“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Houston in Harris County, Texas — The American South (West South Central)

Founding of Harris County

Founding of Harris County Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Brian Anderson, June 29, 2018
1. Founding of Harris County Marker
Inscription.  In December 1835, near the beginning of the Texas Revolution, the new Provisional Government of Texas defined the boundary of the Municipality of Harrisburg, similar to the extent of Harris County today. Its largest town and seat of government was then Harrisburg, founded by John Richardson Harris in 1826. The municipalities became counties in the 1836 Texas Constitution.

Texas won its independence from Mexico after the Battle of San Jacinto on April 21, 1836. The First Texas Congress established the structure of county government and designated the county seat at at the new town of Houston on Buffalo Bayou in December 1836. Local residents David G. Burnet and Lorenzo de Zavala served as the first President and Vice President of the Republic of Texas until October 1836. While Houston was the capital of Texas from 1837 to 1839, City Council designated Houston as a port of call and Buffalo Bayou as a National Highway of the Republic.

Much like today's Commissioners Court, the 1837 Harrisburg County Board of Commissioners was entrusted with control and supervision of roads, ferries, and bridges, in addition to providing for
Founding of Harris County Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Brian Anderson, June 29, 2018
2. Founding of Harris County Marker
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support of indigent, blind, and lame citizens. The first chief justice (county executive), Andrew Briscoe, organized an initial board meeting in March 1837 with DeWitt Clinton Harris serving as county clerk. The first sheriff, John W. Moore, also handled tax collection along with his usual duties. Harrisburg County became Harris County by action of the Third Congress in December 1839.

Today, the county is administered by a County Judge and four Precinct Commissioners, elected by the public. Home to over four million people, Harris County is Texas' most populous county, boasting a thriving port, world renowned medical center, NASA, and headquarters for oil, chemical, and export/import companies.
Erected 2012 by Harris County Historical Commission.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Political Subdivisions. A significant historical month for this entry is December 1836.
Location. 29° 45.675′ N, 95° 21.528′ W. Marker is in Houston, Texas, in Harris County. Marker is at the intersection of Congress Street and San Jacinto Street, on the right when traveling west on Congress Street. Marker is located at the east corner of the Harris County Jury Plaza. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 1201 Congress St, Houston TX 77002, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Harris County (within shouting distance of this marker); Harris County 1910 Courthouse
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(about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); Pillot Building (about 400 feet away); Houston Bar Association (about 400 feet away); Site of General Sam Houston House (about 600 feet away); Republic Building (about 600 feet away); Site of Home of President Sam Houston (about 700 feet away); Sweeney, Coombs & Fredericks Building (about 700 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Houston.
Credits. This page was last revised on June 30, 2018. It was originally submitted on June 29, 2018, by Brian Anderson of Kingwood, Texas. This page has been viewed 211 times since then and 56 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on June 29, 2018, by Brian Anderson of Kingwood, Texas. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page.

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Oct. 7, 2022