The first oil well in the United States was drilled in Texas in 1859. The discovery of oil transformed the economy of the state and helped to make Texas one of the wealthiest states in the nation.
Originally inhabited by various Native American tribes, including the Comanche and Tonkawa, Coleman County, TX has a rich history that dates back thousands of years. The area began to be settled by European Americans in the mid-19th century, with the arrival of pioneers seeking fertile land and opportunities for ranching and farming.

In 1856, the Texas legislature created Coleman County, naming it after Robert M. Coleman, a signer of the Texas Declaration of Independence. The county was officially organized in 1864, and the town of Santa Anna was designated as the county seat. However, the arrival of the railroad in 1886 led to the development of the town of Coleman, which ultimately became the principal city and county seat.

During the late 19th and early 20th centuries, Coleman County experienced significant growth and prosperity. Cotton became a major cash crop, and ranching also played a crucial role in the local economy. The county's population grew, and new businesses and institutions, including schools and churches, were established.

Coleman County faced challenges as well, including periods of drought and the Great Depression of the 1930s. However, the local community persevered, and the county continued to develop over the years. Today, Coleman County remains an important agricultural and ranching center, while also embracing tourism and outdoor recreational activities as additional economic drivers. The county's rich history is commemorated through various historical sites and events, showcasing the enduring spirit of the community and its unique heritage.

This timeline provides a concise overview of the key events in the history of Coleman County, Texas.

  • 1858 - Coleman County is established by the Texas legislature.
  • 1876 - The town of Coleman is founded as the county seat.
  • 1886 - The Santa Fe Railroad reaches Coleman, boosting the local economy.
  • 1896 - Coleman County Courthouse, a significant historical landmark, is constructed.
  • 1930-1939 - The Great Depression leads to economic challenges for Coleman County.
  • 1940s-1950s - Coleman County experiences an increased interest in oil and gas exploration.
  • 1986 - The Texas Railroad Commission names Coleman County the "Texas Top Oil Producing County".
  • 1992 - A tornado causes significant damage in Coleman, resulting in the rebuilding of several structures.
  • Present - Coleman County remains a vibrant community with a mix of agriculture, oil and gas, and tourism.