Railroad Era and Industrial Development
In 1877, the Galveston, Harrisburg, and San Antonio Railroad arrived in San Antonio and sparked major growth in both business and population. Four years later, the International‐Great Northern Railroad reached the city, and several other lines followed (Fehrenbach 2009). As San Antonio expanded into a regional commercial, agricultural processing, and transport hub, services for the growing population also expanded. Infrastructure improvements such as road maintenance, water supply systems, telephone, and electric service all emerged to meet the needs of the growing city. The city’s boom period continued through the turn of the century, and by 1900, the population had risen to 53,321 (Fehrenbach 2009).