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Timpson Texas


Welcome to
Shelby County Texas

History of Shelby County, TX

Shelby County is on the eastern boundary of Texas being separated from DeSoto Parish and Sabine Parish, Louisiana by the Sabine River.  The county seat and largest town is Center, named for its geographic location of the county. Shelby County was first organized under the Mexican government as Tenehaw Municipality, found in 1824.  In 1836, the Congress of the Republic of Texas established Shelby County, named for Isaac Shelby, United State Revolutionary soldier from Tennessee.  In 1882, the courthouse in Center burned in a fire destroying all county records.  A new courthouse was built and completed in 1885 modeled on an Irish castle by architect John Joseph Emmett Gibson, an Irish immigrant.   In 1971, the courthouse was recognized in the National Register of Historic Places.  Today, the leading industries of Shelby County are poultry and egg processing, sawmills, road construction, agribusiness, general construction, manufacturing of hardwood flooring, hardwood veneer, and plywood.  The Toledo Bend Reservoir and Sabine National Forest also attract many tourists.

Cities, towns & communities

AIKEN   located twelve miles from Center on Highway 7.  It was named after Herman Aiken.  First post office established in 1889 and closed in 1909.  The population of Aiken in 1990 was 75.


ARCADIA   located at the junction of Farm Market Road 138 & 1645, ten miles southwest of Center.  The population of Arcadia in 1990 was 20.

BOBO  located between Tenaha and Timpson


BROOKLYN now a ghost town.

BUENA VISTA  now a ghost town.


CENTER the county  seat in Shelby County is located seventeen miles from the Louisiana border.  J. C. Margaret A. Wilson donated the land for the town in 1856 or 1857.  The first post office was opened in 1866.  The towns first framed courthouse burned in 1882, and was replaced by J. J. E. Gibson's "Irish Castle."  The first telephone service came in 1905 and electricity in 1909.  Centers population in 1990 was 4,950.

HANSON   located on U.S. Highway 84, three miles west of Joaquin.  Hanson was founded in 1905 and named after a local family.

HUXLEY     is on FM 2694 eighteen miles from Center in eastern Shelby County.  It was founded about 1890 and received a post office in 1903 with Joseph Hooper as postmaster.  The post office operated until 1905.  In 1938, the community had a school with 100 students.  In 1945 it had a store, a church, and a population of 50.  Toledo Bend Reservoir was constructed nearby in the 1960s, and Huxley was incorporated in 1969.  In 1970, the town had a population of 302.  From that point, the population of the community fluctuated, dropping to 23 by 1972 and then rising to 144 by 1978.  By 1988 it had risen to 366 and Huxley had no businesses.  In 1990, the population was 335.

JAMES    located six miles northeast of Center on U. S. Highway 7.  Established round 1890 and named for James Rushing who served as first postmaster when opened from 1901 to 1905.

JOAQUIN    is located on U.S. Highway 84 and the Southern Pacific Railroad, fourteen miles northeast of Center in northeastern Shelby County. It was founded in 1885, when Benjamin Franklin Morris donated 100 acres to the Houston, East and West Texas Railway on conditions that a railroad station be constructed on the land.  The station and the community that grew up around it were named for Morris's grandson, Joaquin Morris.  A post office was established there in 1886 with Eratus F. Sayers as postmaster.  In 1990, its population was 805. 

NEUVILLE   located on FM 2140, nine miles south of Center.  It was founded in the latter part of 1800s and named after Stephen de Neuville who in settled there in the 1840s. First post office established in 1901 with William J. Neuville as postmaster but closed by 1966.   The population in 1990 was 43.

PATROON  located on the banks of Patroon Bayou at junction of Highway 87 and FM 2261, seventeen miles southeast of Center.  Patroon was founded just before the Civil War.  First post office established in 1868 with William Duffed as postmaster.  Post office was closed in 1966.   The population in 1990 was 53.

PAXTON  located on Highway 84 and Southern Pacific Railroad, twelve miles from Center.  Post office established in 1892.  The settlement of Paxton was named after a local pioneer family.  The population in 1990 was 161.

STOCKMAN   located on FM 415, nine miles south of Timpson.  It was founded in 1890s and named after H.J. Stockman.  First post office established in 1899 with William T. Wallace as postmaster, but closed in early 1950s.  The population in 1990 was 52.

TENAHA     is at the junction of U.S. Highways 84, 59, and 96, on the tracks of the Southern Pacific some eleven miles northwest of Center in northern Shelby County.  It was founded in 1885 as a shipping point on the Houston East and West Texas Railway, when that railroad was being constructed through the county.  The community was named by members of the the Hicks family for Tenehaw Municipality, the original name of Shelby County.  A post office was opened there in 1886 with James N. Woodfin as postmaster.  Its populations was reported as 1,072 in 1990.

TIMPSON   is on the Southern Pacific Railroad at the junctions of US Highway 87, 84, & 59, fifteen miles northwest of Center in northwestern Shelby County.  It was founded in 1885, when the Houston, East and West Texas Railway was being constructed through the area, and was named for P. B. Timpson, an engineer on the railroad.  Timpson received a post office that year with James H. Blankenship as first Postmaster.  In 1990, Timpson had 1,029 residents.



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Copyright 1997  present by Jane Keppler.. This information may be used by individuals for their own personal use, libraries and genealogical societies. Commercial use of this information is strictly prohibited without prior written permission from Jane Keppler. If material is copied, this copyright notice must appear with the information and please email me and let me know. Neither the Site Coordinators nor the volunteers assume any responsibility for the information or material given by the contributors or for errors of fact or judgment in material that is published at this website.

Page Modified: 26 October 2022