Hutto is a city in Williamson County, Texas, United States. It is part of theAustin-Round Rock metropolitan area. The population was 14,698 at the 2010 census.
Hutto water tower
|Nickname(s): The Hutto Hippos|
Location of Hutto, Texas
Historically, Hutto was not established until 1876 when the International-Great Northern Railroad passed through land owned by James Emory Hutto (1824-1914), for whom the community is named. Railroad officials designated the stop Hutto Station. James Hutto was born in Alabama on June 8, 1824; he came to Texas in 1847 and moved his family to Williamson County in 1855. A slave, Adam Orgain, was actually the first person to live in the immediate Hutto vicinity having been placed out on the black land prairie by his owner to watch after the cattle and livestock holdings. It was in 1876 that James Hutto sold 50 acres (200,000 m2) to the Texas Land Company of New York for a town site and railroad right of way. Hutto had become a wealthy cattleman in Williamson County; however, in 1885 he left Hutto and moved to Waco and entered the hardware business. Other early settlers in the area were the Carpenter, Davis, Evans, Farley, Goodwin, Highsmith, Johnson, Magle, Payne, Saul, Weight, Womack and Wright families. Other people living in Hutto during the 1890s included the Armstrongs, the Ahlbergs, M.B. Kennedy, the Hugh Kimbro family, William McCutcheon, Green Randolph, J.B. Ross and the Tisdales. Soon a great many more people, primarily Swedish and German immigrants, came to this area to farm and ranch and begin their new lives in America.
According to local legend it was in 1915 that a circus train stopped in Hutto Texas at the depot to take on passengers, pick up and deliver mail and possibly take on water and fuel for the steam locomotive. The circus train workers also would have taken this opportunity to care for their animals. At some point during this historic layover ahippopotamus got out of the railcar and made its way to the nearby Cottonwood Creek which is next to the rail line. This caused much consternation for the circus workers. Local farmers and merchants watched the commotion in amusement and with interest as unsuccessful efforts were made to extricate the hippopotamus from the muddy waters of Cottonwood Creek. It is said that the Depot Agent, who at that time would have been Hal Farley, Jr., telegraphed the communities of Taylor and Round Rock that were eight miles (13 km) to the east and west of Hutto to the effect of: “STOP TRAINS, HIPPO LOOSE IN HUTTO”. After much effort the hippo was prodded from the mud and water that resembled its natural habitat and was reloaded back onto the train car. Soon afterward the Hutto School adopted the hippopotamus as its mascot and as early as 1923 the hippo appeared on official Hutto High School graduation announcements.
There are several alternate stories about the beginnings of the unique Hutto mascot. According to one the big Swedish and German boys of Hutto were playing their smaller foes in football and the visiting coach exclaimed, “We can’t beat those boys, they’re big as hippos!” Another story, also based on gridiron lore, is that the Hutto football team in the early twenties had no real jerseys and used feed sacks as their uniforms. The opposing coach allegedly said that the football team looked like a bunch of hippos in their makeshift outfits.