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Dallas County, Texas
Dallas - Old Red Museum 01.jpg
The former Dallas County Courthouse in March 2009.
Flag of Dallas County, Texas
Map of Texas highlighting Dallas County
Location in the state of Texas
Map of the U.S. highlighting Texas
Texas's location in the U.S.
Founded March 30, 1846
Named for George Mifflin Dallas
Seat Dallas
Largest city Dallas
 - Total
 - Land
 - Water

, 4.0%
 - (2010)
 - Density

2,692/sq mi (1,039.57/km²)
Time zone Central: UTC-6/-5

Dallas County is a county located in the U.S. state of Texas within the Dallas–Fort Worth–Arlington metropolitan area (colloquially referred to as the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex). As of the 2010 census, the population was 2,368,139[1] and is now the ninth most populous county in the United States. Its county seat is Dallas,[2] which is also the largest city in the county, the third-largest city in Texas, and the ninth-largest city in the United States.

Dallas County was founded in 1846 and was possibly named for George Mifflin Dallas, the 11th Vice President of the United States under U.S. President James K. Polk.


According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 909 square miles (2,350 km2), of which 873 square miles (2,260 km2) is land and 36 square miles (93 km2) (4.0%) is water.[3]

Adjacent counties[]


Historical populations
Census Pop.
1850 2,743
1860 8,665 215.9%
1870 13,814 59.4%
1880 33,488 142.4%
1890 67,042 100.2%
1900 82,726 23.4%
1910 135,748 64.1%
1920 210,551 55.1%
1930 325,691 54.7%
1940 398,564 22.4%
1950 614,799 54.3%
1960 951,527 54.8%
1970 1,327,321 39.5%
1980 1,556,390 17.3%
1990 1,852,810 19.0%
2000 2,218,899 19.8%
2010 2,368,139 6.7%
Est. 2012 2,453,843 10.6%
U.S. Decennial Census[4]
2012 Estimate[1]

As of the census[5] of 2010, there were 2,368,139 people, 807,621 households, and 533,837 families residing in the county. The population density was 2,523 people per square mile (974/km²). There were 854,119 housing units at an average density of 971/sq mi (375/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 33.12% Non-Hispanic White, 22.30% Black or African American, 0.10% Native American, 5.15% Asian, 0.06% Pacific Islander, 14.04% from other races, and 2.70% from two or more races. 38.30% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There were 807,621 households out of which 35.10% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 46.90% were married couples living together, 14.10% had a female householder with no husband present, and 33.90% were non-families. 27.30% of all households were made up of individuals and 5.90% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.71 and the average family size was 3.34.

In the wider county, the population was spread out with 27.90% under the age of 18, 10.70% from 18 to 24, 34.40% from 25 to 44, 18.90% from 45 to 64, and 8.10% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 31 years. For every 100 females there were 99.80 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 98.00 males.

The median income for a household in the county was US$43,324, and the median income for a family was $49,062. Males had a median income of $34,988 versus $29,539 for females. The per capita income for the county was $22,603. About 10.60% of families and 13.40% of the population were below the poverty line, including 18.00% of those under age 18 and 10.50% of those age 65 or over.


Dallas County is governed by a Commissioners Court. The Dallas County Commissioners Court consists of the County Judge (the chairperson of the Court) who is elected County-wide and four Commissioners who are elected by the voters in each of four districts.

The Commissioners Court is the policy-making body for the County; in addition, the County Judge is the senior executive and administrative position in the County. While the cities in the County handle many tasks in local government, the County holds responsibility for the following:

"The Commissioners Court sets the County tax rate, adopts the budget, appoints boards and commissions, approves grants and personnel actions, and oversees the administration of county government. Each commissioner also supervises a Road and Bridge District. The Commissioners Court also approves the budget and sets the tax rate for the hospital district, which is charged with the responsibility for providing acute medical care for citizens who otherwise would not receive adequate medical services."[6]

The total 2010 fiscal year budget is approximately $871 million USD.[7]

Currently (November 2012), the major elected officials are[8]

Position Name Party
  County Judge Clay Jenkins Democratic
  Commissioner, Precinct 1 Theresa Daniel Democratic
  Commissioner, Precinct 2 Mike Cantrell Republican
  Commissioner, Precinct 3 John Wiley Price Democratic
  Commissioner, Precinct 4 Elba Garcia Democratic
  District Attorney Craig Watkins Democratic
  District Clerk Gary Fitzsimmons Democratic
  County Clerk John Warren Democratic
  Sheriff Lupe Valdez Democratic
  Tax Assessor-Collector John Ames Democratic
  Treasurer Joe Wells Democratic

There are 7 congressional districts either entirely or partly within Dallas County. There are 5 Republicans and 2 Democrat.

