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In today’s Texas, with its growing urban populations and big-city lifestyles, it is worth remembering that in 1850 only 10 percent of Texans lived in towns with as many as 100 people. The rest—of many ethnic and racial groups—lived off the land, which was blessedly suited to a profitable variety of crops and livestock and also provided an abundance of wildlife free for the taking.
In Texas Roots, C. Allan Jones reminds us that the economic wealth of modern Texas arose from its agricultural heritage, a rich mixture of practices and traditions including:
· Caddo hunting, gathering, gardening, and farming
· Irrigated agriculture at Spanish missions
· Hispanic ranching
· Slave-based plantations
· Small-scale farmers and ranchers
Through time, people adapted the agricultural technologies, laws, and customs of New Spain, Mexico, Europe, and the South to their own practical, institutional, and legal needs. The result was a particularly Texan system that would serve as the foundation for the state’s economic strength after the Civil War.
Texas Roots shines a bright light on our relationship and connection with the land, bringing alive an aspect of the Texas history that contributed immeasurably to the state’s identity and prosperity.
|Pt. I||Los Tejanos : farming and ranching in Hispanic South Texas||7|
|1||Indian and Spanish colonial origins||9|
|2||Missions and farms on the Rio San Antonio||26|
|3||Ranching along the Rio San Antonio||46|
|4||Settlements between the Rio Grande and Rio Nueces||59|
|5||Conflict and decline||77|
|Pt. II||The Texians : antebellum farmers and stock raisers||99|
|6||Gone to Texas||101|
|7||Plantations and slavery||135|
|8||Hunting and stock raising||171|
|9||Cotton, corn, sugarcane, and wheat||195|