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The history of Amarillo, Texas dates back thousands of years. However, the first European didn’t arrive to the area until 1541, when the Spanish explorer Francisco Coronado began traveling around the American Southwest. After Coronado’s exploration, many others followed his lead, hoping to find large plots of land to graze cattle on and prosper. These hopes were not always realized, because the native Indians were not thrilled about new settlers pushing into their land. Amarillo was one of the last areas in the current United States that had large groups of Indians controlling the area.
The largest thing to affect the city of Amarillo was the oil boom. By the early 20th century, many people in the area had quickly become rich over night. With the discovery of a large oil field just miles outside of Amarillo, many people began moving to the area, lured by the prospect to get rich fast.
With the oil boom also expanded the cattle and ranching industry. Money was flowing through the state, and many families prospered. Throughout the second half of the 1900’s, the city grew and began attracting more tourists. Lake Meredith attracted an amazing 227,000 people during its first year of being open in 1965.For more information, check out this Amarillo History page.