Representative Party Home Town/City District
  Sam Johnson R Plano 3
  Jeb Hensarling R Dallas 5
  Kenny Marchant R Coppell 24
  Michael C. Burgess R Lewisville 26
  Eddie Bernice Johnson D Dallas 30
  Pete Sessions R Dallas 32
  Marc Veasey D Fort Worth 33

There are 5 Texas Senate districts either entirely or partly within Dallas County. There are 4 Republicans and 1 Democrat.

Senator Party Home Town/City District
  Bob Deuell R Greenville 2
  Ken Paxton R Plano 8
  Kelly Hancock R Arlington 9
  John Carona R Dallas 16
  Royce West D Dallas 23

There are 16 members of the Texas House of Representatives who are based in Dallas County. There are 10 Republicans and 6 Democrats.

Representative Party Home Town/City District ↑
  Eric Johnson D Dallas 100
  Stefani Carter R Dallas 102
  Rafael Anchia D Dallas 103
  Roberto R. Alonzo D Dallas 104
  Linda Harper-Brown R Irving 105
  Rodney E. Anderson R Grand Prairie 106
  Kenneth Sheets R Dallas 107
  Dan Branch R Dallas 108
  Helen Giddings D De Soto 109
  Toni Rose D Dallas 110
  Yvonne Davis D Dallas 111
  Angie Chen Button R Richardson 112
  Cindy Burkett R Mesquite 113
  Jason Villalba R Dallas 114
  Bennett Ratliff R Carrollton 115

There are 10 Judges of the Justice of the Peace Courts in Dallas County. There are 5 Republican Judges and 5 Democratic Judges.

Justice of the Peace Party Home Town/City Precinct ↑
  Judge Thomas G.Jones D Dallas County JP 1-1
  Judge Valencia Nash D Dallas County JP 1-2
  Judge Gerry Cooper R Dallas County JP 2-1
  Judge Michael D. Windham R Dallas County JP 2-2
  Judge Al Cerone R Dallas County JP 3-1
  Judge Steve Seider R Dallas County JP 3-2
  Judge Norris “Stretch” Rideaux D Dallas County JP 4-1
  Judge Katy Hubener D Dallas County JP 4-2
  Judge Sandra Ellis R Dallas County JP 5-1
  Judge Juan Jasso D Dallas County JP 5-2

There are 5 Constables of the in Dallas County. There are 2 Republicans and 3 Democrats.

Constable Party Home Town/City Precinct ↑
  Constable Cleophas Steele D Dallas County 1
  Constable Michael Gothard R Dallas County 2
  Constable Ben Adamcik R Dallas County 3
  Constable Roy Williams D Dallas County 4
  Constable Beth Villarreal D Dallas County 5

The Parkland Health & Hospital System (Dallas County Hospital District) operates the Parkland Memorial Hospital and various health centers.

The Commissioners Court meets every Tuesday morning at the Allen Clemson Courtroom located in the Dallas County Administration Building at 411 Elm St., corner of Elm and Houston streets. The building was the headquarters of the Texas School Book Depository Company until 1970. Assassin Lee Harvey Oswald shot President John F. Kennedy from a window located on the sixth floor which today houses the Sixth Floor Museum dedicated to the late president's memory.

Acts of the commissioners court are known as 'court orders'. These orders include setting county policies and procedures, issuing contracts, authorizing expenditures, and managing county resources and departments. Most importantly, the commissioners court sets the annual tax rate and the budget for Dallas County government and the courts. The commissioners also set the tax rate and budget for the Dallas County Hospital District which operates Parkland Hospital.

The commissioners court has direct control over all county offices and departments not otherwise administered by a county elected official. Those departments include Dallas County Elections, Health and Human Services, Facilities Management, Parks and Open Space Program, I.T. Services, Homeland Security and Emergency Services, among others. Through their budget making powers, the commissioners exercise indirect control over the District Attorney's office, Sheriff, District Clerk, County Clerk and County Treasurer. The commissioners also set the budget for each of the District, County, and Justice courts.

Dallas County employs a county administrator who is responsible for the day-to-day management of county government and implementing the Dallas County Master Plan and the directives of the commissioners court. The current county administrator is Darryl Martin who was hired by the commissioners in 2008.

Dallas County Jail, 111 West Commerce Street

Dallas County operates several jail facilities. They include:[9]

  • 111 Riverfront Blvd (Dallas)
    • North Tower Jail
    • South Tower Jail - also known as the "Suzanne Kays Tower"
    • West Tower Jail
  • Government Center Jail - 600 Commerce Street (Dallas)
  • Decker Detention Center - 899 North Stemmons Freeway (Dallas)
  • (formerly) Suzanne Kays Jail - 521 North Industrial Boulevard (Dallas) - population integrated into the South Tower; demolished to clear way for the Trinity River Project[10]

Texas Department of Criminal Justice operates the Hutchins Unit state jail for men in an unincorporated area adjacent to Hutchins.[11] Corrections Corporation of America operates the Dawson Unit, a co-gender state jail in Downtown Dallas, under contract.[12]

Federal Correctional Institution, Seagoville is located in Seagoville.


