December 23, 2016

Nacogdoches ... really the oldest town in Texas, or not?

Nacogdoches is supposedly the oldest town in Texas. Founded in 1716, it celebrated its tricentennial this year. 

There's just two or three problems with this, which included Texas history, Texas myth, privileged viewpoints and more. 

First, there were towns older than it, or villages, or whatever, by settled Indian tribes. They don't exist today, true. But, they were older. (Indeed, per its Wiki page, Nac is near the site of an old Caddoan village.) 

Second, Nac itself has not been continually inhabited over those 300 years, as Wiki also makes clear, and as Nac historically-minded folks know. Per Wiki, Gil Y'Barbo got it to get official Spanish designation as a pueblo, or town, in 1779 after resettlement at the site. 

Third, it ignores that El Paso, whether town, village or whatever — and yes, on both sides of the Rio Grande, or Rio Bravo del Norte, not just on the south/west side that became Ciudad Juarez — are older and continuously older. 

I guess that means that the Republic of Texas claims to the Rio Grande as its border all the way up to its source in southern Colorado, as staked on the post-San Jacinto treaty under duress with Santa Anna, actually weren't true and that Texans of today are admitting that. 

Or else, outside of Nac boosters, they're more clueless of their own state's history than I previously thought. 

Meanwhile, it's got other "issues."  Even before Mexico had finished seceding from Spain, rebellion problems were happening with Anglo settlers in the area, as well as some of the earlier Hispanic ones. Hence Nac's claim to outdo places like Six Flags of America amusement parks with its Nine Flags. 

I'll have more on one of those, the Fredonian Rebellion, and its relation to some modern comedy history, in a second column, which will be an adaptation of an editorial column of mine.

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