The great state of Texas became
the 28th state in the Union on December
29, 1845. Its state capital is Austin. The state was named
after the Caddo Indians of eastern Texas which called their group of
tribes the "Tejas," meaning "those who are friends".
In 1519, the Spanish explored the Texas coast.
This event marked the beginning of Spain's rule in Texas. Nine years later, in 1528, Cabeza de Vaca was shipwrecked near
Galveston. His small band met many Indian tribes while wandering through
the Texas area, but he finally came to a Spanish settlement. He made his
way to Mexico City with tales of the fabled "Seven Cities of Gold."
In the early 1540s, the explorer Coronado, attempted to find the
seven cities and trekked through present day New Mexico, West Texas and
Kansas. Corpus Christi de la Isleta was established near El Paso in 1682.
It was the
first Spanish mission and pueblo in Texas.
In 1685, the French claimed Texas. La Salle
established Fort St. Louis in the Matagorda Bay area. Two years later, he
was killed by his own men. By 1690, Indians and disease had destroyed the
small French force. In 1690, the Spaniards established, Mission San
Francisco de los Tejas, the first East Texas mission. In 1718, with the establishment of Mission San Antonio de Valero (the
Alamo), the city of San Antonio was founded.
In 1821, the year Mexico gained independence from Spain, Stephen Austin received permission from the Mexican government to settle a colony
of 300 families, now known as the "Old Three Hundred," in Southeast Texas. By 1836, 35,000 to 50,000 people had settled in
Texas. By 1835, Stephen Austin was convinced that war with Mexico
was inevitable. The growing tension in Texas was the result of
cultural, political and religious differences between the American
settlers and the Mexican government. Antonio
Lopez de Santa Anna, the president of Mexico, soon reinforced the Mexican troops in
Texas. A battle was fought at Gonzales on October 2, 1835, in which the
Mexican forces were thwarted in their efforts to retrieve a cannon and
rise to the famous flag bearing the words "Come and Take It."
The Battle of Gonzales is generally
considered to be the first battle for Texas' independence.
The Battle of the Alamo, lasting nearly two weeks, ended on March 6,
1836, with the deaths of all its defenders (numbering about 190). The
Mexican army of Santa Anna numbered 4,000 to 5,000 during its final
charge. Some of the men killed were David Crockett, Jim Bowie and
William B. Travis. A later massacre of Texans who had surrendered at Goliad on
March 27 led to the battle cry of Texas' independence, "Remember the
Alamo! Remember Goliad!" The Texas Declaration of Independence was enacted at
Washington-on-the-Brazos on March 2, 1836.
On April 21, 1836, the Battle of San Jacinto was fought near the
present city of Houston. Santa Anna's entire force of 1,600 men was killed
or captured by Gen. Sam Houston's army of 800 Texans; only nine Texans
died. This decisive battle resulted in Texas' independence from Mexico.
Name of Emblem/Symbol
The Lone Star State
"Texas, Our Texas"
State Flying Mammal
Mexican Free-tailed Bat
State Small Mammal
State Large Mammal
Texas Blue Topaz
Prickly Pear Cactus
Complete the questions below.
1. Texas became the 28th
state in the Union on December 29,
2. The state song is "."
3. The state motto is "."
4. The Blue Lacy is the state
5. One hundred ninety defenders died at the Battle
of the .
6. The Texas Blue Topaz is the state .
7. The state small mammal is the
8. The state plant is the
9. The state tree is the .
10. The state nickname is the
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