stands on the Rio Grande (Río Bravo del Norte) across the border from Ciudad Juarez, Mexico. The original El Paso (the present day Ciudad Juarez), was founded on the south bank of the Río Bravo del Norte, (Rio Grande) in 1659 by Spanish conquistadors. Being grassland, agriculture flourished and vineyards and orchards constituted the bulk of the region's production. Local authorities had made several attempts to cultivate the northern bank of the river (present day El Paso) but the Apaches dissuaded settlers from crossing the river which provided a natural defense against them.
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