WELCOME TO KATY, TEXAS-U.S.A.

HUB CITY OF 3 COUNTIES; HARRIS, FORT BEND, AND WALLER!

Hometown of Country & Western singer Clint Black
30 miles West of downtown Houston, Texas
Longitude: 95 49' 27" W (-95.8242)
Latitude: 29 47' 8" N (29.7856)
Elevation (feet): 142
Grid: EL29


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A BRIEF HISTORY OF KATY, TEXAS

If you had come in 1875 to live where Katy is today, you would have found no town and no railroad. One family was here. Thomas and Mary Robinson had 200 acres of land on the Cane Island branch of Buffalo Bayou. They came in 1872. Fifteen years later, Peter Black and his wife, Ophelia, bought land and moved out from Addicks. These families farmed quietly until 1895 when it seemed that a lot of people suddenly decided Cane Island, Texas would be a good place to settle.

Why did this area seem to be a good place to settle?

There are two main reason for the early settlement of this area first called Cane Island. First: People wanted farm land. Second: The Missouri-Kansas-Texas railroad was completed, it was easier for people to get to the area. It was also easier to get farm products to market.

What did the people find when they arrived?

The arriving people found rich farmland. The land was flat and seemed to go on forever. the prairie was covered with tall, flowing grass as high as a man on horseback.

Who came to settle the land?

The first family of the 1895 group of new settlers arrived on Christmas Day in 1894. Mr. William Pitts, his wife Lella, and their three children came from the town of Pattison, Texas.

In 1895 many more families came to find new farms and new lives. The Peeks came from Indiana and Iowa to farm and run dairies. The Stuarts and the Danovers came from Iowa. The Beckendorff's came from Pattison to farm. Mr. Cabiness came then too. He worked for the railroad as the depot agent. He also built a lumberyard, milled rice, bought and sold the farmer's peanuts, and helped start the Apostolic Faith Church in 1905.

One very important person to come this year was Mr. James Oliver Thomas, who came from Mississippi. He bought 320 acres of land and laid out the town site of Katy in 1895. Mr. Thomas set aside land for two parks. One park on Cane Island Creek and the other was the town square.

The year 1896 saw more arrivals. The Stockdick family, the Ruskeys, Mortons, and David Peter Franz, a watchmaker. Coming from Iowa, Mr. Stockdick was a real estate person who encouraged many more families to move from the northern areas to Katy.

This was also the year Katy is first listed in Washington, D.C. as having a post office. It is officially called Katy, Texas and Mr. J.O. Thomas was the postmaster. The post office was part of his general store.

The next year, 1897, saw the arrival of the Morrisons from Missouri, the Freemans from Iowa, and the Eule family from Germany.

Mr. Eule is very special to Katy's history. He is the first person to raise rice in Katy. In 1897, the first year he grew rice, he used surface water from the prairie. The second year, he dug wells to irrigate the fields. The Eule family had a school in their home for their own children and the children of their neighbors.

By 1898, Mr. Featherston had arrived. He was the first pastor of the Katy Baptist Church.

Dr. James Malcom Stewart was an important addition to the settlement in 1898, too. He came from Tennessee with his new wife to start his medical practice.

John Henry Wright, his brother, Wilbur, and their parents, also arrived this year. They drove their team of horses and wagon from Missouri. They were looking for a healthier climate for Wilbur. The family stayed to farm and later start a drug store. In 1904, Mr. J.H. Wright and Dr. Stewart formed a partnership. Mr. Wright opened a drugstore with Dr. Stewart's office next door.

Two families arrived on the same train in 1900. Both families had moved from Germany to Iowa to farm. Looking for a better place they decided to come to Katy. The families' names were Schlipf and Weinman. They purchased farms north of town and there they settled. The Eule farm was nearby so the children went to school in the Eule home. Soon the classes were moved to the Schlipf home, and then they were moved to the schoolhouse that was built on the Schlipf land. Children attended the country school until it closed in 1918.

All children living on the farms went to school at home, at a neighbor's house, or in a one room country school nearby. In 1918 all the children from the small farm schools were brought together in the town of Katy to start the Katy Independent School District. Children came from Cobb School, Schlipf School, Dishman School and Sills School.

What were the crops that were raised?

Many people raised rice. Others raised peanuts and cotton. Most families had their own gardens for fresh vegetables, too. They sold the rice to others and raised potatoes for themselves to eat.

Before and after the storm of 1900!

Many people in Katy date events in the town "before" and "after" the storm. The hurricane of September 8, 1900 that destroyed most of Galveston Island also destroyed most of the buildings in Katy. The only buildings not damaged in any way were the home of J.H. Wright and Mr. Featherston. These homes are still in Katy. The storm had such a dramatic affect on the town that it stands out in memory and so people talk of "before" and "after" the storm.

After the storm, Katy rebuilt and continued to grow. The main industry has been the rice farming. In 1934 a gas field was discovered to the west of the town. Many wells were dug and a refining plant was built. This added a new side to the town's growth. These industries are an important part of the town today.

