About McAllen Ranch

Visit Gallery

The McAllen Ranch, also known by its Spanish Colonial name of Rancho San Juanito, was awarded to Manuel Gómez by the Spanish viceroy after initial application in 1790 and approval the subsequent year.  San Juanito is the western half of the original 95,000 acre grant known as the Santa Anita.  The ranch was developed by Gómez until his death, when the property was conveyed to the two heirs of his widow, María Gregoria Ballí de Dominguez Gómez.  The Domínguez heirs managed the land then inherited by their children, one of whom conveyed a modest, undivided portion to María Salomé Ballí, a cousin.  Upon her marriage to Scottish immigrant John Young, Salomé began acquiring other undivided interests in the Santa Anita.  After the death of her first husband, she married Irish immigrant John McAllen, and together they continued to buy further shares until the Santa Anita was wholly owned by her.  Her two sons, half-brothers John Young and James Ballí McAllen, divided the ranch with McAllen retaining the west side known as San Juanito.  James Ballí McAllen continued to manage the ranch until his death in 1916, and the ownership passed to his four children, Mildred, Salomé, Eldred, and Argyle A. McAllen.  The ranch is owned and operated today by the children of James Argyle McAllen, son of Argyle A. McAllen.