Victoria, Texas

Victoria, Texas

Infobox Settlement
official_name = City of Victoria
settlement_type = City
nickname =

imagesize = 250px
image_caption =


mapsize = 250px
map_caption = Location in the state of Texas

mapsize1 =
map_caption1 =
subdivision_type = Country
subdivision_type1 = State
subdivision_type2 = County
subdivision_name = United States
subdivision_name1 = Texas
subdivision_name2 = Victoria
government_type =
leader_title = Mayor
leader_name = Will Armstrong
area_footnotes =
established_date =
area_magnitude =
area_total_km2 = 85.8
area_land_km2 = 85.9
area_water_km2 = 0.2
area_total_sq_mi = 33.1
area_land_sq_mi = 33.0
area_water_sq_mi = 0.2
elevation_m = 29
elevation_ft = 95
latd = 28 |latm = 49 |lats = 1 |latNS = N
longd = 96 |longm = 59 |longs = 36 |longEW = W
population_as_of = 2000
population_note =
population_total = 60603
population_urban =
population_metro = 301291
timezone = CST
utc_offset = -6
timezone_DST = CDT
utc_offset_DST = -5
latitude =
longitude =
website = []
blank_name = FIPS code
blank_info = 48-75428GR|2
blank1_name = GNIS feature ID
blank1_info = 1370631GR|3
footnotes =
postal_code_type = ZIP code
postal_code = 77901, 77902, 77903, 77904, 77905
area_code = 361

Victoria is a city in and the county seat of Victoria County, Texas, United States.GR|6 The population was 60,603 at the 2000 census. The three counties of the Victoria Metropolitan Statistical Area had a population of 301,291 at the 2000 census, [cite web | url = | title = Annual Estimates of the Population of Metropolitan and Micropolitan Statistical Areas: April 1, 2000 to July 1, 2007 (CBSA-EST2007-01) | format = CSV | work = 2007 Population Estimates | publisher = United States Census Bureau, Population Division | date = 2008-03-27 | accessdate = 2008-03-30] a major part of the region known as the "Golden Crescent". Victoria is the cathedral city of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Victoria in Texas.

Victoria is not named for Queen Victoria of Great Britain but rather for General Guadalupe Victoria, who became the first president of independent Mexico. [Texas Transportation Commission, "Texas State Travel Guide, 2008", p. 72]


Victoria is located thirty miles inland from the Gulf of Mexico and is within a two-hour drive of Corpus Christi, Houston, San Antonio, and Austin. The city is a regional hub for a seven-county area and serves a retail trade area of over 250,000 peopleFact|date=February 2007. The city is known as "The Crossroads"Fact|date=December 2007 because of its location centered among the four previously mentioned cities. Victoria is home to the University of Houston–Victoria and Victoria College, a community college.

Geography and climate

Victoria is located at coor dms|28|49|1|N|96|59|36|W|city (28.816866, -96.993462)GR|1. It is one of the state's old, historic cities. The original colony founded in 1824 was named for the first president of Mexico, Don Guadalupe Victoria.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 33.1 square miles (85.8 km²), of which, 33.0 square miles (85.4 km²) of it is land and 0.2 square miles (0.4 km²) of it (0.45%) is water.


As of censusGR|2 of 2000, there were 60,603 people, 22,129 households, and 15,755 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,838.3 people per square mile (709.7/km²). There were 24,192 housing units at an average density of 733.8/sq mi (283.3/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 71.18% White, 7.59% African American, 0.51% Native American, 1.01% Asian, 0.04% Pacific Islander, 17.31% from other races, and 2.35% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 42.92% of the population.

There were 22,129 households out of which 36.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 52.4% were married couples living together, 14.3% had a female householder with no husband present, and 28.8% were non-families. 24.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.0% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.68 and the average family size was 3.21.

In the city the population was spread out with 28.8% under the age of 18, 9.7% from 18 to 24, 28.0% from 25 to 44, 21.0% from 45 to 64, and 12.6% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34 years. For every 100 females there were 92.6 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 88.8 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $36,829, and the median income for a family was $42,866. Males had a median income of $34,184 versus $21,161 for females. The per capita income for the city was $19,009. About 12.2% of families and 14.7% of the population were below the poverty line, including 20.4% of those under the age of 18 and 12.2% ages 65 or older.


On April 8, 1824, Don Martin De León petitioned the provincial delegation at San Fernando de Béxar to settle forty-one Mexican families on the lower Guadalupe and founded the town of Nuestra Señora Guadalupe de Jesús Victoria. The colonization grant was approved on April 13. Patricia De León (wife of Martin De León) contributed $9,800 and cows, horses, and mules valued at $300, which she inherited from her father. De León's colony was the only predominantly Mexican colony in Texas, and as a Mexican citizen the empresario received legal preference in the numerous border disputes with American settlements encircling Guadalupe Victoria. In 1829 he obtained a second contract to settle one hundred and fifty families within an area of ten leagues from the coast, and complied with that contract, founding the town of Victoria.

The city served for a short time as the capital of the Republic of the Rio Grande in 1840.

Victoria was the site of Foster Air Force Base before its decommissioning in 1958 and Aloe Army Air Field that was decommissioned in 1945.

