The Republic of Texas, 1836-1845
Many Texans note with pride that Texas was once an
independent nation, the Republic of Texas.
Following the Texas forces' victory over Santa Anna at the battle of San Jacinto, a new government was organized. In September, 1836, the hero of San Jacinto, Sam Houston, was elected the first president of the Republic of Texas.
Among Houston's first concerns after his inauguration
on October 22, 1936 was the continued threat of attack by hostile Indians
and the fear of renewed attempts by Mexico to once again extend its borders
across the Rio Grande into Texas.
Houston also was eager to establish diplomatic relationships
with other countries, including the United States. Initial attempts to
forge foreign relations proved difficult for the fledgling nation, however.
A breakthrough came with the signing of a trade treaty with Great Britain.
Eventually, the young republic was recognized by
France, Belgium, the Netherlands, and the German states. The United States,
fearing the effects of an alliance between Texas and Great Britain, recognized
Texas as a sovereign nation in 1837.
In 1839, a permanent capital was established at the
frontier village of Waterloo, located on the east bank of the Colorado
River north of Bastrop.
The name was changed to Austin and the government
was moved in October of 1839. That same year, a new national flag was
adopted featuring a single five-pointed star on a field of blue, flanked
by horizontal red and white stripes.
In 1841, Sam Houston was elected to a second term as President of the Republic. Much of his effort during this term was directed toward achieving statehood within the United States. On October 13, 1845 the people of Texas voted 4,245 to 257 in favor of annexation. U.S. President Polk signed Texas's admittance to the union in December of that year. On Feb. 19, 1846, the flag of the Republic of Texas flew over Austin for the last time.
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