Galveston is a coastal resort city on Galveston Island and Pelican Island in the U.S. state of Texas. The community of 209.3 square miles, with an estimated population of 50,180 in 2015, is the county seat and second-largest municipality of Galveston County. It is within Houston–The Woodlands–Sugar Land metropolitan area.
Named after Bernardo de Gálvez y Madrid, Count of Gálvez, Galveston's first European settlements on the island were built around 1816 by French pirate Louis-Michel Aury to help the fledgling Republic of Mexico fight Spain. The Port of Galveston was established in 1825 by the Congress of Mexico following its independence from Spain. The city was the main port for the Texas Navy during the Texas Revolution, and later served as the capital of the Republic of Texas.
During the 19th century, Galveston became a major U.S. commercial center and one of the largest ports in the United States. It was for a time Texas' largest city, known as the "Queen City of the Gulf". It was devastated by the 1900 Galveston Hurricane, whose effects included flooding and a storm surge.