Buda was a piece of land owned by Mrs. Cornelia A. Trimble. In the year 1880, the International and Great Northern Railroad funded the expansion of the railroad track from Austin to San Antonio. This expansion gave Mrs. Trimble’s land potential and she started working on a plan to plat the land as a city.
The Second Du Pre, Texas
On Friday, April 1, 1881 the town of Du Pre (Buda) was established and plots of land were sold that Saturday. The International and Great Northern Railroad eventually created a rail stop in Buda which led to the town getting a post office, a spike in population growth and attracted businesses to the area. The first community center in this part of the county was Mountain City. It developed before the Civil War, but it was rapidly depopulated as its residents and businesses flocked to the new rail depot in Buda.
After six years of being known as Du Pre, the United State Postal Service discovered that another town had been established as Du Pre, Texas before the year 1881 and required that the town receive a name change.
Becoming Buda, Texas
In 1887, at the request of the post office department, the name of the town was changed to Buda. The common explanation for the new name is that it derives from Spanish word viuda, which translates to widow. The town had gained a reputation as a popular eating and rest stop for rail travelers. The name may refer to a pair of widows who cooked at the Carrington Hotel in the 1880s.
The provisions of supplies and services to surrounding dairy farms and ranches was the basis of the local economy. At different times the community supported mills, hotels, banks, a lumberyard, two newspapers, a cheese factory, a movie theatre and a skating rink. In 1928 local businesses organized a Chamber of Commerce. Buda remained an active commercial center and railroad depot until the Great Depression.
In 1929 its population was estimated at 600, but by 1933 it fell to 300. The town was incorporated in 1948, but it wasn't until the mid-1980s, as the growth of Austin began to be felt in Buda, did its population once again approach pre-depression levels. During this time, Buda had attracted a cement plant and some craft industry, but the community was still primarily rural and residential. Its population in 1990 was 1,795.
Today, we have a thriving city with major retail and services for our residents and visitors. The population is currently over 8,600 and climbing, as Buda is the fastest growing city is the Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization region.