Where is Houston? See Its Location on a Map and Coordinates

Written by Arlene Mckanic
Published: June 29, 2023
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Finding out where Houston is located on a map depends on what “Houston” you’re referring to. Of course, most people think of Houston, Texas, but did you know there are at least 15 places in the United States with the same name? There’s also a Houston in British Columbia, and a village called Houston in Scotland. Where Houston is located on a map also depends on what kind of map it is.

How to Read a Map

Texas State on the map

You can easily see Houston, Texas on this map.

©Alexander Lukatskiy/Shutterstock.com

There are many types of maps, but if you’re looking for a city, town, or village you’d probably refer to a general reference map, a road map, or a globe. A general reference map will show you a lot of things besides the location of the city, town, or village. It may show mountains, lakes, rivers, and the size of your city compared to the other towns and cities around it. A globe shows you the whole world. Because of that, it’ll probably only display the largest city called Houston and its relative position when it comes to other large cities on the planet unless it is a very very large globe.

Longitude and Latitude

A good map is drawn to scale and uses colors, symbols, and grid lines called parallels and meridians. Meridians are lines that are drawn from the north to the south pole through the equator. Parallel lines are equidistant lines drawn around the globe. Meridians measure longitude, and parallel lines measure latitude.

The parallel line that’s the same distance from each pole is called the equator, and the meridian that runs through Greenwich, England is the prime meridian. Both of them are at 0 degrees. The equator is at 0 degrees latitude, and the prime meridian is at 0 degrees longitude. Every other place on the map proceeds from there. For example, the geographic coordinates of Houston, Texas are, pretty much, 29 degrees 45 minutes north latitude (which means it’s north of the equator), and 95 degrees 22 minutes west longitude (which means it’s west of the prime meridian).

On the other hand, if you’re using a road atlas of Texas or the United States, the map probably uses an index. The sides of the map bear letters while the top and bottom of the map have numbers. An index lists cities, towns, and counties in alphabetical order with the corresponding letter and number where they can be found on the map. However, the indices on these maps aren’t standardized. On one map, Houston, Texas is found at E 8, while on another it’s located at P 20. But the geographic coordinates are used by most people.

Other Houstons

Now that we have the coordinates of Houston, Texas, where do we find other Houstons on the map?

The World’s Steelhead Capital

Found at 54 degrees, 23 minutes north, and 126 degrees 38 minutes west, this is a town of about 3,600 known for eco-tourism and the abundance of its fishing. It prides itself on being the “steelhead (salmon) capital of the world.” Unlike Houston, Texas, this Houston is not named for Sam Houston but for John Houston, a newspaper publisher.

The Little Scottish Town Where it All Began

At about 56 degrees North and 4.55 degrees west, this quiet little town in the county and council area of Renfrewshire lies in the Scottish lowlands. Originally, it was called Kilpeter after the 16th century church named after St. Peter. Its modern name comes from Houston Castle, which was owned by the Houstons of Houston, a Scottish clan. Yes, one of their descendants was Sam.

The One Found in Texas County, Missouri

Find this city on the map at 37 degrees 19 minutes north latitude and 91 degrees 57 minutes west longitude. The city was not only named after Sam Houston, but it’s also found in Texas County and is the county seat. Found in the Ozarks, Houston, Missouri has a population of about 2,079 people.

One of Two County Seats

This city of about 3,623 people lies at 33 degrees, 53 minutes north and 89 degrees west and is one of the county seats of Chickasaw County. The other is Okolona. This was because the county was so ravaged by the Civil War that it took years to rebuild even the roadways. One stroke of good luck is the building of a Carnegie library in the city in 1909. Indeed, it was the first of the Carnegie libraries. Judge Joel Pinson named this Houston after his childhood friend Sam. Houston, Mississippi is actually older than Houston, Texas. It was incorporated in May of 1837, while Houston, Texas was incorporated a month later.

Houston, Minnesota

Eastern Barn Owl in South Australia

Houston, Minnesota is home of the International Festival of Owls.

©Imogen Warren/Shutterstock.com

This city of less than one thousand people was also named in honor of Sam Houston by William McSpadden, one of the men he’d commanded in the Mexican-American War. Its coordinates are 43 degrees 45 minutes north and 91 degrees 34 minutes west. The town was platted in 1852 and finally incorporated in 1874. It is the home of the International Festival of Owls. It’s the only all-owl-all-the-time weekend festivity in all of North America.

The Town a Long Way From Anchorage But Not Really

Many multicolored fireworks exploding in the sky at night

Houston is the only place you can legally buy fireworks in the south central part of Alaska.

©Light and Vision/Shutterstock.com

Way up north we find Houston, Alaska at 61 degrees 36 minutes north, and 149 degrees, 46 minutes west. The town’s population is 1,985 people according to the 2020 census. Technically, Houston is only 33 miles from Anchorage, but the terrain requires a 58 mile drive. It is the only place in south central Alaska where you can legally buy fireworks. Buy them along the George Parks Highway at the stand owned by Gorilla Fireworks.

The Houston With the Log Jail House

This unincorporated community at around 34 degrees north and 87 degrees west is notable because of its jail house, which is the only standing log jail in Alabama. Nobody knows how many people live in Houston, Alabama because the census hasn’t been taken since 1880 when the community stopped being the county seat. You’ll find this community in Winston County in northern Alabama.

The Borough in Pennsylvania

At coordinates 40 degrees 14 minutes north and 80 degrees 12 minutes west, Houston, Pennsylvania is a borough as opposed to a city or a town. About 1,165 people live there according to the 2020 census. The borough was incorporated in 1901 and was sort of named after Sam Houston; the land on which the borough was founded was actually bought by Sam’s cousin Daniel Houston. Daniel’s son David and others further developed the land. You’ll find the borough in Washington County near the southwest corner of the state.

The Houston Right on the Alabama Border

This unincorporated community in Georgia is another not named after Sam. Lying at 33 degrees 9 minutes north and 85 degrees 8 minutes west, it was named after H.W. Houston, a local clergyman. It’s found in Heard County, right on the border of Alabama. The community is also called Liberty Hill.

HOW-sten, Ohio

At 40 degrees 15 minutes north and 84 degrees 20 minutes west, you pronounce the name of this little community with its one post office, grain elevator, and dollar store HOW-sten. Harvey Houston platted the place in 1838, and it was once part of three communities. By 1957 they were all merged into one.

The Little Houston in Delaware

In 2020 this little town at 38 degrees, 55 minutes north and 75 degrees, 30 minutes west had 381 people, down from a high of 487 in 1990. It was named after John Wallace Houston, who served as a justice on Delaware’s Supreme Court, a Secretary of State for Delaware, and represented the state in Congress as a Whig and a Democrat. Like its Ohio counterpart, the town is also pronounced HOW-sten.

The photo featured at the top of this post is © Sean Pavone/Shutterstock.com

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About the Author

Arlene Mckanic is a writer for A-Z Animals whose focus is on plants and animals of all kinds, from ants to elephants. She has a Bachelor's Degree from City College of New York. A resident of South Carolina, she loves gardening and though she doesn't have pets, a black racer snake does live in her kitchen.

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