Velasco, located at the mouth of the Brazos River, is one of the oldest towns in Texas. In 1821, the schooner Lively brought the first of Austin's colonists to the site, and over 25,000 settlers entered Texas at the port by the time the Texas Revolution had started in 1835.
After the Battle of San Jacinto, President David Burnet of the ad interim government, moved the capital of the Republic of Texas to Velasco, where on May 14, 1836, the Treaty of Velasco was signed with Santa Anna.
From the time of the Republic until the Civil War, wealthy plantation families of the area spent their summer vacations at resorts located at Velasco and its sister community, Quintana. Within the town, there were comfortable hotels, and not far upstream was a race track that provided some of the entertainment for the guests at the resorts.
A hurricane destroyed Old Velasco in 1875. The town was rebuilt in 1891, however, about four miles upstream from the original site.