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Historical Tidbit Thursdays - Texas Tales - First English-Speaking Europeans In Texas - #TidbitThursday


Welcome to Historical Tidbit Thursdays. The next few weeks I'll be sharing some interesting tidbits I found while researching Texas treasures and tales. Hope you enjoy!

David Ingram may have been the first English-speaking European to enter Texas

David was from the village of Barking, England in the county of Essex just east of London. In October 1567, David and a crew of 114 sailed with Sir John Hawkins on his ship The Minion from Plymouth, England to Africa's slave coast along with 5 or 6 other ships. Being they were English, trading with Spain or Spanish America or Spanish colonies was strictly forbidden, but they did it anyway and one item they paid dearly for were slaves. Hawkins sold the slaves in a Spanish colony and as they sailed home, they ran into a storm near the Caribbean.

English ships were not welcome in Spanish waters, including the Gulf of Mexico or parts of the Caribbean. Their six ships were badly damaged from the storm and they stopped in enemy port Vera Cruz for repairs. Someone tipped off the government there about the English and the ships were attacked. Two ships escaped - The Judith under Francis Drake who sailed home and The Minion under Hawkins.

The Minion was overcrowded and under provisioned, so 114 men (including David Ingram) were set ashore 30 miles north of Tampico, Mexico (which is over 300 miles away from Texas).

David and his men headed north further into this unknown world. For 11 months, they headed north-east into Texas, through native lands, and into Canada ending up at Cape Breton, Newfoundland, a distance of over 3000 miles. Along the way, he lost 111 men to disease, accidents, relations with natives (an interesting result were a lot of blue-eyed native babies whose recessive gene passed down through the generations).

Quite an amazing journey on foot!

"Texas Tales" by C.F. Eckhardt; ISBN#1-55622-141-X

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