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Casa Reyes Ortíz

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c. 1830, 1872. 915 Zaragoza St.

To the east of the plaza, along Zaragoza Street, a series of major houses with vestiges from the colonial period back up to the riverbanks. Most notable is this house built by rancher-merchant Don José Reyes Ortíz on land granted in 1826. The U-shaped dwelling grew from its original west wing laid perpendicular to the street. As family size and fortunes grew, the house was extended with a front wing in sandstone facing the street, and a later second story in brick with a construction date of July 1, 1872, inscribed on a rafter. The Ortíz House is distinctive for its open-air galleries and its terraced courtyard overlooking the Rio Grande, which may be glimpsed from the street through its zaguán, secured by a wrought-iron gate in the Spanish tradition. Today, it functions as a center for border cultural affairs managed by Texas A&M International University in Laredo.

Writing Credits

Gerald Moorhead et al.


What's Nearby


Gerald Moorhead et al., "Casa Reyes Ortíz", [Laredo, Texas], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Cover: Buildings of Texas

Buildings of Texas: Central, South, and Gulf Coast, Gerald Moorhead and contributors. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2013, 270-270.

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