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Newton County, Texas
Newton County was formed in 1846 from Jasper County, and is named for Corp. John Newton, an American Revolution hero, according to the Almanac. Newton, Texas, is the County Seat.
Census Records are available for 1850-1880.
County Records date back to 1846.
[Texas State Genealogical Society. "Stirpes", Vol 2, #2, June 1962, who accumulated the information from the county Clerks of each county, as well as the Texas Almanac, 1961-62, Dallas, Tex.: A.H. Belo corp. 1961]
The act of April 22, 1846, created Newton County, from the east side of the original Jasper County. The citizens having failed to establish a county seat, the Legislature on February 10, 1848, enacted that it be located on "a tract of land belonging to John R. Burke," and be named " Burkeville." Burke donated the land for the county grounds. The northern part of the county, being an agricultural district, was first settled, some of the old Bevil colonists being among the early inhabitants.
The southern half of the county is low and even yet is sparsely occupied, requiring considerable drainage. Thirty years ago it was stated that only about one-twentieth of the county's area was cleared out for cultivation, and probably that was an exaggeration, since a recent estimate is that about ninety-seven per cent of the area is covered with pine and hardwood forests. The raising of cattle and hogs was the chief dependence of the people until after the war, though this industry was on a much smaller scale
than in the prairie counties. There were several mills in the county during the '60s, but only for supplying the local demand for lumber, meal, etc.
Newton County was at the center of the long-leaf pine district of Texas and Louisiana, but development on a commercial scale hardly began until the present century. Lack of railroads retarded improvement in the county, and all the railroads were constructed as adjuncts to the lumber interests. The Orange & Northwestern has been built to Newton and is part of the Frisco System, while a spur of the Santa Fe crosses the county from Kirbyville to the
Sabine. Before the railroads came, the Sabine River was largely used to get products to market.
Burkeville, the first county seat, and located near the best farming district, was for long the principal town. A few years after the organization of the county, the seat of government was moved to Newton. In 1870, the postoffices of the county were Burkeville, Newton, Salem and Bleakwood. Burkeville was estimated to have 410 population in 1900, but since then other places have risen as railroad and lumber centers, and Newton, though still unincorporated,
is said to have a population of about one thousand five hundred, and other towns are Hartburg, Ruliff, Dewey, Call, Bleakwood and Adsul.
Newton county was at the center of the long-leaf pine district of Texas
and Louisiana, but development on a commercial scale hardly began until
the present decade. The railroads in the county were all constructed as
adjuncts to lumbering. The Orange & Northwestern has been built to
Newton, and a spur of the Santa Fe crosses the county from Kirbyville to
the Sabine. In 1900 the only town of considerable population was
Burkeville (410), but since then Newton, Call, Deweyville and others
have grown as railroad and lumber centers. [Excerpted from "Historical Review of South-east Texas...", Volume 1 By Dermot H. Hardy, Ingham S. Roberts; pub. 1910]
The county is sparsely populated.
Cities and Towns
* Biloxi * Bon Wier * Burkeville * Deweyville * Newton *
* Princeton * South Toledo Bend * Trotti * Wiergate *