Piedras Negras, Coahuila

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Piedras Negras
Official seal of Piedras Negras
Nickname(s): The Safe Border!
Piedras Negras is located in Mexico
Piedras Negras
Piedras Negras
Coordinates: 28°42′00″N 100°31′23″W / 28.70000°N 100.52306°W / 28.70000; -100.52306Coordinates: 28°42′00″N 100°31′23″W / 28.70000°N 100.52306°W / 28.70000; -100.52306
Country Mexico
State Coahuila
Municipality Piedras Negras
Established June 15, 1850
 • Mayor

Jose Manuel Maldonado (PRI) 2010

Oscar López Elizondo(PRI) 2010–2013
 • City 914.2 km2 (353.0 sq mi)
Elevation 223 m (732 ft)
Population (2015)
 • City 163,595
 • Density 180/km2 (460/sq mi)
 • Urban 163,595
 • Metro 194,293
Demonym(s) Nigropetense
Time zone CST (UTC-6)
Postal code 26000
Area code(s) 878
Airport Piedras Negras Int. Airport
Website piedrasnegras.gob.mx

Piedras Negras (Spanish pronunciation: [ˈpjeðɾas neɣɾas]) (Black stones) is a city and seat of the surrounding municipality of the same name in the Mexican state of Coahuila. It stands at the northeastern edge of Coahuila on the U.S.-Mexico border, across the Río Bravo (Rio Grande) from Eagle Pass in the U.S. state of Texas. In the 2012 census the city had a population of 163,595 people, which accounted for 91 percent of its municipality's total population of 163,595. The municipality's relatively small area includes some minor localities outside the city limits. The Eagle Pass and Piedras Negras area is connected by the Eagle Pass-Piedras Negras International Bridge, Camino Real International Bridge, and the Eagle Pass Union Pacific International Railroad Bridge.

Founded in 1849, the city was renamed Ciudad Porfirio Díaz in 1888, in homage to President Porfirio Díaz. It reverted to its original name following the Mexican Revolution.

In Spanish Piedras Negras translates to "black stones" – a reference to coal deposits in the area. Across the river, coal was formerly mined on the US side at Dolchburg, near Eagle Pass. This mine closed around 1905, after a fire. Mexico currently operates two large coal-fired power plants named "José López Portillo" and "Carbón 2" located 30 miles (48 km) south of Piedras Negras.


On June 15, 1850, a group of 34 men (commanded by Andrés Zapata, Gaspar Salazar and Antonio Ramírez) met with Colonel Juan Manuel Maldonado to give the news that they had created a pass point at Piedras Negras, to the right of the Rio Grande, south of Fort Duncan. They named it Nueva Villa de Herrera, but it later became Villa de Piedras Negras. In Otto Schober's "Breve historia de Piedras Negras," the local historian points out that the 34 men were repatriates (Mexican Americans) who arrived on June 15, 1850, in what was then called "Colonia Militar de Guerrero en Piedras Negras."[1]

In 1855, the town was looted by a small force of 130 Texans who had been organized by Texas slaveholders for a punitive expedition against a nearby border settlement of fugitive slaves and Indians. The force was led by a captain of the Texas Rangers, and had recently been "repelled by a superior force of Negroes, Indians, and Mexicans who were waiting in ambush" inside Mexico, but they then looted Piedras Negras on the journey back to Texas.[2]

Due to the discovery of huge deposits of coal at the region, in 1881 a railroad track was begun, finishing in 1883. With this construction, the regional economy flourished and on December 1, 1888, it was granted the status of city; this time with the name of Ciudad Porfirio Díaz. After the fall of Diaz in 1911, the city reverted to being Piedras Negras, Coahuila.

On April 24, 2007, an F4 tornado struck the city, killing three people there and seven in Eagle Pass, Texas.[3]



The Northern Region of Coahuila has approximately 300,000 inhabitants. According to the National Institute of Statistics, Geography and Data Processing (INEGI), in 2005 the population of the municipio of Piedras Negras was 143,915 inhabitants, equal to 5.77% of the population of Coahuila. 17% of the population of Piedras Negras came from other states, 3% were foreigners, and the rest were born in Coahuila. Piedras Negras has a high population growth due partly to its status as a border city fueled by U.S.-bound exports from several factories and also by persons who hope to cross the border into the United States. It is estimated that in a couple of years it will become the third most populated city of the state of Coahuila, surpassing Monclova. Nowadays Piedras Negras has more than 200,000 inhabitants.


