Princeton, Texas

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For the ghost town in Newton County, see Princeton, Newton County, Texas.
Princeton, Texas
Location of Princeton in Collin County, Texas
Location of Princeton in Collin County, Texas
Coordinates: 33°10′52″N 96°30′0″W / 33.18111°N 96.50000°W / 33.18111; -96.50000Coordinates: 33°10′52″N 96°30′0″W / 33.18111°N 96.50000°W / 33.18111; -96.50000
Country United States
State Texas
County Collin
 • Total 4.3 sq mi (11.2 km2)
 • Land 4.3 sq mi (11.2 km2)
 • Water 0.0 sq mi (0.0 km2)
Elevation 574 ft (175 m)
Population (2000)
 • Total 3,477
 • Density 801.4/sq mi (309.4/km2)
Time zone Central (CST) (UTC-6)
 • Summer (DST) CDT (UTC-5)
ZIP code 75407
Area code(s) 972
FIPS code 48-59576[1]
GNIS feature ID 1344570[2]

Princeton is a city in Collin County, Texas, United States.


Using only Princeton's official city records, District Court Judge Ray Wheless ruled: "that Princeton's southern most corporate city limit officially extends to approximately 0.6 miles south of the intersection of F.M. Road 982 with U.S. Highway 380 but does NOT include the 5.5-mile stretch to FM 546."[3] "The order brings Princeton's south boundary back to where it stood for nearly 32 years."[3] On July 11, 2011, Princeton's city council voted unanimously NOT to "appeal the Quo Warranto, Case No. 401-00108-2010 (sic)."[4] This decision was reported in The Princeton Herald.[5] On October 10, 2011, Princeton city council approved a new map[6] that reflects the judge's decision.[7]


In the 2000 census, Princeton's population was 3,477. By the 2010 census, Princeton experienced a ~96% growth rate to a population of 6,800. The "White alone" population decreased from ~91% to ~78%, while the "Hispanic or Latino origin" population increased from ~11% to ~24%. Most of the population is between the ages of 18 and 64.[8]


In the late 1870s T. B. Wilson and his brother George began farming near the site of future Princeton. In 1881 the Missouri, Kansas and Texas Railroad Company extended its line from Greenville to McKinney, passing through land owned by the brothers. The name Wilson's Switch was commonly used to designate the area. When residents applied for a post office branch, however, they learned that the name Wilson was already being used. The community then submitted the name Princeton in honor of Prince Dowlin, a landowner and promoter of the town. This name was accepted, and a post office was established in 1888.[9]

In 1940, a camp of 76 cabins was built west of Princeton to house up to 400 migratory workers, who came to work during the onion and cotton seasons. In February 1945, the site became a prisoner of war camp for Germans prisoners captured during the Second World War. The local farmers paid the POWs to work on their farms. This operation continued for eight months. Under a special bill, the German prisoners were contracted to work on the City Park located across from city hall. The park was built as a living memorial and shrine to those who served and died during World War II. The Community Park/WWII P.O.W. Camp is located at 500 West College Street.[10]

Members of the Princeton Independent School District and the Princeton Lions Club have teamed up annually to hold the Princeton Onion Festival. It is a major festival for the town that began in 2005 and is expected to occur on the fourth Saturday of April each year. Festival events include a 5K run, tennis round-robin, craft show, auction, raffle, onion cook-off, and food vendors.[11]


Princeton is a Type A General Law city,[12] but its council members have tried to get a Home Rule form of government passed four times: in November 2007,[13] May 2008,[14] November 2008,[15] and May 2014.[16] Princeton voters rejected Home Rule each time: 149 to 117 in November 2007,[13] 239 to 165 in May 2008,[14] 979 to 449 in November 2008,[15] and 260 to 151 in May 2014.[16] Home Rule cities can tax property at a higher rate than General Law cities, because the tax rate ceiling of Home Rule cities is $2.50 per $100 valuation,[17] while the tax rate ceiling of General Law cities is $1.50 per $100 valuation.[18] Home Rule cities can assess additional property taxes,[19] while a General Law city has "no inherent power to tax."[17] Besides additional property taxes, Home Rule cities are allowed to tax almost anything specified in its charter,[20] while General Law cities cannot, because they have no charter.[17] Home Rule cities can annex property without landowner consent,[21] while General Law cities need landowner consent.[17]

