Belton, Texas

Last updated
Belton, Texas
Downtown belton.jpg
Downtown Belton near Bell County Courthouse
Beltonflag.jpg
Flag
BeltonTXCitySeal.png
Seal
Nickname(s): 
Beltown
TXMap-doton-Belton.PNG
Location in the U.S. state of Texas
Bell Belton.svg
Relief map of Texas.png
Red pog.svg
Belton, Texas
Location in Texas, United States & North America
Usa edcp relief location map.png
Red pog.svg
Belton, Texas
Belton, Texas (the United States)
North America laea relief location map with borders.jpg
Red pog.svg
Belton, Texas
Belton, Texas (North America)
Coordinates: 31°3′32″N97°27′48″W / 31.05889°N 97.46333°W / 31.05889; -97.46333 Coordinates: 31°3′32″N97°27′48″W / 31.05889°N 97.46333°W / 31.05889; -97.46333
Country United States
State Texas
County Bell
Established1850
Named for Peter H. Bell
Area
  Total20.0 sq mi (51.7 km2)
  Land18.9 sq mi (49.0 km2)
  Water1.0 sq mi (2.6 km2)
Elevation
509 ft (155 m)
Population
 (2010)
  Total18,216
  Density910/sq mi (350/km2)
   Demonym
Beltonian
Time zone UTC-6 (Central (CST))
  Summer (DST) UTC-5 (CDT)
ZIP code
76513
Area code(s) 254
FIPS code 48-07492 [1]
GNIS feature ID1351858 [2]
Interstates I-35 (TX).svg I-14 (TX).svg
Website www.beltontexas.gov

Belton is a city in the U.S. state of Texas, within the Killeen-Temple metropolitan area. The city is on the Interstate 35 corridor between Austin and Waco and is the seat of Bell County.The population was 21,734 in 2017 according to a US Census Estimate. [3] As of 2015 the metro region had a population of 450,051. [4]

Contents

History

Belton c. 1881 Old map-Belton-1881.jpg
Belton c. 1881

Belton and Bell County have been the site of human habitation since at least 6000 BC. Evidence of early inhabitants, including campsites, kitchen middens and burial mounds from the late prehistoric era have been discovered in the Stillhouse Hollow Lake and Belton Lake areas. The earliest inhabitants were the Tonkawa, who traditionally followed buffalo by foot. Belton was also home to the Lipan Apache, Wacos, Nadaco, Kiowas and Comanche. By the 1840s most tribes had been pushed out by settlements, but skirmishes with the Commanches existed until the early 1870s. [5]

Belton was first settled 1850 and named Nolanville, taking the name of nearby Nolan Springs which were named for Texan explorer Philip Nolan. In 1851, it changed its name to Belton after being named the county seat of newly created Bell County named after Texas' governor, Peter Hansborough Bell. In 1860, the population was 300, the largest in the county. During the run up to the civil war, Belton had a large pro-Union minority. A Whig Party paper and anti-secession paper called "The Independent" was published there and the city voted overwhelmingly for Sam Houston for governor, who was strongly against Texas secession. [6] Nonetheless, in 1861 Bell County voted for secession and many residents fought in the Confederate Army. After the civil war, Belton experienced unrest. Several pro-union sympathizers were lynched in 1866 and Federal troops were called in to protect the Federal Judge serving in the city. After reconstruction, the city, close to a major feeder of the Chisholm Trail, served as growing business center for the region.

In 1868, Martha McWhirter, a prominent figure in Belton's non-sectarian Union Sunday School, created the Woman's Commonwealth, the only Texas women's commune of the 1800s. The commune started several business ventures including a successful hotel. In 1899, the group sold their holdings and relocated to Maryland. [7] The town experienced rapid growth in the 1880s with the building of the courthouse, Baylor Female College buildings, and a "railroad war" in which, by 1881, Belton was bypassed by the railroad which built Temple as the local junction and depot town. In 1904, the town reported a population of 3,700. The town began to thrive and reached a population of 6,500 in 1928. However the town was decimated by the Great Depression and was down to a population of 3,779 only three years later in 1931. [8]

The town began to recover in the run up to World War II as Fort Hood was opened nearby in 1942. Encompassing over 200,000 acres and almost 90,000 troops, this brought a large population and a lot of economic activity to the area. By 1950, the city's population was back up to 6,246 and by 1990 had reached 12,476. [9]

Geography

Beach at Belton Lake Outdoor Recreation Center. BeltonLakeBeach.jpg
Beach at Belton Lake Outdoor Recreation Center.

