Vernon is a city in Wilbarger County, Texas, United States. It is the county seat, and as of the 2010 Census had a population of 11,002.
Vernon City Hall
|Nickname(s): V - Town|
|Motto: "Steer Our Way!"|
Location of Vernon, Texas
|Coordinates: 34°9′4″N 99°17′26″W|
The original town was called Eagle Springs by the Tonkawa Indians as early as 1858. After the American Civil War, more settlers began moving in the area, and in 1880 they applied for a post office as Eagle Flat. However, the U.S. Post Office rejected the name, saying too many Texas towns were already called Eagle something. The town then chose the name Vernon, after George Washington's home, Mount Vernon.
An estimated seven million head of cattle passed through Vernon on the Great Western Cattle Trail between 1873 and the 1890s. The historic trail was located ninety miles west of and parallel to the better-known Chisholm Trail.
Vernon is located at (34.151116, -99.290473).
According to the United States Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 8.1 square miles (21.0 km2), of which 8.1 square miles (21.0 km2) is land and 0.12% is water.
In 1905, the Wichita Mill and Elevator Company, owned and managed by the entrepreneur Frank Kell of Wichita Falls, established a mill in Vernon. Kell's business partner was W. O. Anderson.
Major businesses and industries in Vernon include a Tyson Foods, formerly Wright Brand Foods, Inc., bacon processing plant, a Rhodia, Inc. guar processing plant, North Texas State Hospital, which is operated by the Texas Department of State Health Services (an agency of the Texas Health and Human Services System), Victory Field Correctional Academy (a juvenile detention facility operated by the Texas Youth Commission), and the Texas AgriLife (Texas A&M System) Research and Extension Center.
The nearby Waggoner Ranch holds the distinction of being the largest spread in Texas under one fence. The ranch remains operational, with business in petroleum, farming, horses, and cattle. The Waggoner produces some of the best ranch horses in Texas, many from the breeding of the quarter horse Poco Bueno. According to the wishes of E. Paul Waggoner, Poco Bueno is preserved standing on the corner at the main entrance to the ranch.
Vernon is host to various events annually including the four-day Santa Rosa Roundup rodeo in May, which is sponsored by the local Santa Rosa Palomino Club. VSMCA is host to Summer's Last Blast, which is held the second weekend of August every year.