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San Benito, Texas

san benito texas police department, san benito texas chamber of commerce
San Benito is a city in Cameron County, Texas, United States The population was 24,250 at the 2010 census[3] On April 3, 2007, San Benito celebrated the 100th anniversary of its naming

The post office was named "Diaz" from April to May 1907 The San Benito Museum, Freddy Fender Museum and Conjunto Music Museum opened in the same building Nov 17, 2007

On October 25, 1975, on the television show Hee Haw, Freddy Fender saluted his hometown of San Benito, population 15,177

San Benito is part of the Brownsville–Harlingen–Raymondville and the Matamoros–Brownsville metropolitan areas


  • 1 History
  • 2 Geography
    • 21 Climate
  • 3 Demographics
  • 4 Government
  • 5 Education
  • 6 Notable people
  • 7 See also
  • 8 References
  • 9 External links


San Benito is known as the "Resaca City" The Resaca de los Fresnos, 400-foot 120 m wide, flows through the city As indicated by its Spanish name, the resaca was a dry river bed It is now the main canal of a large irrigation system

San Benito was at first named "Diaz" in honor of Porfirio Díaz, president of Mexico at that time The people in the San Benito area were predominantly of Mexican ancestry The Anglo settlers came after the completion of the first irrigation system in 1906 Prior to that time, this region was an arid, mesquite-cactus-brush covered wilderness Irrigation water touched off the crop production magic in the railroad

On July 4, 1904, the first passenger train arrived at Diaz To celebrate the coming of the new railroad, the community leaders renamed the railroad station "Bessie", in honor of Bessie Yoakum, whose father, Benjamin Franklin Yoakum, was instrumental in the construction of the railroad

Some time later, when the town site was surveyed, the name was changed to "San Benito" in honor of Benjamin Hicks He was a pioneer rancher whose charitable attitude endeared him to the population The name was suggested by Rafael Moreno, the popular 90-year-old camp cook of the surveying party Moreno suggested the name "San Benito" for his beloved "Saint Benjamin" Hicks

San Benito was a village with a moderate number of homes, businesses, churches, and public schools several years before they were incorporated in 1911 The original map of the townsite was recorded 28 April 1907 The first school was established in 1907 with 48 pupils and Miss Kate Purvis as the teacher The post office also opened in 1907 San Benito Benny Montalvo was born on September 20, 1907 to Ismael and Francisca Esparza Montalvo On the night he was born, the city of San Benito was having a celebration in honor of its new name Upon learning of Benny's birth, Col Sam Robertson suggested to Ismael and Francisca Montalvo to name their new son San Benito, which is how Benny got his name

In 1927 the city adopted a commission form of government operating under a home rule charter

In 1920, when the city was included in the US Census count for the first time, San Benito had become a city of 4,070 people By 1950 the census count was 13,271 In 1960 the population had grown to 16,422 The present population is estimated at 24,500

The irrigation district was organized in 1906 As a result of the availability of irrigation water, San Benito and all of the Lower Rio Grande Valley cities came to serve a newly developing agricultural territory

The original townsite, created in 1911, contained 1,280 acres 520 ha Since then a series of annexations have increased the incorporated area to 4,09217 acres 1,65604 ha

The mild winter climate in this southmost section of Texas has played a dominant role in the growth of San Benito and the other cities of the Lower Rio Grande Valley Crops grow and flowers bloom year-round The city has become a hotspot for winter tourists and retired people, providing a substantial percentage of the buying power of this community


San Benito is located west of the center of Cameron County at 26°8′12″N 97°38′9″W / 2613667°N 9763583°W / 2613667; -9763583 26136603, -97635878[4] Interstate 69E passes through the city, leading northwest 6 miles 10 km to Harlingen and southeast 19 miles 31 km to Brownsville According to the United States Census Bureau, San Benito has a total area of 161 square miles 418 km2, of which 158 square miles 409 km2 is land and 03 square miles 09 km2, or 212%, is water[3]

San Benito is also known as "The Resaca City", due to its resaca a former tributary of the Rio Grande, which has been cut off for irrigation purposes


The climate in this area is characterized by hot, dry summers and generally warm winters According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, San Benito has a semi arid climate, borderline tropical savannah climate abbreviated "Cfa" on climate maps[5]


Historical population
Census Pop
Est 201824,38506%
US Decennial Census

As of the census[1] of 2000, there were 23,444 people, 7,065 households, and 5,715 families residing in the city The population density was 2,1302 people per square mile 8221/km² There were 9,120 housing units at an average density of 8287 per square mile 3198/km² The racial makeup of the city was 7616% White, 032% African American, 041% Native American, 025% Asian, 2048% from other races, and 238% from two or more races Hispanic or Latino of any race were 8693% of the population

There were 7,065 households out of which 414% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 566% were married couples living together, 195% had a female householder with no husband present, and 191% were non-families 168% of all households were made up of individuals and 107% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older The average household size was 330 and the average family size was 372

