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Counties

Population
Change fm 2010
Area (sq.mi.)
Land area(sq.mi.)
Altitude (ft.)
Rainfall (in.)
Jan. avg. min.
July avg. max.
Civilian labor
Unemployed
Wages
Per Capita Inc.
Prop. Value
Retail Sales

5,358
– 1.0
915.5
914.5
2,005–3,000
25.16
24.0
93.3
2,230
4.3
$21,265,095
$42,229
$2,554,677,810
$71,340,033

map of Wheeler County
Click to enlarge. Map legend.
 

Physical Features: Panhandle county adjoining Oklahoma. Plain, on edge of Caprock; Red River, Sweetwater Creek; some canyons; red sandy loam, black clay soils.

Economy: Oil, gas, agribusiness, tourism.

History: Apaches, displaced by Kiowas and Comanches around 1700. Fort Elliott established in 1875 after Indians forced into Oklahoma. Ranching began in the late 1870s. Oil boom in the 1920s. County named for pioneer jurist R.T. Wheeler; county created from Bexar, Young districts in 1876; organized in 1879.

Race/Ethnicity: (In percent) Anglo, 68.8; Black, 3.2; Hispanic, 25.6; Asian, 0.9; Other, 1.8; Two or more races, 1.9.

Vital Statistics, annual: Births, 81; deaths, 72; marriages, 87; divorces, 4.

Recreation: Pioneer West museum at Shamrock; historic sites; Old Mobeetie jail, trading post, Fort Elliott.

Minerals: Oil, natural gas.

Agriculture: Fed beef, cow-calf and stocker cattle, swine, horses; wheat, rye, grain sorghum, cotton. Market value $111.2 million.

WHEELER (1,590) county seat; agribusiness, petroleum center, tourism, slaughter plant; hospital, library.

SHAMROCK (1,913) tourism, agribusiness antiques shops; hospital, library, old Route 66 sites; St. Patrick’s Day event.

Other towns include: Allison (135); Briscoe (135); Mobeetie (102).

old Mobeetie jail

The Old Mobeetie jail. Photo by Robert Plocheck.