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VITERBO, TEXAS. Viterbo is on the Southern Pacific railroad and West Port Arthur Road seven miles south of Beaumont in central Jefferson County. The railroad stop, established sometime after 1898, was named after J. and L. Viterbo, rice farmers of Italian descent who came to Texas from the area of Lake Charles, Louisiana, in 1895, seeking cheaper land prices. They purchased a 1,600-acre tract north of Hillebrandt Bayou. Using a steam pumping plant for irrigation, the Viterbo farm had planted 800 acres of rice within twenty months and served as a model for developers seeking to promote the agricultural prospects of Southeast Texas. Although hurt by a subsequent decline of the local rice industry, the farm was still listed on a 1928 Corps of Engineers topographical map. As of the 1970s the area was crisscrossed with irrigation ditches, canals, and pumping stations, and the former railroad stop of Viterbo lay across the highway from a residential development, Beauxart Gardens.
BIBLIOGRAPHY:Mrs. J. M. Fleming et al., comps., Nederland, 1898–1973: Diamond Jubilee (Nederland, Texas: Nederland Publishing, 1973).
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The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this article.Handbook of Texas Online, Robert Wooster, "VITERBO, TX," accessed January 18, 2019, http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/htv08.
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