Sugar Land

Sugar Land is on Oyster Creek and U.S. Highway 90A, east of the Brazos River and seven miles northeast of Richmond in northeastern Fort Bend County. The area was originally granted to Samuel M. Williams in 1828 for his service as secretary to Stephen F. Austin. Nathaniel F. Williams purchased the land from his brother in 1838, and there he and a third brother, Matthew R. Williams, operated Oakland Plantation, which grew cotton, corn, and sugarcane. The Williams brothers established their raw-sugar mill in 1843. In 1853 Oakland Plantation was purchased by Benjamin F. Terry and William J. Kyle, who were instrumental in extending the Buffalo Bayou, Brazos and Colorado Railway through the property. A post office was established in Sugar Land in 1858. After the deaths of Terry in 1861 and Kyle in 1864 the plantation began to languish. The post office was closed in 1886. E. H. Cunningham of San Antonio accumulated more than 12,000 acres of the property over time and invested more than $1 million in a sugar refinery, a new raw-sugar mill, a paper mill, and the fourteen-mile Sugar Land Railroad in the 1890s. Sugar Land was one of the rail stations. In 1890 a second post office opened. At that time much of the labor force was leased from the nearby state prison farms. The inmates worked in the wet sugarcane fields, many falling victim to the periodic epidemics of fevers. The brutal working conditions caused bitter convicts to call Sugar Land the "Hell hole on the Brazos."

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

Sugar Land is part of or belongs to the following places.

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Adopted by:
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Currently Exists

Yes

Place type

Sugar Land is classified as a Town

Associated Names

  • (Hodge's Bend)

Locations

  • Latitude
    29.59898520
    Longitude
    -95.62264700

Has Post Office

Yes

Is Incorporated

Yes

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Sugar Land by the Numbers

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Population Counts

Sugar Land
Pop. Year Source
129,423 2019 Texas Demographic Center
78,817 2010 Texas Demographic Center
63,328 2000 Texas Demographic Center
33,712 1990 Texas Demographic Center
8,826 1980 Texas Demographic Center
3,318 1970 Texas Demographic Center
2,802 1960 Texas Demographic Center
2,285 1950 Texas Demographic Center