Texas has been a major oil-producing state for over a century. The first big oil discovery in Texas was the Spindletop field near Beaumont in 1901, which set off a massive oil boom that transformed the state's economy and made Texas one of the wealthiest states in the country.
Culberson County, Texas, located in the southwestern part of the state, has a rich and diverse history dating back thousands of years. The area was originally inhabited by various Native American groups, such as the Apache and Comanche tribes, who roamed the vast expanses of land. These tribes hunted the abundant wildlife and adapted to the harsh desert environment.

The arrival of Spanish explorers in the 16th century brought significant changes to the region. The Spanish established missions and presidios in the area, seeking to convert the Native Americans to Christianity and establish control over the land. However, conflicts between the Spanish settlers and the indigenous peoples were common, and the region remained relatively unpopulated.

In the mid-19th century, the region that is now Culberson County became part of the United States after the Texas Revolution. The county itself was established in 1911, named after David B. Culberson, a prominent Texan lawyer and politician. At this time, the area was primarily used for ranching, with cattle grazing on the grasslands.

The discovery of oil in the early 20th century led to a boom in Culberson County's economy. The establishment of oil fields and drilling operations brought an influx of workers and boosted the local population. However, the oil industry faced ups and downs, with periods of prosperity followed by decline.

Today, Culberson County continues to be primarily rural, with a small population. The county's economy is based on agriculture, oil and gas production, and tourism. The vast and rugged landscape of Culberson County attracts outdoor enthusiasts and nature lovers who come to explore the Guadalupe Mountains National Park and experience its stunning desert beauty.

This timeline provides a glimpse into the major events and milestones that have shaped the history of Culberson County, Texas.

  • 1911 - Culberson County is established.
  • 1927 - The town of Van Horn is incorporated.
  • 1942 - Construction of the Van Horn Army Airfield begins.
  • 1969 - Apollo 11 astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin visit Van Horn during a nationwide tour.
  • 2006 - Jeff Bezos purchases land in Culberson County for his private aerospace company, Blue Origin.