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Padre Island
Padre Island
is the largest of the Texas
Texas
barrier islands and is the world's longest barrier island. It is part of the U.S. state
U.S. state
of Texas. The island is located along Texas's southern coast of the Gulf of Mexico
Mexico
and is noted for its white sandy beaches at the south end. Meaning father in Spanish, it was named after Father José Nicolás Ballí (c.1770-1829), who owned the island and served as a missionary priest and collector of finances for all the churches in the Rio Grande Valley. He also founded the first mission in present-day Cameron County.[1] Padre Island
Padre Island
is the second-largest island by area in the contiguous United States, after Long Island
Long Island
in New York on the Atlantic Coast. It is about 113 miles (182 km) long[2] and 1.8 miles (3 km) wide,[3] stretching from the city of Corpus Christi, in the north, to the resort community of South Padre Island
South Padre Island
in the south. The island is oriented north-south, bordered by the Gulf of Mexico
Gulf of Mexico
on the east, and Laguna Madre
Laguna Madre
on the west. The island's northern end connects to Mustang Island
Mustang Island
by roadway. The southern end of the island is separated from Brazos Island
Brazos Island
by the Brazos Santiago Pass. The town of South Padre Island
South Padre Island
is located on its southern end, but the island as a whole is sparsely populated. The central part of the island is preserved in a natural wild state as Padre Island
Padre Island
National Seashore and part of the lower island is protected as part of the Laguna Atascosa National Wildlife
Wildlife
Refuge. Since 1964, the island has been divided by the artificial Port Mansfield Channel. The terms "North Padre Island" and "South Padre Island" are often used to refer to the separated portions of the island. Padre Island
Padre Island
is included within the jurisdictions of Cameron, Kenedy, Kleberg, Nueces, and Willacy counties in Texas.

Contents

1 History 2 Geology 3 Wildlife

3.1 Kemp's Ridley
Kemp's Ridley
sea turtle

4 See also 5 References 6 External links

History[edit] The island was used and occupied seasonally by the Karankawa
Karankawa
Indians at the time of European encounter. During Spanish rule, Father José Nicolás Ballí (also known as Padre Ballí), owned the island in the 19th century, when it was known as the Isla de Santiago land grant.[1] Padre Island
Padre Island
had been granted in 1759 to his Spanish colonist grandfather, Nicolás Ballí, by King Charles III of Spain. The younger Ballí's parents were both Spanish immigrants to Mexico
Mexico
and owned vast amounts of land by royal grants. José Nicolás Ballí served as a secular priest and missionary; he also managed large amounts of land where he ran a ranching operation. In 1804 he founded the first ethnic Mexican settlement on the island as the town of "El Rancho Santa Cruz de Buena Vista" (later known as Lost City).[1] In 1827 after Mexico
Mexico
achieved independence, Father Ballí requested a clear title to the property of Padre Island.[1] His mother Rosa María Hinojosa de Ballí had made a joint application with him for eleven leagues of the island, but when reapplication was required in 1800, she withdrew her name in favor of him.[4] After Ballí died in 1829, the government granted title to the island to him posthumously, issued jointly in his name and that of his nephew Juan José Ballí. He had bequeathed half the island to his nephew, who had worked with him on his ranch.[1] During World War II, United States scientists considered Padre Island as one of eight candidate sites for the first test of an atomic bomb but chose White Sands Missile Range
White Sands Missile Range
in New Mexico
Mexico
for the detonation.[5] See also: Hispanic Heritage Sites (U.S. National Park Service) Geology[edit]

Padre Island
Padre Island
sand dunes at sunset.

