The state song of Texas is entitled “Texas, Our Texas.” The song was composed by William J. Marsh, who cowrote the lyrics with Gladys Yoakum Wright. Primarily considered a march, the song has three stanzas and a chorus that is usually repeated twice during the song.
In the late 1920s, a statewide competition was held in Texas in order to find a suitable state song. “Texas, Our Texas” won the competition and was officially adopted as the state song of Texas in 1929. Since its adoption as the state song of Texas, only one revision has been made to the lyrics. In 1959, when Alaska was admitted to the union, the third line of the song, proclaiming Texas to be the largest state, was changed to declare Texas as the “boldest” state instead.
Texas’s state flag is usually displayed when the state song of Texas is played. Those who are citizens of Texas are expected to stand facing the flag, with their right hands over their hearts. As a sign of respect, all hats and other headwear should be removed. People who are not citizens of Texas are expected to stand out of respect.
The lyrics of “Texas, Our Texas” reflect a fierce pride in the independence Texas achieved during the Texas revolution. The song embraces the concepts of loyalty, purity, and bravery that the Texas flag stands for. The words emphasize the hard-won battle for independence as symbolized by the single star on the state flag.
The Alamo and the battle of San Jacinto, both major turning points in the Texas fight for independence from Mexico, play big parts in the state song of Texas. The reference to the Alamo commemorates the terrible Mexican assault on the Alamo Mission, the brutality of which caused many to join Texas in the fight for independence. The battle of San Jacinto on 21 April 1936 was the battle in which Texas finally defeated the Mexican army, thus ending the Texas revolution and winning independence.
According to the words of “Texas, Our Texas,” it is clear that Texas holds itself proudly as a beacon of freedom and an example of what can be accomplished through bravery, loyalty, and persistence even in the face of adversity. The state song of Texas also reflects a deep abiding faith in God, and its chorus calls for God’s blessing several times over. The song plainly echoes the feelings of pride and loyalty most Texans have for their state, and it is a beloved melody that many Texas citizens know by heart.