The history of Houston goes back all the way to 1836 to the time when Gen. Sam Houston’s Texas Army has succeeded in winning independence from Mexico in what was to be known later on as the battle of San Jacinto. This city was founded in the same year by the brothers Augustus and John Allen and according to history they purchased an acre of land for $1.40 and they have purchased over 6000 acres altogether in the region of Buffalo Bayou. The brothers have overseen the laying out of the town in the same year. Gen. Sam Houston who was the first president of the Republic of Texas signed an act in 1837 authorizing Houston to incorporate. This city was also the capital city of Texas for the period between 1837 and 1840. In the same year a steamship visited Houston and the name of the ship was the Laura. They Houston Chamber of Commerce was formed by four Houston businessman in 1840. Only two years later the Galveston daily news starts with publication and this is still the oldest newspaper in Texas. Eventually in 1846 Texas became the 28th state of the US.
The first census of Houston takes place in 1850 and almost 2400 citizens is counted. At this stage Galveston is the largest city in Texas. The first railroad started to operate in this area in 1853 and the first hospital followed in 1858. First National Bank is founded in the city in 1866 and in the same year the first trolley cars is taken into use and the cars was mule driven and in the same year the city started to use gaslights. In 1877 the first public schools is established in Houston and this was followed in 1880 by the first telephone exchange. As early as 1882 Houston already had an electric light company and together with New York it was the first cities to build electric power plants. The first automobile is seen in Houston in 1897. In 1901 oil is discovered in the region at several locations. This led to an investment by government of $1 million for improvements to the shipping channel. They Houston Symphony was established in 1913. The first air-conditioned building in Houston was the second national Bank which opened its doors in 1923. A pipeline that supplied Houston with natural gas was laid in 1926.
The first international air service to Houston started in 1935. The first Texas medical Center opened its doors in 1943. The first freeway known as the Gulf Freeway was constructed in 1947. In 1948 the port of Houston handles the second most tonnage in the US. The first word which is spoken from the lunar surface in 1969 was the word Houston. In 2001 the worst flooding of the area takes place during the tropical storm Allison which resulted in 37 inches of rain on the area. The Astrodome in Houston becomes a shelter for victims of Hurricane Katrina in 2005. The area is constantly under threat from hurricanes and this resulted in a huge evacuation in 2005 in anticipation of hurricane Rita. This resulted in massive traffic jams but the hurricane turned away towards the Texas Louisiana border. However four years later Houston and Galveston is struck by hurricane Ike.
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