Bellaire

Bellaire, on Interstate Loop 610, is surrounded by Houston, West University Place, and Southside Place in southwest Harris County. William Wright Baldwin, acting as president of the South End Land Company, founded Bellaire and Westmoreland Farms after purchasing the 9,449-acre Rice Ranch in 1908. Baldwin was a native of Iowa and nationally known as vice president of the Burlington Railroad. The development was six miles from Houston on the eastern edge of the Rice Ranch, so named for former owner William Marsh Rice. Promotional advertising in 1909 explained that Bellaire was named for the area's Gulf breezes, but Baldwin may have named it for Bellaire, Ohio, a town served by his railroad. By 1910 Baldwin had invested over $150,000 in capital improvements to turn the treeless prairie into an attractive location for residences and small truck farms. From the site to Main Street in Houston he constructed Bellaire Boulevard. He also incorporated the Westmoreland Railroad Company to build an electric streetcar line down the center of the boulevard. The streetcar, known as the "Toonerville Trolley," operated from December 12, 1910, until bus service replaced it on September 26, 1927. In 1910 horticulturist Edward Teas was induced to move his nursery from Missouri to Bellaire Boulevard to implement landscaping plans drawn by landscape architect Sid Hare. A Bellaire post office opened in 1911.

Adapted from the official Handbook of Texas, a state encyclopedia developed by the Texas State Historical Association (TSHA). It is an authoritative source of trusted historical records.

Belongs to

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Currently Exists

Yes

Place type

Bellaire is classified as a Town

Locations

  • Latitude
    29.70390530
    Longitude
    -95.46223100

Has Post Office

Yes

Is Incorporated

Yes

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Bellaire by the Numbers

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Population Counts

Bellaire
Pop. Year Source
18,425 2019 Texas Demographic Center
16,855 2010 Texas Demographic Center
15,642 2000 Texas Demographic Center
13,842 1990 Texas Demographic Center
14,950 1980 Texas Demographic Center
19,009 1970 Texas Demographic Center
19,872 1960 Texas Demographic Center
10,173 1950 Texas Demographic Center
1,124 1940 Texas Demographic Center
390 1930 Texas Demographic Center