Texas Almanac, 1947-1948 Page: 90
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HISTORY OF TEXAS
In 1946, Texas closed the celebration of its
Centennial of Statehood. It was on Dec. 29,
1845, that the Congress of the United States
approved the new State Constitution of Texas
which had been ratified by the people of
Texas on Oct 13 of that year This has been
declared by the United States Supreme Court
the date of annexation, for legal purposes.
But it was not until Feb 19, 1846, that Presi-
dent Anson Jones of the Republic of Texas
retired in favor of Gov. J. Pinckney Hender-
son, and the Stars and Stripes replaced the
Lone Star Flag at the Capitol in Austin. This
was generally accepted by Texans of that
day as the date of annexation
The Centennial of Statehood celebration
was extended through the hundredth anniver-
sary of the period of the movement for
annexation which began officially ith a
favorable vote by the Texas Congress, fol-
lowed by the adoption of the new proposed
State Constitution by the people.
Plans for the Centennial of Statehood were
necessarily made before the close of World
War II. There was urgent need of conserving
all human and material resources, so plans
were made for a sober-minded, workaday
observance. Though the war clouds lifted on
the eve of the celebration, which was
planned for the latter part of 1945 and the
first part of 1946. the serious nature of the
observance was adhered to.
Such an observance was not without its
appropriateness even though peacetime con-
ditions prevailed. The Texas of today was
wrought from a series of crises that called
for sober thought and work. The people of
no other American commonwealth have the
heritage of such a distinctive chronicle of
tragedy and victory. And the chronicle of
Texas begins long before statehood.
THE BEGINNINGS OF TEXAS.
The development that most prominently
marks the early history of Texas-and lends
color and significance to it-is the shift from
Latin-American to Anglo-American sover-
eignty, and political and cultural influence.
This is true also of a wide area between
Texas and the Pacific, but Texas was the
pivot of the development
The two great Americas are divided, geo-
graphically, at the Isthmus of Panama.
Politically and racially, the dividing line is
at the Rio Grande and the westward-extend-
ing latitude of this stream. Texas lies today
on the southern border of Anglo-America, in
its beginning it lay on the northern border
of Latin America
At the beginning of the Nineteenth Century
Texas was at the vortex of Spanish, French
and Anglo-American contention in North
America. The French effort passed in 1803
with the Louisiana Purchase. which extended
the boundary line of the United States to
the western watershed of the Mississippi-
Had not Moses Austin and his son, Stephen,
caught the vision of an Anglo-American col-
ony in Texas, and had not Houston overcome
the forces of Santa Anna at San Jacinto,
Texas, and the Rocky Mountain and Pacific
Coast States probably would have remained
permanently a part of Latin America while
the people of the United States would have
settled down to subsistence on the resources
of the Mississippi Valley and the Atlantic
Seaboard With the swift charge of the
Texans across San Jacinto Battlefield on the
afternoon of April 21, 1836, the boundary line
of Anglo-America was swept westward and
southward to the Rio Grande, and by con-
sequent events of the next decade this bound-
ary was moved on across the Rockies to the
Pacific. Insofar as the boundaries of the
United States were affected, San Jacinto was
as decisive as was Gettysburg.
This metamorphosis of Latin-American into
Anglo-American Texas furnished a thread of
continuity in the plot of early Texas history,
and its influence is found today indelibly
impressed upon Texas culture.
Under Six Flags.
It has not been a simple plot that has un-
folded to produce the Texas of today, but an
intricate one with far-reaching causes and
effects. It has been one of much vicissitude
and tragedy, especially in the early and mid-
dle periods-one that brought a succession
of *six flags while sovereignty over Texas
changed eight times.
The sequence of the six flags of Texas has
been as follows- Spain. 1519-1685; France,
1685-1690; Spain, 1690-1821, Mexico, 1821-
1836; Republic of Texas, 1836-1845; United
States, 1845-1861, the Southern Confederacy,
1861-1865, United States, 1865 to present. The
sequence above gives, with respect to the
early history of Texas, eras during which the
nations of flags indicated actually had the
firmest hold on Texas soil For this reason
the French period is limited to 1685-1690,
though the French claim extended from 1685
to 1763. The Spanish claim to Texas ex-
tended from 1519 to 1821. Thus there were
seventy-nine years of overlapping Spanish
and French claims.
Eras of Development.
However, a logical breaking of the history
of Texas into eras of political and economic
development does not reveal chapters coin-
ciding with the succession of the flags. The
entire history of Texas falls rather naturally
into twelve periods
1. Era of the aborigine, as revealed in
archaeological research and the chronicles of
the early explorers-the prehistory of Texas.
2 The early explorations, beginning with
Pineda's visit in 1519 and extending to the
beginning of missionary effort in 1690.
3 Founding of the missions and establish-
ment of Spanish dominion, extending from
1690 until the secularization of the missions
4. Decline of Spanish dominion, an era of
filibustering expeditions, 1793-1821.
5 Establishment of Anglo-American colo-
nies, beginning with that of Stephen F.
6. The Texas Revolution, 1835-1836.
7. The Republic of Texas, 1836-1845.
8 Statehood prior to the Civil War, 1845-
9. Texas in the Confederacy, 1861-1865.
10 Period of Reconstruction, 1865-1874.
11 Period of early economic development,
1874 to end of Nineteenth Century.
12 Beginning of industrialization and ur-
banization of Texas, from beginning of
Twentieth Century to the present.
Era of Maturing Economy.
World War II and postwar readjustments
have brought the economy of Texas to the
threshold of still another era of development.
There has been during the last three decades
an accelerating expansion of Texas indus-
trial development. The impact of war needs
and conditions greatly expanded the Texas
industrial capacity As measured in number
of wage earners and Dhysical volume of pro-
duction there was greater expansion of Texas
industry during the four years, 1942-1945,
inclusive, than in all preceding history.
While the postwar readjustment has brought
a decline through the closing of the plants
erected purely for war materials, still the
Texas industrial production continues on a
level much higher than before the war.
At the same time the shift of population
during the war brought to Texas for the
first time a predominantly urban population.
*Some authorities say seven flags, includin, the
Green Flag of the Magee-Gutierrez Expedition,
which had control of Texas for five months in
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Texas Almanac, 1947-1948, book, 1947; Dallas, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth117136/m1/92/: accessed May 29, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.