In 1683, Franciscan priest Damián Massanet left Barcelona to serve as a missionary in the New World. Massanet spent several years building missions in Mexico. Then, in 1690, he accompanied General Alonso De León, governor of the state of Coahuila, to establish a Spanish presence in Texas. Massanet's Tejas mission lasted for only three years, but it marked the first step in Spain's efforts to bring the lands of Texas under the Spanish flag.
Image: Mission Tejas State Park in Grapeland. The park was built by the Civilian Conservation Corps on the site of the original Mission San Francisco de los Tejas. The building pictured is a "commemorative replica" meant to evoke the original mission.