Devine, on old U.S. Highway 81, Interstate Highway 35, and State Highway 173, thirty miles southwest of San Antonio in southeast Medina County, was established in 1881 when the rails of the International-Great Northern Railroad were extended from San Antonio to Laredo. It was named for Judge Thomas Jefferson Devine of San Antonio, an eminent Texas jurist and attorney for the railroad. Devine had a population of 504 when it was incorporated in 1904. It operates under the aldermanic form of government. The surrounding area was placed under irrigation in 1915 by Medina Irrigation Company, which furnishes gravity-flow irrigation from the waters of Medina Lake. Vegetables, corn, and small grains replaced cotton, which had been the principal crop until the advent of irrigation. The area is still noted for its production of white corn, which is milled and used in making tortillas. The town's population doubled to 1,000 when irrigation became possible, and it held steady until the early 1940s. During the 1920s natural gas and oil were discovered in the Devine area. Since the 1940s the community's proximity to San Antonio and the military installations in that area made it an ideal semirural alternative to city living. The population increased from 1,400 in 1941 to 4,016 in 1988. Rated businesses numbered ninety from 1961 to the mid-1980s. Devine has a municipal airport, a public library, a golf course, a public swimming pool, and two nursing homes. It is the site of the largest Spanish peanut shipping center in South Texas. Among its other prominent businesses are Texas Tire Test Fleet, Levans Manufacturing Company that makes women's undergarments, two banks, a farmer's co-op, two weekly newspapers, and two feedlots. The Devine Independent School District had an enrollment of 1,400 students, and Devine had a population of 3,928 in 1990. The population grew to 4,140 by 2000.