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    MISSION, TEXAS

    Hidalgo County, South Texas
    US 83 and Hwy 107
    3.5 miles N of the Rio Grande
    18 miles SE of Edinburg
    8 miles W of (and adjoining) McAllen

    Population: 45,000 (2000)

    Book Hotel Here > Mission Hotels

    Mission Tx Sts Joseph & Peter Seminary
    St. Joseph & St. Peter Seminary in Mission.
    This Seminary burned in 2009.

    Photo courtesy Barclay Gibson, July 2004
    History in a Pecan Shell

    The settlement of Mission is directly tied to once was the La Lomita community, some 5 miles south. The French Oblates of Mary Immaculate developed a chapel on this portion of land which had dated back to a Spanish land grant. Up until 1904, the railroad had only advanced 5 miles from La Lomita to a railhead town known as "Mamie." The railroad was enticed (by a new depot and 20 acres of land) to extend the remaining distance to what became Mission.

    In 1907 when the railroad arrived Mission developed from an influx of new arrivals and the moving of the operations of the Oblate fathers. John J. Conway and J. W. Holt purchased the La Lomita Ranch from the religious order and with other accquired properties, they parceled the land into small tracts for resale.

    The naming of the post office in 1908 accounts for the name change. Since another Lomita, Texas had been granted a post office under that name, the name Mission was submitted to and accepted by postal authorities.

    1908 was a busy year for the town with a school and pharmacy joining the depot and post office. The next year a hotel was built and a newspaper was established. Mission incorporated in 1910.

    A developer named John H. Shary improved the extant (but crude) irrigation system and sold small tracts of land for farms around 1910. The long growing seaon allowed vegetable farmers to grow three crops a year. Shary's name lives on with the community named Sharyland (adjoining McAllen).

    Oil was discovered in the 1930s, providing a boost to the economy, but it was nothing like the oil discoveries further north near Freer. In 1941 Shary and other businessmen bought land northwest of Mission which they then sold at cost to the government for use as an air field. Named Moore Field, it maintained a population of about 3,000 during the years of WWII. Former airmen and their families returned to settle in Mission after the war. At the close of the WWII it became Tri-Cities Airport and then during the Korean conflict it was activated as Moore Air Force Base in 1953. It closed again in 1960.

    Populations:
    1915: 2,000, 1940: 6,000, 1950: 10,700, 1960: 14,000, 1970: 13,000, 1980: 22,500, 1990: 28,600 and 2000: 45,000

    Mission Attractions & Nearby Destinations >
    Mission Hotels
    >
    Cotton Gin, Mission, Texas
    Cotton Gin, Mission, Texas.
    Postcard from Will Beauchamp Collection
    More on Cotton

    Mission Attractions & Nearby Destinations

    Mission TX Post Office Mural: West Texas Landscape  detail  of man with horse by barbed wire fence
    Mission Post Office Mural "West Texas Landscape"
    Photo courtesy Ken Rudine, 2009
    Nearby Destinations

  • Bentsen-Rio Grande Valley State Park -
  • La Lomita - On FM 1016, 3 miles south of US 83.
    La Lomita Chapel, circa 1889, and the municipal historical park
  • Los Ebanos Ferry on the Rio Grande -
    The last hand-operated ferry on either border.
  • World Birding Center Headquarters - 956-584-9156
    Located in the Bentsen-Rio Grande Valley State Park.
  • Anzalduas County Park - 4 miles S of Mission on the Rio Grande.
    Ideal place for butterfly and bird watching. 956-585-5311
  • Santa Ana National Wildlife Refuge - 956-784-7500
    23 miles SE of Mission
    Abundant wildlife, plants, and birds (many not found anywhere else in the United States.) Entrance quarter mile east of the intersection of US 281 and FM 907. 4 miles East of the Pharr/Reynosa International Bridge.
  • Shary-Shivers Estate - 4 miles north on FM 494
  • Tom Landry Mural - In downtown Mission. Corner of North Conway and 101 E. Tom Landry Ave.
  • Mission Hotels > Book Here

    Mission's Major Events

    Contact the chamber for details - 800-580-2700
  • Texas Citrus Fiesta - Annual celebration in January
  • Texas Butterfly Festival - October
  • Mission Hotels > Book Here
  • Native Son
  • Kid Mendoza' and the Battle of the Bulge
    Sgt. Jose Mendoza Lopez
    Born in Mission, Texas, on July 10, 1910.
    December 1944 found Lopez in a bloody conflict known as the Battle of the Bulge. For his actions on Dec. 17, 1944, near Krinkelt, Belgium, Lopez received the highest military decoration for valor in combat the Medal of Honor.
    Mission, Texas, named a street and city park after him.
  • First Christian Church, Mission, Texas
    First Christian Church

    1940 Postcard courtesy rootsweb.com/
    ~txgenweb// postcards/Index.html
    Shary Memorial Chapel, Mission, Texas
    Shary Memorial Chapel, Mission, Texas

    Postcard courtesy rootsweb.com/
    ~txgenweb// postcards/Index.html
    Texas Citrus Fiesta
    Texas Citrus Fiesta

    Postcard courtesy rootsweb.com/
    ~txgenweb// postcards/Index.html
    Texas Escapes, in its purpose to preserve historic, endangered and vanishing Texas, asks that anyone wishing to share their local history, stories, and vintage/historic photos, please contact us.

    Related Topics:
    Texas | Texas Town List | Texas Ghost Towns | Texas Hotels
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    Mission, Texas
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    Edinburg
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    A 1978 a book written by local author Cleo Dawson was made into a movie titled She Came to the Valley. It was filmed on location in Mission and La Lomita
    DVD
    A movie filmed on location in Mission
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