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Bonham, Texas
—  City  —
Location of Bonham, Texas
Coordinates: 33°35′2″N 96°10′54″W / 33.58389°N 96.18167°W / 33.58389; -96.18167
Country United States
State Texas
County Fannin
 - Total 9.4 sq mi (24.2 km2)
 - Land 9.4 sq mi (24.2 km2)
 - Water 0.0 sq mi (0.0 km2)
Elevation 610 ft (186 m)
Population (2000)
 - Total 9,990
 - Density 1,067.1/sq mi (412.0/km2)
Time zone Central (CST) (UTC-6)
 - Summer (DST) CDT (UTC-5)
ZIP code 75418
Area code(s) 903
FIPS code 48-09328[1]
GNIS feature ID 1352653[2]

Bonham is a city in Fannin County, Texas, United States. The population was 9,990 at the 2000 census. It is the county seat of Fannin County[3]. James Bonham (the city's namesake) sought the aid of James Fannin (the county's namesake) at the Battle of the Alamo.



Bonham is located at 33°35′2″N 96°10′54″W / 33.58389°N 96.18167°W / 33.58389; -96.18167 (33.583772, -96.181801)[4].

The city is centrally located in Fannin County in Northeastern Texas, about 25 km south of Oklahoma and has a total area of 9.4 square miles (24.2 km²), with negligible water cover. The distance to Dallas in the Southeast is about 110 km.


Bonham, one of the oldest cities in Texas, dates back to the year 1837 when Bailey Inglish built a two-story block house named Fort Inglish. It was located about 2 miles from the current downtown. Inglish and other acquaintances settled there in the summer of 1837 and the settlement was named Bois D'Arc. In 1843, the Congress of the Republic of Texas assigned the name Bloomington to the city, but finally renamed it Bonham, in honor of James Butler Bonham, a hero and defender of the Alamo. On February 2, 1848 Bonham was incorporated as a city.

After the connection to the Texas and Pacific Railroad the city began to grow and in 1885 there were six churches, three colleges, two public schools, three weekly newspapers, a saw mill, two grain mills, a power plant and 2300 inhabitants. 1890 saw the addition of streetcars, an ice plant, and the opening of the Texas Power and Light Company, a utility provider to the area. In 1925, the city was connected to natural gas lines.

During the Second World War, there was a training camp and an aviation school for the US Air Force in the vicinity of Bonham, as well as a prisoner-of-war camp for Germans and German soldiers. Parts of the camp can still be visited today.


As of the census[1] of 2000, there were 9,990 people, 2,884 households, and 1,848 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,067.1 people per square mile (412.1/km²). There were 3,381 housing units at an average density of 361.1/sq mi (139.5/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 76.27% White, 16.77% African American, 0.84% Native American, 0.48% Asian, 0.03% Pacific Islander, 4.22% from other races, and 1.39% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 8.75% of the population.

There were 2,884 households out of which 28.6% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 44.9% were married couples living together, 14.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 35.9% were non-families. 31.7% of all households were made up of individuals and 16.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.37 and the average family size was 2.98.

In the city the population was spread out with 17.8% under the age of 18, 13.3% from 18 to 24, 33.6% from 25 to 44, 19.3% from 45 to 64, and 15.9% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 36 years. For every 100 females there were 164.0 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 179.9 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $26,131, and the median income for a family was $35,721. Males had a median income of $26,035 versus $21,897 for females. The per capita income for the city was $11,840. About 12.6% of families and 18.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 21.9% of those under age 18 and 18.8% of those age 65 or over.


The City of Bonham is served by the Bonham Independent School District. In addition, Grayson County College operates a branch campus in Bonham, its only campus outside its namesake county.

Notable people

By far Bonham's most famous resident was "Mr. Sam," Sam Rayburn, the longtime Speaker of the United States House of Representatives. Rayburn's house and a library featuring memorabilia from his Congressional terms are popular museums in the city, and State Highway 56 through town (the former U.S. Highway 82) is named Sam Rayburn Boulevard (and runs beside both the house and library).

Other notable residents include:


  1. ^ a b "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.  
  2. ^ "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. Retrieved 2008-01-31.  
  3. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2008-01-31.  
  4. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2000 and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2005-05-03. Retrieved 2008-01-31.  

Tom Scott, 77, a man who had come to embody the colorful history of Fannin County and its people through his dedication to the Fannin County Museum of History.

Tom Scott was a 1949 graduate of Bonham High school and considered by many to be one of the brightest students of his era. He backed up that assessment by earning his B.A. and M.A. in Communications from Baylor University, a M.S. Counseling Certificate from the University of Texas and Ed.S. in higher Education/Psychology from Auburn University.

Tom enjoyed telling people he fought at the "Battle of Lackland," which was his way of saying he was a drill instructor at Lackland Air Force Base from 1954-1958.

He also had an impressive career as a college professor before returning to his hometown to develop into an accomplished history detective. It was Tom's research that first indicated that some of the buildings on the east side of the Bonham Square are constructed from bricks kilned in 1859 to construct the ill-fated 1860 Fannin County Courthouse.

Mr. Scott taught at Temple College and Grayson College before returning to graduate school for training in counseling and psychology. He was then named Director of Student Guidance Services at Henry State College in Alabama. It was there that Tom had an opportunity to get to know Harper Lee, author of To Kill a Mockingbird.

Tom returned to Bonham in 1982, served three terms as chairman of Fannin County Historical Commission and chaired Bonham's Main Street Committee. He became curator of Fannin County Museum of History in 1987 and is one of the primary reasons this museum enjoys a stellar reputation across the state

External links



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