Laredo TX history
Laredo, originally named Villa San Agustin de Laredo, was founded May 15, 1755 by Don Tomás Sánchez. The name Sanchez chose is a tribute to Saint Augustine of Hippo and combination of Laredo, which is attributed to Laredo, Cantabria, a town on the northern coast of Spain. Sánchez was a captain in the Spanish colonial army. The settlement was part of a grand plan to bring civilization to an area which now comprises northeastern Mexico and South Texas.
In 1840, Laredo was the capital of the independent Republic of the Rio Grande, set up in opposition of Antonio López de Santa Anna and brought back into Mexico by military force. In 1846, during the Mexican-American War the town was occupied by the Texas Rangers. After the war, the Treaty of Guadalupe-Hidalgo ceded the land to the United States. A referendum was taken in the town, which voted to petition the American military government in charge of the area to return the town to Mexico. This petition was rejected, and the bulk of the population moved over the river into Mexican territory to found Nuevo Laredo. In 1849, the military set up Fort McIntosh (originally Camp Crawford). Laredo was re-chartered as a city in 1852. Through these changes in sovereignty, Laredo has the distinction of flying seven flags (the Flag of the Republic of the Rio Grande in addition to the Six Flags of Texas).
Laredo has grown from a villa, to the capital of the brief Republic of the Rio Grande, to the largest inland port on the United States-Mexican Border.