Geologically speaking, Padre Island
Padre Island
is a young island, having formed in just the last several thousand years. It is one of 300 barrier islands stretching from Maine
Maine
to Mexico. These natural barrier islands act to protect the mainland from the direct onslaught of storms. Padre Island
Padre Island
began forming as a submerged sand bar some 4500 years ago, as shown by radiocarbon dating of shells. Geologic speculation indicates the emerged island may be 1000 to 1500 years younger.[citation needed] Barrier island
Barrier island
origins have been debated for many years by geologists, but it is agreed they are formed and modified by such factors as sediment type and supply, sea-level directional changes, current and wave strength and direction, and tide magnitude. It is theorized that Padre Island
Padre Island
formed from offshore shoals, with later growth aided by spit accretion. (A spit is a long, narrow tongue of sand extending from a mainland shoreline and formed by the shoreline drifting of sediments.) After a history of shifting, abandonment and reestablishment by storm breaches, many tidal inlets were slowly closed. Short islands were joined to form today's longer islands.[citation needed] Padre Island
Padre Island
graphically illustrates the life and sequences of a barrier shoreline: accretionary or building phase, equilibrium or stability phase, and erosion or destructional state. The northern half of Padre Island's shoreline is in equilibrium; the southern half (and much of the remaining Texas
Texas
coastline) is in an erosional stage. Wind, wave and current action continue to rework and shape the island. South Padre Island
Padre Island
has been in a destructive phase for a long time, probably having retreated landward (along with the lagoon and mainland shoreline). All of Padre Island
Padre Island
will probably retreat landward through long-term erosion due to three causes: interruption and decrease in sediment supply, relative sea level rise, and tropical storm activity. Today, hurricane washovers and wind-carried sand deposited in the Laguna Madre build Padre Island's landward side at the expense of the Laguna Madre.[citation needed] Wildlife[edit] Kemp's Ridley
Kemp's Ridley
sea turtle[edit]

Kemp's Ridley
Kemp's Ridley
sea turtle

On September 2007, Corpus Christi, Texas
Texas
wildlife officials found a record 128 Kemp's Ridley
Kemp's Ridley
sea turtle nests on Texas
Texas
beaches, including 81 in the Padre Island National Seashore
Padre Island National Seashore
and 4 on nearby Mustang Island. Wildlife
Wildlife
officials had released 10,594 Kemp's Ridleys hatchlings along the Texas
Texas
coast in 2007. The turtles are endangered due to getting caught in shrimpers' nets; they are widely hunted in Mexico
Mexico
as popular sources of boot material and food.[6]

See also[edit]

Islands portal Texas
Texas
portal

Islands of the United States

List of islands of the United States by area

References[edit]

^ a b c d e "Ballí, José Nicolás". Handbook of Texas
Texas
Online. Texas State Historical Society. Retrieved 2015-08-15.  ^ * "Padre Island", Encyclopædia Britannica  ^ Garrison, J. R.; Williams, J.; Potter Miller, S.; Weber, E. T.; McMechan, G.; Zeng, X. (2010). "Ground-Penetrating Radar Study of North Padre Island: Implications for Barrier Island Internal Architecture, Model for Growth of Progradational Microtidal Barrier Islands, and Gulf of Mexico
Gulf of Mexico
Sea-Level Cyclicity". Journal of Sedimentary Research. 80 (4): 303–319. doi:10.2110/jsr.2010.034.  ^ [1] ^ "Trinity Atomic Web Site". Walker, Gregory. Archived from the original on 2010-04-20. Retrieved 2010-08-20.  ^ "Endangered Turtle Nests Found in Texas". The Washington Post. CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas. The Associated Press. September 4, 2007. Retrieved 19 September 2012. 

External links[edit]

Find more aboutPadre Islandat's sister projects

Definitions from Wiktionary Media from Wikimedia Commons News from Wikinews Quotations from Wikiquote Texts from Wikisource Textbooks from Wikibooks Travel guide from Wikivoyage Learning resources from Wikiversity

Padre Island
Padre Island
at The Handbook of Texas
Texas
Online Padre Island
Padre Island
Beach
Beach
Visitors Guide Padre Island National Seashore
Padre Island National Seashore
- Geologic Formations "Automobile Traffic on Texas
Texas
Beaches" Discussion of North Padre Driving Ordinance[permanent dead link] Destination Padre Island

Coordinates: 26°50′40″N 97°22′04″W / 26.84444°N 97.36778°W / 26.84444; -97.36778

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Barrier islands of Texas

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