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OLMITO, TEXAS

Cameron County, Texas Gulf Coast
Highways 77 and 83
2 Miles NW of Brownsville

Population: 1,198 (2000)

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History in a Pecan Shell

The Olmito post office opened in 1905. A station was established in the area in 1911, when the St. Louis, Brownsville, and Mexico Railway was constructed. In 1914 the community had a population estimated at fifty, a post office, a grocery store, and a cotton gin. The next year a school was also in operation in the town. The post office closed in 1918 and reopened in 1925. In 1933 Olmito had a population estimated at seventy-five and seven businesses. The population remained at seventy-five through 1948, when there were two businesses in the area. By 1950 the town had a population of 150 and six businesses, and in 1952 the population was 200. In 1970 the Olmito Independent School District was consolidated with the Los Fresnos Independent School District.

Since the 1980s Olmito has received attention because of John Lennon Memorial Park, which is leased to the county at a dollar a year by the McNamara brothers because Lennon "did a great deal to promote peace and world harmony." The park holds an annual celebration in conjunction with Earth Day and another on Lennon's birthday.

During the 1960s a colonia developed northwest of Olmito. It too was known by the name of Olmito. In 1986 it had 274 dwellings and a population of 1,233.

Olmito is Spanish for "little elm."


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