent School District is a public school district based in Eldorado, Texas (USA). The district's boundaries parallel that of Schleicher County. In 2009, the school district was rated "academically acceptable" by the Texas Education Agency.

Texas Hill Country

The Texas Hill Country is a geographic region located in the Edwards Plateau at the crossroads of West Texas, Central Texas, and South Texas. Given its location, climate, terrain, and vegetation, the Hill Country can be considered the border between the American Southwest and Southeast.

The region is notable for its karst topography and tall rugged hills of limestone or granite. Many of the hills rise to a height of 400-500 feet above the surrounding plains and valleys, with Packsaddle Mountain rising to a height of 800 feet above the Llano River in Kingsland. The Hill Country also includes the Llano Uplift and the second-largest granite dome in the United States, Enchanted Rock. The terrain throughout the region is punctuated by a thin layer of topsoil and a large number of exposed rocks and boulders, making the region very dry and prone to flash flooding. Native vegetation in the region includes various yucca, prickly pear cactus, desert spoon, and wildflowers in the Llano Uplift. The predominant trees in the region are ashe juniper and Texas live oak.Bound on the east by the Balcones Escarpment, the Hill Country reaches into the far northern portions of San Antonio and the western portions of Austin. As a result of springs discharging water stored in the Edwards Aquifer, several cities such as Austin, San Marcos, and New Braunfels were settled at the base of the Balcones Escarpment. The region's economy is one of the fastest growing in the United States.

The Eldorado Success

The Eldorado Success has been the local newspaper for Eldorado, Texas since 1901.

U.S. Route 190

U.S. Route 190 (US 190) is an east–west United States Highway in Louisiana and Texas. Segments of US 190 will be upgraded to Interstate 14 (I-14); the first 24.8-mile (39.9 km) segment was opened on January 26, 2017.

U.S. Route 277

U.S. Route 277 (US 277, US-277) is a north–south United States Highway. It is a spur of U.S. Route 77. It runs for 633 miles (1,019 km) across Oklahoma and Texas. US 277's northern terminus is in Newcastle, Oklahoma at Interstate 44, which is also the northern terminus of the H.E. Bailey Turnpike. Its southern terminus is in Carrizo Springs, Texas at U.S. Route 83. It passes through the states of Oklahoma and Texas.

Most of U.S. 277's route through the two states overlaps other U.S. highways. Those include U.S. 62 from Newcastle to Chickasha, Oklahoma, U.S. 62 and U.S. 281 from five miles (8 km) west of Elgin, Oklahoma, to Lawton, U.S. 281 from Lawton to Wichita Falls, Texas, U.S. 82 from Wichita Falls to Seymour, Texas, and U.S. 83 from Anson, Texas to Abilene, Texas. Through the Lawton area and again from Randlett, Oklahoma, to near downtown Wichita Falls, U.S. 277 is also co-signed with I-44.

YFZ Ranch

The YFZ Ranch, or Yearning for Zion Ranch, was a 1,700-acre (7 km2) Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (FLDS) community of as many as 700 people, located near Eldorado in Schleicher County, Texas, United States. As of April 2014, the State of Texas took physical and legal possession of the property.

Places adjacent to Schleicher County, Texas
Municipalities and communities of Schleicher County, Texas, United States

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