First settlers in the area were Comfort and Lydia McMillen and their six children who arrived from Arkansas in 1846, settling on a branch of Muddy Creek which was later named Maxwell Creek. With McMillen family were Lydia’s brothers, James and Henry Maxwell.
By 1850, the William and Dorothy Murphy family also settled on Maxwell Creek. First called Maxwell’s Branch and then Decatur. The town became Murphy (named after James Murphy) in 1888 when railroad came through. James Murphy owned the land where the depot was built.
Primarily an agricultural area from the 1888 until 1930’s, the thriving community had a collection of businesses along the railroad: a depot, a bank, ice-house, telephone exchange, churches, stores, a post office and a cotton gin.
The decline of the old community set in with the failure of the cotton market and the Great Depression. The bank closed its doors on the 1930’s. The population continue to dwindle as farmers sold off their land and the school and post office were closed in the 1950’s.
City became incorporated in September 29, 1958. Now the community celebrates that date with Maize days, a festival playing homage to the city heritage and culture. The current population of this 5.3 square miles community is above 20,230 (Census estimate in 2014). Depending where residents live, children’s attend two schools: Plano and Wylie.