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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Corpus Christi in Nueces County, Texas — The American South (West South Central)
 

Captain Enrique Villarreal and Rincón del Oso Land Grant

 
 
Captain Enrique Villarreal and Rincon del Oso Land Grant Marker image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, May 16, 2018
1. Captain Enrique Villarreal and Rincon del Oso Land Grant Marker
Inscription.
A soldier, colonist, Indian fighter, and explorer, Captain Enrique Villarreal at one time held title to most of the land that now constitutes Nueces County. The Rincón del Oso land grant, encompassing approximately 44,000 acres, was awarded to Villarreal by the Mexican government in 1831, although he had been using it as ranch land since 1810. Trouble with raiding Indians forced him off the land until peace was made in 1824.

As an officer in the Mexican Army, Enrique Villarreal participated in the Mexican War for Independence, the Texas War for Independence, and the U.S.-Mexican War. He was made commander of the troops at Fort Lipantitlan in 1830.

When Henry Lawrence Kinney established his trading post at the site of what is now the city of Corpus Christi, he did so on land that was part of Villarreal's Rincón del Oso grant. In 1841 the two men met, and Kinney purchased one "sitio" of Villarreal's land the following year. Kinney came to own all of the Rincon del Oso Grant after Villarreal's death in 1846.

Captain Enrique Villarreal's significance to local history lies in his position as original title holder to most of what is now Nueces County, including the City of Corpus Christi.
 
Erected 1986 by Texas Historical Commission. (Marker Number 6338.)
Captain Enrique Villarreal Marker (<i>tall view</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, May 16, 2018
2. Captain Enrique Villarreal Marker (tall view)

 
Location. 27° 47.749′ N, 97° 24.228′ W. Marker is in Corpus Christi, Texas, in Nueces County. Marker can be reached from Leopard Street (State Highway 407) east of North Alameda Street, on the right when traveling east. Touch for map. Marker is located near the east entrance to the Corpus Christi City Hall building. Marker is at or near this postal address: 1201 Leopard St, Corpus Christi TX 78401, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Henry Lawrence Kinney (a few steps from this marker); Site of Cheston L. Heath School (approx. ¼ mile away); LULAC (approx. ¼ mile away); Explosion of the Steamship Dayton (approx. 0.4 miles away); Old Bayview Cemetery (approx. 0.4 miles away); Corpus Christi Cathedral (approx. half a mile away); Thomas S. Parker (approx. half a mile away); Corpus Christi Cathedral Site (approx. half a mile away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Corpus Christi.
 
Also see . . .
1. Enrique Villarreal. In 1834 Villarreal applied for the land grant named Paso Viejo near the Colorado Arroyo near Brownsville, Texas. In 1838 Henry L. Kinney arrived at Live Oak Point, north of the Nueces River in present San Patricio County, and established a mercantile store to trade with the Federalist forces
Captain Enrique Villarreal Marker (<i>wide view; left of City Hall east entrance</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, May 16, 2018
3. Captain Enrique Villarreal Marker (wide view; left of City Hall east entrance)
from Tamaulipas. Kinney crossed the Nueces River to the west side without a land title and established a trading post in the Rincón del Oso grant, apparently practicing illegal trade. Around January 1841 Villarreal led about 300 men to his ranch and confronted Kinney, who said that he had been deceived into purchasing the land from a person without title to it. Kinney assured Villarreal that he intended to procure title from him by buying the land, and on July 16, 1842, he purchased one sitio. After Villarreal's death Kinney acquired the remaining nine sitios of land from his heirs. (Submitted on June 2, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.) 

2. History of land grants in Texas. The earliest grant was made by the Spanish crown to establish a mission and presidio in East Texas in 1716. In 1731 town lots in San Antonio de Béxar were granted to Canary Islanders, and by the mid-1700s larger livestock grants were being made along the San Antonio River valley. Despite the granting of large areas of land, the number of inhabitants of the region remained small. In an effort to populate the area, Spanish officials experimented with a policy to entice settlers from the American frontier with promises of land, religious tolerance, and special privileges. As a provision of the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, which ended the boundary dispute with Mexico, the new state of Texas officially
Corpus Christi City Hall (<i>east side; marker visible left of entrance</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, May 16, 2018
4. Corpus Christi City Hall (east side; marker visible left of entrance)
recognized the land grants made under Spanish and Mexican rule as valid. (Submitted on June 17, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.) 
 
Categories. Colonial EraWar, Mexican-AmericanWar, Texas Independence
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 17, 2018. This page originally submitted on June 2, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. This page has been viewed 45 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on June 2, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page.
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