Not all cities in Texas have names whose origins are clear or easy to explain.

Some cities in Texas were named after people who played important roles in the founding of the state and/or establishing its independence from Mexico.

People like Sam Houston and Stefan F. Austin found their names christening two of Texas' 5 biggest cities. Another of the top 5, San Antonio, was named after a stream which early Spanish explorers camped by in 1691.

It was, coincidentally, on the feast day of St. Anthony of Padua. They named the nearby river after "San Antonio" and the city followed suit later.

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Dallas apparently was also named after a "guy" but exactly which guy remains a mystery. Though it's been narrowed down to 3 dudes, no one really knows which one gets the honor.

Corpus Christi also honors a "feast day" upon which another Spanish explorer explored and claimed the area in 1519.

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Not all Texas cities are tied to famous peeps though. El Paso is a shortened version of El Paseo Del Norte, a name given the area by early Spanish explorers who recognized the value of an all season pass through the mountains. It was eventually shortened to "El Paso".

Amarillo, in Spanish, means "yellow". The area was covered in yellow flowers and the soil had a yellow-ish color. The mis-pronunciation, Aaa-mur-ILL-oh as opposed to Ahh-Mah-Ree-Yo, has been attributed to railroad workers unfamiliar with the local dialect.

How These Texas Cities Got Their Names

Texas City Name Origins

For a few more name origins, click here.

For a few more, really odd ones, click here.


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