408 W. Main St. Fredericksburg, TX 830.997.9591
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Welcome to Llano, Texas
Llano is the county seat of Llano County, Texas, in the heart of the Texas Hill Country where the views are beautiful and wide, the water is clear and cool and the night sky is brilliant. As of the 2000 census, the city population was 3,325. Llano is on the Llano River, 65 miles northwest of Austin, 102 miles north of San Antonio, and just 36 miles from Fredericksburg, TX.
The Llano River location for the town was chosen in an election under a live oak on the south bank of the river, near the present site of Roy Inks Bridge in Llano. Into the 1870s the town was little more than a frontier trading center, with a handful of log buildings housing business establishments, a post office, and a few homes. In 1885 an ornate brick courthouse was completed on the square on the south side of the river. A fire in 1892 destroyed this courthouse and the present county courthouse was completed and occupied in August 1893.
In the 1880s the Llano Rural, the town's first newspaper, was established, followed by the Iron City News. The Rural eventually incorporated several other newspapers, including the Advocate, the Searchlight, and the Gazette, to become the Llano News by the early 1900s.
Anticipation of significant economic growth based on the iron deposits discovered at Iron Mountain in northwestern Llano County attracted capital from Dallas and from northern states, and the boom years of Llano-from 1886 to 1893-were launched. Llano was to be the "Pittsburgh of the West." But only a small dam and the street lighting were completed. In 1892, at the peak of the boom period, the town was incorporated, the river was bridged, and the Austin and Northwestern Railroad was extended to a terminal on the north side of Llano. Because of the improved transportation, several granite cutting and finishing businesses moved to town in this period.
Farming, ranching, and the granite industry remained the foundations of the town's economy in the twentieth century. In the 1920s Granite quarrying and finishing retained their importance, amounting to a million-dollar-a-year industry by the 1950s. The Roy Inks Bridge, named for a former mayor, was built after a flood swept away the 1892 structure. By 1964 the town had a new hospital, a post office, school buildings, a community center, a rodeo area, and a golf course, along with a city park and improved water system. A winery, feed processing, insecticide and commercial talc production represent new industry in the area.
Llano County is home of many historic places.
Llano is widely known as the Deer Capital of Texas. The density of deer in the Llano Basin is the highest in the nation. Hunters from all over come to Llano for deer, quail, dove, and turkey hunting, as well as bow hunting.
The spring-fed Llano River, which runs through the city, offers some of the best fishing in the area. Lake Buchanan, which offers a portion of the eastern border of Llano County, was built in 1938 as a hydro-generating project in the scenic Texas Hill Country. White bass, striped bass, largemouth bass, catfish, spotted bass, crappie and walleye attract fisherman to this lake year round.
The bald eagle makes its home in Llano County during its annual winter migration. Nine miles east of Llano on Highway 29, a family of bald eagles can be viewed from the roadside during the nesting season.
The Llano River Golf Course is located two miles west of the Llano courthouse on the Old Castell Road adjacent to Robinson City Park. The 18-hole golf course has front and back T-boxes. Located on the banks of the Llano River, the colorful course presents a good challenge. A fully equipped Pro-Shop and golf carts are also available.
Llanite, a rare type of brown granite with sky blue crystals and rusty-pink feldspar, is found nowhere else in the world except in Llano County. Llanite can be found along a highway cut nine miles north of Llano on Texas 16. The largest piece of polished Llanite in the world can be seen at the Badu House, Llano's historic inn.
An extensive exhibit of artifacts, both Indian and early Texan, plus a large display of area gems and minerals are on permanent exhibition at the Llano County Museum.
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