It was September of 1835, and tensions were escalating between the Mexican government and the Texans. Santa Anna sent troops to disarm the Texans, and a force was dispatched to the town of Gonzales to retrieve a small bronze cannon. The Texans refused to turn over the cannon. After some fighting, a meeting was held in the field between the two opposing forces. Col. John Henry Moore suggested to Lieutenant Francisco de Castañeda that he either surrender and join the Texans in support of the Constitution of 1824, or prepare to fight. Moore pointed to the cannon and told Castañeda that the little cannon was on the field, and he should just try to “Come and Take It”. This now-famous flag was flying over the cannon. Moore turned around and shouted “Fire“—and a shot was fired from the cannon. The Mexican troops immediately wheeled around and withdrew to San Antonio. The flag, back then called the Old Cannon Flag, was reportedly fashioned by Sarah Seely DeWitt and her daughter, Evaline, from Noami DeWitt’s wedding dress. It was of white cloth, with a lone star above a cannon, and the words “come and take it” beneath the cannon. It was Texas’ first battle flag, and first lone star flag. Today we call it the Gonzales Come and Take It flag.
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