Independence is an unincorporated community in Washington County, Texas, United States. Located twelve miles northeast of Brenham, it was founded in 1835 in Austin's colony of Anglo-Americans. It became a Baptist religious and educational center of the Republic of Texas. In 1846 it became the first site of Baylor University and the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor.
The wealthiest community in Texas in 1845, Independence declined later in the century after refusing to give a right-of-way to the Santa Fe Railroad. It was bypassed by the increasingly important railroads and started a long decline after the university moved away. It retains significant historic structures and sites of the nineteenth century. Its residents included many prominent people of early Texas history, including Sam Houston while he was a U.S. Senator. The Houston family were well-known members of the Independence Baptist Church.