Hutchinson was founded on the arrival of the railway line from Cape Town in 1883, as a station named Victoria West Road. In 1901 it was renamed after Sir Walter Hely-Hutchinson, then Governor of the Cape Colony. In 1905 Hutchinson became a junction when a branch line to Victoria West and Carnarvon was opened. This line was extended in 1915 to Williston and in 1918 to Calvinia. It was closed in 2001, but passenger trains on the main line still stop at Hutchinson to serve Victoria West.