Weslaco

Then and Now


Cut through a Jungle of Ebony, Mesquite, Cat-Claw and almost Impenetrable Brush was a lonely road, connecting Donna and Mercedes. A single sign was towering along this path between the two already established cities, announcing the "Weslaco Town Site Sale". The promoters of this sale, who lived in neighboring cities, tied rags on bushes to find their way back and forth. But land was cheap, and even though the new settlement to be was nothing more than a surveyor's mark on a map, people started to buy. Finally, on December 10, 1919, a single pistol shot pierced the air at 10 o'clock in the morning, announcing the official birth of the City of Weslaco.

The new citizens of Weslaco went to work enthusiastically, clearing the land, building streets and homes. By 1929 Weslaco boasted with paved streets and sidewalks, attractive homes, brick churches and palm trees along Texas Boulevard. Business was thriving too, as more and more home-seekers came to Weslaco. It was at the same year that Miss Mary Lovely, the new postmaster of the town, announced that free mail-delivery would start as soon as the residents put up mail-boxes. 1929 was also the year when the first sound-movie entertained Weslaco's citizens, starring Corrinne Griffith, the chamber of commerce hires it's first full time secretary and the Weslaco High School band won first place in the state Class B Division, receiving a lovely cup and $ 300 in cash. The citizens were obviously proud of their accomplishments, and rightfully so, for the thriving town with it's rich vegetable fields an flourishing citrus orchards was literally wrestled away from an inhospitable desert, and drenched with the sweat of their labor.

Today Weslaco boasts a population of over 26,000 residents, Spanish arcitecture abounds amidst the palm trees that sway with the ever-present Gulf Coast breezes. As an additional boost to the local economy, thousands of "Winter Texan" residents make their way to Weslaco every fall and stay until spring, taking advantage of the subtropical climate, the pristine beaches of nearby South
Padre Island, and the great shopping bargains and unique cusine found across the border in neighboring Mexico just a few minutes away.