Whereas, The city of Brownsville is celebrating the sesquicentennial of its founding in 1848, and the Texas House of Representatives is especially proud to recognize the legendary city on this august occasion



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H.R. No. 1027

R E S O L U T I O N

WHEREAS, The city of Brownsville is celebrating the sesquicentennial of its founding in 1848, and the Texas House of Representatives is especially proud to recognize the legendary city on this august occasion; and

WHEREAS, Intricately woven into the history of the Lone Star State, Brownsville is Texas' southernmost city and the Rio Grande Valley's largest city; the area surrounding it dates from the colonial days of Imperial Spain, covering periods of exploration, wars, revolutions, and infamous banditry; and

WHEREAS, First to arrive at this remote area on the Texas coast were the Spanish explorers who found hundreds of native Americans known as Coahuiltecans living there; they were followed by colonizers and staunch families who came to tame the arid wilderness: Alonzo de Leon in 1689, Jose de Escandon in 1746, and Jose Salvador de la Garza in 1782; and

WHEREAS, For more than 300 years, the city has figured prominently in the development of our state and five national banners have flown over its settlements‑‑Spain, Mexico, the Republic of Texas, the Confederate States of America, and the United States; and

WHEREAS, With its rich military, commercial, transportation, and agricultural legacies contributing to the development of Texas and the United States, Brownsville has become a vital international seaport, airport, and railroad interchange point on the Mexican border; and

WHEREAS, Originally settled as part of Matamoros, Mexico, in the latter half of the 18th century, Brownsville was first chartered as a United States city in 1848; General Zachary Taylor established Fort Texas (renamed Fort Brown after the death of its gallant commander, Major Jacob Brown) in 1846 to confirm the Rio Grande as the national boundary after the Republic of Texas became a state; that incident resulted in the Mexican War, and the first battles were fought here: Thornton's Skirmish, the Battle of Palo Alto, and the Battle of Resaca de la Palma; here General Taylor launched his invasion of Mexico, which was followed immediately by the organization of the city of Brownsville by Charles Stillman; several existing buildings of Fort Brown are now part of Texas Southmost Junior College; and

WHEREAS, During the Civil War, Brownsville was the only port available to the Confederacy to ship its cotton in exchange for war supplies and it became the center of action for international intrigue; stationed in Point Isabel and Brazos Santiago, the Union Army forced the Confederates to evacuate the city in 1863, and the stored cotton was burned to keep it from the Union Army, which resulted in destroying Fort Brown and part of the city; and

WHEREAS, Brownsville was the capital of Texas from November 1863 to July 1864, when Brigadier General Andrew Jackson Hamilton, appointed military governor of Texas by President Abraham Lincoln, occupied the city with Union troops; Confederates retook the city in 1864 and maintained control, rebuffing the Union forces in the final battle of the Civil War at the Palmito Ranch under the command of John S. "RIP" Ford; at this time, the war had been over for several weeks; and

WHEREAS, The cattle industry developed on the Spanish land grants here and spread throughout the west at the end of the Civil War; Brownsville was the southern terminus of the Chisholm Trail; during that same period, large irrigation projects were started that were the beginning of the rich agricultural business in the valley; and

WHEREAS, From the beginning, Brownsville was a key commercial center for South Texas and Northern Mexico; transportation was always crucial to its development, and the area was served by sailing ships, covered wagons, steamboats, railroads, deep‑sea ports, and the earliest major international airport; and

WHEREAS, Commissioned officers and future generals were stationed in the city: Robert E. Lee, Philip Sheridan, Braxton Bragg, Don Carlos Buell, Edmund Kirby‑Smith, James Longstreet, John B. Magruder, George Gordon Meade, John Pemberton, John F. Reynolds, George H. Thomas, Joseph Hooker, Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson, George B. McClellan, Irvin McDowell, John Pope, John Sedgwick, Hamilton Bee, John Pershing, and others; future presidents of three nations lived there: Zachary Taylor, Ulysses S. Grant, Jefferson Davis, Porfirio Diaz, Manuel Gonzalez, and Mariano Arista; and men who would one day be governors: A. J. Hamilton, Lew Wallace, Edmund J. Davis, and Juan Nepomuceno Cortina; and

WHEREAS, Here revolutions were planned and supplied‑‑revolutions that altered the future not only of the United States and Mexico, but Europe as well; 49ers passed on their way to the California gold rush, some remaining to help build the city; and

WHEREAS, Men of vision came to find fame and fortune: businessmen turned ranchers‑‑Richard King, Mifflin Kenedy, Francisco Yturria, John Young, John McAllen, Adolphus Glaevecke; pioneers who became farmers, merchants, builders of ports and railroads, and persons of special talents‑‑Charles Stillman, Louis Brulay, Manuel Alonso, Simon Celaya, Jose San Roman, Manuel Trevino, J. H. Fernandez, Albert, Peter, Nicholas, and Joseph Champion, A. P. Barreda, Adrian Ortiz, J. L. Putegnat, Samuel and Jeremiah Galvan, Jacob Mussina, S. A. Belden, Frank S. North, Humphrey E. Woodhouse, Juan S. Cross, Victoriano Fernandez, Joseph Webb, Thomas Carson, Patrick Shannon, Henry Miller, Andres Pacheco, Henry M. Field, William Neale, S. W. Brooks, Stephen Powers, John S. "RIP" Ford, J. T. Canales, Morris Edelstein, James Wells, and many others; and

WHEREAS, Women capable of carving civilization from the cactus and chaparral came also: Maria Josefa Cavazos, Una Rutland Neale, Henrietta Morse Chamberlain King, Theresa Clark Clearwater, Nora Kelly, and Salome Balli; and

WHEREAS, Men and women of the cloth came to bring the word of God into a wild frontier town: Father Jean Maurice Verdet, Father Pierre Karalum, Reverend Hiram Chamberlain, Melinda Rankin, and Father Pierre Parisot, and the sisters of the Incarnate Word and Blessed Sacrament, Saint Clare, Saint Angel, Saint Ephrem, and Saint Dominic established the first parochial school; and

WHEREAS, The future surgeon general of the United States, William Crawford Gorgas, came to work and conquer yellow fever, providing the key to the building of the Panama Canal; Lieutenant Abner Doubleday, who helped give us baseball, served there twice; during the birth of air transportation, Amelia Earhart, Charles Lindbergh, Les Mauldin, Claire Chennault, Ira Eaker, William "Billy" Mitchell, Juan Trippe, Howard Hughes, Eddie Rickenbacker, Tom Braniff, and others; until World War II, the airport at Brownsville was the busiest international airport in the United States; and

WHEREAS, The names of countless men and women who are a part of Brownsville's unique history and who gave of their own talents will forever leave their mark on the city's illustrious past; Brownsville's sesquicentennial celebration will honor these individuals and their contributions not only to Texas, but also to the nation; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That the House of Representatives of the 75th Texas Legislature hereby extend its deepest appreciation to the citizenry of Brownsville and extend best wishes to them for a most glorious sesquicentennial celebration in 1998; and, be it further

RESOLVED, That an official copy of this resolution be prepared to commemorate this notable event as a token of highest regard by the Texas House of Representatives for the city of Brownsville and its people.

Oliveira


_______________________________

Speaker of the House


I certify that H.R. No. 1027 was adopted by the House on May 30, 1997, by a non‑record vote.

_______________________________



Chief Clerk of the House


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