Jeff Davis County, Texas

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See also Jeff Davis County.

Jeff Davis County is a county in the U.S. state of Texas. It is named for Jefferson Davis, the president of the Confederate States of America. It is one of the nine counties that comprise the Trans-Pecos region of West Texas. In 2000, its population was 2,207, and 2,258 by 2009.[1] Its seat is Fort Davis.

The county contains the 270,000-acre (1,100 km2) Texas Davis Mountains American Viticultural Area, though only about 50 acres (0.2 km2) is currently under vine. The McDonald Observatory is located near Fort Davis, and is owned by the University of Texas at Austin.



Native Americans

Prehistoric peoples camped at Phantom Lake Spring, in northeastern Jeff Davis County, and may have used the springs for irrigation.[2] Indian pictographs in The Painted Comanche Camp of Limpia Canyon were discovered by the Whiting and Smith Expedition of 1849.[3]

August 1861, Mescalero Apaches under Chief Nicolas made an attack on Fort Davis, driving off livestock and killing three people. In the ensuing chase by the cavalry, Nicolas ambushed the soldiers, killing them all.[4] September 1868 at Horsehead Hills, a group of volunteer Mexicans and Buffalo Soldiers from Fort Davis attacked and destroyed a Mescalero village to recover captives and stolen livestock. January 1870, a group of soldiers attacked a Mescalero Apache village near Delaware Creek in the Guadalupe Mountains. July 1880 soldiers at Tinaja de las Palmas attacked a group of Mescaleros lead by Chief Victorio. August 1880, Buffalo Soldiers ambushed Victorio at Rattlesnake Springs. Victorio retreated to Mexico and was killed in October by Mexican soldiers. The last Indian depredation in the area was at Barry Scobee Mountain in 1881.[5]

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