Bay City’s history colorful, successful

http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~txmatago/
Children in early Bay City would have enjoyed many parades. This parade entry is decorated with palmettos or palm bracnhes. This picture gives a good view of the first county courthouse at Bay City.

 Bay City, the county seat of Matagorda County, is an incorporated city at the junction of Texas 35 and Texas 60, in the north central portion of the county 90 miles southwest of Houston. 
   The community is named for its location on Bay Prairie, between the richly productive bottomlands of the Colorado River and Caney Creek.  
   It was established in 1894, when David Swickheimer, a Colorado mining millionaire and participant in a promotional organization called the Enterprise Land and Colonizing Company, formed the Bay City Town Company in partnership with G.M. Magill, N.M. Vogelsang, and Nicholas King.  
   Planning that Bay City would one-day supplant Matagorda as county seat, the men selected two cow pastures on Bay Prairie as the site for a new community. 
   The company bought 320 acres from D.P. Moore and another 320 acres from the Mensing brothers of Galveston.  
   One square mile was given to the townsite, on which the promoters laid out wide, regular streets.  
   Elliott’s Ferry, two miles away, provided transportation across the Colorado River. 
   In August 1894, before a single building had been erected, Magill and Vogelsang released the first issue of the Bay City Breeze and began to promote the new community.  
   Distributed countywide, the newspaper, coupled with the promoters’ promise to build a new courthouse if the county government were moved, succeeded in convincing county residents to support the new town.  
   At the time, the population of the county totaled roughly 3,000 people, of which 75 percent were black.  
   On Sept. 18, 1894, Matagorda County voters elected to make Bay City the new county seat. 
 
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