History of Greenville, TX

From the Beginning to How We Got to Today!

Greenville was carved out of blackland prairie by sturdy pioneers who cleared the tall grass for their homes and farms. When Hunt County was created by the first legislature of the new state of Texas in 1846, Greenville was named the county seat. Our community blends heritage and contemporary lifestyle for the best of both worlds: the city and the country.

Greenville was named for Thomas J. Green, a general in the Texas Army in the war for independence from Mexico and, later, a member of the Congress of the Republic of Texas.

The rich blackland soil that stuck to shoes and buggy wheels when wet proved to be a real economic asset. It grew a high quality cotton used by English spinning and weaving mills.

Cotton brought the railroads to Greenville and with them growth and prosperity. The “cotton capital of the world,” Greenville soon boasted the world’s largest inland cotton compress, a population of several thousand and six railway lines.

During the harvest season, cotton brought a “snowfall” to the downtown square as tufts of white pulled from bales for examination by cotton buyers floated into drifts around the courthouse.

One of Hunt County’s most famous citizens has his roots in this cotton heritage. Audie Murphy, WWII’s most decorated soldier was a sharecropper’s son who enlisted for the Army at the Old Greenville Post Office.

As the area began to shift from agriculture to industry in the 1950’s, the city developed its first industrial park. Additional industry grew at the converted World War II Majors Field Army Air Corp base, now the municipal airport and location of L-3’s Greenville facility and newest industrial park.

Today, Greenville is a thriving community of about 25,000 that combines the best of hometown warmth with nearby big-city excitement and the natural beauty of East Texas. The community’s many civic organizations, churches and city-wide festivals and celebrations are enhanced by the availability of local parks, museums, library, golf courses, and nearby lakes.

We think you’ll enjoy calling Greenville, Texas home!

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