5 September – On this day

Sam Houston is elected as president of the Republic of Texas, which earned its independence from Mexico in a successful military rebellion.

Houston served as the republic’s president until 1838, then again from 1841 to 1844. He then helped Texas win admission to the United States in 1845 and was elected as one of the state’s first two senators. He served three terms in the Senate and ran successfully for Texas’ governorship in 1859. As the Civil War loomed, Houston argued unsuccessfully against secession, and was deposed from office in March 1861 after refusing to swear allegiance to the Confederacy. He died of pneumonia in 1863.