1501 E. Expressway 83
Weslaco, Texas 78559
Phone: (956) 647-8800
Fax: (956) 969-8252
The U. S. Border Patrol was created by Act of Congress on July 1, 1924, to apprehend European and Asiatic aliens who might attempt to enter the country illegally and to apprehend contraband smugglers, mainly liquor at the time. Its first personnel were transferred from the "Mounted Guards" or "Mounted Watchmen" who were performing similar duties under the supervision of the Immigration Service.
The Border Patrol was divided into districts, sub-districts and sub-stations for operational purposes with the Rio Grande Valley contained in sub-district # 3 of the San Antonio District. The sub-district headquarters was located in Brownsville, Texas. Eleven patrol inspectors were initially assigned to patrol this sub-district and by the latter part of 1924, ten more patrol inspectors were added. By 1938, the Brownsville sub-district had grown to forty-five inspectors with only five of the original eleven still serving. The inspectors were stationed at sub-stations in Brownsville, San Benito, Harlingen, Raymondville, La Feria, Weslaco, McAllen, Mission, Edinburg and Rio Grande City, Texas. The patrol inspectors were assigned to different sub-stations depending on the amount of illegal entries and smuggling activity in each area.
At the time, there was a port of entry at a point known as Rio Rico on the Mexican side and Thayer, Texas, on the United States side where a pontoon bridge provided access to and from Mexico. Weslaco sub-station strength fluctuated between two to five inspectors until June 1954 when the drive to establish control of the Rio Grande Valley resulted in an increase in manpower to thirty to forty inspectors. After the re-organization of the Service in 1955, the Weslaco Station was made part of the Brownsville Sector.
In 1956, a new station was constructed in Mercedes, Texas, and Weslaco Station became Mercedes Station. July 1, 1960, Mercedes Station was transferred to the McAllen Sector. January 6, 1986, the station was moved back to Weslaco, Texas, and became the Weslaco Border Patrol Station again.
The Weslaco Border Patrol Station is located in the lower Rio Grande Valley between McAllen and Harlingen, Texas. The station is responsible for forty miles of river with the primary activity at the station being line watch of its river boundary and city patrol to service the surrounding cities. The agents use or have used the following tools to accomplish the Border Patrol mission: 4 X 4 vehicles, bike patrol, boat patrol, horse patrol, canine, sensors, night vision goggles and infra-red scopes.
Historical Note: Historical information obtained from writings of John R. Peavey, Clifford Alan Perkins and Fletcher Rawls. All three were stationed in the Rio Grande Valley and were transferred to the Border Patrol from the "Mounted Guards" or "Mounted Watchmen". Mr. Perkins had also been a Chinese Inspector enforcing the Chinese Exclusion Act prior to becoming a "Mounted Guard".