"A home rule city may do anything authorized by its charter that is not specifically prohibited or preempted by the Texas Constitution or state or federal law; a general law city has no charter and may only exercise those powers that are specifically granted or implied by statute."[17] As a General-Law city, Princeton must follow the laws of The State of Texas.[17] The Texas statutes that govern Princeton are called "LOCAL GOVERNMENT CODE…CHAPTER 51. GENERAL POWERS OF MUNICIPALITIES."[22] Chapter 5 of the Texas Local Government Code defines Type A General Law cities[23] and Home Rule cities.[24] Approximately 75% of all Texas cities are General Law cities.[25]


The City of Princeton is served by the Princeton Independent School District.


The fiscal 2013 budget includes an increased ad valorem tax rate to increase funding for maintenance and operations; increased water service rates are also included in the budget.[26]  Fitch notes the city's ad valorem tax rate is above average for Texas municipalities.[26]  Overall debt is above average at 5.2% of market value despite state support for overlapping school district debt and support for direct city debt by the utility system.[26]  GO[27] debt amortization remains below average with 36.8% of principal scheduled for repayment within 10 years.[28]


  1. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  2. ^ "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  3. ^ Cite error: The named reference Beattie was invoked but never defined (see the help page).
  4. ^ "Minutes". The City of Princeton. Retrieved July 2011. 
  5. ^ Engle, Jamie. "City manager terminated, no appeal in 982 case". 
  6. ^ "Annexation Boundary Map". Princeton, TX. Retrieved 2013-02-22. 
  7. ^ "Princeton, Texas". Retrieved 2013-02-14. 
  8. ^ "Census 2010 and 2000". U.S. Census. Retrieved 03-07-13. 
  9. ^ Minor, David. "Princeton, TX (Collin County)". Texas State Historical Association. Retrieved 2013-02-21. 
  10. ^ "Community Park / WWII P.O.W. Camp". City of Princeton. Retrieved 03-07-13. 
  11. ^ "Princeton Onion Festival". Princeton ISD. Retrieved 03-07-13. 
  12. ^ "Comprehensive Annual Financial Report". City Princeton. Retrieved 2013-02-21. 
  13. ^ a b Gallagher, Danny. "Princeton says no to home rule". 
  14. ^ a b "Election Summary Report May 2008,". Retrieved 2014-04-19. 
  15. ^ a b "Election Summary Report Nov. 2008". Retrieved 2014-04-19. 
  16. ^ a b "Election Summary Report May 2014". 
  17. ^ a b c d e f "Alphabet Soup: Types of Texas Cities" (pdf). Texas Municipal League. 
  18. ^ "Municipal Corporations". State of Texas. Retrieved 03-04-13. 
  19. ^ "Texas Statute 302.001". Retrieved 2013-02-21. 
  20. ^ "Texas Tax Code - Section 302.102 Tax Collection Powers". Retrieved 2013-02-21. 
  21. ^ "TX Local Gov't. Code 43.021". Retrieved 03-04-13. 
  22. ^ "Local Government Code: Chapter 51". Retrieved 2013-02-21. 
  23. ^ "Texas Local Government Code - Section 5.001". Retrieved 2013-02-21. 
  24. ^ "Texas Local Government Code - Section 5.004". Retrieved 2013-02-21. 
  25. ^ "Local Government in Texas". Texas Municipal League. Retrieved 03-02-13. 
  26. ^ Cite error: The named reference Fitch was invoked but never defined (see the help page).
  27. ^ Cite error: The named reference GO was invoked but never defined (see the help page).
  28. ^ The Princeton Herald legal notices page, 11-04-10

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