Presidential Election Results 1960-2012
Year Democratic Republican
2012 57.0% 405,571 41.6% 295,813
2008 57.2% 422,989 41.9% 310,000
2004 49.0% 336,641 50.4% 346,246
2000 44.9% 275,308 52.6% 322,345
1996 46.0% 255,766 46.8% 260,058
1992 35.0% 231,412 38.7% 256,007
1988 40.9% 243,198 58.4% 347,094
1984 33.4% 203,592 66.4% 405,444
1980 36.8% 190,459 59.2% 306,682
1976 42.3% 196,303 56.7% 263,081
1972 29.6% 129,662 69.5% 305,112
1968 34.1% 123,809 50.7% 184,193
1964 54.7% 166,472 45.1% 137,065
1960 37.0% 88,876 62.2% 149,369

Dallas County voted for the Republican presidential candidate in every election from 1952 to 2004, except when Texas native Lyndon B. Johnson successfully ran for a full term as President on the Democratic ticket in 1964. In the 2004 election, Democrats won their first countywide administrative office since 1986 by electing Lupe Valdez to the office of Dallas County Sheriff. The last Democratic countywide administrator was D. Connally elected County Surveyor prior to the office's abolition. Democrats also won three district court benches in 2004. Two years later in 2006, Democrats swept every contested countywide race including County Judge, District Clerk, County Clerk, District Attorney and County Treasurer as well as every contested judicial seat. In 2008, Barack Obama won Dallas County with a substantial margin and Democrats won the remaining Republican held judicial seats. In 2012, Obama won Dallas County by virtually the same margin as in 2008.

The Democratic gains in the county are primarily due to the exurban migration of disproportionately conservative, Republican-voting residents to the neighboring counties of Collin, Denton and Rockwall.[13] As a result, those counties have become more solidly Republican. The tremendous growth in these neighboring counties was part of a larger explosion in exurban growth throughout the nation over the last decade which collapsed with the real estate bust in 2007.[14] In North Texas, exurban growth was accelerated by transportation infrastructure expansion including the extensions of U.S. 75 north and the Dallas North Tollway in the mid 1990s, and the completion of the George Bush Turnpike after 2001. These and other enhancements opened up vast tracts of farmland to new housing developments.[15]

Dallas County is unique in having three openly LGBT county elected officials. Lupe Valdez elected Sheriff in 2004 and running for reelection in 2012; Jim Foster, elected County Judge in 2006 serving one term then defeated in the Democratic Primary in 2010; and Gary Fitzsimmons elected District Clerk in 2006 and currently serving.[16]

Although Dallas County has voted consistently Democratic in both Presidential and Senate elections since 2008, it remains a mostly Republican county in the US House of Representatives and the Texas Legislature due to redistricting at the state level.


The following school districts serve Dallas County:

  • Carrollton-Farmers Branch ISD (partly in Denton County)
  • Cedar Hill ISD
  • Coppell ISD
  • Dallas ISD
  • DeSoto ISD
  • Duncanville ISD
  • Ferris ISD (mostly in Ellis County)
  • Garland ISD
  • Grand Prairie ISD
  • Grapevine-Colleyville ISD (mostly in Tarrant County)
  • Highland Park ISD
  • Irving ISD
  • Lancaster ISD
  • Mesquite ISD
  • Richardson ISD
  • Sunnyvale ISD


Dallas Area Rapid Transit provides bus and rail service to many cities in Dallas County, with Dallas being the largest.

The Trinity Railway Express provides commuter rail service to Tarrant County, including downtown Fort Worth.

Major Highways[]

  • I-20 (TX).svg Interstate 20
  • I-30 (TX).svg Interstate 30
  • I-35E (TX).svg Interstate 35E
  • I-45 (TX).svg Interstate 45
  • I-635 (TX).svg Interstate 635
  • Dallas North Tollway.svg Dallas North Tollway
  • President George Bush Turnpike
  • US 67.svg U.S. Highway 67
  • US 75.svg U.S. Highway 75
  • US 77.svg U.S. Highway 77
  • US 80.svg U.S. Highway 80
  • US 175.svg U.S. Highway 175

·Spur 408(Patriot Highway)

  • Texas 5.svg State Highway 5
  • Texas 66.svg State Highway 66
  • Texas 78.svg State Highway 78
  • Texas 114.svg State Highway 114
  • Texas 121.svg State Highway 121
  • Texas 161.svg State Highway 161
  • Texas 183.svg State Highway 183
  • Texas 190.svg State Highway 190
  • Texas 289.svg State Highway 289
  • Texas 342.svg State Highway 342
  • Texas 352.svg State Highway 352
  • Texas 356.svg State Highway 356
  • Texas Loop 12.svg Loop 12


Love Field, located in Dallas and in Dallas County, serves many domestic passengers.

Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport partially located in the city of Irving in Dallas County and Grapevine and Euless in Tarrant County.


  • Addison
  • Balch Springs
  • Cedar Hill
  • Carrollton
  • Cockrell Hill
  • Combine
  • Coppell
  • Dallas
  • Highland Park
  • Hutchins
  • Irving
  • Lancaster
  • Lewisville
  • Mesquite
  • Ovilla
  • Richardson
  • Rowlett
  • Sachse
  • Sand Branch (unincorporated)
  • Seagoville
  • Sunnyvale
  • University Park
  • Wilmer
  • Wylie

Denotes a municipality whose physical boundaries extend beyond Dallas County

Historical communities[]

  • Alpha (not incorporated)
  • Buckingham (Annexed by Richardson in 1996)
  • Embree (merged into Garland in 1887)
  • Fruitdale (annexed by Dallas in 1964)
  • Duck Creek (merged into Garland in 1887)
  • Kleberg, Texas (Absorbed by City of Dallas in 1978)
  • La Reunion (Absorbed by City of Dallas in 1860)
  • Letot (Northwest Dallas County, annexed by Dallas)[17]
  • Long Creek (Merged into Sunnyvale in 1953)
  • Hatterville (Merged into Sunnyvale in 1953)
  • Meaders
  • New Hope (Merged into Sunnyvale in 1953 - not to be confused with the Collin County town of the same name)
  • Noel Junction not incorporated, Addison/Dallas
  • Cedar Springs (Annexed by Dallas First Settled in February 1841. In 1929 the community was annexed by the city of Dallas. [1])
  • Hord's Ridge (Merged by Oak Cliff in 1887 per The Handbook of Texas [2])
  • Oak Cliff (Annexed by Dallas in 1903)
  • Penn Springs (Annexed by Duncanville in 1947)
  • Pleasant Grove (Annexed by Dallas by 1962)
  • Preston Hollow (Annexed by Dallas in 1945)
  • Renner (annexed by Dallas in 1977)
  • Scyene
  • Tripp (Merged into Sunnyvale in 1953)
  • Trinity Mills (Annexed by Carrollton)[18]

See also[]

  • Dallas County District Attorney
  • List of museums in North Texas
  • National Register of Historic Places listings in Dallas County, Texas


  1. ^ a b "State & County QuickFacts". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved December 10, 2013. 
  2. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07. 
  3. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23. 
  4. ^ "U.S. Decennial Census". Retrieved December 10, 2013. 
  5. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2011-05-14. 
  6. ^
  7. ^
  8. ^ Elected Officials
  9. ^ "Jail Information." Dallas County Sheriff's Office. Accessed September 14, 2008.
  10. ^ Krause, Kevin. Suzanne Kays jail to close in Dallas this week." The Dallas Morning News. April 14, 2009. Retrieved on June 3, 2013.
  11. ^ "HUTCHINS (HJ)." Texas Department of Criminal Justice. Accessed September 14, 2008.
  12. ^ "DAWSON (JD)." Texas Department of Criminal Justice. Retrieved on June 3, 2013.
  13. ^ Wallsten, Peter (2004-06-28). "Bush Sees 'Fertile Soil' in Exurbia". The Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2012-06-25. 
  14. ^ Tavernise, Sabrina (April 4, 2012). "Census Data Offers Look at Effects of Recession". New York Times. Retrieved 2012-06-25. 
  15. ^ Kim, Theodore (February 4, 2012). "North Texas Growth Sprang from Pro-Growth Policies". Dallas Morning News. Retrieved 2012-06-25. 
  16. ^ Cloud, John (2007-06-17). "The Lavender Heart of Texas". Time Magazine.,9171,1622593,00.html. Retrieved 2012-06-18. 
  17. ^ Rose-Mary Rumbley, "LETOT, CLEMENT" Handbook of Texas Online, accessed December 26, 2010.
  18. ^ Trinity Mills, Texas from the Handbook of Texas Online. By Matthew Hayes Nall. Retrieved on 31 March 2007.

External links[]

Coordinates: 32°46′N 96°47′W / 32.77, -96.78

This page uses content from the English language Wikipedia. The original content was at Dallas County, Texas. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with this Familypedia wiki, the content of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons License.