The City of College Station is a young municipality, with its beginnings in the founding of Texas A&M College. Texas' first state institution of higher education, the College was inaugurated in 1876.
Because of the school's isolation, school administrators provided facilities for those who were associated with the college. The campus became the focal point of community development. The area was designated "College Station, Texas" by the Postal Service in 1877. The name was derived from the train station located to the west of the campus.
Growth of both the community and college influenced residents' desire to create a municipal government. The City of College Station was incorporated in 1938. The incorporation was a result of a petition, by 23 men representing on and off campus interests, to the Board of Directors of Texas A&M College. The Board of Directors had no objection to the annexation, and suggested that a belt around the campus be included in the proposed city.
Citizens voted 217 to 39 on October 19, 1938 to incorporate the City of College Station. The first City Council meeting was held on February 25, 1939 in the Administration Building on the A&M campus.
The First College Station City Council
The Council became interested in adopting a governmental structure similar to the council-manager form of government. At the time of incorporation, state law did not allow a general law city to hire a city manager. As a result, College Station employed a business manager until 1943 when state law was changed to permit general law cities to make use of the council-manager form of government. College Station become the first general law city in the State of Texas to employ a city manager. In 1952, once College Station's population exceeded 5,000, College Station voters approved a home rule charter that provided for the council-manager form of government.
More historic information is available through Project HOLD, the City of College Station's Historic Online Library Database.
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by Anne Boykin
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by Anne Boykin