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Zant County Court House
Van Zandt County was established by the legislature in 1848
from part of Henderson County and named for Republic of Texas leader
Isaac Van Zandt. Sabine Lake (Jordan's Saline) was named the county
seat, a crude log courthouse was built, and court was held for the
first time in December 1848. In 1850 Wood County was carved out of Van
Zandt County, and the Van Zandt county seat was moved to Canton.
Throughout the 1880s and 1890s the
county was buffeted by a succession of farm and associated political
movements, including the Grange, Greenback Party, and the Farmers'
Alliance. The People's Party, which ran on a strong pro-farmer
platform, was particularly influential, and by 1892 the local chapter
had 300 members. Van Zandt County was also the home base for
Democratic reformer James Stephen Hogg, who had served as district
attorney for the district including Van Zandt County from 1881 to
The decades of the 1880s and 1890s were a time of internal
improvements. A public school system was inaugurated, and between 1887
and 1890 twenty-five new schools were constructed. Telephone service
began 1892, and in 1896 a new courthouse was dedicated.
Cities and towns
Ben Wheeler (unincorporated)
Martin's Mill (unincorporated)
Van Wills Point
Henderson County (south)
Kaufman County (west)
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