King County is located in the Rolling Prairie region of Northwest Texas, is bordered on the north by Cottle and Foard counties, on the east by Knox County, on the south by Stonewall County, and on the west by Dickens County. The center point of the county is midway between Lubbock and Wichita Falls. Guthrie, the county seat, had a population of 160 in 1990.
Cities, Towns and Communities
King County. Created August 21, 1876, from Bexar County, whose diamond-shaped boundaries extended from the Rio Grande to the Panhandle to El Paso. Named for William King, who died at the Alamo. Chief industry, ranching, is reflected in its famous cattle brands: “6666”, “Pitchfork”, “S M S” and “Matador”. A population of only 173 in 1890 was aided in formal organization by petitions signed by itinerants. Names of favorite horses were also added. Organization came on June 25, 1891. In establishing county seat, cowboys voted for Guthrie, which won over Ashville, choice of the ranchers. Historical Marker Text. Marker erected 1965.
King County. Situated near the foot of the Staked Plains, and on the headwaters of the Wichita and Brazos Rivers, King County is still isolated from railways, and its prairies and broken surface has for many years furnished sustenance to thousands of head of stock. While in recent years farming has made some progress in competition with the predominant industry, the markets are still too distant to furnish much incentive to agriculture except in supplying forage for stock.
King County was created August 21, 1876, and was organized June 25, 1891. Its population in 1880 was 40: in 1890, 173; in 1900, 490; in 1910, 810, and in 1920, 355. The county seat and principal town is Guthrie, while one or two other small places are located in the county.
In 1910 the Federal census reported 34,952 cattle in King County ; about 2,500 horses and mules, and the pasturing of cattle on large ranches has for a number of years been the characteristic business of the county. There were 107 farms in 1910, as compared with 53 at the preceding census. The total area of the county is 554,880 acres, and 417,023 acres were included in the ranches and farms in 1910. The progress of agriculture is indicated by the amount of “improved land,” which in 1900 was about 1,600 acres, and in 1910 about 9,000 acres. In 1909, 2.918 acres were planted in cotton ; 1,644 acres in corn, and 813 acres in kaffir corn and milo maize. About four thousand orchard fruit trees were enumerated. In 1903 the assessed value of property in the county was $1,082.420; in 1913, $1,768,098, and in 1920, $1,740,017. – History of Texas, 1922, by W. Barrett Travis.
King County History from the Handbook of Texas Online
King County: Windmills and Barbed Wire, 1976, by the King County Historical Society