History

9 Famed 19th Century Universities in Texas

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Texas became a state in December 1845, the same year one of our famous universities was founded. In fact, 9 Texas schools for higher learning began in the 19th Century and made their mark before 1900. Almost 100 private universities were founded in Texas between 1837 and 1900, but only about 20 remain in present day. Here’s a bit of trivia: the birth of Baylor University, a private university, came before Texas joined the Union. Chartered on February 1, 1845, ten months before statehood, Baylor hits the charts as number one as we count down the oldest schools.

1. Baylor University

baylor university imagePhoto: mapio.net

Baylor University is the oldest University in Texas. Those Baylor Bears began with a modest start by Baptists in Independence, Texas. Independence is 12 miles northeast of Brenham in Texas Bluebonnet country. Baylor moved to Waco in 1885 and established a presence near the Brazos River. Baylor remains a private Christian institution with more than 16,000 students currently enrolled. Baylor Law School was launched in 1949 and became the first law school in Texas. As a member of the Big 12 Conference, Baylor has accumulated 96 conference titles. Sic ‘em Bears!

2. Texas Christian University (TCU)

texas christian universtiy Flicker

Photo: Facebook/TCU-Texas Christian University

Texas Christian University (TCU) comes in at number two. TCU, founded in 1873, is also a private school. The Disciples of Christ are associated with the university but the university isn’t governed by this religious group. You’ll find over 10,000 students enrolled on the campus in Fort Worth, Texas. The Baylor Baptists and TCU Churches of Christ created their private schools prior to public education. Those TCU Horned Frogs can play a mean game of football.

3. Texas A&M

Texas A & MPhoto: Wikipedia

Texas A&M began in 1876 and earns the reputation as the state’s first public institution for advanced education. Located in College Station, more than 58,000 students are registered. That number makes this university the largest enrolled population in a Texas university, and one of the largest student populations in the United States. The endowment fund places in the top ten in the nation. The Aggie Spirit is hard to beat.

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