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WEIL, CHARLES (1847–1918). Charles Weil, pioneer rancher, was born in Surbourg, Alsace, France, on February 5, 1847, the son of Alexandre and Gela Weil. He was educated in France. He came to the United States in 1867 and in 1869 moved to Corpus Christi, where he established a trading post. On January 1, 1874, Weil married Sara Hymans, an orphan who had been reared by his sister. He opened a general store, Frank and Weil, in partnership with a brother-in-law. The business sold such supplies as jeans, leaf tobacco, and kerosene to ranchers in northern Mexico. Goods were brought into Corpus Christi by ships in the Gulf of Mexico and overland by wagon trains. With the completion of the Texas Mexican Railway to Laredo, direct Mexican trade with Corpus Christi virtually ceased, and the Weil mercantile firm became a ranching business in 1888. The ranch was situated on 25,000 acres near Hebbronville. Weil increased his ranch, which was adjacent to the famous King Ranch, to 40,000 acres in South Texas. He eventually turned over the ranch to his son Jonas, one of his eleven children. The Weil ranch attracted such writers as Frederick B. Gipson, who often used tales of the ranch in his columns. Weil died on September 5, 1918, in Corpus Christi and was buried in the Jewish cemetery there.


Corpus Christi Caller-Times, October 23, 1955. Natalie Ornish, Pioneer Jewish Texans (Dallas: Texas Heritage, 1989).

Natalie Ornish


The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this article.

Natalie Ornish, "WEIL, CHARLES," Handbook of Texas Online (, accessed November 29, 2015. Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.