First it was the indigenous peoples of Texas attracted to the San Antonio River. Its cold clean spring water teamed with fish and wildlife abounded on its banks.Then came the Franciscan missionaries. They built missions up and down the San Antonio River. First, they built San Antonio de Valero mission (1718), (The Alamo), San Jose mission (1720), San Juan mission (1731), Concepcion mission (1731), and Espada mission (1731). The "mission" was to Christianize the Indians, teach them a trade, and make them good Spanish citizens. The mission residents were the first to develop and use the San Antonio River.
It does not end there. In 1749 Mission Espíritu Santo and Presidio Nuestra Señora de Loreto de Bahía were moved to what is now Goliad, Texas. Then Nuestra Señora del Rosario Mission (1754). All on the banks of the San Antonio River. Nuestra Señora del Rosario Mission (1754)
Handbook of Texas Online, Kathleen Kirk Gilmore, "NUESTRA SENORA DEL ROSARIO MISSION," accessed October 09, 2019, http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/uqn19.