Aransas County, Tx.

Named for The Rio Nuestra Senora de Aranzazu

Aransas County is located on the Gulf of Mexico and offers the relaxed, laid back quality of life of a coastal community. It was formed in 1871 from portions of Refugio County. Aransas County was named after Rio Nuestra Senora de Aranzazu, a Spanish outpost in early Texas and has an area of 276 square miles. The altitude ranges from sea level to fifty feet. The county is divided into three parts by Copano, St. Charles, and Aransas bays. The level land, part of the Coastal Prairie, is generally poorly drained. Much of the northern portion of the county is in the Aransas National Wildlife Refuge. The subtropical-humid climate features mild winters and warm summers.

The county seat and largest city is Rockport. Along with roads and other means of transport, the county is also served by the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway.

County Resources by City
Welcome to Aransas County
Aransas County is located on the Gulf of Mexico and offers the relaxed, laid back quality of life of a coastal community.

Aransas Pass
The City of Aransas Pass was founded in 1909 by a promotion of a great land lottery. It developed as a fishing village.
Town of Fulton
Fulton, Texas welcomes visitors to come and share in the tranquility and abundant natural gifts that have made Fulton, Texas a vacation destination for 100 years.
The City of Rockport is the County Seat of Aransas County. Rockport was incorporated by Special Act of the Legislature of Texas Charter granted to it on May 29, 1871.
* = unincorporated # = WikiPedia page

Adjacent counties are; Calhoun County, Gulf of Mexico, Nueces County, San Patricio County, and Refugio County.

Aransas County, Tx. History:

In March 1871, because the great cattle boom had established it as the most important town in the area, Rockport became county seat of Refugio County. On September 18 of the same year, the legislature voted to divide the county and designated much of the coastal area as a new county named Aransas. Rockport was made the county seat, and on March 26, 1872, the county commissioners’ court met for the first time in a rented frame house.

In 1888 the San Antonio and Aransas Pass Railroad (later the Texas and New Orleans) reached Rockport. This ensured the town’s continued importance as a shipping center. Despite all of this, the county’s population remained small. However, 1888 all of the unsold land in the Smith and Wood subdivision was acquired by the Aransas Pass Land Company. A comprehensive plan was created to develop Rockport and the surrounding region. Immigrants from the Old South and Europe were lured to the county by the promise of a bright future , and by 1890 the population had grown considerably.

A new county courthouse, designed by J. Riely Gordon, was built in 1889. By 1900 the county had seven post offices and six public schools. Between 1890 and 1900 the number of farms grew from six to forty-seven, and tourism for the first time began to play a significant role in the area’s economy.

Local leaders, however, recognized that the county’s continued prosperity was dependent on developing Rockport into a deepwater harbor. Several attempts had been made by the end of the nineteenth century to open a deep channel, failed for one reason or another. Finally, in the 1920s, Aransas Pass became a deepwater port, but by that time the Port of Corpus Christi had been opened to oceangoing vessels, and the Aransas County ports declined in importance. In 1919 the area was hit by a powerful hurricane and much of Rockport and the surrounding area was destroyed. The combination of the storm and the loss of shipping to Corpus Christi dealt a serious blow to the county’s economy for much of the next four decades.

Fishing and shipbuilding emerged as new industries in the first half of the twentieth century. Commercial fishing flourished in the late 1890s. It increased to the point of outstripping agriculture in net receipts. In the 1930s came the shrimping industry which helped the economy greatly. The small shipbuilding industry took off during World War I and continued to prosper during the 1920s and 1930s. During World War II the United States Navy took over the Rockport Yacht and Supply Company to repair and maintain vessels in the 100-foot class, and another shipyard, owned by Rob Roy Rice, built wooden submarine chasers.

Oil was discovered in the county in 1936, but it was not until the 1950s that oil was produced in large quantities. Much of the drilling has been done offshore, and the county benefited greatly from the settlement in 1953 of the Tidelands controversy, which gave it an additional 208 square miles of submerged land area.

The first school in the county was Lamar Academy, founded around 1850. The first school in Rockport opened in 1881, and in 1884 the first public school opened there. Between 1893 and 1949 seven common school districts operated in the county, but in June 1946 they were consolidated in the Aransas County Independent School District.

Other places in Aransas County:

Doctors Orders Charters Deep Sea & Bay Fishing
U.S. Coast Guard and TX Parks and Wildlife licensed Captain and Guide. Fully inspected and insured 34-foot Wellcraft with air conditioning and restroom.
Kountry Kennel
The facility is clean, and climate controlled for everyone’s comfort. A special bird area is available. Located just outside Rockport where there is plenty of fresh air and lots of stuff to bark at if the urge hits.
New Beginnings
New Beginnings in Downtown Rockport TX offers unique and affordable Furniture, Home Décor, Jewelry, Gifts and much more
Paradise House
Paradise House, in Rockport, Texas, is a Tropical Shopping Experience, offering reasonable prices for fun and functional treasures from all over the Pacific.

The Gulf Intracoastal Waterway, which runs the length of Aransas Bay, handles a large volume of shipping through the area and is an important element in the economy. In the late twentieth century tourist trade was also a major source of income. Local attractions include Goose Island State Park, Copano Bay State Fishing Pier, the Rockport Beach, and the Texas Maritime Museum. Special celebrations include Seafair in October, Fiesta en la Plaza in September, and the Fourth of July Fireworks and Art Festival; Oyster Fest occurs in March and the Children’s Christmas Tree in November.

Aransas County Airport (IATA: RKP, ICAO: KRKP, FAA LID: RKP) is a county-owned public-use airport. It is located north of the central business district of Rockport, Texas.

Major highways are State Highway 35 and State Highway 188.

The Aransas National Wildlife Refuge is located in parts of Aransas, Refugio, and Calhoun counties.

Hoopes House Bed Breakfast in Rockport
Built in the 1890’s, the historic Hoopes’ House in Rockport, Texas has been meticulously renovated and restored to its original splendor. The sunny yellow inn commands a panoramic view of Rockport Harbor and is within walking distance of museums, shops, galleries and restaurants.

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