"The Land of Heart's Delight"

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Falfurrias, the county seat and principal trading center of  Brooks County, is on State Highway 281 sixty miles southwest of Corpus Christi  and ninety miles from Laredo in the northern part of the county. Its founding and  development were largely the effort of Edward C. Lasater, pioneer Rio Grande valley  rancher and land developer, who in 1895 started a cattle ranch in what was then  northern Starr County; his spread came to be known as Falfurrias Ranch, after La Mota  de Falfurrias, the grove of trees he chose as the site of his headquarters. To increase  settlement in the area Lasater encouraged the San Antonio and Aransas Pass Railway to  extend a line to his ranch in 1904. At the railway terminus four miles east of his ranch  house he founded Falfurrias; he also changed the name of his ranch to La Mota. His  Falfurrias Immigration Company set about attracting settlers by offering subdivided  ranch land near the railroad at low prices and advertising extensively in the East and  Midwest.  
 
The name Falfurrias antedates Anglo association with the area, and its derivation is  uncertain. Lasater claimed that it was a Lipan Indian word meaning “the land of heart’s delight”; others believed it was the Spanish name for a native desert flower known as the  heart’s delight. According to local tradition the shepherd’s land came to be known as La  Mota de Don Falfurrias (la mota meaning “a grove of trees”), which eventually evolved  into La Mota de Don Falfurrias and was finally shortened to Falfurrias.
 
A post office under that name began operation in 1898. The Falfurrias Facts began  publication in 1906. In 1911 the state granted a petition by local residents to form a new  county, with Falfurrias as the county seat. Lasater established a creamery operation in  1909; he imported purebred Jersey dairy cattle to his ranch and eventually built what was  said to be the largest Jersey herd in the world. Falfurrias butter is renowned. Irrigation,  introduced during the late 1920s, brought in truck farming and the citrus fruit industry,  with Falfurrias as the shipping center. The discovery of extensive oil and gas reserves  around Falfurrias in the 1930s and 1940s added a new dimension to the town’s growth  and prosperity. Falfurrias had a population of 2,500 in 1925 and 7,500 by 1970. In the  late 1980s the population was just over 6,500. In 1990 the population was 5,788, and in  2000 it was 5,297.