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RINCON RANCH

RINCON RANCH. When Youngs Coleman arrived in San Patricio County in the early 1850s he purchased a block of land on Chiltipin Creek in the northern part of the county, where he built his home. However, since he was running cattle on the open rangeland in the center of the county he opened a working headquarters known as the Rincon about eight miles north of Gregory, to improve access to all parts of his range. In 1871, when Youngs and Tom Colemanqv joined J. M. and T. H. Mathis and George W. Fultonqv in forming the Coleman, Mathis, Fulton Cattle Company, the Rincon became the working headquarters for the giant ranch. By the time the Coleman-Fulton Pasture Company was formed in 1879 the Rincon was firmly established. When George W. Fulton, Jr., was made ranch manager in 1884 he did extensive remodeling of the headquarters home and moved his family to the Rincon. Fred Zimmerman, a gardener from Germany, was hired to turn the headquarters into a scenic spot that featured a pond of water used for swimming. By this time a number of ranch employees and their families were living at the headquarters, which now had a commissary, a blacksmith shop, a butcher shop, a saddlery, a windmill shop, and a place for dances. Married men had separate homes, and a two-story bunkhouse was maintained for single cowboys. A school is thought to have existed at the site by the late 1870s, and in 1878 a telephone line was run from the ranch office in Rockport to the Rincon and on to Tom Coleman's home on the Chiltipin. When the railroad came through San Patricio County in 1888 the company moved its office to the Rincon to be closer to the railroad in Gregory. In a few years the office was moved to Gregory, but the working headquarters remained at the Rincon until the company was dissolved in the late 1920s. In November 1909 President William H. Taft, half brother of Charles P. Taft, owner of the ranch, visited the Rincon for a day, and the ranchhands put on a rodeo in his honor. Many of the Rincon buildings were moved to Taft after the town was established in 1903. The others were torn down or destroyed by hurricanes. In 1906 the company built a school building in Taft and subsidized the wages of the teachers. Another school was supplied for Hispanic children. In 1990 a house stood on the Rincon site, but nothing of the original headquarters was left.

BIBLIOGRAPHY: 

Corpus Christi Caller, March 9, 1950. Keith Guthrie, History of San Patricio County (Austin: Nortex, 1986). A. Ray Stephens, Taft Ranch (Austin: University of Texas Press, 1964). May M. Watson and Alex Lillico, Taft Ranch (1935).

Keith Guthrie

Citation

The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this article.

Keith Guthrie, "RINCON RANCH," Handbook of Texas Online (http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/apr03), accessed July 25, 2014. Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.