“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”

Val Verde County Texas Historical Markers

Comstock Marker site image, Touch for more information
By William F Haenn, August 7, 2013
Comstock Marker site
Texas (Val Verde County), Comstock — 16779 — Comstock
In the early 1880s, Comstock developed as a station on the Galveston, Harrisburg and San Antonio railway because of the natural lake and water supply. The former townsite of Soto or Sotol City was replaced with Comstock, named after John B. . . . — Map (db m79326) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Comstock — 13909 — Dead Man's Pass
This narrow canyon marks a remote and perilous section of a road traveled from San Antonio to El Paso and on to California following the Gold Rush of the 1840s. Adding to the hardships of a journey that took several weeks, this particular area was . . . — Map (db m79325) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Comstock — 13410 — The Pecos River in Literature and Folklore
Noted for mineral-thick waters and sudden floods, the Pecos River snakes through Texas on its way to the Rio Grande. Historian J. Evetts Haley and folklorist J. Frank Dobie, who called it “a strange river,” and a “barricade,” . . . — Map (db m56006) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Del Rio — 663 — Camp Hudson, C.S.A.
When U. S. Troops were surrendered at outbreak of Civil War, camp became Confederate frontier outpost 1861-1862 to guard military road, escort supply trains, curb hostile Indians. Manned by 2nd Texas Cavalry. Texas Confederate Troops used as supply . . . — Map (db m52680) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Del Rio — 699 — Canal System of Del Rio
Crude irrigation systems, drawing water from San Felipe Springs and Creek, were first devised by Indian and Spanish inhabitants of this area. Anglo-American settlers also saw the need for irrigation in this arid region, and about 1869 a group of . . . — Map (db m133870) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Del Rio — 777 — Cementerio Loma de la Cruz(Hill of the Cross Cemetery)
Early land developer Paula Losoya Taylor Rivers (ca. 1830-1902) realized that the people of Del Rio's Mexican Colony had no official cemetery in which to bury their dead. She donated four acres to be designated as a cemetery in 1884. Also buried . . . — Map (db m133871) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Del Rio — 12801 — City of Del Rio
Del Rio was selected as Val Verde County seat when the county was organized in 1885, but it was another 20 years before the first city government was established. In 1905, city residents voted to incorporate, and James McLymont was elected first . . . — Map (db m111424) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Del Rio — 15363 — First United Methodist Church of Del Rio
Six individuals met on September 23, 1882 to create the Methodist Episcopal Church South, the forerunner of First United Methodist Church of Del Rio. These first congregants were Randolph Pafford, J. Lyman Bailey, William M. Bailey, Sarah Bailey, . . . — Map (db m111428) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Del Rio — 13793 — John Taini
On November 1, 1854, John Taini was born in Rezzato, Italy (near Brescia) to Gerolamo and Lucia Prandelli Taini. John later became a stonemason there, and an American contractor recruited him and his partner, G.B. Cassinelli, to build structures . . . — Map (db m111434) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Del Rio — 3240 — Mason-Foster House
A native of New York, local businessman James H. Mason (1835-1916) constructed his home here shortly after he purchased the site in 1887. He later developed a spring on the property for mineral baths and a medicinal drink. John J. Foster . . . — Map (db m133873) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Del Rio — 13639 — Max and Anna Stool
Jewish merchant Max Stool (d. 1972) emigrated to the U.S. from an area of Russia once part of Poland. Settling first in Chicago, he came to Del Rio in 1904 while on a train trip to California and decided to stay. He sold wares as a peddler and soon . . . — Map (db m133874) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Del Rio — 13504 — Medal of Honor Fight, 1875
In the 1870s, the U.S. Army relied on Black Seminole (Seminole-Negro) Indian scouts in campaigns against raiding Native Americans along the Texas-Mexico border. In April 1875, Lt. John L. Bullis and three scouts -- Sergeant John Ward, Private Pompey . . . — Map (db m35448) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Del Rio — Old Del Rio National Bank Building
