The Mission San Jose neighborhood literally grew up around the Mission San Jose y San Miguel de Aguayo, founded in 1720. The mission was listed on the National Register of Historic sites in 1966 and is now part of the San Antonio Missions National Historical Park. The Texas park sits on the western bank of the San Antonio River and also includes Mission Concepcion, Mission Espada, and Mission San Juan Capistrano. Pathways along the riverfront lead from one mission to another.
The historic Mission San Jose is on the eastern border of the neighborhood. Some homes date to the early part of the 20th century, but most of the single-family houses were built between 1940 and 1969. Subsequent developments added row houses, duplexes, and small apartment buildings to the rental pool. Streets are pedestrian-friendly, with well-established trees that provide plenty of shade. Congress Avenue leads to the Mission San Jose grounds and East Bonner Avenue, to the Historical Park’s Visitor’s Center.
Wright Elementary School and Harlandale Middle School are both in the neighborhood. Harlandale High School is about a mile to the south. Services are still held at the Mission San Jose Church in both Spanish and English. Other houses of worship in the area include the Pyron Avenue Baptist Church and Hope Presbyterian Church.
Most stores and restaurants are along South Flores Street on the western edge and Southeast Military Drive on Mission San Jose’s southern border. Some of the locally owned shops have creative names such as the Looney Tunes Ice Cream Shop, Kwik Trip Foods, and the Teddy Bear Thrift Store. Specialty shops are also found in the National Historical Park.