TexasEscapes.comTexas Escapes Online Magazine: Travel and History
Columns: History, Humor, Topical and Opinion
Over 1800 Texas Towns & Ghost Towns
NEW : : TEXAS TOWNS : : GHOST TOWNS : : TEXAS HOTELS : : FEATURES : : COLUMNS : : ARCHITECTURE : : IMAGES : : SITE MAP : : SEARCH SITE
HOME
SEARCH SITE
ARCHIVES
RESERVATIONS
Texas Hotels
Hotels
Cars
Air
Cruises
Mission Hotels
Find Hotel Deals in Mission
Book Today and Save
 
 Texas : Towns A-Z / South Texas : La Joya

LA JOYA, TEXAS

Hidalgo County, South Texas
Highway 83
10 miles W of Mission
16 miles W of McAllen
Just E of Los Ebanos
23 miles E of Rio Grande City
Population: 3,303 (2000)

La Joya, Texas Area Hotels
McAllen Hotels | Mission Hotels

The Schunior High School
The Schunior High School (detail)
TE Photo, 2002

The Naming of La Joya, Texas

The actual first settler of La Joya Texas was the family of Hilario Silva. La Joya was called La Joya because the ranchers of Rio Grande City would take thier cattle to the watering hole (called jollancas) in La Joya. Not because the water glistened like a jewel. New people that have come to live in La Joya think they know the history of La Joya, and get their facts from people that have lived there a very long time although were not of the actual descendants of the 1st settlers. When actually they should get their facts about La Joya from the descendants of the original La Joyans which was my family. There are people like Vicente Garza, Roberto Gonzalez Jr. Aurora G. Cavazos, who is 96 years old who was the granddaughter of Hilario Silva, Manuel Gonzalez, Gonzalo Gonzalez Sr. who also happened to be a direct descendant of Hilario Silva. I, myself am an Hilario Silva descendant but I have learned my history through those people aformentioned. - Yolie Flowers, September 27, 2009

History in a Pecan Shell

"The Jewel" is said to be named after a small natural lake once nearby. The town sits on land that was once known as Los Ejidos de Reynosa Viejo.

The settlers of Reynosa Viejo shared grazing lands here called ejiidos in Spanish. Settlement began in 1749, when José de Escandón brought the first settlers here. Even today, many residents are descendants of the original colonists. Francisco de la Garza, had founded a community called Tabasco, on this side of the Rio Grande in the early 1900s. It prospered briefly after being abandoned (for higher ground) because of severe flooding in 1908 and 1909.

In 1926 a land developer from Houston named J. H. Smith arrived and coaxed the locals into incorporating - which they did that same year - officially naming it after the lake west of town. In 1930 the town was still in its infantcy, with just two businesses and a few houses.

Development was curtailed due to the Great Depression and by 1940 the town only had 175 people living there. Nothing much happened in La Joya until the mid 1950s when a man with the redundant name of Leo J. Leo organized the townspeople to hold an election. In 1965 Leo Leo became the town's first mayor.

By 1972 the town had over 1,200 people which doubled over the next ten years.

Nellie Leo Schunior School Marker
TE photo
The La Joya Post Office
The La Joya Post Office
TE photo, 2002

La Joya, Texas Area Destinations & Hotels:

Mission - Mission Hotels
McAllen - McAllen Hotels
Rio Grande City - Rio Grande City Hotels
Los Ebanos

More Destinations:
South Texas | Texas Town List | Texas
Hotels
- Find Hotels Locally
McAllen Hotels
Find Hotel Deals in McAllen
Book Today and Save

 
HOME | TEXAS ESCAPES ONLINE MAGAZINE | TEXAS HOTELS
TEXAS TOWN LIST | TEXAS GHOST TOWNS | TEXAS COUNTIES

Texas Hill Country | East Texas | Central Texas North | Central Texas South | West Texas | Texas Panhandle | South Texas | Texas Gulf Coast
TRIPS | STATES PARKS | RIVERS | LAKES | DRIVES | MAPS

TEXAS FEATURES
Ghosts | People | Historic Trees | Cemeteries | Small Town Sagas | WWII | History | Black History | Rooms with a Past | Music | Animals | Books
COLUMNS : History, Humor, Topical and Opinion

TEXAS ARCHITECTURE | IMAGES
Courthouses | Jails | Churches | Gas Stations | Schoolhouses | Bridges | Theaters | Monuments/Statues | Depots | Water Towers | Post Offices | Grain Elevators | Lodges | Museums | Stores | Banks | Gargoyles | Cornerstones | Pitted Dates | Drive-by Architecture | Old Neon | Murals | Signs | Ghost Signs | Then and Now
Vintage Photos

TRAVEL RESERVATIONS | HOTELS | USA | MEXICO

Privacy Statement | Disclaimer | Recommend Us | Contributors | Staff | Contact TE
Website Content Copyright ©1998-2008. Texas Escapes - Blueprints For Travel, LLC. All Rights Reserved
This page last modified: September 28, 2009