Texas Almanac, 1939-1940 Page: 64
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64 THE TEXAS ALMANAC--1939.
Texas as a permanent member of the
Mexican federation of states. He had
done so despite pressure exerted upon
him by some of his fellow colonists to
join the faction favoring revolution. By
their actions the Mexicans had lost the
confidence of the man who was at once
their best friend and the most influential
of the colonial leaders.
When, early in 1835, Santa Anna sent a
company of soldiers to Anahuac to assist
in the collection of duties, a force of colo-
nists under William B. Travis marched
on the town and forced the Mexicans to
surrender their arms and leave for San
Antonio. As a result, General Cos,
brother-in-law of Santa Anna and com-
mander of northern Mexico, ordered the
arrest of Travis and several others.
Alarmed at the situation, certain leading
colonists endeavored to effect a peaceful
adjustment, but Cos refused to accept
explanations until Travis and other Tex-
ans were under arrest. It was at this
juncture that Austin returned from Mex-
Ico and announced that he had become
convinced that war was Texas' only re-
Affairs in Texas had led Santa Anna to
the decision to station a military force in
the state. Gen. Martin Perfect de Cos,
his brother-in-law, had been placed in
charge of the northern states, and Col.
Domingo de Ugartechea was stationed
in San Antonio m charge of the military
forces in Coahuila-Texas.
While there had been several prior
armed conflicts, what may be properly
considered the first battle of the Texas
Revolution was that at Gonzales Oct. 2,
1835. Colonel Ugartechea, in command
at San Antonio, sent a company to Gon-
zales to take possession of a cannon, but
the Mexicans were attacked by the Tex-
ans and defeated. The news of this bat-
tle spread and, volunteers poured into
Gonzales. It was decided to march on
San Antonio and on Oct. 11 Austin was
elected commander in chief. In the
meantime, on Oct. 9, a small band of
volunteers had surprised the Mexican
garrison at Goliad and captured a store
of military supplies.
A detachment of Austin's army had a
light engagement with Mexican cavalry
at Mission Concepcion Oct. 28, and on
Nov. 26 the so-called "grass fight" oc-
curred south of San Antonio. This skir-
mish was occasioned by the rumor that
an approaching burro train carried sil-
ver for the pay of the Mexican garrison
at San Antonio, but when captured the
burros' burden proved to be hay destined
for consumption by Ugartechea's cavalry
In the meantime a gathering of repre-
sentative colonials was held at San Fe-
lipe beginning Nov. 3, 1835, and a provi-
sional government set up and Austin,
Branch T. Archer and William H. Whar-
ton were selected to go to Washington
and ask for the assistance of the United
States. This withdrew Austin from com-
mand of tie army which was besieging
San Antonio and Gen. Edward Burleson
was placed in command there by an elec-
tion. Henry Smith was elected provi-
sional Governor of Texas and a council
was organized. While Burleson had
been chosen to lead the army at San
Antonio, Gen. Sam Houston was named
by the gathering at San Felipe as com-
mander in chief to succeed Austin.
At the consultation at San Felipe a
warm debate had been followed by a de-
cision by vote not to declare Texas inde-
pendent of Mexico but to declare for the
Constitution of 1824, which Santa Anna
had set aside, and to reserve for Texas
the right of governing itself until as-
sured constitutional government by
Capture of San Antonio.
At San Antonio the siege dragged and
preparations were being made to aban-
don it when Col. Ben Milam asked for
volunteers to attack the fort, organized
about 300 men and after fighting from
Dec. 5 to Dec. 9, 1835, forced General Cos,
who had arrived from Mexico and taken
command, to surrender, with the agree-
ment that he was to return with his en-
tire force to Mexico. Milam was one of
the two Texans to fall during the battle.
Fall of the Alamo.
The garrison at San Antonio dwindled
after the retirement of Cos, despite the
fact that it was known that Santa Anna
was marching on San Antonio with the
pick of the Mexican Army. Santa Anna
arrived there about Feb. 23. The town
was defended by about 155 men under
the command of Col. William B. Travis.
Travis appealed repeatedly for aid, but
the provisional government was at odds
with itself, the council being arrayed
against the Governor, so nothing was
done. In fact, little provision had been
made for meeting the oncoming enemy.
About thirty men from Gonzales under
the command of Capt. Albert Martin
broke through Santa Anna's lines March
1, raising the force which had been cen-
tered at the Alamo to approximately 185.
It was this little band that held the Ala-
mo against overwhelming odds for five
more days in one of the most heroic
struggles to be found in the annals of
history. On March 6 Santa Anna
stormed the Alamo with something like
3,000 men and the last of the little band
of Texans died fighting. Among them
were William Barrett Travis, James
Bowie, Davy Crockett and James D. Bon-
ham. Lack of co-ordination among Tex-
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Texas Almanac, 1939-1940, book, 1939; Dallas, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth117163/m1/66/: accessed December 16, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.