The climate of the region is semi-arid and hot. During summer the temperatures often surpass 45 °C (113 °F). The hottest months are May through September with a daily average (mean) temperature between 26 °C (79 °F) and 31 °C (88 °F).

The high temperatures recorded in Piedras Negras have earned it recognition as one of the hottest cities in the country.[4]

Highest precipitation months are May, June and September with an average monthly downfall in excess of 80 millimetres (3.1 in) but that is highly sporadic lending to frequent drought conditions. The period of lowest precipitation is between December through March, with a monthly average of 30 millimetres (1.2 in).

Natural resources[edit]

Coal used in the thermoelectric physical

This region generates a large amount of the national production of coal, one of the most economically important non-metallic minerals in the state.

Piedras Negras in music, television, and film[edit]


Church Our Lady of Guadalupe

Piedras Negras' main tourist attractions are:[citation needed]

  • The Macro Plaza (Designed and Built by Cesar Dominguez, AIA, LEED AP) a large square surrounded by restaurants, shops and other businesses
  • The ruins of San Bernardo Mission (18th century)
  • The Handicrafts Museum
  • The Culture House
  • The Hunting and Fishing Club
  • De La Ventana Caverns
  • Mercado Zaragoza, known simply as El Mercado ("the Market"), a traditional Mexican market where one is able to buy a variety of hand-made arts and crafts from the state: vases, leatherworked items, clay and ceramic wares, as well as traditional Mexican candy from the region.
  • El Santuario de Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe, Built in 1859 of ashlar, cement and wood, this church has survived the battles of the Cristero movement in 1927 and an explosion in 1934, leading to its renovation in 1935. The construction of its current towers began in 1950.
  • Plaza de las Culturas (Cultures' Plaza), a new park completed in 2005. The Plaza is a homage to Mexico's three main indigenous cultures: Aztec, Mayan, and Olmec. It features a replica of a pyramid representative of the style of each of the cultures, the biggest one being a replica of the Pyramid of the Sun, located in Teotihuacan, near Mexico City.
  • Estadio Piedras Negras
  • Estadio Sección 123
  • Catedral de Piedras Negras (Diócesis de Piedras Negras)[8]
  • Santuario de Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe (Construido en 1859 de cemento y madera, este santuario sobrevivió los movimientos Cristeros en 1927 y una explosión en 1934, se remodeló en 1935. La construcción de sus torres empezó en 1950).
  • Presidio militar de Monclova Viejo (1773 ruins)
  • Casa Redonda o Maestranza (Donde se constuyeron los cañones constitucionalistas)
  • Antiguo Hotel del Ferrocarril (Ruinas)
  • Antigua Presidencia Municipal (Próximamente, Museo de la Frontera Norte)
  • Plaza de las Culturas
  • Plaza de Toros Monumental "Arizpe"
  • Monumento a Venustiano Carranza (Blvd. Carranza)
  • Monumento al Centenario de la Independencia (Inaugurado el 16 de septiembre de 1910 por el presidente Porfirio Díaz, ubicándolo entre las calles Zaragoza y Fuentes, para ser trasladado posteriormente a la Plaza Central de la Colonia Roma el 15 de julio de 1963)
  • Monumento a los Niños Héroes de Chapultepec (Macroplaza I)
  • Monumento a las víctimas de la inundación del 04/04/04 y el tornado del 24/04/07 en Villa de Fuente
  • Monumento al Venado Cola Blanca
  • Monumento '"Héroes de Coahuila"
  • Misión de San Bernardo (Guerrero, Coah. / 40 km de Piedras Negras)
  • Casa de la Cultura
  • Edificios de Telégrafos y Correos
  • Edificio de la Universidad Autónoma de Piedras Negras
  • Antigua Hacienda de San Isidro
  • Centro de Desarrollo Comunitario Ejido Piedras Negras
  • Centro de Desarrollo Comunitario Col. Presidentes
  • Centro de Desarrollo Comunitario Col. Doctores
  • Centro de Desarrollo Comunitario Col. Lazaro Cárdenas
  • Centro Cultural Multimedia 2000
  • Macroplaza I
  • Macroplaza II
  • Gran Bosque Urbano – El Vergel[9]
  • Teatro del IMSS (Hospital General de Zona #11)
  • Teatro de la Ciudad "José Manuel Maldonado Maldonado"[10][11]
  • Auditorio de Piedras Negras[12][13]
  • La Gran Plaza[14][15]
  • Asta Bandera Monumental "Puente Internacional II" (50 mts.)
  • Asta Bandera Monumental " La Gran Plaza"[16] (120 mts.)[17]
  • Infoteca[18][19]
  • Museo del Niño "Chapulín" (En Construcción)[20]
  • Casa de las Artes[13][21]
  • Paseo del Río[22][23]


Commercial air service is available via Aeropuerto Internacional de Piedras Negras.

