Hillsboro, the principal trade center and seat of Hill County, was established in 1853. In frontier tradition, the first courthouse was a log cabin. The current structure was built in 1890. A fire in 1993 gutted the historic courthouse, but it has since been completely restored. The area is the center of a rich agricultural region, a gateway to Lake Whitney and the home of Hill College. Hillsboro has many restored Victorian homes. The downtown area offers antique shops and a historic square. Hillsboro was one of the first designated Main Street cities in the nation.
The Outlets at Hillsboro on I-35 feature brand-name shopping at discount prices.