About This Place
Alpine is a city in and the county seat of Brewster County, Texas, United States. The population was 5,786 people at the 2000 census, and had increased to 5,905 by 2010.
The area had been a campsite for cattlemen tending their herds between 1878 and the spring of 1882, when a town of tents was created by railroad workers and their families. Because the section of the railroad was called Osborne, that was the name of the small community for a brief time. The railroad needed access to water from springs owned by brothers named Daniel and Thomas Murphy, so it entered into an agreement with the Murphys to change the name of the section and settlement to Murphyville in exchange for a contract to use the spring. In November 1883 the Murphys registered a plat for the town of Murphyville with the county clerk of Presidio County. The town's name was changed to Alpine on February 3, 1888 following a petition by its residents. At this time a description of the town mentioned a dozen houses, three saloons, a hotel and rooming house, a livery stable, a butcher shop, and a drugstore, which also housed the post office.
Alpine grew very slowly until Sul Ross State Normal College (now Sul Ross State University), was opened in 1921. The opening of Big Bend National Park in the 1940s further spurred the growth of the town. The population was estimated at 396 in 1904. By 1927 it had risen to 3,000. The 1950 census reported Alpine's population at 5,256, but the 1960 census reported only 4,740 residents. A high of approximately 6,200 was reached by 1976. In 1980 residents numbered 5,465 and businesses 108. In 1990 the population was 5,637. In 2000 the population grew to 5,786.