Remember the Alamo
April 22, 1836: The Texas forces under Sam Houston capture Santa Anna. Antonia de Padua Maria Severino Lopez de Santa Anna y Perez de Lebron was a Mexican political leader, on and off president of Mexico, and General leading the troops against the Texans fighting a war of Independence. Texas was under Mexican control when hostilities broke out on October 2, 1835. The American settlers were not happy with the Mexican rule of Coahuila y Tejas. The Siete Leyes (Seven Laws) of 1835 saw Santa Anna (then President) abolishing the Constitution of 1824, a representative government offering the ruled a voice in their leadership.
The Seven Laws were unpopular throughout Mexico and several of the United Mexican States resorted to violence. The Battle of Gonzales began the Texans’ War of Independence. By March 2, 1836, Texas had declared itself independent of Mexican rule. On March 6, the Battle of El Alamo (from the Mexican perspective) was ended with the Texans suffering a crushing defeat. The Alamo was taken and every American rebel was killed. Even the Texans who had surrendered were killed as the order came to take no prisoners. Davy Crockett and James Bowie both died in the attack. The Goliad Massacre (March 27) also resulted in 350 Texans killed.
The battle of San Jacinto was fought on April 21. General Sam Houston defeated the Mexican forces numbering 1,360. The 910 Texans were waiting for Santa Anna’s troops to attack. Instead of allowing them to rest, the Texans took the lead and attacked with an outflanking maneuver interrupting the Mexicans taking their afternoon siesta (with no guards posted). At 4:30 PM, Vince’s Bridge was burned and the Texans silently advanced through the woods and surprised Santa Anna’s troops. There were only nine Texans killed with 23 more wounded. The Mexican forces had 630 killed, 208 wounded, and 730 captured.
Santa Anna escaped and was found hiding in a marsh, wearing a dragoon private’s uniform on this date. He was taken to acting Texas President, David G. Burnet and eventually the Treaties of Velasco were signed by both men. Santa Anna was held for months before being transported back to Mexico. The new government there failed to recognize the treaty signed by their ex-President. There were two treaties, one formal with ten points, and a second secret treaty with seven points. Eventually a pact was reached later in the year marking the border between the two combatants at the Rio Grande.
Texas, to be respected must be polite. Santa Anna living, can be of incalculable benefit to Texas; Santa Anna dead, would just be another dead Mexican. – Sam Houston
When a general is given command of an army and everything that is necessary is furnished to him and placed at his disposal, he should be held strictly responsible if he departs from the established rules of war. The government has said, and with truth, that all the resources at its command were placed at my disposal in this campaign, but these being so few, could it have given me many? – Santa Anna
History does not teach fatalism. There are moments when the will of a handful of free men breaks through determinism and opens up new roads. – Charles de Gaulle
Liberty is always dangerous, but it is the safest thing we have. – Harry Emerson Fosdick
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