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BURNET COUNTY (Judicial). Burnet County was established by the Fifth Congress as a judicial county on January 30, 1841. It lay between the Neches and Trinity rivers south of Nacogdoches County and north of Houston County. Fort Houston, the earliest settlement in the area and the temporary seat of justice, had a Sunday school and a temperance society organized in 1840. Peter Fullenwider held Presbyterian services. Magnolia, a projected town on the Trinity River, was intended as a riverport. The Telegraph and Texas Register of September 15, 1841, described the terrain and possibilities of the county and estimated that its population had increased from 250 to 500 between 1839 and 1841. An act of December 6, 1841, provided for a better definition of county boundaries, made Fort Houston the permanent seat of justice, and authorized the county to raise a company of volunteers for protection of the frontier. The county ceased to exist, probably when judicial counties were declared unconstitutional in the case of Stockton v. Montgomery in 1842.


R. L. Batts, "Defunct Counties of Texas," Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association 1 (October 1897). James Wilmer Dallam, A Digest of the Laws of Texas (Baltimore: Toy, 1845). Hans Peter Nielsen Gammel, comp., Laws of Texas, 1822–1897 (10 vols., Austin: Gammel, 1898).

Seymour V. Connor


The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this article.

Seymour V. Connor, "BURNET COUNTY (JUDICIAL)," Handbook of Texas Online (, accessed November 28, 2015. Uploaded on June 12, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

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