In 1910 Del Rio National Bank bought this lot and hired noted Texas architect Alfred Giles to design this structure. The cartouche and cornice above the main entrance, stylistic flourishes not seen in Giles' earlier San Antonio and Hill Country . . . — Map (db m111441) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Del Rio — 3777 — Old Perry Building — Whitehead Memorial Museum —
Erected 1871, before Del Rio was founded, by John Perry, as general store. Once the largest store between San Antonio and El Paso. Served also as courthouse, church, Masonic lodge, post office. Given in 1965 to city and county by descendants of . . . — Map (db m36411) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Del Rio — 14013 — Operation Brass Knob
Laughlin Air Force Base pilots flew secret surveillance missions during the height of the Cold War. The Strategic Air Command formed the 4080th Strategic Reconnaissance Wing in 1956, utilizing high altitude Martin RB-57D and Lockheed U-2 aircraft . . . — Map (db m36893) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Del Rio — Pecos High Bridge
Southern Pacific Railroad was first to cross Pecos River ( 1891) with High Bridge. At that time, it was world’s longest (2,180 ft) and highest (321 ft. above water) railroad bridge. In June 1923, the Texas Highway Department constructed a . . . — Map (db m35485) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Del Rio — 3975 — Pecos River High Bridge
High canyon walls dominate the last 60 miles of the Pecos River before it enters the Rio Grande. The Southern Pacific Railroad built the first high bridge across the Pecos in 1891. The first highway bridge to span the river was built one mile down . . . — Map (db m36940) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Del Rio — 4376 — Roy Bean, C. S. A.(1824-1903)
Born in Kentucky. A trader in Mexico, 1848. Mining in New Mexico when Civil War broke out. As spy and scout, joined Texans in the Command of Gen. John R. Baylor during the 1861-1862 Arizona-New Mexico Campaign. Organized irregular company called . . . — Map (db m36963) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Del Rio — 4434 — Sacred Heart Catholic Church
Mass was celebrated in private homes and in a wooden house at this site before construction of this native Limestone church in 1891-92. Under the direction of the oblate fathers, the mission of Del Rio became Sacred Heart parish in 1895. This . . . — Map (db m111432) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Del Rio — 4639 — Seminole-Negro Scouts
Serving with the U. S. Army at Forts Duncan and Clark and Camp Del Rio (1870-1881), the Scouts were key figures in ridding Texas of hostile Indians. The 100 Scouts were mainly descendants of runaway slaves who had intermarried with the Florida . . . — Map (db m36407) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Del Rio — 4742 — Site of Camp Del Rio
A United States Army post was established in this area on September 6, 1876. Originally known as Camp San Felipe, it was an outpost of Fort Clark (28 mi. E), one of a chain of military fortifications constructed to defend isolated settlements of the . . . — Map (db m71196) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Del Rio — 13112 — The Carter Family In Del Rio
Known as country music's First Family, the Carter family first found national acclaim while on XERA radio. Owned by Dr. John R. Brinkley, the powerful radio station across the Rio Grande from Del Rio reached listeners around the country. A.P. . . . — Map (db m36894) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Del Rio — 5300 — The Cassinelli Gin House
Italian Stonemason G.B. Cassinelli and his partner John Taini were recruited in their native county by an American contractor who wanted them to construct buildings in New York. Shortly after their arrival in the United States, the project failed . . . — Map (db m36895) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Del Rio — 12800 — U.S. Army Camel Corps
The proposal to use camels for commerce and transportation in the arid Southwest came about in the 1830s, but it was under U.S. Secretary of War Jefferson Davis that the idea became a reality. The first shipment of camels arrived on the Texas Gulf . . . — Map (db m36889) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Del Rio — 5626 — Val Verde County Courthouse Square
Organized in 1885 from sections of Crockett, Kinney, and Pecos Counties, Val Verde County was named for a Civil War battle in New Mexico which involved Texas Confederate Forces. The growing railroad town of Del Rio was chosen as the seat of . . . — Map (db m52678) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Juno — 2556 — Hood's Devils River Fight
The men of Company G, a small unit of the U.S. 2nd Cavalry, left Fort Mason on July 5, 1857, under the command of Lt. John Bell Hood (1831-1879), in pursuit of Comanche Indians in the vicinity. Traveling northwest, they discovered a fresh Indian . . . — Map (db m79328) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Juno — 4744 — Site of Camp Hudson
