Understanding the Background of Rowlett, TX
In order to understand how something works today, we have to look at its background. This goes for people, things, and even cities, such as Rowlett, TX. Located in northeast Texas, this city is a suburb with approximately 57,000 residents. Despite the relatively small population, the community continues to grow every day thanks to its close proximity to larger cities, and a plethora of job opportunities. While the city of Rowlett wasn’t always predominantly a commuter town, there have been plenty of ways that the city has contributed to Texan life. To understand how the city functions within the state today, we take a look at where it’s been.
Naming a Newborn City
The city derives its name from Rowlett Creek, which in turn was named for a water system that ran through Daniel Rowlett’s property when he moved to the land in 1835. While Daniel was a member of a well-known political family, the Smoot-Rowlett family, he had no direct dealings with the town that now carries his name other than living on the land. Before bearing the name “Rowlett,” the town was called “Morris” after its first opened post office’s Postmaster, Austin Morris. It’s unclear why the name was later changed.
Early Days in Rowlett, TX
After the town was renamed to Rowlett, the number one contributor to growing populations in the 1800’s came to town: the railroad. The Dallas and Greenville Railway was built to pass through the town in 1886, which connected Dallas with Greenville, and the Missouri-Kansas-Texas Railroad. Only about 35 years later, the city became a stop on the Bankhead Highway, which connected Washington D.C. to San Diego.
Growth in Population
As the town was incorporated in more stops along the rail and highways, more people had access to it, and a growth in the overall population took place. Though these stopping points were contributors to the population growth, the completion of Lake Ray Hubbard in 1971 took the town from a population of around 250 people to near 1,600, growing rapidly each year. By the year 2000, the population had risen to approximately 44,500 people, and it continued to grow.
The town gained national, and in some cases, international notoriety after the 1996 incident, where a local city resident was convicted of murdering her two children as they slept. In 2013, the Rowlett City Council was challenged on the grounds of prayer invocation openings during city hall meetings. The town once again gained national publicity after being struck by a violent storm in 2015, which resulted in a deadly tornado that ripped through a 13-mile pathway.
The City Today
Today, the city is home to Rockwall County’s Collin College, and fosters a thriving photography community, as well as a number of regional award-winning photographers. As the population continues to grow, so does the town’s activity. Despite it being a primarily commuter’s city, there are many things happening in Rowlett, TX that gain more and more involvement every day.