Immigrants' smuggling disaster

On May 14, 2003, Victoria received international attention when nineteen immigrants died while being smuggled into the United States. Seventy-four illegal immigrants were placed into a trailer and then transported from the Mexican-American border to Houston. The trailer had no ventilation and thus created an environment conducive to dehydration and hyperthermia. The driver of the truck, Tyrone Williams, stopped at a gasoline station minutes south of Victoria after being flagged down by other drivers. The drivers could see that people were in the trailer signaling for help. He stopped at the gas station, detached the tractor, and left, with the immigrants left inside. Seventeen died in the trailer, and two others perished in a nearby hospital. Trials for several of the smuggling ring conspirators are still outstanding. The dead immigrants were from Mexico, El Salvador, Honduras, and the Dominican Republic.


Victoria’s 562-acre Riverside Park is home to the Texas Zoo which houses more than 200 species of animals and plants that are indigenous to Texas, exhibiting them in their natural habitat.

There are three golf courses located in Victoria. The Victoria Country Club, Riverside Golf Course, and Colony Creek Country Club.

Riverside Park is home to more than fifteen baseball fields which are occupied during the spring and summer by teams from the Victoria Metro region.


The [ Victoria Public Library] contains approximately 127,000 volumes at its downtown location. Victoria College and the University of Houston-Victoria share a library on their joint campus.

Health care

Victoria has two major hospital systems: Detar Hospitals (Navarro and North) and Citizen's Medical Center. Citizen's was recently named one of the top 100 [ [ About 100 Top Hospitals ] ] hospitals in the nation. It also has a specialty hospital by the name of Victoria Warm Springs Hospital.


Victoria has 4,450 hotel-motel rooms. The Victoria Community Center is the largest enclosed convention/exhibit facility in the Golden Crescent region, with over 68,000 square feet. The Victoria Chamber of Commerce, Victoria African-American Chamber of Commerce, and the Victoria Convention and Visitors Bureau can assist with tourism-related inquires.

Fossati's Delicatessen is the oldest deli in the state of Texas and one of the oldest restaurants in the United States. Located in downtown Victoria, it was opened in 1882 by Italian immigrant Fraschio ("Frank") Napoleon Fossati. After 125 years, Fossati's is still owned and operated by the same family.

The Rosebud Fountain and Grill downtown is a restoration of the diner atmosphere popular in the 1950s. The restaurant, located in a bright red corner building at North Main and West Constitution streets, has been featured in Bob Phillips' Texas Country Reporter syndicated television series.

Victoria has a small but acclaimed art museum -- the Nave Museum -- located adjacent to the First Baptist Church. The Nave is named for Royston Nave, a Texas artist who achieved distinction in New York City in the 1920s. First Baptist in Victoria dates to 1852, when it was formed by eight persons, one of whom was a slave. The current sanctuary adjacent to the Nave Museum on Commerce Street was completed in the 1960s. FBC sometimes houses refugees from Gulf Coast hurricanes. [Texas Historical Commission, historical marker, First Baptist Church of Victoria]

Victoria has a large Roman Catholic Church downtown, St. Mary's, and congregations of most other denominations as well.


Known as the South Texas Crossroads, Victoria is located at the intersection of three major U. S. highways:

*US Highway 59 (future Interstate 69,) is a four-lane divided interstate quality highway extending southwest to Laredo and northeast to Houston where it meets Interstate 10 and Interstate 45. It is also known as the Lloyd M. Bentsen Highway.

*US Highway 77 travels north from Victoria to the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex intersecting Interstate 10, Interstate 35, and Interstate 37. US 77 travels south via a four-lane divided highway to the Rio Grande Valley.

*US Highway 87 travels northwest connecting Victoria to San Antonio providing access to Interstate 35. US 87 also connects with Port Lavaca to the southeast.

Victoria is a regional transportation hub for the surrounding counties with local access to major large and small freight carriers, Victoria Regional Airport, railway terminals, the shallow draft Port of Victoria, and the deep water Port of Port Lavaca-Point Comfort.

Location from Victoria

hub = Victoria
type = ex
NW = Cuero
NWv= Highway 87
NE = Edna, El Campo
NEv= Highway 59
NN = Schulenburg, La Grange
NNv= Highway 77
WW = Kenedy
WWv= Highway 239
EE = Bay City
EEv= Highway 111
SS = Refugio, Corpus Christi
SSv= Highway 77
SE = Port Lavaca
SEv= Highway 87
SW = Goliad, Matamoros
SWv= Highway 59

Largest companies and organizations

*Victoria Chamber of Commerce
*Victoria College
*Mario's Auto Body
*Citizens Medical Center
*University of Houston-Victoria
*DeTar Hospital
*The Ron Brown Company
*ERA Realty Group Inc
*Atzenhoffer Chevrolet-Mitsubishi-Mazda
*Clegg Industries Inc
*Victoria Independent School District
*First Victoria National Bank
*"Victoria Advocate"
*Wells Fargo
*Jess Williams Insurance
*CivilCorp, LLC

Notable residents

Victoria is home to Victoria College and the nowrap|University of Houston–Victoria. Current National Football League players who reside in Victoria include Jerheme Urban (Wide Receiver) and Kevin Kolb (Quarterback). MLB players Doug Drabek and Ron Gant, and WWE wrestler Stone Cold Steve Austin also live in Victoria.

Victoria gallery


External links

* [ City of Victoria, Texas]
* [ "Victoria Economic Development Corporation" economic development]
* [ "The Victoria Advocate" newspaper]
*Handbook of Texas|id=AA/qca1|name=Aloe Army Air Field
* [ "Port of Victoria and the Victoria Barge Canal"]
* [ "Victoria Advocate"]
* [ "Victoria Texas"]

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