Belton is located 60 miles (97 km) north of Austin, [10] 137 miles (220 km) south of Dallas, [11] and 184 miles (296 km) west of Houston. [12] It is near the center of Bell County at 31°3′32″N97°27′48″W / 31.05889°N 97.46333°W / 31.05889; -97.46333 (31.058904, -97.463382). [13] It is at the point where the Blackland Prairie, characterized by level ground & deep fertile soil, and the Edwards Plateau, characterized by its many springs, hills, and steep canyons, meet. [14] Its elevation is approximately 509 feet (155 m). [15]

It is bordered to the northeast by the Leon River, across which is the city of Temple. Nolan Creek, a tributary of the Leon, runs through the center of Belton. It is also southeast of Belton Lake and northeast of Stillhouse Hollow Lake with both touching its city limits. The city limits extend south along Interstate 35 across the Lampasas River nearly to Salado. And abuts Temple City limits at the Leon River

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 20.0 square miles (51.7 km2), of which 18.9 square miles (49.0 km2) is land and 1.0 square mile (2.6 km2), or 5.08%, is water. [16]

Climate

Nolan Creek Tube Chutes & swimming area Nolancreek.jpg
Nolan Creek Tube Chutes & swimming area

Belton has a humid subtropical climate under the Köppen climate classification. This climate is typified by hot and muggy summers, short mild winters, and pleasantly warm spring and fall seasons. Belton averages 35.2 inches (894 mm) of annual rainfall and it is distributed mostly evenly throughout the year.

The average temperature for the year in Belton is 66.3 °F (19.1 °C). The warmest month, on average, is August with an average temperature of 83.3 °F (28.5 °C). The coolest month on average is January, with an average temperature of 47.4 °F (8.6 °C).

Snow is rare in Belton, and ground accumulation even rarer. There's an average of 0.1" of snow (0 cm). The month with the most snow is January, with 0.1" of snow (0.3 cm).

Although severe weather can & does occur, typically during the Spring with supercell thunderstorms it does not fall within the conventional limits of tornado alley. [17]

Demographics

Bell County Expo Center in Belton. Bell county expo.jpg
Bell County Expo Center in Belton.
Historical population
CensusPop.
1870 281
1880 1,797539.5%
1890 3,00066.9%
1900 3,70023.3%
1910 4,16412.5%
1920 5,09822.4%
1930 3,779−25.9%
1940 3,572−5.5%
1950 6,24674.9%
1960 8,16330.7%
1970 8,6966.5%
1980 10,66022.6%
1990 12,47617.0%
2000 14,62317.2%
2010 18,21624.6%
Est. 201822,222 [18] 22.0%
U.S. Decennial Census [19]

As of the census [1] of 2000, there were 14,623 people, 4,742 households, and 3,319 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,171.3 people per square mile (452.4/km²). There were 5,089 housing units at an average density of 407.6 per square mile (157.4/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 72.67% White, 8.10% African American, 0.64% Native American, 0.95% Asian, 0.10% Pacific Islander, 14.83% from other races, and 2.71% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 25.13% of the population.

There were 4,742 households out of which 37.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 49.9% were married couples living together, 16.1% had a female householder with no husband present, and 30.0% were non-families. 24.6% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.69 and the average family size was 3.23.

In the city, the population was spread out with 26.9% under the age of 18, 18.4% from 18 to 24, 26.5% from 25 to 44, 17.1% from 45 to 64, and 11.1% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 28 years. For every 100 females, there were 95.0 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 90.4 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $32,052, and the median income for a family was $38,635. Males had a median income of $31,304 versus $20,678 for females. The per capita income for the city was $14,345. About 12.7% of families and 17.9% of the population were below the poverty line, including 20.7% of those under age 18 and 14.0% of those age 65 or over.

Education

University of Mary Hardin-Baylor Entrance sign, UMHB, Belton, TX IMG 5551.JPG
University of Mary Hardin-Baylor

Belton is served by the Belton Independent School District. The school district operates two high schools, three middle schools and nine elementary schools. The district and all of its campuses received the Texas Education Agency's highest accountability rating (met standard) based on student performance on the State of Texas Assessment of Academic Readiness. Both Belton High School & Belton New Tech High School have been included on lists of the nation's best high schools compiled by US News & World Report and Newsweek. Belton New Tech High School and South Belton Middle School have been recognized as Apple Distinguished Schools for their implementation of the district's digital learning initiative. The mascot for Belton ISD is the Tiger. [20]

Falling in Temple, TX city limits but within the boundaries of Belton Independent School District is Central Texas Christian School a private Christian k-12 school with an enrollment of approximately 570 students. [21]

Higher education

Belton is home to the University of Mary Hardin–Baylor. Founded in 1845, it is a private Christian university affiliated with the Baptist General Convention of Texas. [22] [23] Awarding degrees at the baccalaureate, master's, and doctoral levels it has an enrollment of 3,898. [24]

Parks and recreation

A water Park named Summer Fun in Belton, TX. Summer Fun Water Park in Belton, TX.jpg
A water Park named Summer Fun in Belton, TX.

