Prior to the time during which Austin became a town and then a city settled by white people, it provided sustenance and support to a number of Indian tribes, including the Tonkawas, the Comanches, and the Apaches. These nomadic tribes moved up and down the Colorado River and often camped in the area which eventually became Austin. In the late 18th century, Spanish settlers established missions in the area, and then by the 1830’s white settlers had moved in and established a town which they called Waterloo.
Austin Becomes a Capital
By 1839, Waterloo had been chosen to become the capital of the brand-new Republic of Texas, so it was quickly upgraded and renamed after Stephen F. Austin, the father of Texas. The street plan for this new city was surveyed and laid out by Judge Edwin Waller, and that street plan has survived for the last 180 years without any radical changes. It’s interesting to note that when Austin was established as the capital of the Republic of Texas, the city still had less than 1,000 inhabitants, and the entire government for the new capital was literally brought in on oxcarts late in 1839.
The state of Texas was of course made into a state in 1845, and the elections which followed maintained Austin as the capital city of the new state. By the late 19th century, Austin was well on its way to becoming a full-blown city, and in 1888 a grand capital building was completed which at that time was considered to be the seventh largest building in the world. That building remains intact to this day, and is still a center for government.
Commercial Growth of Austin Begins
Another milestone in the growth of the city was achieved in 1893 when the Great Granite Dam was completed on the Colorado River. The reason this dam was so essential to the area was that it provided hydraulic power which generated electricity. This of course, was needed by residents of the area and it also proved to be a powerful attraction for manufacturing concerns. By 1938, the dam had been completely replaced by a group of seven dams which were funded by the federal government, a project which was sponsored by a young Lyndon B. Johnson.
After the country in general and Austin as a city emerged from the dark days of the Depression, the city immediately began developing itself as a center for high technology. A number of research laboratories were established, and high-tech companies began to be attracted to the area in increasing numbers. This in turn, sparked the growth of Austin’s general economy, and that attracted even more individuals to the area. When a city grows, you of course need a reliable contractor to maintain the roads for Asphalt Paving in Austin TX.
Austin Becomes a Modern City
The city enjoyed very rapid growth all throughout the 1970’s, and a great many groups sprung up in communities throughout the city which sponsored strong neighborhoods, environmental care, and historic preservation. During the 1970’s also, the music scene began to emerge in Austin with national artists such as Willie Nelson and David Rodriguez generating interest in the local area, followed by world-class blues guitarist Stevie Ray Vaughn. And as time went on, things to do in Austin continued to grow. To this day, Austin can be classified as a center for high-tech companies and corporations, as well as a hotbed of live music venues and a birthplace for many national and international performers.