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Maverick County is named for Samuel Maverick, cattleman and state legislator. Its county seat is Eagle Pass.
The Rio Grande forms Maverick County's western and international border with Mexico; the county is bordered on the north by Kinney County, on the east by Zavala County, and on the south by Webb County. The county is triangular in shape and contains 1,287 square miles, or 824,960 acres. Eagle Pass, the county seat and most populous community, is in southwestern Maverick County on the Southern Pacific Railroad, immediately east of the Rio Grande opposite Piedras Negras, Mexico.
Established in 1856 from Kinney County it was not until September 4, 1871, that it was officially organized.
Antonio Rivas was the first known rancher on the land in 1765.
New ranches were established by Mike Wipff, Frank Lehmann, Patrick Thomson, and John Towns following the organization of the county. Telegraph communication reached Eagle Pass in November of 1875 with the completion of a military line between Fort Clark and Fort Duncan. The historic Maverick County Courthouse was completed by pioneer builder William Hausser on April 4, 1885, at a cost of $20,489. The courthouse, site of the celebrated Dick Duncan murder trial in 1889, exhibits a modified Gothic architecture with high windows and an overall Spanish fortress appearance. This unique structure was declared a Texas historic landmark in September 1971. The population of the county was 1,951 in 1870 and 2,967 in 1880. In 1870 thirty-nine farms in Maverick County averaged three acres in size. By 1880 thirty farms and ranches averaged 9,418 acres; only two of the farms were over 1,000 acres, indicating that the majority of farm acreage was concentrated in one or two very large ranches. The concentration of farm and ranch lands in a few hands ended by 1890; of the ninety farms in Maverick County that year twenty-three were over 1,000 acres. By 1900 there were ninety-one farms and ranches, with twenty-three over 1,000 acres, and the average farm size reached a historic high of 36,743 acres. Ranchers raised sheep (111,240 in 1880 and 149,310 in 1890) and cattle (37,058 in 1890 and 40,083 in 1900). During the decade following the turn of the century the number of livestock plummeted; cattle numbers dropped from 40,083 in 1900 to 13,866 by 1910, and sheep fell from 149,310 to 14,070 in 1900. Cattle numbers remained low throughout the first half of the twentieth century before reaching its highest number of the century with 31,568 in 1959. In 1971, 750,000 acres in the county were devoted to ranching, and from 15,000 to 20,000 cattle were shipped each year.
[Excerpted from: Ruben E. Ochoa, "MAVERICK COUNTY," Handbook of Texas Online; Published by the Texas State Historical Association.]
Other Populated Areas
Eidson Road * El Indio * Elm Creek * Las Quintas Fronterizas * Quemado * Radar Base * Rosita North * Rosita South
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