It’s a Huge State with a Rich History
The name Texas comes from the Native American word tejas which means friends. During its long history six different nations have ruled over Texas, but after lots of struggles and a war with Mexico, Texas finally became a state in 1845, and since then, it’s just kept growing and growing and growing.
Today, if Texas were its own country, it would have the 10th largest economy in the world, ahead of Canada and South Korea.
Texas is called “The Lone Star State.” The state flag (pictured here) was originally adopted in 1839 as the second national flag of the Republic of Texas. There was no change in the design when Texas became a state.
Texas is the second most populous state in America. Only California has more people. And in terms of its physical size, Texas is very big. Only the state of Alaska is bigger.
It’s a Big State with Several Big, Texas-sized Cities
Texas is the second most populous state in America. Only California has more people. And in terms of its physical size, it’s very big. Only the state of Alaska is bigger.
The biggest city in Texas is Houston, in the southern part of the state, near a big body of water called The Gulf of Mexico. The city of Houston was named for a famous Texan: Sam Houston. Sam was originally from Tennessee where he was a congressman and governor. But he moved to Texas before it became a state and was even more successful there. Today, the city that’s named for Sam Houston is the fourth largest city in America. Only New York City, Los Angeles California, and Chicago Illinois are bigger. To learn more about Sam Houston, click here.
Other big cities in Texas include Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonia, El Paso, and Austin, which is the state capital.
Four U.S. Presidents Have Called Texas Home
- Dwight Eisenhower (pictured here) was born in Denison, Texas. Eisenhower was the 34th president of the United States of America.
- Lyndon Johnson, the 36th president, was a lifelong Texan.
- George Herbert Walker Bush, the 41st president. moved to Texas after college and lived there for the rest of his life.
- George Herbert Walker Bush’s son, George W. Bush, who was the governor of Texas before he became the 43rd president.
Fact #1: Texas was part of Mexico until it declared its independence. And for nine years, before it became a state, it was its own country, called the Republic of Texas.
Fact #2: Texas if famous for its oil wells, its cattle, its cowboys and cowgirls, its music, its football, and much, more.
Fact #3: Texas and Mexico share a common border that’s over 1,200 miles long.
Fact #4: Because Texas borders Mexico, Texans have developed a taste for food that’s a mix of Mexican and American cooking. They call it called Tex-Mex.
Fact #5: Six flags have flown over Texas: British, French, Mexican, Texan, United States, and the Confederate flag. That’s how Six Flags amusement park got its name!
Fact #6: The state of Texas is the America’s biggest producer of oil, cattle, sheep, minerals and cotton.
Just for fun, see if you can answer these questions.
What is the capital of Texas? Is it Houston, Austin, or Dallas?
Austin is the capital of Texas. Houston is the state’s largest city.
Which country shares a 1,200-mile border with Texas? Is it Mexico, Canada, or Cuba?
Mexico shares a long border with Texas.
What type of regional food do Texans like? Is it Tex-Fried, Tex-Mex, or Tex-Fresh?
Tex-Mex is the type of regional food that mixes Mexican and Texan tastes.
Which state has more people: California, Texas, or New York?
California has more people than any other state. Texas is second.
If you have time, you can write a story of your own.
Here are a couple of story ideas you can choose from.
Idea #1: You can write a brief story about some of the cool things you learned about the state of Texas.
Idea #2: You can write a story about a famous Texan: Sam Houston. For more information about Sam Houston, click here.
To help you write a great story, we have some helpful hints and timely tips.
Check out “10 Tips for Writing Better Essays.”
Here's a riddle for you:
What is a Texas cowboy's favorite kind of car?