King Juan Carlos of Spain urged Texans on Friday to embrace their Spanish heritage through historical knowledge and cultural appreciation.
Juan Carlos, on a two-day visit to Dallas, spoke after Southern Methodist University President R. Gerald Turner presented him with an honorary degree.
"The United States should not forget that their country was formed by union with the Southern States where the Spanish imprint was strong," he said.
A bronze portrait of the king was unveiled at SMU's Meadows Museum. A gallery in the museum was named for his wife Queen Sofia to commemorate the visit.