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

Celaya Building

Circa 1850

 
 
Celaya Building Marker image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, May 18, 2018
1. Celaya Building Marker
Inscription.
(English)
Built circa 1850 for J.N. Reynolds, the original French Creole architectural elements have been removed. The building was purchased in 1890 by Simón Celaya, a native of Balmaceda, Spain. He used the building as headquarters for the Rio Grande Railroad Company, the pioneer railroad company in Brownsville.

(Spanish)
Construido cerca 1850 para J.N. Reynolds, los detalles originales de la arquitectura criolla francesa han sido despojados. Simón Celaya, oriundo de Balmaceda, España, compro el edificio in 1890 y lo utilizo como la sede del Rio Grande Railroad Company, la compañía ferroviaria pionera de Brownsville.
 
Erected by Brownsville Historical Association.
 
Location. 25° 54.072′ N, 97° 29.888′ W. Marker is in Brownsville, Texas, in Cameron County. Marker is at the intersection of East 12th Street and East Elizabeth Street (Business U.S. 77), on the right when traveling south on East 12th Street. Touch for map. Marker is mounted at eye-level, directly on the subject building, near the intersection, facing East 12th Street. Marker is at or near this postal address: 1159 East Elizabeth Street, Brownsville TX 78520, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within
Celaya Building (<i>East 12th Street side view; marker visible near left edge of building</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, May 18, 2018
2. Celaya Building (East 12th Street side view; marker visible near left edge of building)
walking distance of this marker. Federal Court Site (a few steps from this marker); San Román Building (within shouting distance of this marker); San Roman Building (within shouting distance of this marker); Manautou Building (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); Public Market and Town Hall (about 400 feet away); Brownsville Home of Charles Stillman (about 500 feet away); Stillman House / Residencia Stillman (about 600 feet away); Juan H. Fernandez y Hermano Building (about 600 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Brownsville.
 
More about this marker. Marker is in the Brownsville Historical Trail series.
 
Regarding Celaya Building. The Celaya building is currently occupied by a retail perfume outlet.
 
Also see . . .
1. History of the Rio Grande Railroad. The Rio Grande Railroad, which runs from Brownsville on the Rio Grande to Point Isabel on the Laguna Madre, has the double distinction of being the shortest railroad in the United States and the only one which up to November, 1924, had the old French or one-meter gauge. There are many prominent men connected with its history. Such names as Richard King; his partner, Mifflin Kenedy; and Simon Celaya. The original stockholders were Simon Celaya, H. E. Woodhouse, Charles McManus, John S. Ford, David Maltby, and Joseph Kleiber. Many of their descendants are now among the
Celaya Building (<i>front/East Elizabeth Street view</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, May 18, 2018
3. Celaya Building (front/East Elizabeth Street view)
delta's most influential citizens. (Submitted on June 28, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.) 

2. The Rio Grande Railroad. The Rio Grande Railroad was organized by Simón Celaya of Brownsville in 1870 and opened a 22.5-mile narrow-gauge line connecting Point Isabel and Brownsville on July 4, 1872. The Rio Grande was the only railroad in Texas and one of the few in the United States to be built to a track gauge of forty-two inches. Its route was relatively direct from Brownsville to the coast but required fifteen bridges, including a 15,550-foot trestle across the Badilla Grande. The track through the low coastal marshland made the Rio Grande vulnerable to hurricanes and floods, from which the railroad suffered considerable damage on several occasions. (Submitted on June 28, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.) 

3. Immaculate Conception Cathedral and Cemetery. On December 4, 1849, four fathers of the Oblate of Mary Immaculate arrived in Brownsville on horseback to establish a local parish. Seven years later, the Church of the Immaculate Conception was completed, using 250,000 bricks made as tithes by parishioners. On the grounds are two memorials: one dedicated to the Oblate missionaries, and a vault belonging to the family of Simon Celaya, a Spanish immigrant and organizer of the Rio Grande Railroad. (Submitted on June 28, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.) 
 
Categories. Hispanic AmericansRailroads & Streetcars
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 29, 2018. This page originally submitted on June 27, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. This page has been viewed 46 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on June 28, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. • Andrew Ruppenstein was the editor who published this page.
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