Why is everyone marking the 175th birthday of Houston today? Because that many years ago, the Allen brothers waited until what they hoped would be the end of a brutal and sticky summer before posting the first newspaper ads for what they were sure would become “the great interior commercial emporium of Texas.” A few highlights from their dry and breezy copy from August 30, 1836: “Tide water runs to this place and the lowest depth of water is about six feet. Vessels from New Orleans or New York can sail without obstacle to this place, and steamboats of the largest class can run down to Galveston Island in 8 or 10 hours, in all seasons of the year. . . . There is no place in Texas more healthy, having an abundance of excellent spring water, and enjoying the sea breeze in all its freshness. No place in Texas possesses so many advantages for building, having Pine, Ash, Cedar and Oak in inexhaustible quantities . . . In the vicinity are fine quarries of stone. . . . Steamboats now run in this river, and will in a short time commence running regularly to the Island.” A city can dream, can’t it? Happy birthday, Houston!
Image: The Portal to Texas History