The town of Slaton traces its history to the Santa Fe Railroad. O.L. Slaton, a Lubbock businessman and banker, was instrumental in securing the right-of-way for the railroad through this area. When the new town was laid out in 1911, it was named for him.
The Pecos and Northern Texas branch of the Santa Fe Railroad line reached Slaton in May 1911, one month after the first town lots were sold. The official opening day of Slaton was held on June 15, 1911, when the first of Santa Fe's four daily passenger trains arrived.
Slaton grew rapidly as the railroad established a division point here which included a Harvey House, roundhouse, machine shops, and a two-story freight and passenger depot. A post office was opened in 1911 with Annie Higbee as postmistress. Buildings were quickly erected on the square as businesses were established. The Santa Fe hired Dr. Samuel Houston Adams as surgeon for the Slaton Division.
Slaton was incorporated in 1912. R. J. Murray was elected mayor, and Joe H. Teague, Sr., served as first city marshal. Located in one of Texas' foremost agricultural regions, Slaton continues to have an economy based on ranching and farming.