10 Interesting Facts About Texas
From time to time, we like to bring you some little known facts about our Great State of Texas. Here are 10 more of those interesting facts.
1. Texas was the 28th state in the U.S. and was admitted into the Union on December 29, 1845. All other states except Texas entered the United States by territorial annexation. Only Texas entered by treaty.
2. The word “Texas” was the Spanish pronunciation “Tejas” of the Hasinai Indian word meaning “allies” or “friends.” In fact, the Texas state motto is “friendship.”
3. The phrase “Six Flags over Texas” refers to the six countries that ruled over Texas territory. The first flag belonged to Spain (1519-1821), the second was the royal banner of France (1685-1690), the third was the flag of Mexico (1821-1836), the fourth belonged to the Republic of Texas (1836-1845), the fifth was the flag of the United States (1845-1861 and 1865-present) and, upon secession, Texas replaced the U.S. flag with one for the Confederate States of America (1861-1865).
4. Texas still owns all of its public lands. If the federal government wants to create a park or cut a stand of timber, it must first ask the state’s permission.
5. At 268,601 square miles, Texas is the largest state in the contiguous United States and is the second biggest state in the U.S. (only Alaska is bigger). If it were a country, it would be the 40th largest country in the world, after Chile and Zambia.
6. The Texas state capitol building—completed on May 16, 1888—is the largest capitol of all state capitols in the nation in terms of gross square footage. It is second in total size only to the National Capital in D.C. Additionally, the capital dome in Austin is 7 feet higher than the dome on the U.S. capitol.
7. Approximately 90% of the world’s recoverable helium is located in the ground under Amarillo, Texas.
8. Austin is home to the largest urban bat colony in North America. Over 1.5 million bats roost beneath the Congress Avenue Bridge over Lady Bird Lake and eat between 10,000- 30,000 lbs. of insects a night.
9. Texas is the largest petroleum-producing state in the U.S. and if it were an independent nation, it would rank as the world’s 5th largest petroleum-producing nation. Only 34 of Texas’ 254 counties have no known natural gas within their boundaries.
10. There are more than 70,000 miles of highway in Texas, of which 40,985 are paved farm and ranch roads. Along Texas roads, there are more than a million signs and markers. Texas uses 1.6 million gallons of white and yellow paint each year to paint stripes along its highways.
There you are...10 more reasons to be proud that we are Texans!