Many questions about Katy have been answered and there are many left unanswered. As you think back over what you have read, see if you can answer; who? what? where? and When? about the early settlement of Katy.

Looking Back

In 1895 a group of farmers and merchants laid the plans for a town on the old San Felipe Trail. Out of the plains of the Brazos River Valley across a community of churches and business. Now, some seventy years later, a small metropolis flourishes. Although Katy's population within the city limits numbers in the thousands, the surrounding subdivision rival the population of some major cities creating one of the fastest growing areas in the U.S.

Through it all, the ethics of hard work, determination, honor and concern for your fellow man inherent in the founders of Katy, can still be felt in the delightful cross between small town advantages and the benefits of a growing city.

Katy's atmosphere of caring does an outstanding job in combining the advantage of modern technology and an expanding job market.

Living in Katy

Living in the Katy area means an escape from the hustle and bustle of the Houston scene. Katy offers the charm of a small town, or the sophistication of suburbia.

Housing in Katy ranges from apartment and condominiums to large estate houses with acreage to enjoy and maintain horses-and others with championship golf courses as their backyard. Subdivisions abound with tennis courts, swimming pools, and endless amenities for their residents.

Apartments that cater to singles and families are plentiful, and the taste of everyone's life style can be met.

Fully planned communities which features areas of shopping centers, spacious plazas, and every convenience that enhances community living, leads the way to future growth in an exciting and efficient style.

With the various stages of housing available, no matter the size of the checkbook, one can find living in Katy easy and affordable.

But a residence in a community is only half of being a part of the life in that community. Katy has so much more to offer in many churches, clubs and organizations to fit one's preference for a complete life style.

Economy

Katy is historically an agricultural area with rice the major crop, with soybeans having been added as an alternate in recent years. The Katy area has been the site of one of the United States' largest gas fields since the early forties; this has added greatly to the economy of the area. Most recently the development of industrial sites, both East and West of the City, have added growth to the economy.

Recent statistics show that 34.2% of the employed persons 16 years and over to be managerial and professional specialty, while 38.5% are technical, sales and administrative support personnel.

Household distribution of income lists 10.2% over $50,000; 23.2 from $35,000 to $50,000; 34.6% from $25,000 to $35,000; and 13.6% from $20,000 to $25,000.

Population

The city of Katy has a population of approximately 11,775 residents according to the 2000 census. Area wide population is in excess of 100,000 while regional population is over 1 million.

Climate

Katy is known for its pleasant subtropical climate. Situated on the coastal plains of Texas, with relative proximity to the Gulf of Mexico, prevailing Gulf winds, moderate summer high and winter low temperature extremes, making our winters mild and our summers warm and humid. Average daily high temperature in the summer is in the mid 90's and daily high temperatures in the winter average 65 degrees. The summer of 2000 saw record temperatures in the Katy area with some area thermometers registering around 112 degrees in the shade. Rainfall averages between forty-five (45) and fifty (50) inches a year, and the growing season lasts approximately 296 days.

Celebrities who call Katy home:

  • Yao Ming: Professional Basketball Star

  • Clint Black: Country and Western Singer

  • Brian Black: Country and Western Singer

  • Kevin Black: Country and Western Singer

  • Frank Bielec: Designer/Spokesman and star of the TV hit "Trading Places"

  • Roger Clemens: Baseball Star

  • Renee O'Connor: Co-star of Xena: Warrior Princess

  • Renee Zellweger: Actress/Movie Star




    Assorted Facts, Figures, and Statistics for Katy, Texas

    Population (year 2000): 11,775

    Males: 5,845 (49.6%), Females: 5,930 (50.4%)

    Elevation: 142 feet

    County: Harris, Fort Bend, Waller

    Land area: 10.7 square miles

    Median resident age: 32.7 years
    Median household income: $51,111 (year 2000)
    Median house value: $95,900 (year 2000)

    Races in Katy:

    White Non-Hispanic (70.3%)
    Hispanic (23.8%)
    Other race (8.6%)
    Black (4.2%)
    Two or more races (2.0%)
    American Indian (1.0%)
    (Total can be greater than 100% because Hispanics could be counted in other races)

    Ancestries:

    German (16.1%), United States (10.9%), English (10.5%), Irish (9.1%), French (3.2%), Scotch-Irish (3.0%).

    For population 25 years and over in Katy city:

    High school or higher: 81.9%
    Bachelor's degree or higher: 23.5%
    Graduate or professional degree: 6.3%
    Unemployed: 5.5%
    Mean travel time to work: 32.7 minutes

    For population 15 years and over in Katy:

    Never married: 21.7%
    Now married: 64.2%
    Separated: 1.2%
    Widowed: 4.1%
    Divorced: 8.8%
    13.6% Foreign born (12.4% Latin America)

    Industries providing employment:

    Retail trade (15.5%)
    Educational,health and social services (15.1%)
    Professional,scientific,management,administrative,and waste management services (12.5%)
    Manufacturing (10.3%).

    SOURCE: City-Data.Com



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