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Rio Grande Poor Farm
Socorro, El Paso County, Texas


Description: Rio Grande Poor Farm
Other Names:
Address: 800-801 Rio Vista Rd, Socorro, El Paso Country, Texas
Original Client:
Date: 1935
Condition: extant

Architect or Firm: Trost & Trost
Associated Architect or Firm:
Contractors: WPA
Dimensions and Orientation:
Budget/Cost: architect fee $1,731

Wall Materials:
Roofing Materials:
Other Materials Used:
Remodeling and Additions:

Present Owner:
Location of Drawings:
Location of Documentary Photographs:

Bibliography: (1) El Paso Herald Post , April 10, 1935 page 2
(2) El Paso Herald Post March 25, 1935 page 1
Remarks: The original buildings on the poor farm were done by Braunton & Leibert in 1915. The poor farm was intended to house and care for El Paso county’s indigent and homeless residents. In 1916, Judge E.B. McClintock appointed John O’Shea to operate the approximately 208-acre county farm. John’s wife Agnes took charge of the inmates. After the death of Mrs O’Shea in 1929, her married daughter Helen took over the farm while living in San Antonio.

In March 1935, Texas Transient Bureau requested a portion of the county poor farm for a transient camp. The proposed camp would be built on the undeveloped portion of the poor farm lying north of the Rio Vista Road. Construction started on the farm.

Trost & Trost were one of the architects involved in the plans for the additional buildings in 1935. When the Texas Transient Bureau was discontinued, the El Paso county commissioners hire architect Percy McGhee to present a new project to the Works Progress Administration authorities in 1935.



Prepared for the El Paso Public Library by Lloyd C. and June F. Engelbrecht under a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities, 1990