I’m not a Texas native, but ever since I came out to Abilene in 1989 for college, I’ve made Texas my home. I fell in love with this bold land full of glorious sunsets, rugged cowboys, and people who cling to the hospitality of the south. My children are all Texas born and bred, as are my books.
The Lone Star State has a proud heritage, being the only US state to have once been an independent nation. However, as I did a little more research, I was fascinated by the different flags Texas used throughout its revolutionary history.
The most famous Texas flag, is of course, the Lone Star Flag. This iconic design was adopted on January 25, 1839 as the official national flag of the Republic of Texas. It continued on as the state flag when Texas joined the Union in 1845.
However, during Texas’s formative years, as they struggled to gain freedom from Spain and Mexico, there were several different revolutionary flags used to inspire its citizens. I’ve picked a few of my favorites to highlight.
The Lone Star and Stripes Flag – used primarily by the Texas Navy through the time of the Texas Revolution up until annexation. Its resemblance to the United States flag gave an added benefit of protection for those ships flying this flag in coastal waters. There is also evidence that the Lone Star and Stripes was used at the battles of Goliad, the Alamo, and San Jacinto.
The Come and Take It Flag – created by the people of Gonzalez, Texas featuring the image of the town cannon Mexican forces had demanded they turn over. In 1831, the Mexican Army had given a small cannon to the town to protect them against Commanche raids. Over the next four years, however, the political situation in Mexico deteriorated, and they demanded their cannon back to deal with the revolts. Texians gathered to battle the dragoons sent to reclaim the cannon and were successful. The Battle of Gonzalez was a small, insignificant skirmish, but it became the first battle of the Texas Revolution and inspired countless Texians to make a stand against Mexico.
The Alamo Flag – Historians doubt that this flag actually flew over the Alamo during the famous battle, but it came to represent what the Battle of the Alamo stood for – Freedom. This flag was used when Texas was still Coahuila y Tejas, a Mexican state fighting for freedom from Spanish rule. Most likely it derived its name as the Alamo Flag from the persistent belief that it was raised during that famous battle, even though there is no evidence to support the claim. Davy Crockett”s journal clearly states that the Lone Star and Stripes flag was what had been raised.
- So what do flags mean to you? Patriotism, state pride?
- Do you ever fly flags for personal events in your lives? I remember after the birth of our first child, my mother-in-law planted a pink flag in our yard bolding proclaiming that we had just welcomed a little girl to our family.
- Do you have flags in your home for decoration or commemoration of a loved one? They sure are powerful symbols, aren’t they?