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VINEGARROON, TEXAS. Vinegarroon was at the junction of the Pecos River and the Rio Grande in southern Val Verde County. The area was inhabited as long as 6,000 years ago by prehistoric peoples who left their art and belongings on the walls and floors of nearby caves and rockshelters. Vinegarroon was named for the whip scorpion, common in the surrounding area, that emits a vinegar-like odor when it is alarmed. The community was founded in 1881 by Roy Bean, the self-proclaimed Law West of the Pecos. The Galveston, Harrisburg and San Antonio Railway built its tracks through the area in 1882, and Vinegarroon became a construction camp for the railroad. In 1892 the Texas and New Orleans Railroad Company, then operators of the Galveston, Harrisburg and San Antonio, rebuilt the Pecos Loop tracks and constructed the Pecos High Bridge. Subsequently Vinegarroon was abandoned as the Pecos crossing on the railroad. Without the railroad and with Bean's move to Langtry, Vinegarroon vanished.


Virginia Madison and Hallie Stillwell, How Come It's Called That? Place Names in the Big Bend Country (Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press, 1958).

Julia Cauble Smith


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

Julia Cauble Smith, "VINEGARROON, TX," Handbook of Texas Online (, accessed March 30, 2015. Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.
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