History of Texas, together with a biographical history of Milam, Williamson, Bastrop, Travis, Lee and Burleson counties : containing a concise history of the state, with portraits and biographies of prominent citizens of the above named counties, and personal histories of many of the early settlers and leading families Page: 13

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HI~~i'ORY 01! 2'AXAS. '3~_

Palestine ........................
Corsicana........................
Denison ........ ................
A ustin..........................
San Antonio.....................
Fort Ewell......................
Fort Chadbourne................
Jacksboro.......................
Henrietta.......................
Fort Concho......................
Fort Stockton....................
El Paso.........................
Fort Davis......................
Eagle Pass.......................
Fort Elliott......................
Silver Falls ....................
Midland.............. ....

495
448
767
513
676
20()0
2,120
1,133
915
1,888
3,050
3,370
4,918
800
2,500
3,800
2,779

DISCOVERY OF TIIHE REGION.
Robert Cavalier de la Salle, the noted
French explorer of the Mississippi valley,
etc., came down the Mississippi river in
1683, and returned to France. In 1685, having
obtained royal letters patent, and provided
with four vessels, he set sail to discover
the mouth of the great Father of Waters,
but, drifting too far west, he landed in Texas,
supposing M~atagorda bay to be the point he
was looking for. After exploring the country
he conceived the bold project of traversing
ths country northward to the Illinois river,
a distance of 2,000 miles. Selecting a few
of his friends, he started, but on March 20,
1687, fell a victim to the treachery of his
own men. He was slain by a musket ball
fired by Duhaut, who had become jealous
and dissatisfied with him and others in the
party. This unjustifiable deed was committed
somewhere in the region of the Brazos
river: it is impossible to identify the exact
point. It "was several days' journey

west of the Cenis Indians," whose dwellings
at that time were on the Trinity river.
La Salle was "saturnine ill temperament,
reserved in his communications, asking counsel
of none. There was a certain hardness in
his manners, a tone of lofty self-reliance,
which, though it commanded the obedience
of his followers, did not gain their good will.
On the other hand, his capacity for huge designs
has had few parallels. He has been
called the Columbus of his age; and had his
success been equal to his ability, this distinction
might justly have been awarded him.
Cool and intrepid, never for a moment yielding
to despair, he bore the burden of his
calamities manfully, and his hopes expired
only with his latest breath."
TEXAS COMPARATIVELY UNKNOWN UNTIL RECENTLY.

Mary Austin Ilolley, a resident of Texas,
in 1833 penned the following, to the effect
that Texas, in its merits, was not really discovered
until a comparatively late date:
" Texas, until within the last few years, has
been literally a terra incognita. That such a
region existed has indeed been known, but in
respect to its geography and natural resources,
clouds and darkness have rested upon it.
This is the more remarkable, lying, as it does,
contiguous to two enlightened nations,-the
United States on the one side and Mexico on
the other, bothl by land and sea. While
Britons, impelled by a daring spirit of enterprise,
have penetrated to the ice-bound region
of ilelville's Island, and our own New Englanders
have encountered all the hardships
and hazards of the western desert, the Rocky
mountains and hostile Indians, to find a home
at the mouth of the Columbia river, this most
inviting region, lying just at their doors, has
been altogether overlooked.

13

HISTRY F TXAS

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Lewis Publishing Company, publisher. History of Texas, together with a biographical history of Milam, Williamson, Bastrop, Travis, Lee and Burleson counties : containing a concise history of the state, with portraits and biographies of prominent citizens of the above named counties, and personal histories of many of the early settlers and leading families, book, 1893; Chicago. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth29785/m1/14/ocr/: accessed September 29, 2016), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .