Fort saint louis
On a bluff overlooking Garcitas Creek in present-day Victoria County, Texas lies the site of the earliest European settlement on the entire Gulf coast between Pensacola, Florida, and Tampico, Mexico. Most often called Fort St. Louis through historical error this meager outpost came into existence not only as the bitter fruit of one man's vision but also as a manifestation of the three-way struggle for America in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. Spain had come early to work its way north and south from the Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico. England gained a toehold with its colonies on the Atlantic Seaboard. France utilizing the Saint Lawrence River and other waterways claimed Canada and the Great Lakes region then aspired to the center of the continent by possessing its greatest river the Mississippi. By the strangest of circumstances France's ambitions led to this tenuous settlement on the Texas coast.