They were also required to furnish their own arms, mounts, and equipment. They covered the retreat of civilians from dictator Santa Ana's army in the famous "Runaway Scrape," harassed columns of Mexican troops and provided valuable intelligence to the Texas Army. He came to San Antonio in 1837 and within three years was named a Ranger captain.Hays built a reputation fighting marauding Indians and Mexican bandits. Homer Garrison, Jr., long-time director of the Texas Department of Public Safety, once described the men who have worn the silver or gold star of the Texas Rangers, the oldest state law enforcement agency in North America.The Rangers have a heritage that began with the earliest settlements in Texas.And numerous movies, radio shows and television shows have been inspired by the Rangers over the years.The Rangers are part of the history of the Old West, and part of its mythology.In dealing with persons deemed a threat to Texas, Hays helped establish another Ranger tradition--toughness mixed with a reliance on the latest in technology.The Republic of Texas was one of the earliest customers of a New England gun maker, Samuel Colt.
Under Mexican law, Austin was authorized to form a militia to ward off Indian raids, capture criminals and patrol against intruders.They became so effective against Indian guerrilla raids that they strongly influenced the formation of the U. These men freely borrowed from each others' experience and equipment.While most had been born in the American South, many hailed from Ireland, Germany, Scotland and England and spoke with their native accents.The term "Texas Ranger" did not appear officially in a piece of legislation until 1874.During Austin's day, companies of men volunteered and disbanded as needed. The official records show that these companies were called by many names: ranging companies, mounted gunmen, mounted volunteers, minutemen, spies, scouts and mounted rifle companies.