The city maintains 13 city parks. Largest among them are Heritage Park, which is along the Leon River. Yettie Polk Park, which winds along Nolan Creek with a walking trail reaching from down and Interstate 35 to the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor, And Miller Springs Nature Center offering hiking trails along the Leon River below the Belton Lake Dam.

For recreation, Belton has two major lakes: Belton Lake on the Leon River, and Stillhouse Hollow Lake on the Lampasas River. Belton Lake has 11 public access parks owned and maintained by the United States Army Corps of Engineers. Stillhouse Lake has four with lake access. These parks offer many amenities such as boat docks, picnic areas, hike and bike trails, camping sites, public restroom facilities, marinas and designated sandy swimming beaches. [25]

There is also a water park, Summer Fun Water Park, which features slides, a lazy river, and other fun activities. Food may also be purchased both inside and in a building just out side of Summer Fun which serves assorted snacks.

Notable people

Related Research Articles

Palo Pinto County, Texas U.S. county in Texas

Palo Pinto County is a county located in the U.S. state of Texas. As of the 2010 census, its population was 28,111. The county seat is Palo Pinto. The county was created in 1856 and organized the following year.

Hardin County, Texas U.S. county in Texas

Hardin County is a county located in the U.S. state of Texas, United States. As of the 2010 census, its population was 54,635. The county seat is Kountze. The county is named for the family of William Hardin from Liberty County, Texas.

Comanche County, Texas County in Texas

Comanche County is a county located on the Edwards Plateau in Central Texas. As of the 2010 census, its population was 13,974. The county seat is Comanche. The county was founded in 1856 and is named for the Comanche Native American tribe.

Bell County, Texas U.S. county in Texas

Bell County is a county located in the central part of the U.S. state of Texas. As of the 2010 census, its population was 310,235. Its county seat is Belton. The county was founded in 1850 and is named for Peter Hansborough Bell, the third governor of Texas.

Seymour, Texas City in Texas, United States

Seymour is a city in and the county seat of Baylor County, Texas, United States. The population was 2,740 as of the 2010 Census.

Harker Heights, Texas City in Texas

Harker Heights is a city in Bell County, Texas, United States. As of the 2010 census, 26,700 people resided in the city, up from a population of 17,308 in 2000. This makes Harker Heights the third-largest city in Bell County, after Killeen and Temple. Incorporated in 1960, the city derives its name from one of the two original landowners and founder, Harley Kern. Harker Heights is part of the Killeen – Temple – Fort Hood metropolitan area. People usually refer to the town as just "Heights".

Little River-Academy, Texas City in Texas, United States

Little River-Academy is a city in Bell County, Texas, United States. The population was 1,961 at the 2010 census. It is part of the Killeen–Temple–Fort Hood Metropolitan Statistical Area.

Morgans Point Resort, Texas City in Texas, United States

Morgan's Point Resort is a city, or district of Belton Texas, in Bell County, Texas, United States. The population was 4,170 at the 2010 census. It is part of the Killeen–Temple–Fort Hood Metropolitan Statistical Area. It was incorporated in 1970.

Salado, Texas town in Texas, United States

Salado is a town in Bell County, Texas, United States. Salado was first incorporated in 1867 for the sole purpose of building a bridge across Salado Creek. In 2000, the citizens of Salado voted in favor of reincorporation, before which it was a census-designated place. The population of the village was 2,126 at the 2010 census. It is part of the Killeen–Temple–Fort Hood Metropolitan Statistical Area.

Temple, Texas City in Texas, United States

Temple is a city in Bell County, Texas, United States. As of 2018, the city has a population of 76,600 according to a US census estimate.

Comanche, Texas Community in Texas, United States

Comanche is a city located in Comanche County in the U.S. state of Texas. The population was 4,335 at the 2010 census. It is the county seat of Comanche County. Comanche is a popular stop for hunters.

Kountze, Texas City in Texas, United States

Kountze is a city in Hardin County, Texas, United States. The population was 2,123 at the 2010 census. It is the county seat of Hardin County. The city is part of the Beaumont–Port Arthur Metropolitan Statistical Area.

Sour Lake, Texas City in Texas, United States

Sour Lake is a city in Hardin County, Texas, United States. The population was 1,813 at the 2010 census. It was originally named "Sour Lake Springs", after the sulphurous spring water that flowed into the nearby lake. The city is part of the Beaumont–Port Arthur Metropolitan Statistical Area. Sour Lake is the oldest surviving town in Hardin County. It is called by some the "Gateway to the Big Thicket".

