Originally settled by Indians German and Spanish pioneers began settling Austin’s stretch of the Colorado River in the 1830s and it was officially incorporated in 1839. Austin’s first village was Waterloo – and it’s the one that was chosen to become the state’s capital of the new Republic of Texas. Then Republic of Texas President Mirabeau B. Lamar proposed moving the capitol from Houston to Austin when he visited the area in 1837-38. The city was later named after Stephen F. Austin “the father of Texas” and its founders’ vision included a state capitol building that would look down from a hill over the city. Texas was annexed in 1845 and the State Capitol was built in 1888 – on a hill with stunning views of the city.
The city grew throughout the 19th century and became a center for government and education with the construction of the Texas State Capitol and the University of Texas. After a lull in growth from the Great Depression Austin Texas resumed its development into a major city in the 1980s and emerged as a center for technology and business.