History of Texas, together with a biographical history of Milam, Williamson, Bastrop, Travis, Lee and Burleson counties : containing a concise history of the state, with portraits and biographies of prominent citizens of the above named counties, and personal histories of many of the early settlers and leading families Page: 211
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HISTORY OF TEXAS.
decided at the polls by a n aj mrity of twentyseven
to one to issue bonds for $1,400,000,
for the purpose of erecting an enormous dam
across the Colorado river and the building of
a complete system of water and electric light
works, to be owned and controlled by the
Tlhe work on the dam was begun in November,
1890, and was completed in 1893.
It is an immense granite structure, 1,150 feet
long and 60 feet above the ordinary low-water
level of the river. Total cost of the (lain,
$607,928, and the city waterand electric plants
in connection raise the total cost to about
$1,400,000. It furnishes 14,500-lhorse power,
of which the city has about 4,500, leavirg
10,000-horse power that can be utilized
for manufacturing purposes. It is the
largest improved water-power, except one, in
the United States. The lake formed by the
building of tlhe dam is another attractive
feature of the city. It extends thirty miles
up the river, and the scenery along it.- shores
is of the most romantic and picturesque
character, unsurpassed in America. A large
excursion steamer navigates the lake, and
Austin is destined to become a great pleasure
resort. One of the most lovely sites on the
lake, about four mile above the dam, has
been laid out for extensive Chaltauqua
grounds. It is owned by an association of
well known, enterprising citizens and edacators,
chartered by the State. A large permnanent
high school, for advanced education,
is established at the Clihautauqua grounds.
The site commands a magnificent view of
lake and mountain scenery, and the Capital
City can be plainly seen in the distance.
Austin offers many superior advantages
for manufacturing enterprises, and her industrial
enterprises, although comparatively
small, are increasing with every year by the
location of new establishments. A bakingpowder
factory and creamery are among tlle
most recent assured additions to the manufacturing
interests of the city.
The HIouston & Texas Central, tlie International
& (ireat Northern, and the A.\utin
& Northwestern railways, run into tlhe city.
The Missouri, Kansas & Texas Railroad al!-,
has arrangements by wlhichl its passenger
trains run into the city. It is the terminL.of
the Houston & Texas Central, and the
headquarters of thle Austin & Northwestern
Estimated meroantile traPnsactions in 1,81:
Dry goods, $1,500,000; groceries, $2.5)00,000;
hardware, $800.00(0; jewelry, $75( ,000;
lumber, $1,200,000; agricultural implements,
$800,000; furniture, $1,0 )00,000;
produce. eggs, chickens, etc., $250,000; miscellaneous,
,$2,000,000. Produce, etc., handied
in 1891: Cotton, 1.00()0 bales; wool,
2,500).00 pounds; hides, 1,200,000 pounds;
cotton seed, 10,000 tons; corn, 100,000
bui-hels; wlheat, 10,0()()00 bushels; live-stock,
5,()000 head; value of all other products,
Bank exchange in 189'1 amounted to $11,000,000.
The real type of Texas civilization expressed
itself at an early date after annexation
in the establishment of three grand
asyluims-one for the blind, one for the deaf
and dumb, and one for the insane. The cost
to the State in the establishment and naintenance
of these. benevolent institutions has
been and still is a heavy draft upon the
treasury. While they are sustained by direct
taxation, they are the State's channels of continuous
aid to the unfortunate among the
people. They are objects of general interest,
and frequent entertainments given by
them draw large crowds and furnish occa
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Lewis Publishing Company, publisher. History of Texas, together with a biographical history of Milam, Williamson, Bastrop, Travis, Lee and Burleson counties : containing a concise history of the state, with portraits and biographies of prominent citizens of the above named counties, and personal histories of many of the early settlers and leading families, book, 1893; Chicago. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth29785/m1/216/: accessed April 20, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .