Happy Birthday, Texas! It was on this day, March 2, in 1836, Texas declared their independence from Mexico and declared themselves a Republic. Here are 10 fun facts about the Lone Star State:

  1. The Texas Declaration of Independence was signed by a convention at Washington-on-the-Brazos.
  2. Texas became the 28th state on Dec. 29, 1845.
  3. Texas is also known as the “Lone Star State”
  4. Texas’ Lone Star flag became the state’s official flag on January 24, 1839.
  5. Six countries have countries have controlled some or all of Texas at some point: Spain (1519–1821); France (1685–1690); Mexico (1821–1836); the Republic of Texas (1836–1845); the Confederate States of America (1861–1865); and the United States of America (1845–1861; 1865–present).
  6. Only one of the original five copies of the Texas Declaration of Independence remains; it was found at the U.S. State Department in 1896 and now resides in the Texas State Archives in Austin.
  7. The men defending the Alamo never knew that Texas had declared independence.
  8. Only two of the 59 who signed the Texas Declaration of Independence, – Jose Francisco Ruiz and Jose Antonio Navarro – were native Texans, according to the Star of the Republic Museum.
  9. In 1836, Sam Houston, became the first president of the of Republic Texas.
  10. The Republic of Texas lasted nine years, eleven months, and seventeen days.