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FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) – We’re still months away from Fourth of July fireworks, but people across the state are celebrating independence on Wednesday. That’s because March 2 is actually Texas Independence Day. It has been 180 years since Texas leaders broke away from Mexico.

The holiday marks the date that the Texas Declaration of Independence was adopted after the Texas Revolution. It was signed the next day and the Republic of Texas was formed. March 2 also happens to be Sam Houston Day, recognizing the birthday of solider and politician Sam Houston, who rallied Texas to a victory over Mexico at the Battle of San Jacinto. That win secured independence for Texas.

George Childress is credited with crafting the Texas Declaration of Independence, with help from other committee members.

When the document was approved and signed by delegates representing the 59 settlements across Texas, five copies of it were made. Those were given to the towns of Bexar, Brazoria, Goliad, Nacogdoches and San Felipe. Officials ordered another 1,000 copies to be distributed as handbills.

The Republic of Texas became a part of the United States less than 10 years later. Texas is the only state to enter the nation by treaty, rather than annexation. Texas Independence Day is still recognized as an official holiday across the state. Most state government offices do remain open, however, with at least partial staffing.

There is an official celebration planned for this weekend near Houston, but folks across the rest of the state — including here in North Texas — are taking advantage of the day to share why they are proud to be from Texas. “I’m proud because we Texans are friendly, hard working, enjoy the natural things in life,” stated Regenia Ojukwu on Facebook. “We have passion for people and things most people take for granted.”

So, take a moment on Wednesday to do something that is truly Texan. Maybe you can kick back with a refreshing Dr Pepper. Bonus points if you enjoy it with a Whataburger meal. Or drive around and avoid the armadillos. (They’re the state’s official small animal.) Or treat yourself to some topaz jewelry. (It’s the state’s official gemstone.) Whatever you do, just make sure that it’s done with some good ol’ Texas pride, y’all.