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|City of Victoria|
|— City —|
|Location in the state of Texas|
|Coordinates: 28°49′1″N 96°59′36″WCoordinates: 28°49′1″N 96°59′36″W|
|• City Council||Mayor Will Armstrong |
|• City Manager||Charmelle Garrett|
|• City||33.1 sq mi (85.8 km2)|
|• Land||33.0 sq mi (85.9 km2)|
|• Water||0.2 sq mi (0.2 km2)|
|Elevation||95 ft (29 m)|
|Time zone||CST (UTC-6)|
|• Summer (DST)||CDT (UTC-5)|
|ZIP code||77901, 77902, 77903, 77904, 77905|
|GNIS feature ID||1370631|
Victoria is located thirty miles inland from the Gulf of Mexico. The city is a regional hub for a seven-county area known as the "Golden Crescent" and serves a retail trade area of over 250,000 people. Victoria is known as "The Crossroads" because of its location within a two-hour drive of Corpus Christi, Houston, San Antonio and Austin.
Victoria is named for General Guadalupe Victoria, who became the first president of independent Mexico. The city is home to the University of Houston–Victoria and Victoria College. Victoria is the cathedral city of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Victoria in Texas.
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Mission Nuestra Señora del Espíritu Santo de Zúñiga was then established by Spain in Victoria County, in 1722. Also built on Matagorda Bay near La Salle's Fort Saint Louis. The mission and complementing Presidio La Bahia (fort) was intended to secure the Texas coastline from the French and to gather the local Indians. Being unable to attract the Indians to stay at the mission and due to tensions between the Indians and Spanish soldiers, the mission was relocated only four years later, to a more favorable location on the Guadalupe River. Artifacts from this settlement are currently on display at the Museum of the Coastal Bend in Victoria.
Moved in 1726 near Victoria, it was established among the Tamique and Aranama Indians in Mission Valley. Dams and stone acequias were built to carry water from the river to the mission. A ranching outpost was also built of mortar and stone at Tonkawa Bank, on the river about 12 miles distant. The presidio also followed and was built at what was later to become Fernando De Leon's Ranch. The establishment prospered for 26 years, producing enough grain and hay to trade with other Spanish settlements. It was at this time that the foundation for cattle and horse ranching started.
A later colony was established by Martín De León in 1824, and was the only predominantly Mexican colony in Texas. Victoria was the center of the colony, which was part of an effort by the Mexican government to settle Texas. From March through November of 1840, the government of the Republic of the Rio Grande operated in Victoria until the collapse of the Republic.
Main article: De León's Colony (Texas)
Victoria is located on the coastal plains of Texas approximately 50 miles from the Gulf of Mexico and 20 miles from the nearest bay waters. It lies along and just to the east of the Guadalupe River. The topography is mostly flat to slightly rolling with an average elevation of 95 feet. Most of the city is underlain by smectite-rich clay which is locally capped by silt or fine sand; the high shrink-swell potential associated with smectite creates major challenges to urban infrastructure. Vegetation in better-drained areas consists primarily of short grasses with post oaks and other small timber and brush. Moist sites can grow tall forests dominated by elm and pecan.
Victoria is classified as humid sub-tropical. June through August is very hot and humid with high temperatures regularly exceeding 90 degrees F. The record high temperature of 111 degrees F. was recorded in September 2000. Spring and Autumn months are generally mild to warm with lower humidity. Winters are mild with occasional cold spells. The record low temperature was recorded in December 1989 when the temperature dropped to 9 degrees F. Snow is very infrequent, usually occurring on average once every 11 years. On December 24–25, 2004, Victoria recorded its first White Christmas ever when 12.5 inches of snow fell.
Victoria has occasional severe weather, mostly from flooding. Hurricanes have the potential to bring severe damage to the area. Hurricane Claudette in July 2003 was the last hurricane to score a direct hit on the city. During this event, winds gusted to 83 mph at the Victoria Regional Airport and 90% of the city lost power. The most intense hurricane to affect Victoria remains Hurricane Carla in September 1961.
|[hide]Climate data for Victoria, Texas|
|Record high °C (°F)||31 |
|Average high °C (°F)||17.1 |
|Average low °C (°F)||6.4 |
|Record low °C (°F)||−13 |
|Precipitation mm (inches)||62 |
|Source: National Weather Service|
This post has been edited by Ian Williams: 11 March 2012 - 16:22