Originally named Taylorsville in 1876, it was home to the International and Great Northern Railroad. In 1882 the Missouri, Kansas and Texas line was established to make Taylor the crossroads of enterprise. Rich black soil made cattle and cotton king. A large fire in 1879 destroyed 29 wood-frame buildings downtown. Buildings were quickly rebuilt with brick and mortar, and they are still part of today's architecturally significant downtown. Today, Taylor is a thriving community. It is home to Scott and White healthcare systems, and Temple College. It also offers some of the top barbecue in the nation, is a part of the Texas BBQ Trail.
Some famous citizens include actor Rip Torn; Elmer "Pet" Brown, world middleweight wrestling champion; Dan Moody, the youngest governor in Texas' history; Bill Pickett, the cowboy who invented "bulldogging;" and cartoonist Tex Avery.
Festivals include Main Street's Zest Fest in May, the Rodeo Association's Tractor Pull in June, the Taylor Rodeo in July, the International BBQ Cook-Off in August, the Taylor Fly-In & Air Race in November and the Parade of Lights in December.
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