Praries & Lakes
2010 Census - Unknown
2000 Census - 600
Chappell Hill, Texas
Chappell Hill Texas History:
By 1847, Jacob Haller was operating a trading post in a small community located at the Chappell Hill site. In 1847, Haller’s wife Mary established the Chappell Hill post office. She purchased 100 acres for a townsite. In 1849, she platted the townsite, sold town lots, and named the town for her grandfather, an early area settler. Missionary Robert Alexander organized the Chappell Hill Methodist Church the same year. By the 1850s, Chappell Hill was a business center for the area’s large cotton plantations. Chappell Hill incorporated in 1856; the town’s voters voted to rescind the incorporation 1884. Chappell Hill businessmen were instrumental in getting the Houston and Texas Central Railroad to build a line to Chappell Hill in 1859. The arrival of the railroad enabled Chappell Hill to become a distribution center for area farmers and ranchers. During the Civil War (1861-1865), a Confederate quartermaster depot and a military hospital were located in Chappell Hill. Camp Felder, a Confederate camp for Union prisoners, was located near town at the site of a former Methodist campground. In 1864, Union soldiers were transferred from Camp Groce near present day Hempstead to Camp Felder to avoid a yellow fever outbreak at Camp Groce. The 1867 yellow fever epidemic caused many of the surviving Chappell Hill residents to flee the town. The arrival of industrious Polish immigrant farmers beginning in the early 1870s ensured Chappell Hill’s place as an area supply point. The population increased from 318 in the early 1870s to 800 by 1885. In 1889, Polish immigrants organized St. Stanislaus Catholic Church, one of the earliest Polish parishes in Texas. Residents organized the Chappell Hill Circulating Library Association in 1893. The library was restored in 1864. Brenham began to flourish by the late 1880s, causing Chappell Hill to decline. The Methodist’s Soule University which was established in 1856 closed in 1888. The Chappell Hill Female Academy (1852) closed in 1912. By 1914, Chappell Hill had 600 residents. It increased to 1,000 by 1930. However, the Great Depression and the decline of the cotton industry caused the population to drop to 300 by 1960, as residents moved elsewhere in search of jobs. The town’s economy began to revive in the 1960s as Houstonians moved into the area and showed an interest in the restoration of historic homes, causing property values to soar. The Chappell Hill Chamber of Commerce was established in 1970. In 1984, voters rejected the reincorporation of Chappell Hill. This historic town has more than twenty-five Texas historical markers, and ten sites listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Many historical buildings are located in the Main Street Historic District. The recently restored Masonic Cemetery contains the graves of Republic of Texas settlers and Confederate veterans. During the spring, visitors flock to Washington County to view the beautiful bluebonnets and other wildflowers. Chappell Hill is located west of the Brazos River at the intersections of U.S. 290, FM 1155 (Main Street) and FM 2447, 44 miles east of Giddings, 22 miles east of Burton, 27 miles southeast of Somerville and Lake Somerville, 10.6 miles southeast of Brenham, 25.6 miles southwest of Navasota, 22 miles southwest of Washington, 13 miles slightly northwest of Hempstead, 49 miles northwest of San Felipe, 16.2 miles north of Bellville, 46 miles northeast of Columbus, and 32 miles northeast of Round Top, Texas.