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County
Refugio
Region
Gulf Coast
Population
2010 Census - 2,890
2000 Census - 2,941
Nearby
Towns
Refugio, Texas
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Refugio Texas History:
The town is located on the north bank of the Mission River at the intersection of U.S. 183 and U.S. 77. The town site was a favorite camping ground of the Karankawa Indians who eventually developed a permanent village there. In 1795, the Spanish moved the Nuestra Senora del Refugio Mission to the site; a town developed around the mission. By the time the mission closed in 1830, more than 100 Mexicans lived on rancheros in the surrounding area. The town of Refugio was established in 1831 when James Power and James Hewetson acquired the rights to the mission building and the surrounding town. The town was slow to grow until the discovery of oil in 1928. Major job opportunities are in agriculture or in the oil and gas industry; Refugio has several major oil fields. Refugio is the site of archaeological digs. The town is located at the intersection of U.S. 77, U.S, 183 and FM 2678, 5 miles northeast of Woodsboro, 27 miles southeast of Goliad, 43 miles southwest of Victoria, and 41 miles northeast of Corpus Christi, Texas. 
 
Karankawa Indians:
The nomadic Karankawa Indians lived along the Texas Gulf Coast from the western end of Galveston Island to Corpus Christi. They were a tall tribe; many warriors were over 6 feet tall; men wore their hair to their waists. They were heavily tattooed and wore shell ornaments. They pierced each nipple and their bottom lip with small pieces of cane. They greased their bodies with shark liver oil to ward off mosquitoes and other insects. During the summer months they survived by moving inland and hunting with long bows. During the winters they fished and crabbed the coastal bays in dugouts. They lived in round huts made with thatch and animal skins. The Indians had varied experiences with Anglos though in the end their population was decimated through warfare and diseases caught from Anglos. The Indians helped Spanish explorer Cabeza de Vaca when he was shipwrecked on Galveston Island in 1528. After French explorers under LaSalle stole two canoes from the Karankawa and refused to return them, the Karankawa engaged them in battle; the Indians won. The Karankawa were not cannibals. Though they did sometimes eat captured enemies, they did not do this for food, but rather to absorb the magic powers of the enemy. Indian Tribes Locations Map
 
Historic Mission Nuestra Senora Del Refugio in 1793:
This mission was the last of the Spanish missions constructed in Texas. It was constructed with the purpose of converting the Karankawa Indians to Christianity. The Karankawa had refused to attend two early missions, but promised to attend a mission established on the Texas coast. The Indians helped choose the site near Refugio which would serve Indians located in the Matagorda Bay region. The mission had its own supply and construction problems which were exacerbated by Indian attacks led by Karankawa Chief Fresada Pinta. Within a year the mission was moved to a new site. The original bell from the mission is located at the Refugio County Museum. The Texas Historical Marker is located at the Lady of Refuge Catholic Church (1008 S. Alamo Street), the original site of the mission. Historical tours are available. (361) 526-5555.
 
Refugio County Courthouse, 1919:
The brick courthouse was designed in Texas renaissance style by famed courthouse architect Atlee B. Ayres. North and south side additions were added in the early 1950s. The bronze “Memorial to Captain King” statue located on the courthouse grounds was sculpted by famed Franco-American Sculptor Raoul Josset. The 2010 Refugio County census was 7,383. (361) 526-4434. 808 Commerce Street.
 
Refugio County Museum at Heritage Park:
The museum and the 1876 Linney-Husen house are located in Heritage Park. The Linney-Husen house was designed in Greek revival style; it was built for John Filmore Linney. The museum features permanent exhibits depicting the history of the area from the Spanish Mission period to the immigration of Irish Settlers, and the impact of ranching and oil on the area after 1929. A collection of bronze sculptures by Western artist Frederic Remington is on permanent loan from owner Jack Kelly. There is a large collection of photos from 1800s, including the boom days in the oil field. The museum also offers information on the local Indian tribes, the military leaders King and Ward, the Battle of Refugio, and the massacre of King’s men in Goliad. Other exhibits include the original bell from the Mission Nuestra Senora Del Refugio, and a collection of memorabilia of baseball great, Nolan Ryan who is a native son. Open Tue-Fri, 9am-5pm; Sat, 1-5pm. (361) 526-5555. 102 W. West Street at U.S. 77. Heritage Park is located at the intersection of U.S. 77 and West Street.
 
Refugio County Library:
The library provides traditional library programs, children, youth and adult programs, summer programs, public access computers with internet connections, and free Wi-Fi. (361) 526-2608. 815 South Commerce Street, 78377.
 
Texas South Wind Vineyard and Winery, Goliad & Refugio:
David and Regina Staggs sometimes purchase grapes from other growers including the Santa Anita Vineyard in Mission, Texas. The winery is open for tastings and tours Mon-Sat, 11am-7pm, and on Sundays by appointment only. They offer live music on the first Saturday of each month, 6pm-10pm. (361) 526-4662. They are located between Refugio and Goliad at 16375 U.S. 183 South, Refugio, TX 78377. Email 
 
Event Venue - Refugio County Community Center:
Amenities include a kitchen a large event area, restrooms, and plenty of parking. The Center is available for event rentals. Reservations may be made at the County Judge’s Office by calling (361) 526-4434. The Center is located north of the hospital on Swift Street.
 
Woodsboro Market Days, 1st Saturday of Each Month, Woodsboro:
Market days are held on the town square at the corner of 2nd Street and Wood Avenue. (361) 526-2835.
 
Refugio County Jamboree, 4th Thursday of Each Month, Refugio:
This event is held at the Refugio Community Center. The Center is located north of the hospital on Swift Street.
 
Annual Refugio County Fair & PRCA Rodeo, 3rd Weekend in March:
Activities at this four day fair include a scholarship cook-off, a breakfast, a parade, arts and crafts vendors, a livestock show, dances to live music at Padilla Hall, a horseshoe pitching tournament at Padilla Hall, a rodeo and an auction. (301) 526-1605. (361) 526-2825. 106 Fairground Road, Refugio. Email
 
Taqueria Guadalajara:
They serve good Mexican Food. (361) 526-5553. 511 North Alamo Street. Reviews
 
Moya's Cafe:
They serve good Mexican food. (361) 526-9124. 401 2nd Street. Reviews