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TAYLOR, TEXAS

Williamson County, Texas Hill Country
Intersection of US 79 and Hwy 95
35 miles NE of Austin

Population: 11,472 (1990) 13,575 (2000)

Book Hotel Here > Taylor Hotels

Taylor, Texas street scene birds-eye view, old photo
Birds-eye view of Taylor, Texas, looking North West
Photo courtesy texasoldphotos.com
Taylor had several prosperous periods, sponsored in a large part by the cattle and cotton industries.

One inventive theater/candy shop owner invented a sauerkraut-flavored candy that was popular with locals, but failed to catch on nationally. The secret of his success was having two long rows of candy cabinets on either side of the theater's recessed entry. Moviegoers would be forced to run the tempting gauntlet, and passersby could buy even if they didn't want to see the show.
History in a Pecan Shell
Historical Marker (Main Street, in front of Taylor City Hall):

City of Taylor

When the International & Great Northern Railroad built across Williamson County in 1876, one of the towns created along its route was "Taylorsville", named for railroad executive Moses Taylor. Lots were sold in June, and the post office opened on August 9, 1876. the earliest settlers included railroad officials such as I.&G.N. president John R. Hoxie and agent Henry Dickson, and merchants such as C. p. Vance, who moved his general store from Circleville. John McMurray started a private school, and Moritmer R. Hoxie donated land for a cemetery. Methodist and Presbyterian churches were organized in 1876, and other congregations the following year. Located on a cattle trail, the new community soon became a major shipping point for cattle. A second rail line, the Missouri, Kansas & Texas, was extended to Taylorsville in 1882, spurring further growth. The town was incorporated in 1882 with Daniel Moody, father of Texas governor Dan Moody (1893-1966), as its first mayor. In 1892 the city's name was shortened to "Taylor". By that time, cotton had joined cattle and the railroad as an important element in the local economy. Today light industry and diversified farming contribute to Taylor's prosperity.
Taylor Texas Main Street old postcard
Looking North on Main Street, Taylor, Texas
Photo courtesy texasoldphotos.com

Taylor, Texas Attractions

Immanuel Lutheran Church, Taylor, Texas
Immanuel Lutheran Church in Taylor
Photo courtesy Barclay Gibson, April 2005
St. James Episcopal Church, Taylor,  Texas
St. James Episcopal Church
Photo courtesy Barclay Gibson, April 2005

Contact the Chamber for a driving tour map. Taylor has a wonderful array of 19th Century buildings that went up after their devastating fire in 1879. Sunday is a great day to visit downtown. Architectural details abound in cast iron staircase supports, granite building corner protectors (at least one) and stained glass and stone. Several antique shops are open and so is the Moody Museum.

Taylor Public Library
More of Taylor's interesting and frequently offbeat history can be found at the Taylor Public Library at 721 Vance Street. 512-352-3434.

Moody Museum by Mike Cox

Famous Sons
This restored Victorian House (c. 1887) was the birthplace of Governor Dan Moody. While he's always mentioned for prosecuting the KKK in Williamson County, he also brought honesty back to State Government after the corrupt reign of the Fergusons (A Ma and Pa business, if ever there was one), reclaiming hundreds of thousands of dollars for Texas. As Governor, he also declared martial law in Borger and sent in Texas Rangers to clean up the lawless element.

Other famous sons include actor "Rip" Torn and Bill Pickett who liked his meat rare. Pickett was honored posthumously with a postage stamp partially because of his talent of "bulldogging" or throwing a bull by biting its upper lip. Someone suggested a festival based on this unusual talent, but Taylorites decided they would rather sack rattlesnakes.

Event
Plan to visit the Taylor Rattlesnake Sacking Championships in March. Like Dave Berry says: "We are not making this up." Call the Chamber.

Taylor Hotels
> Book Here

Taylor Chronicles

  • Battle of Brushy Creek by Mike Cox
    More than a decade before Texas celebrated a centennial of independence from Mexico by putting up hundreds of historical markers across the state, the school children of Taylor collected money for a stone marker commemorating a little-known fight between Comanche warriors and Texas Rangers called the Battle of Brushy Creek. ... more
  • The Banker by Mike Cox
  • old theater downtown Taylor Texas



    Former theatre in Taylor
    TE photo
    Taylor Architecture Past & Present
    "Rooms with a Past"
    Hotel Blazimar c1943
    Taylor National Bank Building
    "Razed in Texas"
    Taylor, Texas City Hall c1906

    Cotton for shipment, Taylor Texas
    Cotton for shipment in Taylor
    Postcard courtesy William Beauchamp
    Odd Fellows Building, Taylor, Texas
    The Odd Fellows Building in Taylor
    TE Photo, 2004
    Nearby Destinations
  • Hwy 95 South 16 miles to Elgin via Coupland with its picturesque downtown and railroad depot, another 17 miles south to Bastrop.
  • Hwy 95 North 34 miles to Temple.
  • Hwy 79 West 17 miles to Round Rock, then I-35 South 18 miles to Austin.
  • Taylor Hotels > Book Here

    Taylor Chamber of Commerce - 512-365-8485
    1519 North Main, Taylor, Texas 76574
    Website: www.taylorchamber.org

  • Taylor, Texas Forum
  • Subject: Blazimar Hotel
    Those of us born and raised in Taylor know that the Blazimar (spelling correction) was named after Bland, Zizinia and Marse. We are unsure of who the Zilkers might be as they or unknown to Taylorites. By the way, I checked the Taylor Public Library archives to be certain of my information and the spelling of The Blazimar. Thank you, Ella Jez, March 10, 2009


  • Subject: Blazilmar Hotel story
    Dear TE, My grandparents (Paul and Eureka Ferguson) managed the Blazimar hotel in Taylor, Texas, in the late 1950s and I spent several summers there. I well remember James the elevator man and even helped as his special assistant sometimes when he was busy with some chore my grandmother thought up. He taught me how to ease the lever down to stop exactly even with the floor so the guest doesn't trip.

    Your reminiscence page brought back such a flood of old memories it makes me eager to write an article for your magazine. Meanwhile, [here is] my 2004 short story, set in 1958 at the Blazilmar. "Waiting for Elvis" is fiction, but based on actual events. It won second place in the Denver Woman's Press Club ---- In-House Writer's Contest in 2005! - Shere Chamness, August 22, 2007

  • Subject: Hotel Blazimar
    I grew up in Taylor also and I remember the Blazimar Hotel very well. I have a brother that worked across the street at the Blazilmar garage as a mechanic. I remember coming home from boot camp from San Diego and arriving on a greyhound bus. - Bennie Mitchell, Amarillo Texas, March 18, 2006

  • I'm looking for historic information about Taylor Texas. My father James Vester Taylor was born and grew up there. His father, Christopher Columbus Taylor, married to Mary Alice Taylor had a cotton farm there for their adult life. My father told me that we were descendents of the naming Taylor, but he is since deceased and I have no further information. Can you refer me to any links, books, etc., where I might find information. Your site brought back memories. - Vera (Taylor), Seattle, Washington, December 04, 2005

  • Thank you sooo much for your coverage of Taylor! We really do appreciate it. You do great work for our small towns! - Shelly Hargrove, Main Street Project Manager
  • Taylor, Texas
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