Spend your Summer at Washington-on-the-Brazos

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Courier after the victory

After the victory at San Jacinto, Ross picked up President Burnet and his cabinet and took them to view the site of the battle at the request of Secretary of War Thomas J. Rusk. The Yellow Stone then steamed back to Velasco on May 3 with the president and cabinet members along with their printing  Read more

Path towards Galveston

Houston released the boat and it set off towards Galveston. Ross knew that part of the Mexican Army would be waiting for them regardless that he and his men were not Texas army volunteers. Because they had aided the Texan rebels, they were at risk. So, Ross stacked cotton bales high on the desk as  Read more

The river crossing

On April 11, Houston received the Twin Sisters, two small cannons sent by the citizens of Cincinnati, Ohio. At 10 o’clock on the morning of April 12, Houston’s men began filing aboard the Yellow Stone. By the next day, more than 700 soldiers, 200 horses and supplies had been ferried across the swollen Brazos River  Read more

Letters between Houston and Captain Ross

On April 7, Santa Anna and his army arrive at a burned-out San Felipe. He then turned towards Harrisburg, the seat of the Texas government. Meanwhile, Houston was resting his men and waiting for supplies that never came. He moved his troops closer to the Brazos, into the canebreaks opposite Groce’s Landing. On Monday, April  Read more

The Yellow Stone at Groce’s Landing

In late March of 1836, the Yellow Stone was stopped at one of its regular stops, Groce’s Landing, just a short way downstream from Washington. At the same time, Houston and his army were weaving back and forth from the Colorado River to the Brazos River. Santa Anna had crossed the Colorado in pursuit, forcing  Read more

Early steamboat transportation

Steamboat transportation on the Brazos River began as early as 1829 but did not really pick up until 1835 with the introduction of the Steamship Yellow Stone. Although the River was hard to navigate, the steamboats offered a way of getting fresh goods back and forth between the interior cities such as Washington. Henry Jones,  Read more

Washington as a major town

Washington had become a major supply point by 1835 because of its location on the river and to major roads. Because of this, merchants and tradesmen from neighboring communities settled in the new town. Washington’s location was ideal because it was elevated on bluffs above the river with a plentiful water supply from nearby springs.  Read more

Robinson’s land near the river

In 1821, Andrew Robinson’s family and other members of the Old Three Hundred settled near what would be called the town of Washington. The next year Robinson was operating a ferry at the La Bahia crossing and a settlement named La Bahia developed at the busy ferry crossing. The Handbook of Texas says, “In 1831  Read more

Colonization of the Brazos

Although the Brazos was well known to Spanish explorers and missionaries who described the Indians along its banks, the first permanent settlements on the river were made by Anglo-Americans.In 1821, Stephen F. Austin obtained permission from Spanish Governor of Texas and Coahuila to explore the country on the Brazos River. He concluded the land was  Read more

Los Brazos de Dios

The full name of the Brazos River is Los Brazos de Dios, “the arms of God,” as named by the Spanish explorers when they first came over. How and who exactly named it this is still a mystery but there are several popular legends surrounding the naming. The first is the exploration by Francisco Vasquez  Read more