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Baylor University

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1887, William W. Larmour. 8th St. at Speight Ave.
  • (Photograph by Gerald Moorhead )
  • (Photograph by Gerald Moorhead)

Baylor is the world's largest Baptist University. Founded under charter issued by the Congress of the Republic of Texas on February 1, 1845, and in continuous operation since, it was named for Judge R. E. B. Baylor (1791–1873), a native of Kentucky, a U.S. congressman from Alabama in the 1820s, and one of the first district judges in Texas. Judge Baylor, with the Reverend William Tryon and the Reverend James Huckins, obtained the charter under the terms of a resolution of the Union Baptist Association to establish “A Baptist University  . . . to meet the needs of all the ages to come.” The first location was at Independence, in Washington County. An early benefactor was General Sam Houston, who sent his children to the university and who initiated construction of the first building for women on the campus. In 1886 the university moved to Waco, where the campus continues to grow.

Writing Credits

Gerald Moorhead et al.


What's Nearby


Gerald Moorhead et al., "Baylor University", [Waco, Texas], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Cover: Buildings of Texas

Buildings of Texas: Central, South, and Gulf Coast, Gerald Moorhead and contributors. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2013, 125-126.

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