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Texas (TX) is a state located in the South Central United States. Texas shares borders with Arkansas and Louisiana to the east, the Mexican provinces of Tamaulipas and Coahuila to the south, New Mexico to the west, and Oklahoma and Sequoyah to the north.
The region was originally under Spanish colonial rule beginning in the mid-1700s, a role that passed on to Mexico when the latter nation won its war of independence against Spain in 1821. In 1835, American settlers in Texas, discontent with Mexican rule, launched a revolution against the Mexican government, and upon their success in 1836 (following the infamous massacre at the Alamo and the decisive rout of the Mexicans at the Battle of San Jacinto) formed the independent Republic of Texas. As such, the Republic existed as an independent nation for nine years before it was annexed to the United States and admitted to the Union as the 31st state on December 29, 1845.
The state capital of San Antonio also served the capital of the Republic, while the largest city of Galveston (pop. 2,540,000) is a major port and commercial center, as well as the location of NASA's Johnson Space Center (in the suburb of Houston). Texas is also a major center for the slowly declining oil industry, now on track to becoming outdated altogether by the early 21st century, due in no small part to the introduction of affordable electric vehicles in the early 1980s. The US-based Shellron Oil (the largest of the world's oil conglomerates and subsidiary of Royal Dutch Shell) has its headquarters just north of Galveston.
Texas is subdivided into 254 counties, the most out of any US state. Unlike most states, Texas counties are subdivided into precincts, and most counties are small (or sparsely populated) enough that they are divided into only four precincts apiece.