Happy Texas Independence Day.
The Texas Declaration of Independence was produced, literally, overnight. Its urgency was paramount, because while it was being prepared, the Alamo in San Antonio was under seige by Santa Anna’s army of Mexico.
Immediately upon the assemblage of the Convention of 1836 on March 1, a committee of five of its delegates was appointed to draft the document. The committee, consisting of George C. Childress, Edward Conrad, James Gaines, Bailey Hardeman, and Collin McKinney, prepared the declaration in record time. It was briefly reviewed, then adopted by the delegates of the convention the following day.
As seen from the transcription, the document parallels somewhat that of the United States, signed almost sixty years earlier. It contains statements on the function and responsibility of government, followed by a list of grievances. Finally, it concludes by declaring Texas a free and independent republic.
Prior to statewide testing, this used to be a key part of 7th grade and other curricula in social studies.
There must be a celebration somewhere in Texas today, but I can’t find it.
Here’s one way to celebrate appropriately, from eHow to:
Things You’ll Need:
Visit Washington-on-the-Brazos, where the Texas Independence Convention signed the Republic into being. It’s now a state park with state-of-the-art interactive exhibits open year round, with plenty of rousing events during the week of March 2.
Travel to San Antonio and tour the Alamo.
Watch “The Alamo” starring John Wayne as Davy Crockett.
Throw a Happy Birthday Texas party. Suggest that guests come dressed as cowboys or Alamo freedom fighters; serve cowboy camp grub and Tex-Mex goodies, play songs about Texas and tell Texas jokes.
- PBS American Experience, “Remember the Alamo”
- Lone-star.net, “Battle of the Alamo”
- Texas State Library and Archives Commission, “The Republic of Texas”
- TXL&AC on the Texas Declaration of Independence