One of the oldest counties from the Republic of Texas (1837), it is named for the Colorado River. The river still influences the county's major cash crop — rice. Taking advantage of the coastal conditions and local irrigation methods, area farmers also grow milo, soybeans, cotton and turf grasses.
Once an Indian village called Montezuma, the town was laid out in 1823. Columbus is the oldest, continuously occupied Anglo-American community in Texas and is known as the "City of Live Oaks." Ten historic sites make up the Historic District Walking Tour of Columbus, which includes the Confederate Memorial Museum, Alley Log Cabin, District Court Oak, and the Mary Elizabeth Hopkins Memorial Santa Claus Museum. The 1890-circa Colorado County Courthouse has a stained glass dome in the second floor courtroom that was uncovered in its 1980 restoration. The Colorado County Courthouse is closed for construction and is scheduled to reopen in May 2014.
In the original colony founded by Stephen F. Austin, the town site was dedicated in 1856 and named for the lake it borders. Eagle Lake is known as the
"Goose Hunting Capital of the World." The town's
Prairie Edge Museum highlights the natural and cultural history of the city and its lake, showing artifacts from the community's early days.
Attwater Prairie Chicken National Wildlife Refuge
More than a century ago, 1 million Attwater's prairie-chickens graced the Texas and Louisiana gulf coastal prairie. Today, less than 1 percent of coastal prairies remain. This natural setting of 8,000 acres of critical habitat was set aside for these endangered birds and many migratory and resident wildlife species.
Originally called Jackson Station after its founder, D.W. Jackson, the city was renamed Weimar after Weimar, Germany. The town's
Heritage Society Museum exhibits photographs of Texas' 254 courthouses, a turn-of-the-century mercantile store, an extensive collection of military items and pharmaceutical artifacts. St. Michael's Catholic Church is also in Weimar. Beautiful stained glass windows best viewed from inside brighten the interior of this church, along with an ornate altar and statuary.
The town of Frelsburg was the first German settlement in Colorado County. It was founded in 1837 by William Frels, an immigrant who fought for Texas' independence from Mexico. Saints Peter and Paul Catholic Church, established in 1847 by German Catholics in the town, is the oldest Anglo Catholic parish in Texas. The Trinity Lutheran Church was built on land donated by William Frels and until 1932 all services were conducted in German. Located north of Columbus on Highway 1291.