Dallas is the ninth-largest city in the United States and the third-largest city in the state of Texas. The city's prominence arose from its historical importance as a center for the oil and cotton industries, and its position along numerous railroad lines. In 1963, John F. Kennedy was assassinated while his motorcade passed through downtown Dallas. The bulk of the city is in Dallas County, of which it is the county seat. However, sections of the city are located in Collin, Denton, Kaufman, and Rockwall counties. According to the 2010 United States Census Bureau, the city had a population of 1,197,816. The U.S. Census Bureau's estimate for the city's population increased to 1,241,162 as of 2012.
The city is the largest economic center of the 12-county region. metropolitan area had a population of 6,700,991 as of 2012. The metropolitan economy is the sixth largest in the United States, with a 2012 real GDP of $420.34 billion. In 2013 the metropolitan area led the nation with the largest year-over-year increase in employment and advanced to become the fourth largest employment center in the nation (behind NYC, LA and Chicago) with over three million non-farm jobs.
Dallas was founded in 1841 and formally incorporated as a city in February 1856. The city's economy is primarily based on banking, commerce, telecommunications, computer technology, energy, healthcare and medical research, transportation and logistics. The city is home to the third largest concentration of Fortune 500 companies in the nation. Located in North Texas, Dallas is the main core of the largest inland metropolitan area in the United States that lacks any navigable link to the sea. With the advent of the interstate highway system in the 1950s and 1960s, Dallas became an east/west and north/south focal point of the interstate system with the convergence of four major interstate highways in the city, along with a fifth interstate loop around the city. Dallas developed a strong industrial and financial sector, and a major inland port, due largely to the presence of Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport, one of the largest and busiest airports in the world.
In the latest rankings released in 2013, Dallas was rated as a beta plus world city by the Globalization and World Cities Study Group & Network. Dallas is also ranked 14th in world rankings of GDP by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.
Before Texas was claimed in the 18th century as a part of the Viceroyalty of New Spain, the Dallas area was inhabited by the Caddo people. Later, France also claimed the area, but in 1819 the Adams-Onís Treaty made the Red River the northern boundary of New Spain, officially placing the future location of Dallas well within Spanish territory. The area remained under Spanish rule until 1821, when Mexico declared independence from Spain and the area became part of the Mexican state of Coahuila y Tejas. In 1836, the Republic of Texas broke off from Mexico to become an independent nation.
In 1839, Warren Angus Ferris surveyed the area around present-day Dallas. Two and a half years later, John Neely Bryan established a permanent settlement near a river he found and called that settlement Dallas. The Republic of Texas was then annexed by the United States in 1845 and Dallas County was established the following year. Dallas was formally incorporated as a city in February 2, 1856.
On November 22, 1963, President John F. Kennedy was assassinated on Elm Street while his motorcade passed through Dealey Plaza in downtown Dallas. The upper two floors of the building from which Lee Harvey Oswald shot Kennedy, the Texas School Book Depository, have been converted into a historical museum covering the former president's life and accomplishments.