Historically four major industries shaped the Texas economy prior to World War II: cattle and bison, cotton, timber, and oil. Before and after the U.S. Civil War the cattle industry, which Texas came to dominate, was a major economic driver for the state, thus creating the traditional image of the Texas cowboy. In the later 19th century cotton and lumber grew to be major industries as the cattle industry became less lucrative. It was ultimately, though, the discovery of major petroleum deposits (Spindletop in particular) that initiated an economic boom which became the driving force behind the economy for much of the 20th century. With strong investments in universities, Texas developed a diversified economy and high tech industry in the mid-20th century. As of 2015, it is second on the list of the most Fortune 500 companies with 54. With a growing base of industry, the state leads in many industries, including agriculture, petrochemicals, energy, computers and electronics, aerospace, and biomedical sciences. Texas has led the U.S. in state export revenue since 2002, and has the second-highestgross state product. If Texas were a sovereign state, it would be the 10th largest economy in the world.
During Spanish colonial rule, in the 18th century, the area was known as
Nuevo Reino de Filipinas "New Kingdom of the Philippines", or as provincia de los Tejas "province of the Tejas", later also provincia de Texas (or de Tejas), "province of Texas".
It was incorporated as provincia de Texas into the Mexican Empire in 1821, and declared a republic in 1836.
The Royal Spanish Academy recognizes both spellings, Tejas and Texas, as Spanish-language forms of the name of the US State of Texas.
The English pronunciation with /ks/ is unetymological, and based in the value of the letter x in historical Spanish orthography. Alternative etymologies of the name advanced in the late 19th century connected the Spanish teja "rooftile", the plural tejas being used to designate indigenous Pueblo settlements. A 1760s map by Jacques-Nicolas Bellin shows a village named Teijas on Trinity River, close to the site of modern Crockett.