In the city, the population was spread out with 333% under the age of 18, 105% from 18 to 24, 248% from 25 to 44, 178% from 45 to 64, and 136% who were 65 years of age or older The median age was 30 years For every 100 females, there were 902 males For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 841 males

The median income for a household in the city was $24,027, and the median income for a family was $26,415 Males had a median income of $22,097 versus $18,512 for females The per capita income for the city was $10,317 About 287% of families and 327% of the population were below the poverty line, including 421% of those under age 18 and 228% of those age 65 or over


The United States Postal Service operates the San Benito Post Office[7]


The San Benito Consolidated Independent School District serves San Benito The local high school is San Benito High School SBCISD has 2 high schools, Veterans Memorial Academy and San Benito High School; three middle schools, Riverside, Berta Cabaza, and Miller Jordan

In addition, South Texas Independent School District serves San Benito and many nearby communities by providing several magnet schools South Texas Academy of Medical Technology Med Tech is located in San Benito

San Benito Public Library is the city's library[8]

IDEA Public Schools also has a school in San Benito

Notable people

A list of San Benito's most notable people includes:

  • Charley Crockett, musician[9]
  • T R Fehrenbach, author[10]
  • Freddy Fender born Baldemar Huerta, musician
  • Charles Pugsley Fincher, cartoonist, lawyer, creator of Thadeus & Weez newspaper comic strip[11]
  • Narciso Martínez, conjunto musician[12]
  • Bobby Morrow, winner of three gold medals in the 1956 Summer Olympics
  • Col Sam A Robertson, founder, railroad pioneer, first postmaster, World War I recipient of Distinguished Service Medal[13]
  • Charles M Robinson III, author, history scholar
  • Robert Salaburu, professional poker player, 8th place at the final table of the 2012 World Series of Poker
  • Armando Torres III, a former US Marine kidnapped in Mexico
  • Wilma Vinsant, combat flight nurse killed over Germany[14]

See also

  • La Calle Stenger


  1. ^ a b "American FactFinder" United States Census Bureau Retrieved 2008-01-31mw-parser-output citecitationmw-parser-output citation qmw-parser-output id-lock-free a,mw-parser-output citation cs1-lock-free amw-parser-output id-lock-limited a,mw-parser-output id-lock-registration a,mw-parser-output citation cs1-lock-limited a,mw-parser-output citation cs1-lock-registration amw-parser-output id-lock-subscription a,mw-parser-output citation cs1-lock-subscription amw-parser-output cs1-subscription,mw-parser-output cs1-registrationmw-parser-output cs1-subscription span,mw-parser-output cs1-registration spanmw-parser-output cs1-ws-icon amw-parser-output codecs1-codemw-parser-output cs1-hidden-errormw-parser-output cs1-visible-errormw-parser-output cs1-maintmw-parser-output cs1-subscription,mw-parser-output cs1-registration,mw-parser-output cs1-formatmw-parser-output cs1-kern-left,mw-parser-output cs1-kern-wl-leftmw-parser-output cs1-kern-right,mw-parser-output cs1-kern-wl-right
  2. ^ "US Board on Geographic Names" United States Geological Survey 2007-10-25 Retrieved 2008-01-31
  3. ^ a b "Geographic Identifiers: 2010 Census Summary File 1 G001: San Benito city, Texas" US Census Bureau, American Factfinder Retrieved July 8, 2015
  4. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990" United States Census Bureau 2011-02-12 Retrieved 2011-04-23
  5. ^ "San Benito, Texas Köppen Climate Classification Weatherbase" Weatherbasecom Retrieved 14 February 2019
  6. ^ "Population and Housing Unit Estimates" Retrieved July 26, 2019
  7. ^ "Post Office Location - SAN BENITO" United States Postal Service Retrieved on May 9, 2010
  8. ^ "Public Library Archived 2010-09-19 at the Wayback Machine" City of San Benito Retrieved on May 9, 2010
  9. ^ Darling, Cary 8 May 2018 "Talking music, race and Texas with Charley Crockett" Houston Chronicle Retrieved 14 February 2019
  10. ^ "TR Fehrenbach - Penguin Random House" PenguinRandomhousecom Retrieved 14 February 2019
  11. ^ "Charles Pugsley Fincher" Theallisonlawfirmcom Retrieved 14 February 2019
  12. ^ "Narciso Martínez "Father of the Texas-Mexican Conjunto"" Libutexasedu Retrieved 14 February 2019
  13. ^ MCKENNA, VERNA J 15 June 2010 "ROBERTSON, SAMUEL ARTHUR" Tshaonlineorg Retrieved 14 February 2019
  14. ^ Gilbert, Minnie 15 June 2010 "Shea, Wilma Vinsant [Dolly]" Handbook of Texas Online Texas State Historical Association Retrieved 4 October 2017

External links

  • Texas portal
  • City of San Benito official website
  • San Benito, Tx in Handbook of Texas Online
  • Assembling Piper Cubs at San Benito

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