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BUCHANAN, TEXAS. Buchanan, five miles northwest of Cleburne in central Johnson County, was established in 1856 and selected as the second county seat in a special election held on October 4 of that year, after the discovery that the original county seat, Wardville, was more than six miles from the county's geographic center. Buchanan was named for Democratic presidential nominee James Buchanan. Following the completion of a log courthouse, the first term of the county court met at Buchanan on February 16, 1857, by which time James Buchanan had been elected president. The county court continued to meet in Buchanan for just over ten years. A post office opened there in 1857, and during the following year a jail was completed. An inadequate water supply, however, severely hampered growth. In 1866 the state legislature designated a portion of western Johnson County for inclusion in the newly established Hood County. This shift of territory reduced Johnson County's size and relocated its geographic center so that Buchanan was no longer within six miles of it. In a special election on March 23, 1867, county voters chose a new county seat, Camp Henderson, which became Cleburne. Buchanan lost its post office in 1868 and was abandoned by 1892.


Viola Block, History of Johnson County and Surrounding Areas (Waco: Texian Press, 1970).

Brian Hart


The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this article.

Brian Hart, "BUCHANAN, TX," Handbook of Texas Online (, accessed November 26, 2015. Uploaded on June 12, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

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