41 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Texas

    There's no place like the Lone Star State!

    1. Texas is larger than any country in Western Europe.

    2. Texas was its own country from 1836 until 1845, when it finally agreed to join the United States.

    3. Three of North America's ten largest cities are in Texas—Houston (#4), San Antonio (#7), and Dallas (#9). Sorry Austin (#11).

    4. King Ranch in South Texas is larger than the entire state of Rhode Island.

    5. The state motto of Texas is "Friendship."

    6. It's completely legal to shoot and kill Big Foot if you see him (or her) in Texas.

    7. In 2005, the town of Clark formally renamed itself to DISH, TX, as part of a deal for every resident to receive free basic television and DVR services from DISH Network.

    8. In Norwegian slang, "Texas" means "crazy."

    9. In 1942, the BBC banned the song "Deep in the Heart of Texas" in factories, as the clapping portion of the song was seen as a hazard around heavy machinery.

    10. The term Maverick comes from the name of a badass Texan from the 1800s known as Samuel Maverick.

    11. Austin is widely considered the "Live Music Capital of the World."

    12. Brazoria County is known as a bird watchers paradise, boasting approximately 400 observable species of birds.

    13. The Houston Comets are the only WNBA team to take home four back-to-back WNBA championships.

    14. Six Flags amusement parks owe its namesake to Texas state history.

    First opened 1961 in Arlington, Six Flags was named after the six flags that have flown in ownership over Texas—the United States, the Republic of Texas, the Confederacy, France, Spain, and Mexico.

    15. The official seashell of Texas is the Lightning Whelk.

    16. There are are approximately 11.7 million cattle and calves currently living in Texas.

    17. Athens, Texas claims to be the official birthplace of the American hamburger.

    18. The official state dish is a big ol' bowl of hot chili.

    19. The deadliest natural disaster in American history took place in Texas.

    In 1900, a Category 4 hurricane struck the shoreline of Galveston, killing at least 8,000 people and destroying over $20,000,000 in property—which would be somewhere around $700,000,000 in today's market.

    20. More tornados have been recorded in Texas than any other state.

    21. Texas is North America's leading producer of crude oil.

    22. Two United States Presidents were been born in Texas — Lyndon Johnson and Dwight Eisenhower.

    23. Every year, Amarillo hosts the world’s largest Calf Fry cook-off… those are bull testicles FYI.

    24. At 85 mph, Texas has the highest speed limit in the country.

    25. The state dinosaur is the Pleurocoelus.

    26. The world's largest statue of an American is of Sam Houston, called a "Tribute to Courage" and is located in Huntsville.

    27. Sam Houston was actually born in Virginia.

    28. The oldest law enforcement agency in North America are the Texas Rangers.

    29. Honorary Texas Rangers include Chuck Norris, John Wayne, Will Rogers, and former President George H.W. Bush.

    30. It's illegal to let a camel run loose on the beaches of Galveston.

    31. Texas boasts more than 72,000 miles of highways.

    32. Texas owns ALL of its public lands.

    Which essentially means that the U.S. Government must ask permission to build anything on it.

    33. The state dog of Texas is the Blue Lacy.

    34. The Texas Star at the State Fair of Texas is the largest Ferris wheel in North America.

    35. The Katy Freeway at Beltway 8 is the world's widest freeway at 26 lanes across!

    36. San Antonio's Bracken Cave is home to the world's largest bat colony.

    37. While Austin's South Congress Bridge is home to the world's largest urban bat colony.

    38. The word "Texas" is derived from the Hasini Indian word for "Friend."

    39. The official sport of Texas is Rodeo.

    40. Dr Pepper was created in 1885 by a Waco pharmacist named Charles Alderton.

    41. The Texas State Capitol is taller than the U.S. Capitol by 15 feet.