Hearne (population 4,690) was platted in 1870 and is known as the "Crossroads of Texas" because two major rail lines and two major highways cross in the city.
An important new heritage tourism initiative in the community is the development of historic Camp Hearne as a tourist destination. Camp Hearne was a prisoner of war camp that housed up to 5,000 German, Italian, and Japanese prisoners during World War II.
Many of the site's components remain intact, making it the best remaining example of an U.S. Army prisoner of war main camp. Focus on Camp Hearne has led to interest in preserving other properties that complement the World War II theme.
The historic Hearne Railroad Depot (1901) has been moved, and efforts are underway to transform it into a visitor center and museum that will feature exhibits about Hearne and the local area circa World War II, as well as railroad and train memorabilia.
As part of its heritage tourism promotion, Hearne participates in the initiatives of the Texas Historical Commission's Texas Brazos Trail Region.
Designated a Preserve America Community in May 2004.