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Founded by the United Brethren Society in 1878–79, once had dreams of becoming an important center of industry and education. An ephemeral boom, marked by considerable expansion and the opening of a college, the Washington Institute, collapsed before the close of the century. Later, Huntsville became a wheat-shipping point. The name was for B. J. Hunt, who, with John Fudge, donated 90 acres for the town site.