Martin DeLeon was the only mexican empressario to found a colony in Texas, he was born in 1765 in Burgos, Neiveo santander ( now Tamaulipas ), where his parents, Bernado and Maria Golvan DeLeon, settled after moving from Burgos spain. The DeLeons was an aristocratic family of great wealth; members were educated in Madrid Paris and London and were acquainted with european rules. Martin, however, declined his father's offer to complete his educayion in Monterry and Europe, choosing instead to become a merchant and suppliar of provisions to the miners of real De San Nicolas.
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In 1790 he joined the Fieles de Burgos regiment, organized by Mexican viceroy Juan Vicente Guernes Pacheco as a defense against Indians in Nuevo Santander. De León was promoted to captain, thus achieving the highest rank available to a crillo. In 1795 he married Patricia de la Garza, daughter of Gen. Felipe de la Garza, commandant of the Eastern Internal Provinces. The couple settled in Cruillas, Nuevo Santander (now Tamaulipas), where they began ranching. An excursion to La Bahía, San Antonio, and Nacogdoches in 1805 induced De León to settle in Texas. He established a ranch between Chiltipin Creek and the Aransas River.