While in East Texas, Spanish priests encountered the Caddoes, whom they called “Tejas.”


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While in East Texas, Spanish priests encountered the Caddoes, whom they called “Tejas.”

  • While in East Texas, Spanish priests encountered the Caddoes, whom they called “Tejas.”

  • The priest took the Caddoes’ friendliness as an openness to become Catholic, so ten missions were started between 1690 and 1693.



The Native Texans were not generally receptive to conversion, so in 1693, Spain abandoned their missions in Texas for the next 20 years.

  • The Native Texans were not generally receptive to conversion, so in 1693, Spain abandoned their missions in Texas for the next 20 years.

  • During this time, the French established important trading posts in Biloxi, MS and Mobile, AL.



  • Father Francisco Hidalgo was concerned that the Native Texans who had been baptized now had no priests or churches.

  • In 1713, he sent a letter to the French Governor of Louisiana asking him to send French Priests to Texas.



  • The governor sent French explorer St. Denis.

  • St. Denis was arrested for trespassing into Spanish territory because Spanish authorities were unaware of Father Hidalgo’s request.



Realizing the French might try to colonize East Texas, the Spanish established a series of new missions.

  • Realizing the French might try to colonize East Texas, the Spanish established a series of new missions.

  • In 1719, war broke out between France and Spain.



Lt. Philippe Blondel led an attacking group of seven French soldiers from Natchitoches to the Spanish Mission San Miguel de Lainares de los Adaes.

  • Lt. Philippe Blondel led an attacking group of seven French soldiers from Natchitoches to the Spanish Mission San Miguel de Lainares de los Adaes.

  • The small group of priests and one Spanish soldier were easily subdued.

  • The French soldiers decided to seize some livestock along with the captured men.



Blondel had tied some chickens to his saddle.

  • Blondel had tied some chickens to his saddle.

  • When the chickens started flapping, the horse was startled, reared up and threw the commander to the ground.



Because of this, one of the friars managed to escape to a nearby presidio.

  • Because of this, one of the friars managed to escape to a nearby presidio.

  • He told the commander there that an “enormous” French force was invading.



The Spanish decided to retreat from East Texas.

  • The Spanish decided to retreat from East Texas.

  • Without even trying, the French had driven out the Spanish.

  • The incident became known as The Chicken War and showed that Spanish presence in Texas was very weak.



After being embarrassed by the French in the Chicken War, Spain resolved to take back East Texas.

  • After being embarrassed by the French in the Chicken War, Spain resolved to take back East Texas.

  • The Spanish governor Aguayo decided to demonstrate his control of Texas.



In 1721, abandoned missions were reopened. New missions and presidios were built.

  • In 1721, abandoned missions were reopened. New missions and presidios were built.

  • By Spring 1721, Spain had ten missions and four presidios on the frontier. This re-established Spanish dominance in Texas.



Aguayo understood that the colonies needed additional settlers to increase growth.

  • Aguayo understood that the colonies needed additional settlers to increase growth.

  • In 1731, 15 families from the Canary Islands were sent to Texas.



The relationship between Spanish and French colonies became more peaceful.

  • The relationship between Spanish and French colonies became more peaceful.

  • The Spanish continued missionary work and colony building.

  • The French traded with Native Texan groups without attempting additional colonization.



France was no longer a threat, so Spain wanted to establish even more missions and settlements in Texas.

  • France was no longer a threat, so Spain wanted to establish even more missions and settlements in Texas.

  • Native American groups challenged Spanish claims to lands in the north and west.

  • Spain needed fewer, stronger colonies to protect its claim.



In 1745, the Tonkawas residing near the San Gabriel River requested Spanish assistance to protect them from Comanche raids.

  • In 1745, the Tonkawas residing near the San Gabriel River requested Spanish assistance to protect them from Comanche raids.

  • Within 5 years, the Spanish built three missions and a presidio.



These new missions were failures.

  • These new missions were failures.

  • They were almost totally destroyed by the Apaches.

  • By 1757, Spain had abandoned these settlements and relocated the missions elsewhere.



Expansion in South Texas was more successful.

  • Expansion in South Texas was more successful.

  • Between 1748-1755, fifteen missions were founded and 6000 people settled in 20 towns between the Rio Grande and Nueces River.



To settle in the Northwest, the Spanish made peace with Native Texan groups in the region.

  • To settle in the Northwest, the Spanish made peace with Native Texan groups in the region.

  • The Apaches agreed to live in the missions if they were given protection against the Comanches and the Wichitas.



In 1758, a large group of Comanches launched a surprise attack the mission, killing 8 Spaniards and burning buildings.

  • In 1758, a large group of Comanches launched a surprise attack the mission, killing 8 Spaniards and burning buildings.

  • A second attack prompted the Spanish to seek revenge.

  • The Spanish soldiers and their allies were eventually defeated and driven out by the Comanches.



Between 1764-1767, King Carlos III sent the Marques de Rubi to inspect the northern frontier.

  • Between 1764-1767, King Carlos III sent the Marques de Rubi to inspect the northern frontier.

  • Rubi recommended moving all Texas colonies closer to San Antonio.

  • Rubi also advised forming alliances with the Comanches and Wichitas against the Apaches.



  • King Carlos accepted all of these recommendations.

  • After these were carried out with much difficulty, a fragile peace on the Spanish frontier had been forged by 1780.




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