Van Horn, Texas
Van Horn is a town in and the county seat
County seat
A county seat is an administrative center, or seat of government, for a county or civil parish. The term is primarily used in the United States....

 of Culberson County
Culberson County, Texas
Culberson County is a county located in the U.S. state of Texas. It is one of the nine counties that comprise the Trans-Pecos region of West Texas. In 2000, its population was 2,975. Culberson was founded in 1911. It is named for David B. Culberson, a lawyer and Confederate soldier in the American...

, Texas
Texas is the second largest U.S. state by both area and population, and the largest state by area in the contiguous United States.The name, based on the Caddo word "Tejas" meaning "friends" or "allies", was applied by the Spanish to the Caddo themselves and to the region of their settlement in...

, United States
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

. The population was 2,435 at the 2000 census.


Van Horn is located at 31°2′33"N 104°49′59"W (31.042489, -104.832928).

According to the United States Census Bureau
United States Census Bureau
The United States Census Bureau is the government agency that is responsible for the United States Census. It also gathers other national demographic and economic data...

, the town has a total area of 2.9 square miles (7.5 km²), all land.


Anglo-Texan settlement began in the late 1850s and early 1860s supportive of the San Antonio-El Paso Overland Mail route. Although U.S. Army Major Jefferson Van Horne is believed to have passed near the area in 1849 on his way to take command of what would later become Fort Bliss
Fort Bliss
Fort Bliss is a United States Army post in the U.S. states of New Mexico and Texas. With an area of about , it is the Army's second-largest installation behind the adjacent White Sands Missile Range. It is FORSCOM's largest installation, and has the Army's largest Maneuver Area behind the...

, the town is instead named for Lt. James Judson Van Horn who commanded an army garrison at the Van Horn Wells beginning in 1859. Lt. Van Horn's command was relatively short-lived as the post was seized by Confederate forces in 1861 and Lt. Van Horn taken prisoner. Settlement was further stimulated by the construction of the Texas and Pacific Railway
Texas and Pacific Railway
The Texas and Pacific Railway Company was created by federal charter in 1871 with the purpose of building a southern transcontinental railroad between Marshall, Texas, and San Diego, California....

 in 1881.


As of the census
A census is the procedure of systematically acquiring and recording information about the members of a given population. It is a regularly occurring and official count of a particular population. The term is used mostly in connection with national population and housing censuses; other common...

of 2000, there were 2,435 people, 834 households, and 652 families residing in the town. The population density
Population density
Population density is a measurement of population per unit area or unit volume. It is frequently applied to living organisms, and particularly to humans...

 was 846.9 people per square mile (326.4/km²). There were 976 housing units at an average density of 339.5 per square mile (130.8/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 64.60% White, 0.66% African American, 0.57% Native American, 0.57% Asian, 31.46% from other races
Race (United States Census)
Race and ethnicity in the United States Census, as defined by the Federal Office of Management and Budget and the United States Census Bureau, are self-identification data items in which residents choose the race or races with which they most closely identify, and indicate whether or not they are...

, and 2.14% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 78.60% of the population.


The Town of Van Horn is served by the Culberson County-Allamoore Independent School District
Culberson County-Allamoore Independent School District
Culberson County-Allamoore Independent School District is a public school district based in Van Horn, Texas .The district serves all of Culberson County and eastern portions of Hudspeth County....


Government and infrastructure

The United States Postal Service
United States Postal Service
The United States Postal Service is an independent agency of the United States government responsible for providing postal service in the United States...

 operates the Van Horn Post Office.


  • Interstate 10
  • State Highway 54
    State Highway 54 (Texas)
    State Highway 54 or SH 54 is a highway maintained by the Texas Department of Transportation that runs from Interstate 10 and U.S. Route 90 in Van Horn north to US 62 and US 180 between Salt Flat and Pine Springs near Guadalupe Mountains National Park...

  • U.S. Highway 90 - Western terminus of highway.

Space Tourism

In late 2006, the Wall Street Journal reported that Jeff Bezos
Jeff Bezos
Jeffrey Preston "Jeff" Bezos is the founder, president, chief executive officer , and chairman of the board of life and background:...

, founder and CEO of, Inc. is a multinational electronic commerce company headquartered in Seattle, Washington, United States. It is the world's largest online retailer. Amazon has separate websites for the following countries: United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Japan, and...

, had acquired 290000 acres (1,173.6 km²) of land 25 miles (40.2 km) north of Van Horn to house his fledgling space tourism company, Blue Origin
Blue Origin
Blue Origin is a privately funded aerospace company set up by founder Jeff Bezos. The company was awarded $3.7 million in funding in 2009 by NASA via a Space Act Agreement under the Commercial Crew Development program for development of concepts and technologies to support future human...

. , Blue Origin had been expected to start commercial operations as early as 2010, aiming for 52 launches per year from the Van Horn, Texas facility.
however, Blue Origin and Bezos "have been very secretive about" the plans for the Van Horn facility for the past five years, having granted no interviews with news media since a single interview with the Van Horn Advocate in early 2005.
In early 2010, NASA awarded Blue Origin US$3.7 million to work on an advanced technology, which detaches a crew cabin from its launcher if the shuttle malfunctions."

10,000 Year Clock

In 2009 the The Van Horn Advocate announced that the Long Now Foundation
Long Now Foundation
The Long Now Foundation, established in 1996, is a private organization that seeks to become the seed of a very long-term cultural institution. It aims to provide a counterpoint to what it views as today's "faster/cheaper" mindset and to promote "slower/better" thinking...

 was starting geologic testing for an underground space to house a 10,000 Year Clock of the Long Now
Clock of the Long Now
The Clock of the Long Now, also called the 10,000-year clock, is a proposed mechanical clock designed to keep time for 10,000 years. The project to build it is part of the Long Now Foundation....

, on the Bezos ranch, north of Van Horn.

See also

  • Guadalupe Mountains National Park
    Guadalupe Mountains National Park
    Guadalupe Mountains National Park is located in the Guadalupe Mountains of West Texas and contains Guadalupe Peak, the highest point in Texas at in elevation. It also contains El Capitan, long used as a landmark by people traveling along the old route later followed by the Butterfield Overland...

  • Guadalupe Mountains
    Guadalupe Mountains
    The Guadalupe Mountains are a mountain range located in West Texas and southeastern New Mexico. The range includes the highest summit in Texas, Guadalupe Peak, , and the "signature peak" of West Texas, El Capitan, both located within Guadalupe Mountains National Park, as well as Carlsbad Caverns...

  • McKittrick Canyon
    McKittrick Canyon
    McKittrick Canyon is a scenic canyon within the Guadalupe Mountains of West Texas. The steep towering walls of McKittrick Canyon protect a rich riparian oasis in the midst of the Chihuahuan Desert....

  • Kent, Texas
    Kent, Texas
    Kent is an unincorporated village in Culberson County, in West Texas, United States. It lies just north of Interstate 10 at Exit 176, ten miles west of the beginning of Interstate 20 and four miles west of the eastern Culberson County boundary. It is sandwiched between the railroad, immediately...

  • Sierra Blanca, Texas
    Sierra Blanca, Texas
    Sierra Blanca is a census-designated place in and the county seat of Hudspeth County, Texas, United States. The population was 533 at the 2000 census, and had decreased to 510 according to a July 2007 estimate....

  • West Texas
    West Texas
    West Texas is a vernacular term applied to a region in the southwestern quadrant of the United States that primarily encompasses the arid and semi-arid lands in the western portion of the state of Texas....

External links

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