The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 62, July 1958 - April, 1959 Page: 136
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
River, which forms the eastern boundary, and by numerous
creeks. The outstanding topographical feature of the county is
probably the Brazos valley where the soil is predominantly dark,
thus making the area ideal for cultivation. The rainfall is approx-
imately forty inches per year and the average length of the grow-
ing season is 27 i days.
The Anglo-American colonists found the Washington County
area well suited for their purposes, and it became a part of Stephen
F. Austin's colony in 1821. Such significant towns as Independ-
ence, Washington-on-the-Brazos, and Chappell Hill were founded
in the present Washington County area, and by 1835 the popula-
tion was large enough to warrant the establishment of a munici-
pality. On March 17, 1836, Washington County was created by
the Convention of 1836, and it was organized on December 14,
1837, with the county seat at Washington-on-the-Brazos. The
westward moving tide of Anglo-American farmers soon forced
the courthouse to be moved farther west. In 1841 the county seat
was moved to Mount Vernon, and in February, 1844, Brenham,
because of its central location, was made the county seat. Hasskarl
has devoted an excellent chapter to tracing the history of Brenham
after it became the headquarters of Washington County.
A section on city development brings out the growth of Bren-
ham's city government. Hasskarl deals specifically with the his-
torical facts of Brenham's police and fire departments, public
utilities, city health department, and street maintenance.
In May, 186o, the first railroad reached Brenham. This road
was built from Hempstead to Brenham and was opened to traffic
on October 1, 186o. This line was sold to the Houston and Texas
Central Railroad Company in 1869, and it later became the prop-
erty of the New Orleans Railroad of the Southern Pacific Lines.
By 188o the Santa Fe was operating a railroad from Galveston to
Brenham, thus giving the agricultural market town of Brenham
two railroads to transport its crops.
The closing chapters are devoted to telling the stories of
Brenham's military organizations, educational development, and
social and cultural life. The last chapter especially gives a good
picture of how the social institutions of Brenham have developed.
The author's personal interest in Brenham led to the writing
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 62, July 1958 - April, 1959, periodical, 1959; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101173/m1/158/: accessed December 15, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.