Theses and Dissertations - UTB/UTPA

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



First Advisor

Dr. Sonia Hernandez

Second Advisor

Dr. Linda English

Third Advisor

Dr. Russell Skowronek


This thesis demonstrates that the City of San Juan serves as a microcosm of Rio Grande Valley history and became one of the most substantial municipalities in the region as a crossroad location for commercial agriculture, tourism and economic development. Outlined is the succession of Spanish land grantees, displaced Civil War families, Anglo entrepreneurs and Mexican Revolution refugees and their migration to San Juan at various stages of municipal development. Statistical data portrays how city officials, economic development personnel and community leaders positioned the city to benefit from federal funding and city planning opportunities. The progression of how San Juan overcame Anglo-Hispanic conflict and maintained a Hispanic majority in city government is delineated. Finally, the efforts of a continuous string of strong characters are shown and how they positioned San Juan to be one of the champions in its role in the transformation of the Rio Grande Valley.


Copyright 2013 Roseann Bacha-Garza. All Rights Reserved.

Granting Institution

University of Texas-Pan American

Included in

History Commons