LA JUNTA DE LOS RIOS
While taking a lunch-time drive along the main street of Presidio in search of some terrific Tex-Mex, keep in mind that this small border town in southern Presidio County is located in what is considered the oldest continuously cultivated area in the United States. Archeological evidence suggests that farming, in the form of individual farms and small-scale industry, has occupied this Rio Grande River floodplain for centuries. By 1681, the fertile region surrounding the junction (la junta in Spanish) of the Rio Conchos and the Rio Grande was known as La Junta de los Rios. The region supported a lively community that straddled rivers, communities and ultimately nations, and despite borderland rhetoric, this relationship has yet to subside. This network of people, trade, family, and industry has been hundreds of years in the making, creating a bond that is neither easily dismissed nor readily broken. Today, Presidio offers an example of a Texas and Mexican frontier heritage inextricably linked. Presidio also serves as western gateway to the 350,000 acre Big Bend Ranch State Park and the stunning Bofecillos mountain range. The adobe trading post and private fortress of Ben Leaton, restored and interpreted by Texas Parks and Wildlife, and the new electricity storage battery station, the largest in the United States and housed in architecture designed to suggest a fort, together provide a perfect window into Presidio’s past and future.