Named for Jabez Deming Giddings, an early railroad promoter, the town was formed by the Houston and Texas Central Railway in 1871. The area around Giddings became home to a large number of Wendish families who immigrated to Texas from Germany in the mid-nineteenth century. In 1874, Giddings became the county seat when Lee County was formed. Wide streets were used for markets including the two principal ones, Austin and Main. In the late nineteenth century, Lee County became an important area for cotton growing and, later, cattle raising.
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