International Day of the Nacho[edit]

The International Day of the Nacho takes place every October 21. It was initiated in the 1990s in the United States and Mexico to commemorate the invention of nachos by Ignacio "Nacho" Anaya in 1943 at El Moderno restaurant in the border town of Piedras Negras, Coahuila.[24]

Local media[edit]


  • Zócalo News[25]
  • Periódico La Voz (La Voz News)
  • El Día News[26]
  • Revista Bravo!
  • El Tranchete (tabloid)


  • EXA FM 105.5[27]
  • Di-94.5 FM Dinámica Auditiva
  • K93 FM (Eagle Pass, Texas)
  • Súper Estelar 107.9 FM[28]
  • Amor 107 FM
  • Romántica 99.9
  • BACK 99.1 FM XHSL
  • Radio Gente FM 102.5 XHPNC
  • La Consentida 104.4 FM
  • Fiesta Mexicana 106.3 FM XHPSP
  • La Mexicana 1320 AM
  • La Norteñita 830 AM XEIK
  • Radio Popular Fronteriza S.A. 920 AM XEMJ[29]
  • La Rancherita del Aire 580 AM XEMU[30]

Local television[edit]

  • Televisa Piedras Negras (XHPN)
  • TV Azteca Piedras Negras
  • Visión 10 (XHPNW)
  • RCG Piedras Negras
  • Multimedios TV Piedras Negras / Eagle Pass (XHAW)
  • International Bridges Channel


  • Internet Cablecom – Internet / Cable
  • Infinitum by Telmex – Internet / Telephone

Internet local news[edit]

  • Periódico Zócalo Sitio Web[25]
  • Agencia de Noticias INFONOR[31]
  • Agencia de Noticias SIP
  • Coahuila en Línea[32]
  • Territorio de Coahuila y Texas[33]


Recent events[edit]

  • On April 4, 2004, the Río Escondido (a tributary of the Río Bravo) broke its banks and some 36 residents of the Piedras Negras area were killed or vanished after the resulting flash floods.[34]
  • In 2007, a tornado hit both Piedras Negras and Eagle Pass on April 24, killing three people in Piedras Negras and seven people in Eagle Pass. Several others were injured and homeless in both communities. See also Piedras Negras-Eagle Pass Tornadoes
  • On Monday, September 17, 2012, at least 30, and possibly more than 100, inmates broke out of a prison here, near the U.S.-Mexico border, by digging a tunnel from the prison's carpentry section.[35]


  • Gladys Pearl Baker : Mother of Norma Jean, better known as Marilyn Monroe.
  • Pedro Ferriz Santacruz : journalist, presenter, ufologist and political.
  • Ramón Bravo : Oceanographer, communications expert, researcher and Mexican environmentalist.
  • Armando Jiménez : Writer and architect, author of the book series "Mexican Picardy".
  • Pablo Valdés Hernández : Mexican composer.
  • Julio Santoscoy Cobo: Recognized chronicler of the city and historian.
  • Hector Ruiz : President and CEO of Advanced Micro Devices (AMD).
  • Ricardo Mendoza Wheeler : Director of the film The Escape of the Saints (2005).
  • Ricardo Omaña : Newspaper columnist and editorial writer. Author of "One Column" since 1960.

