THE HISTORY OF TEXAS
Through most of its early history Texas was settled by various native tribes. The first Europeans arrived in 1519 when Spanish conquistadors came to the area. However the early Europeans saw little of value to keep them in Texas so the first settlement did not occur until 1682 when a small French Colony was established. This colony only lasted a couple of years but it was enough to encourage the Spanish to set up new colonies in the region. In large part this was done to claim the area for Spain and to keep the French from expanding the Louisiana Territory into Texas.
The Spanish would rule Texas as part of its American colonies for the next hundred and forty years. Although only a very small number of people settled in the area. However in 1821 Mexico including Texas won its independence from Spain. The new Mexican government proved to be very unpopular in Texas and almost immediately there was a push for independence. In an attempt to gain independence Texas actively recruited settlers from the United States in the hopes that if there were enough Americans living in the region the US would support them in the fight.
The Texas revolution began in 1835 and would last for about a year. Because of the very small population of Texas there was very little actual fighting, although the Alamo has become famous as a battle site from the war. In reality Texas won its independence mostly by default. The Mexicans were largely unable to administer the region properly so they put up little real resistance to Texas becoming an independent country which occurred in 1836.
Although Texans take great pride in having once been an independent country the truth is the brief period that they were independent were a nightmare for the people who lived there. The Texans proved no more capable of administering the area than the Mexicans had been. The result was a great deal of internal conflict as well as many disputes with the native population. As a result in 1845 at the request of the Texas government the area was annexed by the United States.
Texas would only remain a part of the union for a brief period before leaving again in 1861 at the start of the Civil war. As a member of the Confederacy they fought against the union during the war although there were few actual battles in Texas. Following the war Texas went through a period of reconstruction however as there had been few battles in the state and they had not had a large cotton producing industry anyway they came through it better than the other confederate states. Over the course of the twentieth century Texas has become one of the wealthiest states in the US due largely to cattle and oil production.