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RITA SANTA, TEXAS. Rita Santa, on University of Texas lands and the Santa Fe Railroad in southwestern Reagan County, was built in 1925 as a community for the employees of the Texon Oil and Land Company. The town was first named Santa Rita, after the Santa Rita oil well two miles to the west, but the railroad changed the name to Rita Santa to avoid confusion with a town on its line in New Mexico. In 1929 the Texon Company was sold, other firms moved in, and by 1933 the population had risen to 350. In 1945 100 people resided in Santa Rita, but because of declining oil production the town had disappeared by 1957.


Richard R. Moore, West Texas after the Discovery of Oil (Austin: Pemberton Press, 1971). Samuel D. Myres, The Permian Basin: Petroleum Empire of the Southwest (2 vols., El Paso: Permian, 1973, 1977). Martin W. Schwettmann, The Discovery and Early Development of the Big Lake Oil Field (M.A. thesis, University of Texas, 1941). J. L. Werst, Jr., ed., The Reagan County Story (Big Lake, Texas: Reagan County Historical Survey Committee, 1974).

Jane Spraggins Wilson


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

Jane Spraggins Wilson, "RITA SANTA, TX," Handbook of Texas Online (, accessed November 27, 2015. Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

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