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Independence Heights is a community in Houston, Texas, bordered by Crosstimbers to the north, Yale Street to the west, the 610 Loop to the south, and Airline Drive to the east. The Super Neighborhood boundary created by the City of Houston is bordered by Tidwell to the north, Shepherd Drive to the west, the 610 Loop to the south, and Interstate 45 to the east. Black families started to migrate to Northern Houston known as the Independence Heights around 1908. The area was developed by Wright Land Company, and consisted of small wood frame houses, purchased by the residents. Many of the houses were built by black contractors who lived in the area. On January 25, 1915 Independence Heights, with a population of nearly 600 was incorporated, becoming the first African American municipality in Texas. George O. Burgess, a lawyer born in Milligan Texas 1876, was elected as the 1st Mayor of Independence Heights. Burgess Hall, named today located at 700 E. 34th Street was the City Hall-Courthouse until 1919. City improvements over the next few years included the shell paving of streets, plank sidewalks, and the installation of a municipal water system. On June 19, 1919 O. L. Hubbard became the second Mayor of Independence Heights. He served until 1925. Arthur L. McCullough became the third and final Mayor of Independence Heights. He served from 1925 to 1928. In the late 1920s, there were 40 black-owned businesses in Independence Heights they included: grocery stores, restaurants, a lumber company, a watch repair shop, ice cream parlors, a cleaning and pressing shop, a drug store, a black smith shop, law offices and an electrical shop. Other professions included: teachers, attorneys, construction, longshoremen and rail road workers. Independence Heights was annexed by the city of Houston on December 26, 1929. Today, Independence Heights is a neighborhood on the brink of redevelopment. Spearheaded by descendants of the original settlers, the community has come together and developed plans that will guide the neighborhood revitalization. In 2008, the community was damaged by Hurricane Ike. As a result, federal funding is slated to help redevelop this historic community. New homes and schools are being built. - source: Wikipedia

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