Stafford’s Long and Rich History
The city of Stafford has a long and rich history, starting from the early 1800s when a man named William Stafford began running a cane mill and cotton gin on his plantation. Just a few years later, during the Texas Revolution in 1836, Mexican forces invaded that area of the state and ordered the plantation burned.
Stafford is Reborn
Not to be deterred, Stafford rebuilt the plantation and stayed there until his death in 1840. His plantation was so successful that settlers arrived in the area and built what they called “Stafford’s Point” around his property. In 1853, the area became an official townsite complete with a post office and several stops for the Buffalo Bayou, Brazos and Colorado Railway systems.
The town continued to grow so that by 1884, it boasted 50 fulltime residents, a grocer, and two general stores! A mere decade later, the town had a population of 300. Unfortunately, during World War I, the population fell again as young men went off to fight in the war; however, by 1931, Stafford had grown to over 320 people yet again! The population continued to grow, reaching 400 residents by 1946. The town then incorporated as an official city in 1956.
Since its incorporation in 1956, Stafford has continued to grow and thrive. According to the 2010 U.S. census, the population had reached over 17,000 people with over 4000 households! Corporations, including the United Parcel Service, Tyco, and Texas Instruments have moved operations into the city at one time or another. At one point, Texas Instruments even provided 15% of the jobs in the city.
Stafford’s infrastructure has also grown to support its population. The city boasts some 15 business parks or office complexes, a shopping mall, and some 19 motels. Over 35 acres in the city are designated as public parks, many of them offering basketball courts, playing fields, and playground equipment, perfect for growing families! The Fort Bend Star newspaper also has an office and production facility in the city.
The Houston Community College System also has a close association with Stafford, with its Southwest College establishing a branch in the city. The Southwest College regularly sees attendance of some 8000 students. There is also a center for the performing arts in the city along with a 4900 square foot public library.
While the city of Stafford has had its struggles over the years, including the closing of some Texas Instruments facilities and other such economic setbacks, city residents exhibit the same fighting spirit as the man whose name the city carries! Undeterred by company closings, many city residents stay in the area and start their own businesses, determined to keep Stafford thriving as an all-American town.
The quiet, small town feel in the city also makes it an excellent place to raise a family, and that quaint atmosphere is not likely to go away anytime soon! Stafford’s history is deeply rooted in American history and its residents are determined to ensure the city continues to thrive in future years.