Canadian, Texas

Canadian, Texas

Canadian, Texas
City Hall and Municipal Auditorium
City Hall and Municipal Auditorium
Nickname(s): "The oasis of the High Plains"
Motto: "Wildlife, History, Tradition"
Location of Canadian, Texas
Location of Canadian, Texas
Country United States
State Texas
County Hemphill
 • Total 1.3 sq mi (3.3 km2)
 • Land 1.3 sq mi (3.3 km2)
 • Water 0.0 sq mi (0.0 km2)
Elevation 2,425 ft (739 m)
Population (2000)
 • Total 2,233
 • Density 1,731.0/sq mi (668.3/km2)
Time zone Central (CST) (UTC-6)
 • Summer (DST) CDT (UTC-5)
ZIP code 79014
Area code(s) 806
FIPS code 48-12412[1]
GNIS feature ID 1372905[2]

Canadian is a city in and the county seat of Hemphill County, Texas, United States.[3] The population was 2,649 at the 2010 census. It is named for the Canadian River, a tributary of the nearby Arkansas River. Incorporated in 1908, Canadian is sometimes called "the oasis of the High Plains." Canadian is on the eastern side of the Texas Panhandle adjacent to Oklahoma.


  • History 1
  • Geography 2
    • Climate 2.1
  • Demographics 3
  • Education 4
  • Notable people 5
  • Gallery 6
  • References 7
  • External links 8


Downtown Canadian

The trails along the river are older than recorded history. Francisco Coronado came through the area in 1541 in a vain search for the Seven Cities of Cibola. In 1840, Josiah Gregg and thirty-four men from Missouri passed through Canadian with trading goods worth $25,000 while en route to Santa Fe, New Mexico. In 1849, parties headed for the California gold rush passed through, led by Captain Randolph B. Marcy. In the 1870s and 1880, hunters, cattlemen, and settlers alike used the trails as the Panhandle was opened for civilization.[4]

By the first decade of the 1900s Canadian was a railroad and marketing center; it was served in the late 1920s by the Clinton-Oklahoma-Western Railroad Company of Texas, one of the Frank Kell properties.[5]

Canadian had a Baptist academy. Robert Moody (1838–1915), a banker, rancher, and academy trustee, built the Moody Hotel downtown to reflect on the future of the community. The three-story, brick-veneer structure replaced the former McIntosh Hotel. The Moody opened late in 1910 with forty guest rooms and an oak stairway. The hotel flourished until changing travel plans caused it to close. It was purchased by pioneer merchant Nahim Abraham in 1950 and now houses the Abraham Companies, operated by his great-grandsons.[6] Robert Moody's grandson, Robert R. Young, also a native of Canadian, was subsequently the chief officer of the New York Central Railroad.[7]

In the 1985 book Hemphill County History, Tom Abraham, the second of Nahim Abraham's four sons, found his fellow citizens of Canadian to have pride, purpose and determination: "I know Canadian folks - they just don't give up."[8]

Canadian is the site of one of fourteen branches of the Happy State Bank and Trust Company, based in Amarillo.

A portion of the Tom Hanks movie, Cast Away, was filmed in Canadian.


According to the United States Census Bureau, Canadian has a total area of 1.3 square miles (3.4 km2), all of it land.


According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, Canadian has a semi-arid climate, abbreviated "BSk" on climate maps.[9]


As of the census[1] of 2000, there were 2,233 people, 869 households, and 625 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,731.0 people per square mile (668.3/km²). There were 1,047 housing units at an average density of 811.6 per square mile (313.4/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 88.94% White, 0.22% African American, 0.76% Native American, 0.13% Asian, 0.04% Pacific Islander, 9.00% from other races, and 0.90% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 18.76% of the population.

There were 869 households out of which 35.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 60.9% were married couples living together, 7.6% had a female householder with no husband present, and 28.0% were non-families. 26.1% of all households were made up of individuals and 13.5% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.52 and the average family size was 3.04.

In the city the population was spread out with 27.5% under the age of 18, 7.2% from 18 to 24, 26.8% from 25 to 44, 22.9% from 45 to 64, and 15.5% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females there were 91.7 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 87.0 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $31,929, and the median income for a family was $38,676. Males had a median income of $30,240 versus $17,083 for females. The per capita income for the city was $16,384. About 12.3% of families and 14.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 19.4% of those under age 18 and 16.4% of those age 65 or over.


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

Notable people



  1. ^ a b "American FactFinder".  
  2. ^ "US Board on Geographic Names".  
  3. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07. 
  4. ^ Texas Historical Commission, historical marker, Canadian River, 1966
  5. ^ "Clinton-Oklahoma-Western Railroad". Retrieved April 27, 2013. 
  6. ^ Texas Historical Commission, Historical marker, Moody Building, Canadian, Texas
  7. ^ Texas Historical Commission, historical marker, Canadian River, 1967
  8. ^ "Living in Canadian" (PDF). Retrieved September 21, 2014. 
  9. ^ Climate Summary for Canadian, Texas
  10. ^ "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Incorporated Places: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2014". Retrieved June 4, 2015. 
  11. ^ Texasalmanac

External links

  • City of Canadian
  • Canadian, Tx in the Handbook of Texas
  • New York Times, "New Life Where Towns and Teams Are Dying"