The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 106, July 2002 - April, 2003 Page: 226
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
nent vecinos (residents) by arbitrary measures and the failure to establish
a town council."8
Gutierrez was a master of anti-Spanish propaganda, which resonated
among a significant portion of the Tejano population. He underestimat-
ed, however, the difficulties of translating resentment against royal offi-
cials to a positive allegiance to the Mexican nation. After all, Tejano loy-
alties were focused upon family and community, king and church, prior
to the Hidalgo Revolt. During the period 1811-1813, many inhabitants
were fickle in their allegiance, either staying neutral or swaying back and
forth between rival camps, depending upon the shifting tide of war. Prof-
fers of allegiance were as variable as the wind without guarantees of pro-
tection by some governmental authority. The provincial junta, though os-
tensibly loyal to Gutierrez, ultimately sanctioned his ouster when
Arredondo's army neared B6xar. The junta, which doubtless feared Span-
ish reprisals, could not risk alienating Anglo-American soldiers, whose
support then seemed indispensable to communal survival.81
Guti6rrez's political loyalties were broadly "republican," if we define
that term within the context of the Mexican insurgency. He was the first
rebel leader in Texas to battle openly for an independent Republic of
Mexico, completely free of Spanish monarchical rule. His politics com-
bined distinct and often conflicting tendencies within the Mexican insur-
gency-what D. A. Brading has identified as an adherence to "liberal be-
liefs" as well as "creole patriotism." On the one hand, Gutierrez declared
his commitment to Enlightenment ideals of human freedom and
progress. On the other hand, he appealed to the populace through rhet-
oric laced with religious zeal, hatred of Spaniards, and a romanticized
sense of Mexican nationality. He was a frontier caudillo who swayed un-
easily between republican and authoritarian governance. The people
might hold the "legitimate power," as he once said, but they required
guardians to protect their welfare, especially during a war for national
survival. He presumed that creoles such as himself constituted the right-
ful governing class of Mexico.82
Despite being rejected by his U.S. allies in 1813, Gutierrez persisted in
seeking Anglo-American support during the next seven years for his all-
consuming war against Spain. From his base in Louisiana, he ultimately
failed to assemble a new multinational coalition under his command.
While he maneuvered for reliable North American allies, some Anglo-
American filibusters sought his services, at least to legitimize their own
"J. Villasana Haggard, "The Counter-Revolution of Bexar, 1811," SHQ 43 (Oct., 1939), 230o.
"X De la Teja, "Rebellion on the Frontier," 22-27
"' D. A. Brading, The First America The Spanzsh Monarchy, Creole Patriots, and the Lzberal State,
1492-1897 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1991), 565.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 106, July 2002 - April, 2003, periodical, 2003; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101223/m1/278/: accessed May 27, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.