Rudyville Cemetery

Hidalgo Co. Cemeteries of Tx

Submitted by Frances Isbell

With Permission  of Hidalgo Co. Historical Commission (2005)

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LOCATION: East of Mercedes Main Canal Headgates on north side of Military Highway (US 281) near the Rio Grande.

SURVEYED: Community and cemetery abandoned. Some graves transferred to Zacatal 1909.

HISTORY: Rudyville Ranch was founded by Edward P. Dougherty (1819-1877). He came from Ireland to serve as a dragoon with Gen. Zachary Taylorís army in the Mexican War, and fought at the Battles of Palo Alto and Resaca de la Palma. In 1847 he married Marcela Garcia Anciso of Monterrey, many of whose family members accompanied her to Texas.

The couple lived in Brownsville, where lawyer Dougherty became Judge of the 21stJudicial District, and an active politician in the affairs of Hidalgo County. In 1858, they moved five miles southwest of his home base at his El Zacatal Ranch to Rudyville Ranch on the banks of the Rio Grande, where he built his family home. His two sons, William and James, became active in county politics, and his daughter Mary Concepcion married Alexander Leo, the county sheriff.


The 1880 census reported thirteen heads of families at Rudyville. After the 1909 flood, some graves, including those of Edward and Marcela Dougherty, were transferred to the Anciso family cemetery at Zacatal. The community was abandoned because of repeated flooding. Origin of the name Rudyville is not known.