A Guide to the John William Warren Papers, 1768, 1902-1961
El Celeste Irrigation Co. S.A. was founded by John William Warren (president), his brother Robert Lee Warren, and Milton I. Vought (general manager). Vought moved to Mexico in 1901 and between the years of 1901 and 1910 purchased in his own name 10,173 hectares (25,137 acres) of land known as "El Celeste."
Situated about 200 miles South of the Texas border, 40 miles from the Gulf coast, 75 miles northwest of Tampico, 5 miles from the railway and fronting about 10 miles on the Guayalejo River, El Celeste remained in Vought's name until the Mexican company was organized for the purpose of selling the land to American farmers. An abundant supply of water for irrigation purposes was a necessity. A contract was obtained from Mexican authorities for water rights to the Frio River, which lay beyond the Guayalejo. Work was in progress by May of 1913. At this point, however, political events in Mexico made the continuation of this project impossible.
The John William Warren Papers span the years 1768-1961 and include correspondence and legal documents. Portions of these documents are in the Spanish language. The legal documents cover the period from 1902 to 1948. Included within the papers is Autos de General Visita de Orcasitas, a handwritten document from 1768. The John William Warren Papers represent Texas business relations with Mexico in the early twentieth century.
The correspondence can be divided into four sections. The first section covers the period from 1903 through 1909. The majority of this correspondence is in Spanish between Milton Vought and Lic. Rafael L. Hernandez.
The second section of correspondence runs from mid-1909 through 1913 and consists primarily of letters between John William Warren and Milton I. Vought concerning the development of the canal and the changing political situation at the time.
The third section of correspondence runs from 1920 through 1933. Messrs. Warren and Vought attempt in this period to hold on to their land and water rights. They also file claims with the Mexican Special Claims Commission to recover financial losses suffered during the revolution.
The last section of correspondence covers the period from 1933 through 1961. The bulk of this correspondence contains letters between Robert Lee Warren and the wives and children of John Warren and Milton Vought. These letters concern their attempts through the various U.S. Commissions on Mexican Claims to recover a portion of their financial losses.
The addition includes ledgers, maps, writings and blue prints from 1903-1948.
This collection is housed at UTSA's Main Campus and must be accessed via the John Peace Library Special Collections reading room. To request access, please use the Collections Request Form.
Permission to Publish
Permission to publish material from the John William Warren Papers must be obtained from University of Texas at San Antonio Libraries Special Collections.
John William Warren Papers, 1768-1961, MS 70, University of Texas at San Antonio Libraries Special Collections.
Donation by The Estate of Annie Lee Roberts, 1992.
Processed by Eleanor Warren Magruder Johnson, April 1992.
Addition encoded by Tatina Wulzer, Collections Assistant, April 2009.
Detailed Description of the Papers or Records