Taylor, TX – Williamson County

Population 16,483 // Official Website // Schools

Taylor is located about 29 miles northeast of Austin in Williamson County. Taylor was originally founded in 1876, and named Taylorsville in honor of Edward Moses Taylor, an official with the International-Great Northern Railroad. That same year the Texas Land Company auctioned lots in anticipation of the I&GN’s arrival. Immigrants from Germany and Austria as well as the Slavic states were among the first settlers. Thanks to the railroad’s presence, the town soon became a busy shipping hub for grain, cotton and cattle.

By 1878 the town had 1,000 residents and 32 businesses. The Taylor, Bastrop and Houston Railway reached the area in 1882, and subsequently machine shops and a roundhouse serviced both rail lines. A mayor-council form of city government was established that year, and in 1883 a public school system replaced many of the private schools.

By 1890 Taylor had two banks as well as the first savings and loan institution in Texas. Other newly introduced enterprises included an electric company, a cotton compress, and several newspapers. A water line from the San Gabriel River, a 100-man volunteer fire department, entertainment venues, and an annual fair had all appeared by 1900. The community’s name was officially changed to Taylor in 1892.

Taylor continued to grow over the following century; since 1900 the city’s population increase has averaged approximately 128 new residents per year. The community has made capital improvements in facilities and infrastructure to improve the educational offerings and overall quality of life. Some of these improvements are related to water, wastewater, drainage, and parks & recreations.

The town has historically been known for its agriculturally-related businesses and manufacturing industry, which includes factories for the production of furniture, clothing, bedding, and other products. In more recent years the City of Taylor, in coordination with the Taylor Economic Development Corporation and the Taylor Chamber of Commerce, has strived to attract new investment to improve the economic base and strength of the community. Since 2008, more than 20 companies have come to Taylor, creating 300+ new jobs and investing nearly $40 million. Taylor’s largest employers include the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT), Durcon Inc., Burrows Cabinets and the T. Don Hutto Residential Center.

Though considered part of Austin’s metropolitan area, Taylor takes great pride in its individuality and rural identity. Taylor also celebrates its ethnic diversity, which is an underlying theme during the annual “Taylor History Days”. Historic preservation is another element important to the community. A number of stately mansions can be found here, many of which have been restored and modernized throughout generations. A few of the more well-known include Pecan Manor Bed & Breakfast, Moore House, Blazimar Hotel, and the Moody Museum, home of Taylor’s first Mayor, Dan Moody Sr., and childhood home of his son, Governor Dan Moody.
Recreation in Taylor includes municipal parks with swimming pools and picnic areas, as well as the Taylor Country Club’s public 9-hole golf course.

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