Learn about Texas's history and available records in this research guide that includes a map and bibliography.
16th-century Spaniards exploring Texas found indigenous people, but not the gold they sought. Later Spanish missions, presidios and villages were the nuclei for modern cities, including El Paso (1682), San Antonio (1718), and Nacogdoches (1779)—the latter well situated for trade with the Indians and with Natchitoches, La. French settlement on the Texas Gulf coast in 1685 was short-lived. When France ceded greater Louisiana to Spain in 1762, Texas and Louisiana were under the same crown. In 1803, the United States tried to claim Texas as part of the Louisiana Purchase.