1850 Upshur Slaveholders Index
1860 Upshur Slaveholders Index (partial)
Slaves Statistics 1850
Slaves Statistics 1860
African American Census Statistics 1880 - 2000
AFRICAN AMERICANS IN CAMP COUNTY Anglo
settlement began in the late 1830s, with most of the early
settlers coming from the southern states of Georgia, Alabama, and
Tennessee. The earliest communities in the area were Pittsburg,
near the center, and Lilly and Pine, in the southwestern and
south central part. In 1855 a post office was also established at
Pittsburg, and by 1860 this town had become the most important
supply center for northern Upshur County farmers. These early,
predominantly southern settlers brought with them their southern
heritage and institutions. Most of the early settlers were
protestants, especially Baptists and Methodists. A number of the
settlers were also slaveholders, who used the fertile soils of
the county to grow the two most important southern crops, cotton
and corn. Although precise figures are not available, the
proportion of the population who were blacks held as slaves
probably exceeded the 1860 statewide average of about 30 percent
The 1880 census provided the first population figures for Camp County. In 1880 the county had a population of 5,931, with 3,085 whites and 2,845 blacks.
For the next ten years the black population of the county grew at a faster rate than the white, and in 1890 there were 3,328 whites and 3,296 blacks.
From that point the white population grew at a faster rate than the black until 1920, when the 4,577 African Americans present constituted about 41 percent of the total population of 11,103.
Between 1920 until 1960, with the exception of a modest gain between 1930 and 1940, the population of the county declined, with black population declining at a faster rate than the white.
By 1960 blacks constituted about 38 percent of a total population of 7,849.
From 1960 through 1980 the total population of the county began to rise, but the black population of the county continued to decline.
In 1980 the 2,369 blacks constituted approximately 25 percent of the total population of 9,275.
In 1990, 24 percent of the county's 9,904 inhabitants were black.
When voters went to the polls to select the county seat in 1874, they also elected the first county officials. Most of those elected were Republicans. As in most Texas counties controlled by the Republican party during this Reconstruction period, the votes for Republican candidates came almost exclusively from black voters, while the candidates themselves were generally white. By 1876 Democrats had regained control of the county. On the local level they were generally successful in maintaining control; in fact, by the 1890s the Republicans no longer fielded a county ticket.
The depression signaled the beginning of the end of a number of long-term Camp County economic and social trends. One of these was population growth. Every census had recorded a larger population from 1880 through 1920.
During the decade of the 1920s, though, the population declined for the first time, and, although it rose slightly during the 1930s (from 10,063 to 10,285), it subsequently fell steadily until 1960.
By 1960 it had fallen from the 1920 high of 11,103 to 7,849.
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