On October 13, 1845, legislative history shows Texans voted to shed its status as an independent republic and become a member of the United States.
At the same time, Texans also voted to convert the constitution for the Republic of Texas into a new state constitution.
Texas declared its independence from Mexico on April 21, 1836, and the U.S. gave diplomatic recognition to the then-republic the following year, but it did not move forward in annexing Texas as a state or territory.
Despite the desire by both parties for Texas to become part of the U.S., the process was not a smooth one:
History shows Northern abolitionists resisted bringing Texas into the Union, as they claimed Texas was run by a, as they described it, “slaveocracy conspiracy” of former southerners who moved into the territory.
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But the presidential election of 1844 signaled a change in the country’s views toward annexing Texas:
James Knox Polk of Tennessee won the presidency, with a platform encouraging the annexation of Texas and the westward expansion of American territory.
However, before his inauguration, President John Tyler negotiated a congressional resolution to approve of Texas’ annexation.
The move from independence to becoming the 28th state was put to a vote, where nearly every county approved the measure by an overwhelming majority; in some counties, the vote record played unanimously.
President Polk signed the annexation legislation on December 29, 1845, making Texas an official part of the United States.
Until that point, Mexico refused to recognize Texas’ independence and still considered it part of Mexican soil.
When President Polk signed the law that would annex Texas as a new state, the Mexican ambassador called it an act of war.
The two countries would go to war a year later, and the U.S. would earn concessions that would become Texas, Colorado, Arizona, New Mexico, Utah, Nevada and California.
Texas forever, y’all.