Coffee City, Texas Town in Texas, United States

Coffee City is a small town in southeast Henderson County, Texas, United States. The population was 278 at the 2010 census, up from 193 at the 2000 census.

Bee Cave, Texas City in Texas, United States

Bee Cave is a city located in Travis County, and within the United States state of Texas. The population was 3,925 as of the 2010 census.

Lakeway, Texas City in Texas, United States

Lakeway is a city in Travis County, Texas, United States. The population was 11,391 at the 2010 census; up from 8,002 in 2000. The city is located next to Lake Travis. It is an exurb in Greater Austin.

Rowlett, Texas City in Texas, United States

Rowlett is a city in Dallas and Rockwall counties in the U.S. state of Texas, and an eastern suburb of Dallas. The population was 66,285 as of the 2018 Census est. It is a growing, upscale community with nearly $1.5 billion in development in the Dallas–Fort Worth metroplex, located on Lake Ray Hubbard.

The Lampasas River (lam-PA-sis) is a river in the U.S. state of Texas. The river originates near the city of Hamilton and travels southeast for seventy-five miles through central Texas to a man-made reservoir called Stillhouse Hollow Lake. The river flows approximately 100 miles southeast through Lampasas, Burnet, and Bell Counties. It continues for a short distance after the lake to converge with the Leon River to form the Little River (Texas) near Belton.

Little River (Texas) river in Texas, United States of America

The Little River is a river in Central Texas in the Brazos River watershed. It is formed by the confluence of the Leon River and the Lampasas River near Little River, Texas in Bell County. It flows generally southeast for 75 miles (121 km) until it empties into the Brazos River about 5 miles (8.0 km) southwest of Hearne, at a site called Port Sullivan in Milam County. The Little River has a third tributary, the San Gabriel River, which joins the Little about 8 miles (13 km) north of Rockdale and five miles southwest of Cameron. Cameron, the county seat of Milam County and the only city of any significant size on the Little River, was established in 1846.

Marble Falls, Texas City in Texas, United States

Marble Falls is a city in Burnet County, Texas, United States. As of the 2010 United States Census, the city population was 6,077. It is about 38 miles (61 km) northwest of downtown Austin and 85 miles (137 km) north of San Antonio.

References

  1. 1 2 "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on 2013-09-11. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
  2. "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
  3. "Population and Housing Unit Estimates" . Retrieved June 9, 2017.
  4. "Table 1. Annual Estimates of the Population of Metropolitan and Micropolitan Statistical Areas: April 1, 2000 to July 1, 2009 (CBSA-EST2009-01)". 2009 Population Estimates. United States Census Bureau, Population Division. 2010-03-23. Archived from the original (CSV) on 2010-06-15. Retrieved 2010-03-25.
  5. "Handbook of Texas Online-Bell County" . Retrieved June 27, 2017.
  6. The Belton Independent
  7. Texas State Historical Association - Belton Woman's Commonwealth
  8. "Handbook of Texas Online" . Retrieved June 27, 2017.
  9. "Handbook of Texas Online" . Retrieved June 27, 2017.
  10. "Distance from Belton, TX to Austin, TX". trippy.com. Retrieved 2019-01-11.
  11. "Distance from Belton, TX to Dallas, TX". trippy.com. Retrieved 2019-01-11.
  12. "Distance from Belton, TX to Houston, TX". trippy.com. Retrieved 2019-01-11.
  13. "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23.
  14. "Texas Ecoregions". tpwd.texas.gov. Retrieved 2019-01-11.
  15. "Belton TX Lat Coordinates". latlong.net. Retrieved 2019-01-11.
  16. "Geographic Identifiers: 2010 Demographic Profile Data (G001): Belton city, Texas". U.S. Census Bureau, American Factfinder. Retrieved April 10, 2014.
  17. "Belton Texas Weather Summary". weatherbase.com. Retrieved 2019-01-11.
  18. "Population and Housing Unit Estimates" . Retrieved August 1, 2019.
  19. "Census of Population and Housing". Census.gov. Archived from the original on April 26, 2015. Retrieved June 4, 2015.
  20. Belton ISD
  21. The University of Mary Hardin-Baylor
  22. "Baptist General Convention of Texas - Supported Universities". Archived from the original on 2011-05-16. Retrieved 2008-01-26.
  23. [news.umhb.edu/archive/2015?page=1 University of Mary Hardin-Baylor News Article]
  24. Stillhouse Lake Parks
  25. Times-News, Oct. 17 1991
  26. Seattle Times, Oct 17 1991
  27. "Catholic Online, Nov. 6 2009". Archived from the original on 2011-06-06. Retrieved 2010-03-22.