"Mission San Bernardo ruins, Guerrero, Coahuila, Mexico" by Christopher Talbot , public domain
El Camino Real de los Tejas
National Historic Trail - TX,LA
The El Camino Real de los Tejas National Historic Trail covers the U.S. section of the El Camino Real de Los Tejas, a thoroughfare from the 18th-century Spanish colonial era in Spanish Texas instrumental in the settlement, development and history of Texas. The modern highways Texas 21 (along with Texas OSR) and Louisiana 6 roughly follow the original route of the trail.
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El Camino Real de los Tejas - Visitor Map
Official visitor map of El Camino Real de los Tejas National Historic Trail (NHT) in Texas and Louisiana. Published by the National Park Service (NPS).
National Park System - National Park Units
Map of the U.S. National Park System. Published by the National Park Service (NPS).
National Park System - National Park Units and Regions
Map of the U.S. National Park System with Unified Regions. Published by the National Park Service (NPS).
National Park System - National Heritage Areas
Map of the U.S. National Heritage Areas. Published by the National Park Service (NPS).
https://www.nps.gov/elte/index.htm https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/El_Camino_Real_de_los_Tejas_National_Historic_Trail The El Camino Real de los Tejas National Historic Trail covers the U.S. section of the El Camino Real de Los Tejas, a thoroughfare from the 18th-century Spanish colonial era in Spanish Texas instrumental in the settlement, development and history of Texas. The modern highways Texas 21 (along with Texas OSR) and Louisiana 6 roughly follow the original route of the trail. Explore a diverse array of histories contained within El Camino Real de los Tejas’ 150-year life, including the Spanish struggle to missionize American Indian nations, the growth of cattle ranching in the Mexican period, and the movement for Texan independence and statehood. You can visit many sites of the El Camino Real de los Tejas National Historic Trail over the 2,580-mile historic route that crosses 2 states, and travels into Mexico, to Mexico City. Mission San Bernardo ruins, Guerrero, Coahuila, Mexico Mexican mission stands in the dirt Construction of the mission church began in 1760 but was never completed. The outstanding ruins are virtually the only visible remains of the complex of missions established in the area. The purpose was to convert Coahuiltecan Indians to Catholicism. El Paso de Jacinto/Paso de los Indios, Webb County, Texas lots of greenery along a river; sunflowers in the foreground Around 1746, explorer Jacinto de León discovered a ford that allowed safe passage across the Río Grande in this vicinity; it had probably been used for centuries by American Indians. Rancho los Ojuelos, Webb County, Texas stone house ruins; briliant green grasses and trees on the right This national historic district consists of 13 stone houses (several in ruins) constructed from hewn sandstone blocks, chinked and plastered, ranging from rectangular flat roofed Colonial style buildings to hip roofed two room structures. Post-1750s. McKinney Falls State Park, Travis County, Texas rock indentations in a dry creek with five people walking under clouds Recent research reveals that in 1716 the expedition of Domingo Ramón followed the left bank of Onion Creek along the western edge of McKinney Falls State Park to its junction with Williamson Creek. You can walk in rock indentations in the creek bed. Mission Tejas State Park, Houston County, Texas trail segment indentation with leaves in it, trees along the side This 1.5-mile-long trail segment crosses an area that has remarkable visual integrity. The trail segment courses parallel to State Road 21 and at times crosses the highway. Comanches and Horses Historians often cite the importation of large horse herds as one of the Spanish empire's biggest impacts on the Americas. Ironically, these very herds helped transform Comanches into Spain's most formidable rival. Two wild horses stand in a large open area. San Antonio Missions on El Camino Real de los Tejas Like Spanish Texas in general, San Antonio began as a response to encroaching French forces. Spaniards used three distinct institutions to populate New Spain’s northern frontier and preserve it from foreign influence: presidios, missions, and civilian settlements. The various branches of El Camino Real de los Tejas carried goods, people, and information that helped missions achieve this goal. Stone sign in front of a spanish colonial mission. Well-Traversed Caddo Trails The early trade routes established by the Caddo later supported European settlement as well as economic and political growth in Texas and Louisiana for over 300 years. When Europeans first arrived in Caddo territory, they found well-traversed trails connecting native cultural settlements. The Spanish built missions and posts along the main thoroughfares, which collectively became known as El Camino Real de los Tejas or the Royal Road to the Tejas. A trail leads through a dense green forest. Caddo Timeline This timeline describes the European influence and interaction with the Caddo people, from the mid-1500's to the mid-1800's. Beginning in the early 1820s, increased Anglo migration into Caddo territory (“land grabs”) impacted the sacred Caddo landscape significantly. Read more about the impacts of the Anglo influence on the Caddo Nation over time. The map shows the routes/trails of St. Denis through and to the Red River Caddo Nation- The Sacred Landscape Long before Europeans came to explore Texas, the people now known as Caddo had a well-developed trail system across their territory in East Texas. Major east-west and north-south trails led to and from important mound centers and established communities where significant social, political, and religious rituals and traditions, along with daily domestic activities, occurred. A map of southeast Texas depicting a number of rivers draining into the Gulf of Mexico. Early Caddo History The Caddo originated in the lower Mississippi Valley and spread west along the river systems. Sometime