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  #1  
Old Posted Jul 4, 2020, 11:30 PM
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Is Texas quintessentially “Southwestern”

This was a idea that came to mind after going through the Florida thread.

To state my case, is it possible that everyone here and even outside this discussion can fully agree that Texas is “Southwestern” in the purest sense, without argument?

Texas seems to embody both Southern and Western influences.

It was a part of the Confederacy, was the last state to give up slavery, and has very strong historical ties to the rest of the South via the Gulf. Houston’s culture seems to be greatly influenced by New Orleans and there is a very strong Southern presence in Eastern Texas. Even that area geographically is filled with swamps and wetlands, no different from the Louisiana bayous.

However, Texas was once a part of Spain/Mexico. It was the frontier for American settlers headed westward in search for a new start of life. El Paso is pretty much in an arid climate and it’s in Western Texas that one is reminded of the cowboy culture.

Texas seems to be a transitional place, a place that invokes both characteristics of the South and the West in equal proportions.

Am I wrong or right in this assumption? Texan forumers are strongly encouraged to share their views.
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  #2  
Old Posted Jul 4, 2020, 11:38 PM
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Only West Texas.
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  #3  
Old Posted Jul 4, 2020, 11:43 PM
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No

South central is its own thing

Texas and Oklahoma should be one state

Texahoma
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  #4  
Old Posted Jul 4, 2020, 11:48 PM
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East Texas is very much Southern IMO. Tyler, Texarkana, Nacogdoches, etc would blend right in if they moved to Mississippi.

West Texas is obviously more Southwestern, El Paso could be Arizona.

Central Texas and North Texas are more ambiguous, as is the panhandle.
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  #5  
Old Posted Jul 5, 2020, 12:21 AM
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I think the dividing line is somewhere around Austin. Here's my semi-informed opinion why.

East of Austin, there were numerous anglo settlers before the 1830s and 1840s. Many immigrated from places like Tennessee and would have been descendants of scots-irish type people who brought inherently southern cultural values and food and the speaking accent with them. Also during that time along the Brazos and Colorado rivers there was slavery present. There are still rural black communities here. And the confederacy in this half of the state had strong support.

West of Austin, a lot of territory was defacto held by Native Americans, until later in the 19th century when they were pushed out. So development happened around ranches, railroads, stuff like that in the post civil war era, which is usually a marker of a place being part of the West. There is/was of course more influence by Mexicans who in cases came before Texas separated and became part of the US and afterwards due to the proximity to the border.

What Texas does not have much of is any strong Native American heritage that's still around, which I think is a hallmark of the real Southwest(NM, Arizona, etc have very strong surviving indian tribes).
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  #6  
Old Posted Jul 5, 2020, 12:50 AM
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No. New Mexico is far and away the quintessential "Southwestern" state, followed by Arizona.

Texas, more specifically the DFW metroplex, is where the South, West, and Midwest (more Great Plains than Great Lakes) all converge... it's situated at the dead center of the country, after all. If you had to choose a major city that nearly all of America would more or less find culturally comfortable and familiar, it would probably be Dallas. Head three hours east, you're in Dixie; three hours north, Oklahoma; three hours west, Abilene.
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  #7  
Old Posted Jul 5, 2020, 1:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dc_denizen View Post
No

South central is its own thing

Texas and Oklahoma should be one state

Texahoma
Absolutely not! Thems fightin' words!
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  #8  
Old Posted Jul 5, 2020, 1:51 AM
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I've always thought of Texas as a mix of southern and western and Mexican as has already been stated.
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  #9  
Old Posted Jul 5, 2020, 3:20 AM
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No, Houston is the South, except for the western suburbs like Katy; thats just hell on Earth.
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  #10  
Old Posted Jul 5, 2020, 3:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dc_denizen View Post
No

South central is its own thing

Texas and Oklahoma should be one state

Texahoma
No, Dallas/Ft Worth and the northern panhandle should be Texahoma. East Texas should be its own state with Houston as the capitol. Central TX and the Hill Country should be separate as well. Than South Texas from San Marcos down to Brownsville should be separate as well. Than West Texas is completely different from the rest of the state and should also be its own state.

