"I Wasn't Born In Texas But I Got Here As Fast As I Could!" is just one of the bumper stickers you'll see proudly displayed when visiting the Lone Star State. Texas enjoys an impressive history with all kinds of facts and dates worthy of mention in textbooks. However, I prefer to reminisce about our personal history there.
My wife and I were lucky enough to be residents of that great state for the better part of a decade, living in and around the capital city of Austin. Wait, I stand corrected, as one gentleman stated “This ain’t no state, son. This here’s the Republic of Texas!” The freeways were surrounded by green belts as thick as primeval jungles and armadillos made nocturnal journeys through the walkways of our apartment complex. The springtime saw entire fields full of blooming blue bonnets, something to behold.
We flew kites at the Galveston beach sand-castle-festival, took weekend drives to Fredericksburg and explored the remote desert of Big Bend. Thanks to restaurants like Rudy's and The Salt Lick, I learned barbecue is not something you buy in a bottle at the grocery store.
When family members came to visit, we would take them to watch the sunset across the waters of Lake Travis. And when we welcomed our first child into the world, we received an instruction sheet from the hospital entitled, "Congratulations on the Birth of Your New Little Texan!"
With so many good memories wrapped up in our time there, it was a real pleasure to wrap my hands around the Henry Repeating Arms Texas Tribute Edition Golden Boy Rifle. Henry Repeating Arms offers a variety of handsome .22 LR Tribute models honoring our country, The Constitution, farmers, American rodeo and our military to name a just few. The company also donates special editions to raise money for worthy causes including military veteran services, volunteer firefighters and much-needed medical treatment for sick children.
The Texas Tribute features an eye-catching contrast of gold and black tones inspired by the eruption of the first oil gusher on Spindletop in 1901. Over the next four decades, Texas became central to American oil production, which elevated the state to national and world importance. To honor the role “Texas Tea” has played in its history, this rifle's walnut furniture is treated with a deep black stain. The 20" long blued steel barrel is octagonal with polished flats.
The sight system consists of a fully adjustable Marbles semi-buckhorn rear sight dovetailed into the barrel and paired with a dovetailed brass-bead front sight. The drilling and tapping for optics has been omitted from this receiver to preserve its lines and show of the high-polish shine. The other external controls, including the standard-size lever loop, trigger, hammer and tubular magazine are treated with a black finish to match the barrel.
Some of the other Tributes sport engraved receivers that tell their story. To help this rifle stand out even more, the embellishments were moved from the receiver out into the stocks. The fore-end is secured by a polished brass barrel band and features four inlaid metallic five-pointed stars on the left and right sides, framing the word “Texas” in gold lettering.
The right side of the shoulder stock features four more stars and a golden representation of The Lone Star State, while the left side sports a single inlaid star. As one would expect, the Texas tribute arrives with a buttery smooth action that's ready for the range should one feel the inclination to put a few rounds through it.
I spend a good deal of time putting various models of firearms through their paces at the range in order to find out how they perform. However, in some cases, the function and technical features of a particular platform take a back seat to what the gun represents. Henry Repeating Arms builds terrific rifles, and every single one I've handled is a real shooter with years of service life in it, including the Texas Tribute Edition Golden Boy Rifle.
But for me, my reasons for wanting to own this particular Henry have as much to do with the good memories it evokes of a great state and the fine people we've met there as well as owning a high-quality, American-made rifle. We may not be Texans geographically speaking, but we keep Texas in our hearts. We'll be back for a visit just as fast as we can!