Facts About Texas: Essential Information for Visitors and Residents

Texas has evolved from indigenous habitation and European exploration to its independence, and now thrives as a diverse and influential U.S. state.

The Heart of Texas History and Statehood

Early Inhabitants and Spanish Exploration

More than 10,000 years ago, indigenous people inhabited what is now Texas.

The region was occupied by numerous Native American tribes when the first Spanish conquistadors arrived in 1519.

The name Texas derives from táyshaʼ, a word in the Caddoan language.

Early exploration and colonization efforts by both France and Spain took place in Texas.

In 1685, French colonists attempted to establish a colony called Fort Saint Louis but it was ultimately unsuccessful.

Following this, Spanish colonization increased, fearing the French would gain control of the area.

Road to Independence and Republic of Texas

Tensions between Texas and Mexico escalated leading up to independence.

After several smaller insurrections, the Texas Revolution broke out, and Texas declared its independence in 1836.

One significant event during this time was the Battle of the Alamo, where the defenders of the Alamo bravely fought against Mexican troops led by General Santa Anna.

As a result of the Texas Revolution, the Republic of Texas was established in 1836 and remained an independent nation until 1845.

The flag, known as the Lone Star Flag, was adopted in 1839 and became a symbol of the republic’s struggle for independence.

Joining the Union as the 28th State

In 1845, the Republic of Texas was annexed to the United States and became the 28th state of the Union.

This led to the U.S.-Mexican War from 1846 to 1848.

The Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo in 1848 ended the war and gave Texas a definitive border, shaping its modern-day territory.

Throughout its history, Texas has played a vital role in American development, politics and economy.

The Lone Star State continues to be known for its diverse and rich cultural heritage, fascinating history, and lasting influence on the United States as a whole.

Cultural and Economic Prosperity

A bustling Texas city skyline with diverse cultural landmarks and thriving economic symbols

Richness of Culture and Language

Texas, often referred to as the Lone Star State, has a rich tapestry of cultures and languages due to its diverse population.

The state’s unique blend of Mexican American, Tejano, and German influences contributes to its distinct identity.

Alongside English, many residents speak Spanish as well as other languages brought by immigrants from around the world.

Diverse Economy and Natural Resources

The Texas economy has transformed significantly over time, driven by a variety of industries and resources.

Historically, Texas profited from the cattle, cotton, and oil industries.

In recent years, the state has diversified its economy, incorporating sectors like construction and financial services.

Texas also benefits from its vast natural resources, being a major player in natural gas production and consumption.

A key factor contributing to the state’s economic success is its diverse workforce, which reflects the inclusiveness and prosperity of its diverse communities.

The economy of Texas is further bolstered by a thriving tourism sector, attracting millions of visitors with famous landmarks like the Johnson Space Center and the annual State Fair.

Texas Today: Population and Landmarks

Texas is the second most populous state in the U.S., with major cities such as Austin, Houston, Dallas, and San Antonio experiencing significant growth.

Between 2010 and 2020, Texas saw a 15.9% increase in population, reaching approximately 29.1 million residents.

By 2036, an estimated 10 million more people are expected to call Texas home, raising the total population to 38 million.

While Texas covers a vast area and encounters various natural disasters, such as hurricanes and power grid challenges, Texans take pride in their diverse landscapes and notable landmarks.

In addition to the cities, these landmarks include natural wonders like Big Bend National Park, and iconic structures such as the Alamo, further enriching the state’s cultural and economic prosperity.