Settlers of the Texas Frontier were undeniably an eclectic bunch, and the founders of Waco were no exception. One of the main organizers of the new city was a Jewish, Jamaican-born Spaniard named Jacob de Cordova. De Cordova was not only instrumental…

“The King of Western Swing,” the “living root of country music.” Henry William “Hank” Thompson became a western swing and country music star right from his hometown of Waco. Hank was born in Waco on September 3, 1925 to German-Czech immigrant parents…

Over the past forty years, Kitok Restaurant has gone from a humble diner to a local institution, known for its blend of American and Korean fare. But when it first opened in 1975, owner Kitok Moore stuck to diner classics and hesitated calling her…

When football fans hear “Battle of the Brazos,” they think of an old rivalry between Baylor and Texas A&M (formerly The Agricultural and Mechanical College of Texas), two schools situated on the Brazos River. Before the days of the Big 12 and the…

Positioned on what used to be the only highway through town, Magnolia Table now draws in patrons from around the country and the globe. Though a new restaurant itself, the Table resides in a building with a rich history that has welcomed hungry…

A decade ago no one dreamed that two abandoned cottonseed silos would become the icon of a burgeoning retail empire—yet that is exactly what happened. After the Brazos Valley Cotton Oil Mill closed in 1958 and the silos ceased to serve as storage in…

In the midst of war, some towns stay far removed from the action. For Waco in 1917, this was far from the case. Engineers and workers broke ground for Camp MacArthur training base in July, famously taking up over 1,300 acres of the small Texas city.…

The “irreverent gadflies.” When Baylor University students think about the NoZe Brothers today, they picture fellow students performing shenanigans around campus while wearing big plastic noses, wild wigs, and eclectic outfits. They think of The…

Nestled behind several fast food chains at Fifteenth Street and Speight Avenue, Cupp’s Drive-Inn has been offering diner favorites to local residents and Baylor students and staff for seventy years and counting. The small diner offers a window into…

For nearly a century, Wilkirson-Hatch-Bailey Funeral Home has provided funeral care to McLennan County, priding themselves on not only offering funeral arrangements, but on serving families during times of grief. Wilkirson-Hatch-Bailey…

Centered in Waco as one of the nation’s premier shops for hand-crafted cowboy hats, Standard Hat Works has been serving customers from near and far for over 100 years. William Gross, a Hungarian immigrant to the United States, founded what would…

Situated just off of Waco's historic traffic circle, Circle Hardware Supply stands as one of the city's longest-running businesses. Originally founded by Frank Stevens in 1945 as a small lumber operation called Circle Lumber Company, the business has…

Love it or hate it, Interstate 35 is a presence that is difficult to ignore. As part of America's major interstate highway system, I-35 has left an indelible impact on the city of Waco, prompting dramatic shifts in Waco's economy, neighborhoods, and…

When Ramiro “Ramsey” Muñiz ran for governor of Texas in 1972, he became the first candidate of Hispanic descent to run for the state's gubernatorial seat. Despite Muñiz’s controversial legacy, his career was, for many, as inspiring as it was…

For most of their history, the Davidians and later the Branch Davidians had lived in isolation from the Waco community. As a city with deep religious roots, Branch Davidians were generally accepted and allowed to practice their religious beliefs…

Often confused with the Davidians, the Branch Davidians are a splinter group organized in 1955 by Ben Roden following the death of Davidian founder Victor T. Houteff. Houteff had founded the Davidians, a small Adventist reform movement, in 1929. Six…

During the 1960s and 70s, the Vietnam War rocked American communities from coast to coast, leaving death and division in its wake. McLennan County was no exception. The Waco Vietnam Veterans Memorial stands on the banks of the Brazos River as a…

From the 1940s to the 1970s, Wacoans could enjoy the full spectrum of the cinematic experience from the comfort of their own cars at the Circle Drive-In Theatre. This theatre, named for Waco's nearby traffic circle, was one of hundreds of drive-in…

Waco has deep Christian roots, but other religions, such as the Bahá’í Faith, also have a longstanding history in Central Texas. The Bahá’í Faith was first established in Iran in 1863 by Bahá’u’lláh who taught that religion is progressively…