Pioneer residents of Ysleta.

Jacinto Telles purchased a large amount of land in 1825 from the boundary commission when colonial rule over Mexico was declining. The Telles; including Ramon, Richardo, Juan Cruz, Rafael Telles were among the early Spanish settlers along with Pedro Gonzales, who served as Alcalde(mayor) of Ysleta. His son, Jose Maria Gonzales wielded a lot of influence in Ysleta because of he had a lot of political influence and owned a large amount of land. Jose Maria also served as mayor when Ysleta was part of the United States, He also served as  Justice of the Peace, County Judge, and County Commissioner. Jose Maria’s son, Alexander Gonzales served as county commissioner and built the Zaragosa Bridge in the 1920s.The Telles, Pedro Gonzales, and Felix Paso were listed as taxpayers in 1841. Epifanio Telles opened his own general which was located along the Rio Grande. Jose Maria Telles was a prominent landowner in Ysleta he married Maria De La Cruz in the 1820s.

Among early Spanish settlers was Pedro Candelaria was one of the Earliest Justice of the Peace in El Paso County in 1884 and arranged the election that moved the county seat from San Elizario to Ysleta in 1871. His son, descendants Pedro jr served as clerk of the  El Paso city corporation court. He married Leonarda Telles, a member of the Tigua tribe. several of  Pedro’sand other descendants made a mark in Ysleta over the years. His son, Frank sr was a prominent landowner,-farmer, and businessman who chaired the Ysleta School Board in 1921.He also unsuccessfully fought against the construction of PasoTex, a gas station near the Old Ysleta Mission in 1929.  Another early settler was Carlos Schell who some claimed he opened the first store in Ysleta

Another early settler was Carlos Schell who some claimed he opened the first store in Ysleta, He was a prominent merchant. His shop was also an inn and it was on a block where a movie theater once stood. Pablo Duran was a wagon driver and took Schell on Trips to Chihuahua City. Schell married Fernanda Aragon of Juarez, who family who owned a ranch and would make shoes for all who lived or worked on the farm. Schell died and  Fernanda married Pablo Duran and had a daughter named Beatriz Duran Cadena. They had two daughters, Estelle and Josefina, who both married two sons of Morris and Juana Lowenstein.  Other early Spanish settlers were members of the Durans and Luna Family. The Luna family owned a farm and ran a vineyard, growing grapes.

Joseph Longo

EPHS Curator

Since 1954 the El Paso County Historical Society has been a driving force in the historic scene of El Paso. EPCHS strives to foster research into the history of the El Paso area; acquire and make available to the public historic materials; publish and encourage historical writing pertaining to the area; and to develop public consciousness of our rich heritage.