Mesquite, Texas, is a city in the state’s central region, situated just 12 miles east of Dallas. Mesquite is sandwiched between Garland (to the north) and Balch Springs (to the south), and is located on U.S. Route 80 close to the intersection of I-30 and I-635 (to the south). Mesquite is commonly referred to as the “Rodeo Capital of Texas” because it hosts the Mesquite Championship Rodeo each year.
The Mesquite Creek in the area inspired the Texas and Pacific Railway to establish the town of Mesquite in 1873. The city was founded in 1887, but it only expanded slowly due to its reliance on cotton. The city’s population more than doubled from less than 2,000 to more than 50,000 between 1950 and 1970. The development of nearby Dallas is largely responsible for this increase. Mesquite’s historical commission was established in the ’80s as part of an effort to protect the city’s rich history and culture. Historic Mesquite, Inc., the organization that grew out of the commission, is still going strong and is currently planning a historical park, among other things.