El Paso, Del Rio, Laredo and Odessa are quintessentially Southwestern.
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  #11  
Old Posted Jul 5, 2020, 3:47 AM
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A lot of Texas actually feels Midwestern, in the sense of great plains and prairies and the general feel of the region. Lubbock or even DFW has a lot in common with the broader Midwest.
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  #12  
Old Posted Jul 5, 2020, 4:00 AM
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I think people have already said it, but no, the entire state is not quintessentially Southwestern. It's a big state, and El Paso and San Antonio are, but Houston is definitely not Southwestern and even though Dallas has some of those characteristics, they are not the dominant vibe.
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  #13  
Old Posted Jul 5, 2020, 4:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Quixote View Post
No. New Mexico is far and away the quintessential "Southwestern" state, followed by Arizona.

Texas, more specifically the DFW metroplex, is where the South, West, and Midwest (more Great Plains than Great Lakes) all converge... it's situated at the dead center of the country, after all. If you had to choose a major city that nearly all of America would more or less find culturally comfortable and familiar, it would probably be Dallas. Head three hours east, you're in Dixie; three hours north, Oklahoma; three hours west, Abilene.
This
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  #14  
Old Posted Jul 5, 2020, 4:43 AM
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West Texas is basically New Mexico. El Paso is closer to LA than to Dallas.

But obviously the vast majority of where Texans actually live (Dallas-Houston-SA-Austin) has a totally different, transitional feel. IMO Texas starts to feel like the SW cowboy stereotype when the grasslands turn to semi-arid scrubland (so west of Abeline and San Angelo, more or less). And, as others have mentioned, North TX feels like OK and East TX feels like the South.
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  #15  
Old Posted Jul 5, 2020, 5:11 AM
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El Paso is Southwest. Never been to San Antonio, can't vouch for the vibe.

What exactly makes New Mexico more southwestern than Arizona?
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  #16  
Old Posted Jul 5, 2020, 5:36 AM
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Texas is just very big and is its own thing.
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  #17  
Old Posted Jul 5, 2020, 6:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Buckeye Native 001 View Post
What exactly makes New Mexico more southwestern than Arizona?
New Mexico has a stronger Native American (Navajo and Pueblo) heritage, and is home to two of the three ancient Pueblo civilization UNESCO World Heritage Sites (the other is in Colorado). Pueblo-style architecture can be found throughout Albuquerque and, of course, Santa Fe; Arizonan residential architecture tends to be more generic American (a lot more single-story ranch). I also find Arizona a lot more Anglo and Midwest-influenced, while New Mexican culture is still driven in part by Spanish-Americans.
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  #18  
Old Posted Jul 5, 2020, 7:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Quixote View Post
New Mexico has a stronger Native American (Navajo and Pueblo) heritage, and is home to two of the three ancient Pueblo civilization UNESCO World Heritage Sites (the other is in Colorado). Pueblo-style architecture can be found throughout Albuquerque and, of course, Santa Fe; Arizonan residential architecture tends to be more generic American (a lot more single-story ranch). I also find Arizona a lot more Anglo and Midwest-influenced, while New Mexican culture is still driven in part by Spanish-Americans.
Much of northern AZ is Navajo (and Hopi) country along with northern NM. Geographically, I'd say they're about the same but yeah, AZ has huge metropolitan area which is what most people think of when they hear 'Arizona'. That and the Iced Tea...
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  #19  
Old Posted Jul 5, 2020, 8:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Buckeye Native 001 View Post
El Paso is Southwest. Never been to San Antonio, can't vouch for the vibe.

What exactly makes New Mexico more southwestern than Arizona?
San Antonio is rather odd. It's nothing like the American Southeast or Gulf Coast as Houston is, but it's quite different from the true Southwest including El Paso as well. It's kind of a blending of the southern plains and the true Southwest. It also, rather oddly, has had a substantial German immigration resulting in surrounding towns with names like New Braunfels. It's quite a melting pot.

What makes New Mexico and Arizona different is recent arrivals from the rest of North America (and I include Canada in that because my Arizona community has lots of Canadians, mostly but not exclusively snowbirds, living there). New Mexico has not been nearly so populated by newcomers and retains more of the "old southwest" flavor that you can also still find in the more remote parts of Arizona (like its southeastern corner) but not in most of the state. Because it lacks major metros (Albuquerque isn't really "major"), it's also not nearly so much of a magnet for migrants from Latin America (including Mexico)--in other words, it's just relatively isolated and subject to less homogenizing change.
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  #20  
Old Posted Jul 5, 2020, 8:37 AM
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Originally Posted by JManc View Post
Much of northern AZ is Navajo (and Hopi) country along with northern NM. Geographically, I'd say they're about the same but yeah, AZ has huge metropolitan area which is what most people think of when they hear 'Arizona'. That and the Iced Tea...
Before I started spending half my time there, I would have said the word mostly makes me think of this:

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