between 700 and 800 they settled the area between the Arkansas River and the middle reaches of the Red, Sabine, Angelina, and Neches rivers and adopted agriculture. They grew corn and pumpkins as primary crops which, later combined with beans and squash, stimulated population growth. A map , depicting the locations of American Indian homelands. Caddo Social Structure The Caddo people trace their descent through the maternal line. They recognized and ranked clans, with marriage typically occurring between members of different clans. Religious and political authority in historic Caddo communities rested in a hierarchy of key positions shared between the various affiliated communities. A thatched-hut made of grass stands in a field with sunflowers. Caddo Trade Located where the southeastern woodlands meet the western prairies, the Caddo produced bountiful crops and were well placed to participate in exchange networks. Key trails fanning out as far afield as Florida; Casas Grandes, Arizona; Cahokia, Illinois; and the Rio Grande pueblos of New Mexico crossed Caddo country, linking the Caddo to distant Indian worlds and positioning them at a crossroads of trade. A red, convex-shaped pottery with a white, swirling design. Caddo Population Decline Over the course of more than 500 years, the Caddo developed powerful political chiefdoms, organized complex ranked societies, erected ceremonial centers and temple mounds, and participated in long-distance exchange networks. At their height, around 1300, they may have numbered more than 200,000 people. An illustration of an American Indian thatched-hut village. Hike on a National Historic Trail Hiking a National Historic Trail isn't always what people expect. Like the National Scenic Trails, the historic trails pass through multiple states and travel across a variety of land ownership. Unlike the National Scenic Trails, the historic trails can't be traversed on one long walking trail. You can plan a weekend adventure or an afternoon outing on a National Historic Trail. The following trips will give you the opportunity to hike pieces of the historic trail routes. A brown trail sign stands next to a trail that leads through the forest. Series: El Camino Real de los Tejas NHT: Caddo Nation The early trade routes established by the Caddo later supported European settlement as well as economic and political growth in Texas and Louisiana for over 300 years. When Europeans first arrived in Caddo territory, they found well-traversed trails connecting native cultural settlements. The Spanish built missions and posts along the main thoroughfares, which collectively became known as El Camino Real de los Tejas or the Royal Road to the Tejas. Texas-Oklahoma area map, depicting the locations of Caddo tribes. Become a Junior Ranger for National Historic Trails Learn about the National Historic Trails and earn junior ranger badges! These activities can be completed virtually or after visiting a site along the National Historic Trails. Booklets can be submitted either electronically or by mail. Take a look and start exploring the trails today! small photos of different trail sites with junior ranger badges. National Historic Trails: Historical Routes of National Significance Wondering about National Historic Trails? Check out this infographic with basic information about the trails, their purpose, and where you can go for more information! Infographic about National Historic Trails featuring a map. Full description available at link. National Historic Trails Scrapbooks Imagine if early travelers on the National Historic Trails had a polaroid camera... what would their scrapbooks look like? Though we have many journals describing their experiences, there are obviously very few or no photos at all from these journeys. Cameras didn't exist! Well, we took a crack at it and created scrapbook pages for them! Take a look at what we imagine a trail traveler's scrapbook would like! A scrapbook page depicting multiple scenes from the trail, and relevant icon images. National Historic Trails Fashion Inspiration During NPS Fashion Week, we are exploring some ways fashion inspiration may be found on National Historic Trails (NHTs). On NHTs you’ll find intriguing colors, shapes, textures, histories, and stories. From golden sunsets to feathered hats, NHTs have diverse natural and cultural environments that can inspire the fashionista in us all! A red rock cliff with a path winding through it Conservation Diaries: Ramona Malczynski, Partnership Outreach Intern Ramona Malczynski spent the summer traveling through Northern and Central New Mexico and meeting with many people during her time with the Latino Heritage Internship Program. During summer 2021, she worked as the Latino Historic Trails Partnership Outreach Intern at the National Trails Office of the National Park Service. selfie of two women Floresville El Camino Trail Exhibits Audio Description Interested in El Camino Real de los Tejas in Floresville? Take a look at this interpretive exhibit and listen to the audio description. San Antonio to Goliad Itinerary: El Camino Real de los Tejas NHT This itinerary offers a mix of recreation and history! It is a very full day, so adjust the time you spend or visit to meet your needs. Check the visiting hours for sites and inquire if programs are available. Historic stone structure with a small, covered entrance area and a wall, exhibit Military Movements and Uses on El Camino Real de los Tejas As European nations struggled for trade routes and territory in the Americas, they established military forts - called presidios in Spanish - to protect their claims from both other European nations and unfriendly indigenous groups. A timber log fence encircles a wooden fort. El Camino Real de los Tejas Timeline El Camino Real de los Tejas was the northeastern segment of a network of royal roads radiating from Mexico City. Terrain, weather, and relations with local tribes influenced travel, so many routes developed over time. El Camino Real de los Tejas Junior Ranger Interested in becoming a trail junior ranger? Use this information to complete your worksheet and earn your badge!