Magnolia Park is located next to the Woodlands in southwestern Montgomery County, Houston. It is considered as one of the oldest Hispanic neighborhood in Houston. Magnolia Park has been called several names such as “Mink” and “Mink’s Prairie, but today, it is known as Magnolia Park. In this article, we are going to learn more about the history of Magnolia Park and the things to do while you’re there.
In 1890, Magnolia Park was developed on a 1,374-acre site owned by a man named Thomas M. Brady. The site was located on Harrisburg Road, just across Bray’s Bayou and seven miles away from downstream from Houston. The place was named “Magnolia Park” because of the 3,750 magnolias that the developers planted there.
Even though whites were the first to inhabit the town, Mexican Americans who came from South Texas began to arrive in 1911. They first settled in the area filled by sand that was rummaged from the turning basin, which is now known as El Arenal or the Sands. Most of these new settlers were working as laborers, widening Buffalo Bayou and laying railroad tracks. Other workers loaded cotton on railroad cars and ships, and some helped construct the ship channel.
In 1912, Our Lady of Guadalupe Church, along with the Heart of Mary Catholic Church, organized a club that provided schooling for the children. Over the years, this kind gesture became a community center that helped people in need.
Magnolia Park saw an influx of immigrants from northern Mexico during the 1920s. The number of immigrants reached an all-time high that the community where they live had become a barrio with its own business district filled with Mexican-owned firms.
In October 1926, the City of Houston decided to annexed Magnolia Park. Three years later, Magnolia Park was surrounded by textile mills, refineries, industrial plants, factories, textile mills, as well as wharves. It also housed the largest Mexican settlement in Houston. In 1990, the community became a working-class neighborhood that had a population of 14,000.
Today, Magnolia Park still takes care of several historical buildings located throughout the Canal and Harrisburg streets.
Things to Do in Magnolia Park, Houston
- Indulge on some killer barbecue at D’s Farm Road BBQ – This place serves backyard and roadside-style barbecue with both locals and tourists talking. Here you can order a smoked prime brisket or skewers of house candy bacon. If you plan to drop by Magnolia Park, do not forget to add this place into your itinerary for some delicious barbecue action.
- Gulp on some Texas ales at the Lone Pint Brewery –This place serves a single malt and single hop IPA they call the Lone Pint’s Yellow Rose. The Lone Pint Brewery uses whole cones to make distinctive local Texas ales that are quaffable, tasty, and hoppy. The Lone Pint Brewery is open for tours and tastings every Saturday from 12 noon to 4 P.M. It will probably cost you around $10 for the tour and a pint glass of Yellow Rose.
- Shop local goods at the Magnolia Farmers and Artisans Market –This market was established in 2009, and this is a farmers and artisans market that is open every first and fifth Sundays of the month. Here you can support local farmers by shopping farm-fresh vegetables and fruits, grass-fed meats, free-range yard eggs, locally-roasted coffees, scratch-made pasta and bread, fresh goat cheese, and even handmade soaps and jewelry.
- Relax at the Haras Hacienda –This is a boutique hotel with a classic and contemporary Spanish look. This place has a beautiful natural landscape and offers a state-of-the-art luxury experience. Here you can indulge in some modern blend of American and Mexican cuisine or have a relaxing day at the spa where you can treat yourself into a deep tissue massage, deep hair conditioning treatment, and even a clarifying facial.