Present day Waco derived its name from the Wichita Native American group called “Waco” who lived in the land before western settlers moved in. Stephen F. Austin, avoiding a bloody conflict with the natives, made a treaty with them in 1825 and they eventually moved out and settled in present-day Fort Worth before joining other Wichita tribes in Oklahoma. As settlers moved in and made the town their home, many wanted to name the city Lamartine but Texas Ranger and surveyor George Erath swayed them to name the town Waco in honor of the Native Americans who first lived there.
Recovering rapidly after the Civil War, Waco became a booming town where cattlemen threading the Chisholm Trail would stop by to replenish supplies. The economy further boomed with the completion of the suspension bridge that spanned the Brazos River, prompting the town’s incorporation as a city in 1870. The first gas plant also began operation during the 1880s but the city’s economy gained a much needed boost with the construction of military bases in the area.
The city however, declined considerably with the closure of Connally Air Force Base, but Waco’s urban renewal projects helped revived the city’s economic standing. Aside from this, the city provided a wide array of incentives that was successful in attracting residential, small business and industrial establishments to move to the area thus reviving the city’s commercial, retail and manufacturing industries.
Since the rollout of energy deregulation in Texas, Waco has been slowly emerging in the area of wind power development and other forms of renewable energy resources. This provided residents freedom with their electric choice, giving them the power to choose their retail electricity providers and gain significant savings from affordable electric plans and good quality services. The city also conducted electricity auctions and have participated in online exchanges for energy, green power, renewable energy certificates and other environmental commodities.