Big Spring, Texas

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Big Spring is a city in and the county seat of Howard County, Texas, United States, at the crossroads of U.S. Highway 87 and Interstate 20. With a population of 25,233 at the 2000 census, it is the largest city between Midland to the west, Abilene to the east, Lubbock to the north, and San Angelo to the south. Big Spring was established as the county seat of Howard County in 1882; it is the largest community in the county.

The city got its name from the single, large spring that issued into a small gorge between the base of Scenic Mountain and a neighboring hill in the southwestern part of the city limits. Although the name is often mistakenly pluralized, it is officially singular; Big Springs, Texas, is actually a community in eastern Texas' Rusk County.

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Geography

Big Spring is located at 32°14′36″N 101°28′31″W / 32.24333°N 101.47528°W / 32.24333; -101.47528 (32.243198, -101.475231)[3].

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 19.2 square miles (49.7 km²). 19.1 square miles (49.5 km²) of it is land, and 0.1 square miles (0.2 km²) of it (0.42%) is water.

Origin of the name "Big Spring"

The area's "big spring", long dry but recently modified to draw water from Comanche Trail Lake, was of major importance to all life in the surrounding area. In the early-1840s, it was the center of a territorial dispute between Comanche and Pawnee tribes, and has been a major watering hole for wildlife and prehistoric man in this semi-arid area.[4] Early military scouting reports and pioneer accounts describe the water as cold, clear, and dependable; the spring pool was approximately 15' deep, with the overflow going only a short distance down the draw before it sank beneath the surface. The spring has mistakenly been described in other writings as being located in Sulphur Draw. It is actually located to the south, near the top of a small, rugged, unnamed draw running eastwards from the spring, and is itself a tributary to Beal's Creek, the name given to Sulphur Draw as it flows into, through, and past the city of Big Spring.

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