San Angelo was first settled by Indians at the convergence of the Concho Rivers and later discovered by the Spaniards in the 1500's. In 1867, Ft. Concho was founded as a frontier outpost and established to protect early West Texas settlers. The Fort was home for the 4th and 10th Calvary, the 16th Infantry, and the famous Buffalo Soldiers. "Santa Angela," was the settlement that sprang up across the Concho River from the Fort. Named in honor of Carolina Angela de la Garza DeWitt, deceased wife of the city's founder Bart J. DeWitt, Santa Angela was eventually changed to San Angelo. Learn more about our National Historic Landmark at www.fortconcho.com.
In 1888, the first train arrived in San Angelo and in the early 1900's, construction began to connect San Angelo with the Kansas City, Mexico, and Orient (KCM&O) line. The new depot became the headquarters for the Texas Corporation of the KCM&O and was the second largest building in San Angelo at the time, and the only one made of brick. Construction began from San Angelo west to Alpine to connect Kansas City eventually with the Pacific Ocean. Crews in Mexico were connecting track through the Copper Canyon region and over the Continental Divide. One of the contractors on the project was Pancho Villa, whose antics eventually led the company into bankruptcy. In 1923, the West Texas oil boom began when "Santa Rita #1" brought in a gusher west of San Angelo, just 174 feet north of the KCM&O tracks.
The city of San Angelo is located on the northern boundary of the Chihuahuan desert and has an altitude of 1,900 ft. Its proximity to the Concho River which flows through the city, and to 3 lakes, provides a very pleasant climate for an average of 251 days a year of sunshine. San Angelo is located between the Texas Hill Country to the southeast, the rolling plains to the northeast, and the Chisos Mountains of Big Bend National Park to the southwest. San Angelo covers 58 square miles and has a population of over 95,000. Along with the nationally recognized San Angelo Museum of Fine Arts and Angelo State University, San Angelo is home to Goodfellow Air Force Base and Howard Community College. The city enjoys a diverse economy of ranching, farming, oil & gas, and successful home-grown mercantiles and international businesses.