Texas Honor and Memorial Days
Written by: Lee Spencer White, ADDA Founder
JANUARY 26 - LAMAR DAY
Lamar Day honors Mirabeau B. Lamar, the second President of the Texas Republic. Lamar advocated setting aside land for public schools. Lamar is known as "The Father of Education."
FEBRUARY 19 - STATEHOOD DAY
Statehood Day honors Texas' entry into the United States as the 28th state in the Union.
MARCH 2 - TEXAS INDEPENDENCE DAY
Texas Independence Day honors the signing of the Texas Declaration of Independence at Washington-on-the-Brazos. It is also the birthday of Sam Houston, the first President of the Republic of Texas.
MARCH 6 - ALAMO HEROES DAY
Alamo Heroes Day honors the heroic sacrifice of the less than 200 Texan citizen-soldiers who defended the Alamo from February 23 - March 6, 1836. Electing to fight rather than surrender, they gave their lives that Texas might live, and their sacrifice was not in vain. The battle cry, "Remember the Alamo!" became a rallying point for the Texas people and continued to inspire Texans and Americans. The Alamo has become an international symbol of courage, honour and the love of liberty and is visited by over 3 million persons a year.
MARCH 27 - GOLIAD HEROES DAY
Goliad Heroes Day honors those who gave their lives in the cause of Texas Independence at Goliad. Following the fall of the Alamo, part of Santa Anna's army attacked Colonel Fannin's men at Goliad. Following the Battle of Coleto Creek on March 19 -20, Fannin was forced to surrender. He and his men were promised fair treatment and parole. But Santa Anna ordered that all of these men should be shot. On March 27, the unknowing Texas prisoners were marched out and executed. Over 320 men lost their lives. This was the largest loss of life in the cause of Texas independence. "Remember Goliad!" became one of the famous battle cries at San Jacinto.
APRIL 21 - SAN JACINTO DAY
San Jacinto Day honors the victory of the Texas army over Santa Anna. On April 21, 1836, forty days after the fall of the Alamo, the Texan army commanded by Sam Houstonturned on part of the Mexican army at San Jacinto. In the late afternoon less than 1,000 Texans advanced against the Mexican camp of 1,600 soldiers and with battle cries, "Remember the Alamo! Remember Goliad!" defeated Santa Anna's troops in less than 20 minutes. Santa Anna was captured and promised to remove his army from Texas. This secured the independence of the Texan people who went on to build a great republic and state.
SEPTEMBER - TEXAS NAVY DAY
Texas Navy Day honors the courage and determination of the small Texas Navy who helped secure the Gulf of Mexico and protect Texas' independence on the sea.
SEPTEMBER 29 - FRENCH LEGATION DAY
French Legation Day honors the signing of the treaty between France and the Republic of Texas.
OCTOBER 2 - GONZALES DAY
Gonzales Day honors the first skirmish fought in the Texas War for Independence. On October 2, 1835, the citizens of Gonzales refused to give up a small cannon to the Mexican military. They made a flag with a single black star and cannon with the legend, "Come and Take It!" Gonzales is remembered as the "Lexington on Texas."
NOVEMBER 7 - AUSTIN DAY
Austin Day pays honor to the "Father of Texas," Stephen F. Austin. Austin brought the first 300 Anglo-Celtic families to Texas in 1822 and helped guide Texas during the difficult years under the Mexican flag. When war broke out, Austin served as the first Commander of the Texas army.
DECEMBER 10 - SIEGE AND BATTLE OF BEXAR DAY
Siege and Battle of Bexar Day honors the heroes of the Texas army who successfully defeated General Cos and the Mexican army at San Antonio.
DECEMBER 20 - FIRST FLAG OF TEXAS INDEPENDENCE DAY
First Flag of Texas Independence Day honors the Goliad "Bloody-Arm" flag which was raised following the signing of the Goliad Declaration of Independence in 1835. While the Texas Provisional Government considered this declaration premature, it set into motion the eventual signing of the Texas Declaration of Independence in March 1836. The Goliad Flag is considered the first flag raised in the name of Texas Independence.
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