Barrio Libre is bounded by 14th,
Stone, 19th and Osborne Sts, in downtown Tucson, Arizona.
Barrio Libre (Spanish for
"free district") is Tucson's major Spanish-speaking neighborhood
and has played an important role in the development of the city.
Located just south of Presidio de San Agustín del Tucson (1775),
one of Spain's northern forts, Barrio Libre was established near
an important water supply, a large natural spring. The district
was originally settled by laborers from the presidio as well as
ranchers who built their town homes in the district. Many of the
barrio's residents became prominent citizens who helped shape
the development of Tucson.
The district's greatest
period of growth came after the introduction of the railroad
into Tucson in 1880. Between 1885 and 1900, dense rows of adobe
buildings were constructed along the barrio's major
thoroughfares. Architecturally unchanged from its territorial
appearance, Barrio Libre still retains 19th-century Hispanic
traditions of urban form and architecture. The concentration of
Sonoran, Transitional and American Victorian adobes contributes
to the district's sense of timelessness.