Cleburne is Johnson County's third county seat. It was formerly known as Camp Henderson, a temporary Civil War outpost from which Johnson County soldiers would depart for war (most of them would serve under General Cleburne). The city was formally incorporated in 1871.
In August 1886 the Texas Farmers' Alliance met at Lee's Academy and adopted a seventeen-point political resolution, commonly known as the Cleburne Demands, which was the first major document of the agrarian revolt occurring at the end of the late nineteenth century.
Cleburne was primarily an agricultural center and county seat until the Santa Fe Railroad opened a major facility there in 1898. During this time the population boomed, as it became a sizable city for the area with over 12,000 residents by 1920.
Cleburne is on the fringe of the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex. Growth in the area can be primarily attributed to suburbanization. It is the second most populous city in Johnson County (slightly less populous than Burleson).
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 30.5 square miles (79 km), of which 27.8 square miles (72 km) is land and 2.7 square miles (7.0 km) (8.77%) is water.
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