The history of Houston, TX, dates back to 1836 when General Sam Houston led his army to victory for the independence of Texas from Mexico. That same year, brothers Augustus C. and John K. Allen would purchase nearly 7,000 acres of land that would eventually become the city of Houston.
By 1837, the Allen brothers already had streets laid out and a plan for becoming Houston. The city customarily determined regular roads to be 80 feet wide, while Texas Ave. was built at 100 feet. Interestingly enough, this layout was designed by Gail Borden, a publisher, and surveyor who also happens to be the creator of condensed milk.
In 1837, Houston was incorporated as a city in the Republic of Texas. From 1837 to 1839, Houston would serve as the capital city of the Republic of Texas. It wasn’t until nearly a decade later that Austin became the capital of Texas, and it still is to this day.
During the 1840s, Houston started building fundamental parts of the city, including the Chamber of Commerce. In 1842, the oldest newspaper in Texas—The Galveston County Daily News—was published. By 1846, Texas had officially become the 28th state in the US.
The late 1800s brought about a significant change for Houston and the rest of the United States, thanks to the advent of the telephone. Suddenly, cities throughout the country needed complex infrastructure to allow people to power their homes and communicate. In 1880, Houston created its first telephone exchange. In 1882, the Houston Electric Light Co. was formed. Houston and New York would go on to become the first two cities to build electric power plants.
In 1897, the first asphalt was laid on the streets of Houston. This marked the beginning of a change in the times, as automobiles were starting to become commonplace.
In the 1920s, the first air conditioning in a public building sparked a real revolution in Houston, allowing residents to circumvent the extreme summer temperatures and live a better life.
Where it is today
Today, Houston is one of the largest cities in Texas and a hub for global shipping. While Houston has grown to include bright neon lights and large malls, the history that defines the city is still evident in Houston today. Click here for some ideas what to do in Houston.
Drive to Monterrey, Mexico
Another nice feature of Houston is its distance to the border. Just over seven hours south on the 35, pick up the 85 in Mexico and after a few Blinks, you’re there. A beautiful city within one of the most appealing countries in the world. Just make sure one thing, if you drive your Audi or Tesla, make sure to get good Mexican car insurance, not that cheap stuff at the border.