Established by the United States Army, June 7, 1857, as a means of protecting the road from San Antonio to El Paso against hostile Indians. Named in honor of 2nd Lieutenant Walter W. Hudson who died April 19, 1850, of wounds received in action with . . . — Map (db m79327) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Langtry — 3567 — Near Site, Southern Pacific Ceremony of Silver Spike
Marked completion of Southern Pacific Railway. Eastern part originated in Texas in 1850s; then was rechartered 1870 by Texas Legislature as Galveston, Harrisburg & San Antonio Rwy., designed to join Houston and San Antonio to the Rio Grande. T. . . . — Map (db m36447) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Langtry — 13175 — Eagle’s Nest
Humans are believed to have traveled through the remote and dramatic landscape near the confluence of the Pecos River and the Rio Grande for centuries. For years, the cliff across the river from this site was home to a pair of golden eagles, whose . . . — Map (db m5821) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Langtry — 13649 — Fitzsimmons-Maher Prizefight
In 1896, Judge Roy Bean made national headlines with a unique boxing match held at this site. Robert James Fitzsimmons was to fight James J. Corbett, the heavyweight champion, but the Legislature had outlawed boxing in Texas. While promoters sought . . . — Map (db m5802) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Langtry — 2749 — Jersey Lily Saloon - - 1882 - 1903
"Law West of the Pecos" Courtroom. Named for Judge Bean's idol, actress Lillie Langtry. Recorded Texas Historic Landmark, 1965. Lower marker This historic site is preserved for posterity by the State Department of Highways & Public . . . — Map (db m26541) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Langtry — 13174 — Langtry
Langtry was created in 1882, when the Galveston, Harrisburg & San Antonio Railroad, later known as Southern Pacific, signed a deed with the Torres family, who owned the land. The town, which provided water for locomotives, developed from a tent town . . . — Map (db m5791) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Langtry — 3052 — Law West of the Pecos
Judge Roy Bean lived a life in which fiction became so intermingled with fact that he became a legend within his lifetime. Basis for his renown were the decisions which he reached in this building as the Law West of the Pecos. Court was held as . . . — Map (db m5822) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Langtry — 12798 — Railroad Bridges Over the Pecos
A major tributary of the Rio Grande, the Pecos River was long a barrier to transportation, particularly across the deep gorge that once marked its joining with the Rio Grande. Construction of the first railroad bridge over the Pecos took place in . . . — Map (db m36445) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Langtry — 14089 — Robert Thomas Hill
Tennessee native Robert T. Hill (1858-1941) moved to Comanche, Texas at age 16 and developed an interest in Texas geology. Educated at Columbia University, he worked for the U.S. Geological Survey, the University of Texas and as State Geologist. . . . — Map (db m5820) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Langtry — 12694 — Site of Vinegarroon
Crossing the Pecos River Canyon was the last major obstacle the Southern Pacific Railroad faced in completing its southern transcontinental route linking New Orleans and San Francisco. As "Tunnel No. 2" was excavated on the west side of the canyon . . . — Map (db m36442) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Langtry — 12987 — The Torres Family
In the 1870-80s, brothers Cesario, Bernardo and Juan Torres were prominent west Texas citizens due to their irrigation work in the region. For work out west, Bernardo received land in Val Verde County at the Rio Grande - Pecos River confluence. His . . . — Map (db m5801) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Langtry — 13173 — William H. Dodd
Born in 1868, England native William H. Dodd settled in Val Verde County by 1894, establishing a ranch and general merchandise store. He also served as postmaster, operating the post office from his store, which occupied this site for many years. . . . — Map (db m5800) HM
Texas (Val Verde County), Pumpville — 13411 — Pumpville
In 1882, the Galveston, Harrisburg & San Antonio Railway created a water stop for steam engines on a new line through this area. Two and a half miles north of this site, the company built a pumphouse, depot and other facilities. A community first . . . — Map (db m111475) HM

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