The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 40, July 1936 - April, 1937 Page: 160
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
The supposition that Travis' original resolution not to retreat
was the result of his belief that his desperate position would bring
response, and the revolution would flare gloriously, is a supposition
doubtless shared by many. Surely he must have believed it possi-
ble for his men to escape, a few at a time, during the early days
of the siege, his messengers having consistently succeeded in get-
ting in and out through Mexican lines. Even after hope of relief
virtually was abandoned there was the alternative of attempting
escape. It is reported in the famous address he supposedly made
his men the night before the final assault that he offered them
that alternative. The address, whether spurious or authentic, at
least is in character.
But if Travis originally let himself be trapped as bait for the
revolution he soon made it clear that he was willing to go through
with the sacrifice. A plausible conclusion as to his state of mind
is that he saw his destiny hanging in the balance at the Alamo:
If, by some miracle, he continued to beat off the invaders, wore
them down to starvation, or held them till colonists rallied to the
flag, he would be the king-pin, the undisputed leader of the revo-
lution; if, on the other hand, he and his band were wiped out in
defense of the place--in defense of Texas' liberty--his sacrifice
not only might stir Texans and United States sympathizers to
action but would doubtless immortalize the name Travis.
It may be repeated that no conflict between his personal ambition
and his patriotism has been intimated in this analysis; the pur-
pose rather being to point out the conscious, selfish ambition that
must have accompanied Travis' intense love of liberty and his
inevitable challenge of what he considered tyranny.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 40, July 1936 - April, 1937, periodical, 1937; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101099/m1/174/: accessed December 16, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.