Texas Revolution (Great Events from History: North American Series)
Article abstract: After winning independence from Mexico, Texas stays an independent republic for a decade before annexation by the United States.
Summary of Event
The movement of Euro-Americans into Texas is usually dated from 1821, when Spanish authorities granted Moses Austin permission to colonize a large tract of largely unpopulated land. Austin’s plea for the grant was based in part upon his claim to Spanish citizenship by reason of his previous residence in Louisiana. Moses Austin’s death in Missouri the same year and the creation of an independent Mexico failed to stop the colonization project. Austin’s son, Stephen, took over and spent a year in Mexico City persuading the new authorities that his claim should be accepted. When additional grants were made by the provincial government, Austin’s colonization scheme prospered, as did those of other empresarios who had received grants. Euro-American settlers from the United States, sometimes accompanied by their slaves, soon represented a large majority of the people of Texas.
Austin and officials of the province of Texas-Coahuila worked in harmony for several years. Slavery was opposed by Mexican officials, but the province of Texas-Coahuila recognized labor contracts that made indentured servants of the slaves. All settlers were required to be Roman Catholics, but they were not required to attend church services. The...
(The entire section is 1387 words.)
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Texan War of Independence (Magill’s Guide to Military History)
Article abstract: At issue: Self-governance of American settlers in Mexican Texas. Result: Texas won its independence.
When Mexico became independent in 1821, it included all the northern frontiers of the former New Spain, from the Sabine River to the Pacific Ocean as far north as what later become the states of Nevada, Utah, and Colorado. These territories were sparsely populated. The fledgling Mexican government contracted in 1821 with an American, Stephen Fuller Austin, to bring settlers from the United States to Texas.
By 1834, the English-speaking colonists (Texians) outnumbered the Hispanics in Texas (Tejanos) about four to one. Texas was not a separate state but part of the Mexican state of Coahuila. The Texians resisted Mexican attempts to impose Catholicism, to centralize control of commerce and taxation, and to prohibit slavery. They especially resented the dictatorship of Antonio López de Santa Anna, who became president in 1833. Some wanted restoration of the 1824 Mexican constitution; others wanted separate Mexican statehood under that constitution; still others wanted Texan independence.
Some hostilities occurred in 1832. John Davis Bradburn, a renegade Kentuckian who had risen to colonel in the Mexican army, commanded Fort Anáhuac and held William Barret Travis prisoner. About 130 supporters of Travis captured a detail of Bradburn’s cavalry...
(The entire section is 937 words.)