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Brownfield, Texas
—  City  —
Location of Brownfield, Texas
Coordinates: 33°10′47″N 102°16′15″W / 33.17972°N 102.27083°W / 33.17972; -102.27083
Country United States
State Texas
County Terry
Area
 - Total 6.3 sq mi (16.4 km2)
 - Land 6.3 sq mi (16.4 km2)
 - Water 0.0 sq mi (0.1 km2)
Elevation 3,310 ft (1,009 m)
Population (2000)
 - Total 9,488
 - Density 1,501.0/sq mi (579.6/km2)
Time zone Central (CST) (UTC-6)
 - Summer (DST) CDT (UTC-5)
ZIP code 79316
Area code(s) 806
FIPS code 48-10720[1]
GNIS feature ID 1352989[2]

Brownfield is a city in Terry County, Texas, United States. The population was 9,488 at the 2000 census. It is the county seat of Terry County[3] near Lubbock in West Texas.

Contents

Geography

Brownfield is located at 33°10′47″N 102°16′15″W / 33.17972°N 102.27083°W / 33.17972; -102.27083 (33.179826, -102.270926)[4].

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 6.3 square miles (16.4 km²), of which, 6.3 square miles (16.4 km²) of it is land and 0.04 square miles (0.1 km²) of it (0.32%) is water.

Brownfield lies in the center of Terry County and the southern portion of the South Plains and Llano Estacado. The city itself rests on a thick layer of caliche bedrock, referred to locally as the "Caprock," which creates a nearly flat horizon that stretches for miles. It is this caprock that prevented the eroding away of soil over time, leaving the flat Llano Estacado at elevations of 3000+ feet. The caprock escarpment, about 50 miles east, is a rather precipitous drop of 1000+ feet and shows the various geologic layers. In early days, climbing the caprock escarpment was not easy for covered wagons.

The only terrain variation lies at the south end of the city where the Lost Draw carves a channel that runs across the entire county. The Lost Draw formed over 10,000 years ago during the last Ice Age when the climate of the area was much wetter. When the vast glaciers of the north retreated, the left numerous dry river channels crisscrossing the Llano Estacado. When settlers during the 1800 ventured across this area, they often went into these channels expecting to find water, however, unless significant rains had occurred recently, their search was in vain, with many of the parties becoming "lost", hence the name, Lost Draw.

The most notable geographic feature of Brownfield remains its red dirt. The soil creates an almost iridescent red color during sunrise and sunset due to the high iron oxide content.

Weather

Brownfield lies in a semi-arid temperate zone, where high winds and extreme temperature variation are the norm. The summers reach over 100 degrees Fahrenheit (38 °C) for multiple consecutive days. The winters often fall below freezing for extended periods, however snow remains unusual due to very little precipitation forming in the winter months.

The most significant time of the year for weather events starts in March and runs through September when severe thunderstorms form on the Great Plains. Massive amounts of rain, winds, hail, and a few tornadoes are to be expected at this time of year. Late thunderstorms that produce hail are significantly harmful to the local economy as it destroys the local cotton crop.

Economics

Cotton farming remains the backbone of not only Brownfield, but the entire South Plains in general. Cotton fields stretch for miles, and the harvest season in October sees a frenzy of activity as harvesters (locally called cotton strippers), module makers, and module trucks are seen scurrying all over the county.

A significant haze also develops over the city as the local cotton gins go to work stripping the cotton from the burr, separating the seeds, and then compressing the cotton into 500 lb (230 kg) bales. The haze is actually fine cotton dust, and sometimes small drifts develop in the street resembling snow mixed with red dirt.

Peanut growing has found a toehold on the economy as have vineyards. In recent years, grape growing has shown Terry County as a prime producer of choice wine grapes. While there are currently no wineries in the county, there are several notable ones in the Lubbock area, about 30 miles northeast.

Oil production continues to form a small, but significant part of the Brownfield landscape.

Demographics

As of the census[1] of 2000, there were 9,488 people, 3,176 households, and 2,337 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,501.0 people per square mile (579.6/km²). There were 3,735 housing units at an average density of 590.9/sq mi (228.2/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 24.56% White, 6.59% African American, 0.42% Native American, 0.25% Asian, 14.47% from other races, and 3.71% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 45.95% of the population.

There were 3,176 households out of which 34.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 55.3% were married couples living together, 14.1% had a female householder with no husband present, and 26.4% were non-families. 24.1% of all households were made up of individuals and 14.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.68 and the average family size was 3.19.

In the city the population was spread out with 27.2% under the age of 18, 9.8% from 18 to 24, 27.3% from 25 to 44, 20.0% from 45 to 64, and 15.8% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 35 years. For every 100 females there were 109.5 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 111.6 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $26,504, and the median income for a family was $32,076. Males had a median income of $23,637 versus $19,628 for females. The per capita income for the city was $13,854. About 21.8% of families and 26.0% of the population were below the poverty line, including 38.7% of those under age 18 and 13.5% of those age 65 or over.

Brownfield is served by a weekly newspaper, nearby stations KBXJ (FM) and KPET (AM), and the various Lubbock radio and TV stations. KKUB (AM) and KTTU-FM are licensed to Brownfield but operate primarily from offices and studios in Lubbock.

Education

The City of Brownfield is served by the Brownfield Independent School District.

Notable natives

  • Delton Ray Gregg (1930-2009) Terry County Commissioner Precinct 3 from 1987-1999. He was formerly named "Outstanding Young Farmer of Terry County".

References

External links

www.brownfieldonline.com

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