Stephenville is a city in and the county seat of Erath County, Texas, United States. It is on the North Bosque River, which forms nearby. Founded in 1854, it is home to Tarleton State University. As of the 2020 census, the city's population was 20,847, and it is the principal city in the Stephenville Micropolitan Statistical Area. Stephenville is among several communities that call themselves the "Cowboy Capital of the World".
|• City Council||Mayor Doug Svien |
|• City Manager||Allen L. Barnes|
|• Total||11.91 sq mi (30.85 km2)|
|• Land||11.89 sq mi (30.79 km2)|
|• Water||0.02 sq mi (0.06 km2)|
|Elevation||1,273 ft (388 m)|
|• Density||1,440.4/sq mi (556.1/km2)|
|Time zone||UTC-6 (Central (CST))|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC-5 (CDT)|
|GNIS feature ID||1347894|
Stephenville is named after John M. Stephen, who settled there in 1854, and donated the land for the townsite laid out by George B. Erath when the county was organized in 1856. In the first two years of its settlement, the population increased to 776. The population then declined until 1871, because the townsite was in Comanche territory and raids were common, and because the hardships of the American Civil War led citizens to leave. The population grew after Stephenville became an agriculture and livestock center. Coal mining also became important to the area in 1886, and was a major segment of the economy for the 30 years.
Stephenville was incorporated in 1889, with the arrival of the Fort Worth and Rio Grande Railway. In the 1890s, many of the buildings around the town square were built, Tarleton State University opened, and the community's two newspapers merged to become the Empire-Tribune, which is still in operation. In February 1907, the Stephenville North and South Texas Railway was chartered by Stephenville and Hamilton business interests, which sold the line in 1910 to the St. Louis Southwestern Railway of Texas system. In the 20th century, industry became an important part of Stephenville, and the population has steadily increased since the 1920s.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has an area of 11.89 square miles (30.8 km2), of which 11.89 square miles (30.8 km2) are land and 0.04 square miles (0.10 km2) is covered by water.
The climate in this area is characterized by hot, humid summers and generally mild to cool winters. According to the Köppen climate classification system, Stephenville has a humid subtropical climate, Cfa on climate maps.
|U.S. Decennial Census|
|Black or African American (NH)||1,122||5.37%|
|Native American or Alaska Native (NH)||98||0.47%|
|Pacific Islander (NH)||6||0.03%|
|Some Other Race (NH)||44||0.21%|
|Hispanic or Latino||4,342||20.78%|
As of the 2020 United States census, there were 20,897 people, 7,291 households, and 3,771 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,440.4 people per square mile (556.1/km2). The 7,579 housing units averaged 637.4 per square mile (246.1/km2). Of the 7,291 households, 25.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 37.1% were married couples living together, 8.8% had a female householder with no husband present, and 50.2% were not families. About 33.1% of all households were made up of individuals, and 10.1% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.27 and the average family size was 2.99.
In the city, the population was distributed as 27.8% under the age of 19, 21.4% from 20 to 24, 22.2% from 25 to 44, 17.2% from 45 to 64, and 11.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 25.3 years. There were 8,130 males and 8,933 females.
The median income for a household in the city was $33,175, and the median income for a family was $52,320. Males had a median income of $36,139 versus $30,007 for females. The per capita income for the city was $19,596. About 13.6% of families and 26.2% of the population were below the poverty line, including 23.1% of those under age 18 and 14.3% of those age 65 or over.
- Stephenville Public Library
- Stephenville Independent School District
- Stephenville High School (grades 9–12)
- Henderson Jr. High School (grades 7–8)
- Gilbert Intermediate School (grades 5–6)
- Hook Elementary School (grades 3–4)
- Chamberlin Elementary School (grades 1–2)
- Central Elementary School (grades Pre-K–K)
- Huston Academy (grades 7–12) (previously Erath Excels! Academy)
- Jessie G. Beach (1887 – 1954), paleontologist and museum aid, born in Stephenville.
- Art Briles, former football coach at Baylor University
- Dustin Hodge, television producer and writer
- Brock Holt, professional baseball player, graduated from Stephenville High School
- Jewel (singer), singer-songwriter, lived on a Stephenville ranch while married to Ty Murray. She refers to the town in the song "Stephenville, TX".
- Kevin Kolb, NFL quarterback
- Jess Lockwood, world champion bull rider
- Ty Murray, world champion rodeo cowboy
- Carey Wentworth Styles, newspaperman, founder of The Atlanta Constitution, editor, managing editor, or special writer at "more than a dozen Texas dailies and weeklies." West End Cemetery
- Hugh Wolfe, professional football player
- "2019 U.S. Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved August 7, 2020.
- "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 31, 2008.
- "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. October 25, 2007. Retrieved January 31, 2008.
- "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved June 7, 2011.
- Climate Summary for Stephenville, Texas
- "Census of Population and Housing". Census.gov. Retrieved June 4, 2015.
- "Explore Census Data". data.census.gov. Retrieved May 21, 2022.
- https://www.census.gov/[not specific enough to verify]
- "About the Hispanic Population and its Origin". www.census.gov. Retrieved May 18, 2022.
- "Library". City of Stephenville. Retrieved April 12, 2018.
- "Huston Academy". Huston Academy. Retrieved April 12, 2018.
- "Erath County Center". Ranger College. Retrieved April 12, 2018.
- Hernandez, Lezlie (September 2, 2021). "Spotlight on Jessie G. Beach, Smithsonian Department of Paleobiology Staff Member". Smithsonian Libraries and Archives.
- "Houston's Briles set to interview at Baylor". Houston Chronicle.
- Wilson, Mark. "Storyteller: Erath native exploring 'expanse of possibilities' in film world". Stephenville Empire-Tribune. Retrieved July 16, 2019.
- Wilson, Mark. "Holt honored with retirement of SHS baseball jersey No. 1". Stephenville Empire-Tribune. Retrieved August 11, 2021.
- "Ty Murray's Saddle House". Texas Monthly. January 20, 2013. Retrieved April 25, 2018.
- "Jess Lockwood wins second Professional Bull Riders title in 3 years at World Finals". Star-Telegram. Retrieved November 12, 2019.
- "Professional Bull Riders - PBR Officers". Archived from the original on February 22, 2014. Retrieved May 18, 2017.
- Nixon, Raymond B. (June 17, 1945). "Constitution's Founder Fought for Georgia with Pen and Sword". The Atlanta Constitution. Retrieved April 7, 2019.