The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 51, July 1947 - April, 1948 Page: 48
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
this small attendance dropped steadily. When Almonte in-
spected the town in 1834, he found that the lone school was
"very badly supported."3o
In the town of La Bahia conditions were even worse. A town
official, reporting to his superior in Bexar, portrayed a sad state
Due to the miserable conditions the population is diminishing. ..
If there had been a supply of horses here, the place would have been
absolutely abandoned. This is the main reason why a regular
school does not exist in this district such as we had a few months
ago. Only through the entreaties and persuasions of the Cabildo
and the parish priest has D. T. Buentello taken charge of 16-2o
children to whom he gives primary instruction, more as a favor than
for the money he receives. Yet if circumstances ... should change,
the first step this ayuntamiento will take will be the establishment
of a school."l
Handicapped by poverty, frontier conditions, political unrest,
a declining population, and lack of state aid, the Mexican settle-
ments were unable to maintain adequate educational facilities.
Federal and state decrees had proved ineffective in creating an
educational system; the efforts of the individual Mexican munici-
palities proved no more successful.
In the Anglo-American settlements, however, the educational
picture was materially brighter. Texas had been opened to Amer-
ican colonization through the efforts of Moses Austin and his
son Stephen. The latter brought the first group of American
colonists into the province in 1821. For almost a decade there-
after, Mexico encouraged American emigration by granting huge
tracts of free land. Under this incentive, American settlers
poured into Texas. By 1825 there were over seven thousand
Americans in Texas, a number already greater than the Mex-
ican population.2 The latter remained stationary, whereas the
former increased rapidly. In 183o there were twenty-two thou-
sand Americans in Texas; by 1835 almost thirty thousand." The
Mexican population never rose beyond four thousand. Thus,
0OMorphis, History of Texas, 58.
alHernandez to Governor Martinez, August 3, 1822, in Eby, Education in Texas:
Source Materials, 53. Original in Bexar Archives.
32Rives, United States and Mexico, I, 153.
33Garrison, Texas, 157.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 51, July 1947 - April, 1948, periodical, 1948; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101119/m1/66/: accessed July 28, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.