College Station, Texas

The Houston and Texas Central Railway started passing through the area in 1860 it was the perfect location for the railway because of the Geography of College Station. Eleven years later, the site was selected as the location for the proposed Agricultural and Mechanical College of Texas, a land-grant university. The school began operations as the first public university in Texas in 1876, the year the country celebrated its 100th birthday. 350 people called College Station home in 1884, and 391 people did so at the turn of the century. However, the town’s transportation system was improved throughout this time. After the Missouri Pacific Railroad Company abandoned the line in 1965, the I&GN Railroad was extended to College Station in 1900. Ten years later, electric interurban service was introduced between Texas A&M and the nearby town of Bryan. In the 1920s, a municipal bus system took the place of the interurban.

North Oakwood, a neighborhood to the north of College Station, became a part of Bryan in 1930. It wasn’t until 1938 that College Station became a city, and John H. Binney was elected as its first mayor. The city created a zoning commission within a year, and by 1940, there were 2,184 people living there. Ernest Langford, who began a 26-year tenure as mayor in 1942 and was dubbed the “Father of College Station” by some, oversaw the growth of the city. The city adopted a council-manager form of local administration early on in his first tenure.

After World War II, population growth quickened, with the non-student population increasing to 7,898 in 1950, 11,396 in 1960, 17,676 in 1970, 30,449 in 1980, 52,456 in 1990, and 67,890 in 2000. In 2018, the population of the Bryan-College Station metropolitan area surpassed 270,000.

The 1997 opening of the George H.W. Bush Presidential Library brought prominence to College Station and Texas A&M University during the 1990s. When the Aggie Bonfire collapsed while being built in 1999, 12 people were murdered and 27 others were injured. Along with Lockeford, California, it was one of the first regions to receive drone deliveries from Amazon in 2022.

The establishment of Texas A&M College marked the commencement of the City of College Station, a relatively new municipality. The college was established in 1876 and was the first state-funded institution of higher learning in Texas.
Administrators at the institution provided facilities for people connected to the college because of the school’s remoteness. The center of community development shifted to the campus. The Postal Service gave the location the name “College Station, Texas” in 1877. The train station to the west of the campus is where the name came from.
Residents’ desire to establish a municipal government was prompted by the expansion of the neighborhood and the college. In 1938, the City of College Station became a legal entity.

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