Texas Background

Map of French control in US

French Territory in America

Map of North America 1700

Territories for European nations in the Americas

Map of Mexico 1824

Mexican terriroy in 1824

The history of Texas starts with the French colonization in the late 1600s. Rene-Robert Cavalier de La Salle, who was looking for the entrance to the Mississippi River from the Gulf of Mexico, accidentally ended up settling in what was namec Fort St. Louis in the eastern part of modern day Texas. While the small French colony along with the colonists ended up disappearing, mostly because of disease and massacre by Native Americans, word of this colony had reached Spain, and it was decided that they would take action out of fear of losing control of the Americas.6

Spain then sent out to sent out missionaries to spread Christianity and Spanish culture to the New World. Alongside the missions, presidios were set up to protect the roadways, but slowly evolved into helping develop missions as well as spread Spanish culture. Over time, Spain expanded its hold in Texas and eventually even into Louisiana. It also acted as a buffer between European powers and their lands. The capital of Texas under Spanish rule became San Antonio thanks to its success at being a mission, presidio and a civilian settlement.Spain reinforced Texas after the Louisiana Purchase, bringing attention to Americans, thinking they should be receiving Texas as a part of the Louisiana Purchase. Eventually Spain lost its hold over its Mexican colony.

At the time of Mexican rule over Texas, the colony had been devastated by pirates, revolutionaries, and smugglers invading it. As the United States pushed further west, the Tejanos, the Hispanic population of Texas, efforts to begin settlement of lands by American farmers. Under Mexican rule, empresarios, or agents of the government who'd find people to settle land for Mexico, received land as well as acting as a government for the lands they settled. One of the most renowned empresario was Stephen F. Austin. He brought in around 300 families to Texas.Many of these settlers were cotton farmers who came from the United States and often brought slaves with them. Although Mexico outlawed slavery, an exception was made for Texas. As American settlers increased, distrust between Mexico and the US increased as well. This eventually led to the Mexican government attempting to ban slavery in Texas as well as stop immigration from the US. Along with several skirmishes and a failed secession from Mexico, war was soon to follow. This came to a point when Mexican President Santa Anna abolished the constitution the settlers had agreed to live under. Fearing future violence, Mexico dispatched a small army to retrieve a cannon from Gonzales, however they were met with resistance and the flag with a cannon and the words "Come And Take It" written on it.This is often seen as the start of the Texas Revolution.