The Texas Embassy In Washington, D.C.
Did yo know Texas has an Embassy in Washington, D.C.? In fact, it is the only state to have one, at least it used to. In 1836, Texas became its own country after it fought Mexico for independence. Texas immediately reached out to the United States, England, France, Netherlands and a few other nations to be recognized so they could establish diplomatic missions and thus, hope to reduce their chances that Mexico changes its mind and restarts the Texas war of independence again, or as Mexico saw it, the a revolt within one of its states.
On March 3rd, 1836 the United States recognized Texas as an independent nation and formally created a position called the U.S. Minister to Texas, and President Andrew Jackson gave the job to Alcee Louis la Branche. There is even a street named after Alcee Louis la Branche in Houston today and it’s spelled La Branch now. Soon France, Netherlands and Belgium also recognized Texas.
So Texas went about setting up Embassies in London, Paris, Brussels, Amsterdam and Washington, D.C. But unlike embassies of today, the Texas Embassy kept moving around every year, depending on where the current Texas Ambassador’s residence was located, with the State Departments registry listing it as “unknown”. Texas went through several, in fact there were eight diplomatic ambassadors over the nine years that Texas was an independent nation, William H. Wharton, Memucan Hunt, Peter W. Grayson, Anson Jones, Richard Dunlap, Barnard EB Senior, James Riley and Isaac Van Zandt.
Though technically the Texas Embassy was actually a legation, it functions as an embassy and as such, like most legations, the word was eventually removed and all legations became embassies.
When Texas was about to become a U.S. state, the British wanted Texas to remain independent and offered to protect Texas’ borders with both Mexico and the United States, hoping to keep it as a counterweight to the United States. As you already know, Texas elected to become a state within the United States, and joined the union but via a treaty, which allows Texas, among other special provisions, to split into four different states if it wants without consent from Washington, D.C.