It was eerily quiet. Fortunately for Pasquale his horse stood still, alert and watchful but didn’t make a sound. A thin trail of smoke rose undetected among the trees and Pasquale had to focus to even detect it was there. He had been trailing the Indians. They knew he was doing so. Yet, they left him alone. He wasn’t far from the settlement called Gonzales and he hoped the group was headed there to trade and not attack.
Suddenly, a tall Indian brave made his way out of the thick brush. The horse boogered and it was all Pasquale could do to hold him steady.
“We are headed to Gonzales,” the man said in broken English. “You will ride with us?” Pasquale took a deep breath. Thank goodness, they were friendly. Pasquale stepped off his horse and met the man halfway. They shook hands and turned toward the spiraling smoke.
Gonzales is one of the most historic towns in Texas and it is where the first shot was fired in the battle for Texas independence! Whether you come to Gonzales to follow the Independence Trail, visit our historic sites, see the wildflowers, shop for antiques or collectibles, try the famous barbecue or rope in the South Texas Championships you are invited to make Gonzales your home for the weekend of March 27th through March 29th.
Gonzales will open its doors to USTRC Team Ropers the last weekend in March and what a weekend it will be. If you haven’t made plans to attend now is the time to do so.
Gonzales is quite possibly the most historic town in Texas. It was the very center of the Texas revolution in 1835-1836 and 40 years later it became a financial center as men made their fortunes in cotton and cattle.
Lavish lifestyles resulted in large homes and buildings that have been preserved for over 100 years. To date over 80 historic properties have been documented. The list is far from complete and research continues as we speak. Visitors can visit the Old Jail Museum and it involves a tour of many historical properties and sites. Frame homes were built of cypress and shipped from the Florida/Louisiana coastal area to the Texas port of Indianola. It was then hauled by ox-cart to Gonzales. Cypress seldom rotted and was rarely damaged by termites. Many of the brick homes and buildings are built from brick made by the Sunset Brick Company, which operated in Gonzales from the early 1880s through the mid 1970s.
Needless to say, the city is built on history and you will be surprised at what you might find if you take the time. Gonzales was established in 1825 on Kerr Creek, 2 1/2 miles east of the confluence of the San Marcos and Guadalupe Rivers. It was the capital of Empresario Green DeWitt’s Colony and was the western most Anglo settlement until the close of the Texas Revolution. The town was named in honor of Don Rafael Gonzales, provisional Governor of Coahuila, Mexico and
Texas. During the colonial period of 1825 to 1835 there were many problems with the Comanche and Tonkawa Indians. In 1831, the Mexican government sent Gonzales a six-pound cannon as protection against the Indians. This cannon was used in the ‘Come and Take It’ Battle on October 2, 1835, firing the first shot in the Texas Revolution. General Sam Houston, while in Gonzales, learned of the devastating defeat of the Alamo from Mrs.
Almaron (Susannah) Dickinson, who, with her baby and two servants, survived the siege. After learning of this event, General Houston gathered troops and began the famous ‘Runaway Scrape’, gaining time and mustering troops to eventually take a stand at San Jacinto where Santa Anna was defeated and Texas gained its freedom from Mexico.