Sister cities[edit]

Piedras Negras has two sister cities, as designated by Sister Cities International:


  1. ^ "Historia". Piedras Negras. Retrieved 2014-03-05. 
  2. ^ Johnson, Nicholas (2014). Negroes and The Gun: the black tradition of arms. Amherst, New York: Prometheus. p. 133. ISBN 978-1-61614-839-3. 
  3. ^ Welch, William M. (April 26, 2007). "Border storms' death toll rises to 10 - USATODAY.com". Usatoday30.usatoday.com. Retrieved 2014-03-05. 
  4. ^ "Piedras Negras, una de las ciudades más calientes del país". ZÓCALO SALTILLO. March 8, 2009. Retrieved April 12, 2011. 
  5. ^ "Estado de Coahulia-Estacion: Piedras Negras (Obs)". Normales Climatologicas 1951–2010 (in Spanish). Servicio Meteorologico Nacional. Retrieved May 4, 2015. 
  6. ^ "NORMALES CLIMATOLÓGICAS 1981–2000" (PDF) (in Spanish). Servicio Meteorológico Nacional. Retrieved May 4, 2015. 
  7. ^ "Station 76243: Piedras Negras". Global station data 1961–1990—Sunshine Duration. Deutscher Wetterdienst. Retrieved May 4, 2015. 
  8. ^ "Diócesis de Piedras Negras". Diocesispn.org. Retrieved 2014-03-05. 
  9. ^ "Verbena popular por inauguración del Bosque Urbano "El Vergel"". Retrieved April 1, 2010. 
  10. ^ "Teatro Piedras Negras!!!". YouTube. August 10, 2009. Retrieved 2014-03-05. 
  11. ^ "Entrega el Gobernador Humberto Moreira el Teatro de la Ciudad de Piedras Negras "Pepe Maldonado"". Retrieved December 28, 2010. 
  12. ^ "YouTube". YouTube. Retrieved 2014-03-05. 
  13. ^ a b "Inauguran Auditorio y Casa de las Artes de Piedras Negras". Retrieved December 21, 2010. 
  14. ^ "YouTube". YouTube. Retrieved 2014-03-05. 
  15. ^ "Entrega Humberto Moreira "Gran Plaza" a Piedras Negras". Retrieved December 9, 2010. 
  16. ^ "YouTube". YouTube. Retrieved 2014-03-05. 
  17. ^ "Asta Bandera Monumental de Piedras Negras es un símbolo de identidad nacional". Retrieved December 23, 2010. 
  18. ^ "YouTube". YouTube. Retrieved 2014-03-05. 
  19. ^ "El Gobernador Humberto Moreira Valdés entregó la moderna Infoteca de Piedras Negras". Retrieved December 29, 2010. 
  20. ^ "Museo del Niño "El Chapulín" se construirá en Piedras Negras". Retrieved April 21, 2010. 
  21. ^ "YouTube". YouTube. Retrieved 2014-03-05. 
  22. ^ "YouTube". YouTube. Retrieved 2014-03-05. 
  23. ^ "Inauguran Paseo del Río de Piedras Negras". Retrieved November 28, 2010. 
  24. ^ http://www.nationalnachosday.com/
  25. ^ a b "PeriĂłdico ZĂłcalo – Noticias de Saltillo, Coahuila, MĂŠxico, Piedras Negras, Monclova, AcuĂąa, Videos, ZĂłcalo". Zocalo.com.mx. Retrieved 2014-03-05. 
  26. ^ "eldiapn.com". eldiapn.com. Retrieved 2014-03-05. 
  27. ^ "EXA". Exafm.com.mx. Retrieved 2014-03-05. 
  28. ^ "superestelar1079.com". superestelar1079.com. Retrieved 2014-03-05. 
  29. ^ "Coahuiltecamedios.com". Coahuiltecamedios.com. Retrieved 2014-03-05. 
  30. ^ "La Rancherita del Aire, desde Piedras Negras, Coahuila, México". La-rancherita.com.mx. Retrieved 2014-03-05. 
  31. ^ "Infonor – Diario Digital". Agencia.infonor.com.mx. Retrieved 2014-03-05. 
  32. ^ ":: Coahuila en Línea ::". Coahuilaenlinea.com. Retrieved 2014-03-05. 
  33. ^ "Portada". Territorio de Coahuila y Texas. Retrieved 2014-03-05. 
  34. ^ "Global Hazards – 2004 | State of the Climate | National Climatic Data Center (NCDC)". Ncdc.noaa.gov. May 16, 2012. Retrieved 2014-03-05. 
  35. ^ "More than 30 escape from Mexican prison on US border – World news – Americas | NBC News". MSNBC. September 17, 2012. Retrieved 2014-03-05. 


  1. ^ Station ID for Piedras Negras is 76220 Use this station ID to locate the sunshine duration

External links[edit]