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County
Val Verde
Region
Big Bend
Population
2010 Census - 35,591
2000 Census - 33,867
Nearby
Towns
Del Rio, Texas
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Del Rio Texas History:
The first settlement was a small fort established prior to the Civil War by the Spanish near the confluence of the Rio Grande River and San Felipe Creek. The San Felipe springs provided millions of gallons of water. In 1868, the San Felipe Agricultural, Manufacturing, and Irrigation Company purchased several thousand acres near the creek. In 1871, the company constructed a network of irrigation canals and sold land to settlers who established truck farms and grew tomatoes, lettuce, melons, beets, broccoli, celery, radishes, onions, cabbage, strawberries, and other fruits and vegetables suitable for shipping. The settlement that developed was named San Felipe del Rio. In 1883, the United States Postal Department requested that the name be shortened to Del Rio to avoid confusion with San Felipe de Austin, now a State Historic Site in San Felipe, Texas. In 1885, Del Rio became the county seat of the newly established Val Verde County. In the 1880s the Southern Pacific Railway built a line to Del Rio. The military has always played a large role in the economic fortunes of Del Rio. Military camps were established at Del Rio in the 1800s. Laughlin Field was established as a pilot training facility during World War II. The base was later renamed Laughlin Air Force Base. Agriculture and ranching have also contributed to the town’s economy. Del Rio hosts a large “Winter Texan” population. Ciudad Acuna, Coahuila, Mexico is located across the Rio Grande River from Del Rio. Two border crossings, the Lake Amistad Dam (road) International Crossing, and the Del Río-Ciudad Acuna International Bridgeconnect the two cities. Del Rio is located on the Rio Grande River at the intersection of U.S. 90 and U.S. 277, 130 miles southeast of Sanderson, 60 miles southeast of Langtry, 90 miles southwest of Sonora, 76 miles southwest of Rocksprings, 78 miles southwest of Camp Wood, 155 miles west of San Antonio, 70 miles northwest of Uvalde, 32 miles northwest of Comstock, 30 miles northwest of Brackettville, and 55 miles northwest of Eagle Pass, Texas.
 
Historic Canal System of Del Rio, Texas Historical Marker Text:
“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 landowners formed the San Felipe Agricultural, Manufacturing & Irrigation Company. Among early stockholders were W. C. Adams, Donald Jackson, Joseph Ney, Randolph Pafford, James H. Taylor, and A. O. Strickland. They dammed San Felipe Creek just below the Springs, and by 1871 had built canals diverting water to 1,500 acres of land.Under an 1875 irrigation law, the company received a 99-year state charter which authorized the digging of two canals: five mile long "Madre Ditch", and mile-long "San Felipe Ditch", plus lateral canals. In 1876 the state inspector reported that the San Felipe Company had irrigated about 3,000 acres. Land grant provisions of an 1876 law awarded the Company 5,000 acres of state land for the total mileage of its canals. In addition to promoting agricultural development, the work of the San Felipe Company stimulated the growth of Del Rio, since the irrigation canals provided water to the city as well. Today this vital water supply system is still in operation.” Photo of the Acequia Madre Canal
 
Ciudad Acuna, Mexico:
Acuna is located in the state of Coahuila, Mexico, across the Rio Grande River from Del Rio, Texas. The two nearby border crossings include the Lake Amistad Dam International Crossing and the Del Rio-Ciudad Acuna International Bridge. The 2010 Acuna census was 134,233. Acuna is the fastest growing city in Mexico. This former bull fighting capitol still hosts the occasional bull fight. A favorite restaurant is Mi Tierra.  
 
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Dell Rio/Amistad Dam International Bridge to Ciudad Acuna, Mexico:
The bridge was originally constructed in 1930; it was renovated in 1987. The bridge consists of four passenger lanes, and pedestrian sidewalks which are open 24 hours a day. (830) 703-2012. Send mail to 3240 Spur 239, Del Rio, Texas 78840. The port of entry is located at the intersection of Spur 239 and Qualia Drive.From Del Rio, take U.S. 90 West for 8 miles. Go left on Spur 349 and drive 2.4 miles to Qualia Drive and the bridge. 
 
Lake Amistad International Dam Road, Del Rio to Ciudad Acuna, Mexico:
The Amistad Dam is located approximately 10 miles west of Del Rio. From Del Rio, take U.S. 90 West for 8 miles. Go left on Spur 349 and drive 2.4 miles to the top of the dam. The dam road is an official Port of Entry to Mexico for vehicles and is open daily, 10am to 6pm. It does not accept commercial vehicles or commercial merchandise entry. (830) 774-4345.
 
Val Verde County Courthouse, 1887:
The courthouse was designed n second empire by architects Larmour & Watson. Atlee B. Ayres supervised the 1915 restoration. The original mansard roof and turrets were altered during renovations. The 2010 Val Verde County census was 48,879. (830) 774-7501. 400 Pecan Street, Del Rio, TX 78840. Email 
 
Val Verde County Jail, 1888:
This jail was designed by architects Larmour & Watson, the same architects who designed the 1887 Val Verde County courthouse. It was used as a jail until 1956, and now houses other county offices. The jail is located on the corner of Mill and East Losoya Streets.