The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 86, July 1982 - April, 1983 Page: 442
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
Mexico, but less so in Texas where the missions had been almost to-
tally secularized by 1821. The parallel degeneration of the Roman
Catholic church, after the Spanish archbishop led most of his bishops
back to Spain following the capitulation of the Spanish forces, was a
severe loss in terms of stabilizing institutions. The pope refused to rec-
ognize independent Mexico and sent no replacements. The remaining
bishops faced many problems, including the lack of an English-speak-
ing priest to serve the Anglo settlements in Texas, and the final arrival
of Padre Michael Muldoon in 1831 was too little too late. Of even
greater significance was the further decline of the once-fine Spanish pre-
sidio system, which had protected frontier residents from the indios
bdrbaros, autonomous tribes of seminomadic Indians who rejected
Christianity. In the case of Texas, there were only fifty-nine cavalry-
men in 1826 to protect the residents from the raiders. Even augmented
by regular army troops after 1830, the insufficient garrisons were poorly
supplied and the men seldom paid, a situation that led to many deser-
tions and an unreliable force. Frontier defense devolved on local mili-
tia, a civic duty unpopular among both native Mexicans and Anglos
Borderland residents also suffered from a repressive commercial sys-
tem inherited from Spain. Certain commodities, such as tobacco, were
limited to a favored few producers, who paid the government for the
privilege of growing and processing the addictive weed used in the
Indian trade. Moreover, Mexico had few manufactories of any kind,
and imported manufactured goods could enter only designated ports,
consigned to select merchants. The system was designed to raise reve-
nue, as no land or income taxes were levied. The frontier felt the re-
pressive nature of this policy because the price of goods escalated, not
only with transportation costs, but also with taxes levied by local gov-
ernments along the route in addition to those paid at the port. Texans
will discover that the seemingly unique complaints against the collec-
tion of customs voiced by Anglos in 1831-1832, and associated events,
were common from Santa Fe to California. While Texans finally broke
with Mexico in 1836, the other border states continued to stage local
rebellions against perceived repressive acts of the central government.
Never able to settle the frontier with people from central Mexico, the
authorities allowed Anglo-Americans to settle and exploit the natural
resources of the borderlands. The failure to supply needed services to
the frontiersmen caused frustration and alienation among both Anglo
and native Mexican residents. When Anglo-American traders brought
needed goods and substituted capitalism and the free-enterprise system
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 86, July 1982 - April, 1983, periodical, 1982/1983; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101209/m1/490/: accessed August 20, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.