Texas Parks & Wildlife Magazine   


Independence Hall-exhibit-final


Texas Turns 186

Visit Washington-on-the-Brazos to travel back to Texas’ birth.

On March 2, 1836, chilled to the bone by wintry weather, 59 delegates met in an unfinished log cabin in Washington, Texas, to declare this state’s independence from Mexico. Santa Anna’s troops had surrounded the Alamo and the situation looked dire, but with an unyielding independent spirit, these Texas leaders carried on as if a beneficial outcome for Texas was never in doubt.

Undaunted, the delegates continued working as the Alamo fell on March 6 and a stream of settlers passed through town fleeing the Mexican army. The conventioneers adopted a constitution for the new Republic of Texas and named an interim government before they finally skedaddled, too.

Spoiler alert: Texas did win independence at the Battle of San Jacinto a month later and became the 28th state on December 29, 1845.

Washington-on-the-Brazos State Historic Site (near Brenham) hosts an annual two-day celebration on the weekend before Texas’ March 2 birthday — this year from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday, February 26, and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Sunday, February 27.

The beautiful 293-acre park grounds are the site of three historical attractions: the Star of the Republic Museum (collections and programs honoring history of early Texans), Independence Hall (replica of the site where representatives wrote the Texas Declaration of Independence) and Barrington Plantation (where interpreters dress, work and farm as did the original residents of this homestead).

The birthday celebration features live music, food, traditional crafts, living history presentations, historical encampments and commemorative programs so guests can experience life in Texas in 1836.

 TPWD Staff  Chase Fountain | TPWD


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