Texas Almanac, 1941-1942 Page: 45
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ERA OF STAGNATION-FREEBOOT-
ERS AND BUCCANEERS.
Following the secularization of the
missions in 1793, there was a period of
waning of Spanish religious and political
influence in Texas. There were several
reasons: Spain was in difficulties in Eu-
rope and was losing her grip on Mex-
ico. In turn, the growing sentiment of
revolt in Mexico created a situation
which permitted little consideration of
Texas. Spanish influence reached a low
ebb in Texas after 1811, when the revolt
in Mexico led by Hidalgo broke out.
Though it was suppressed temporarily
there was a state of smoldering rebel-
lion until 1821 when Mexico finally suc-
ceeded in throwing off the Spanish yoke.
During this period authorities of neither
Spain nor Mexico had much time to de-
vote to the raw province between the
Rio Grande and the Sabine.
Domingo Teran de los Rios, appointed
in 1691, is generally accepted as the first
royal Spanish Governor of Texas, al-
though earlier Governors of the northern
Mexican states had jurisdiction over por-
tions of Texas at intervals. From thi-
date Texas had a definite status as a
province, at times separately and a'
other times jointly with Coahuila. 'fhe
administration of De los Rios came to a-!
end in 1693 and though Texas continued
to have the status of a province there
was no government to maintain head-
quarters north of the Rio Grande until
1720 when Marquis de San Miguel de
Aguayo established his headquarters at
Los Adaes, which was on the Red River
at the approximate location of the pres-
ent Robeline, La. This place was the
capital of Texas until San Antonio be-
came the seat of government in 1772.
In the development of Texas history,
it should be kept in mind that the early
political, as well as the early church
history, was divided between the east
and the west. The administrations of the
Governors did not extend into the ter-
ritory of extreme Western Texas, which
was under the authority of the adminis-
tration at Santa Fe. Those portions of
Texas now included in the Trans-Pecos,
Pecos Valley and Great Plains regions
were identified in their early develop-
ment with the history of New Mexico
rather than that of Texas.
New Problem on the East.
In 1803, France sold Louisiana to the
United States and Spain recognized a
still greater menace east of the Sabine.
The virile new republic was more feared
than France, and several incidents, no-
tably the Aaron Burr conspiracy, con-
tributed to Spanish fear of American de-
signs on Texas. In 1736, the Arroyo
Hondo, east of the Sabine, had been tem-
porarily fixed as the eastern boundary
ot Texas. However, doubt as to the
actual boundary continued and the ter-
ritory between the Sabine and the Ar-
royo Hondo became a "neutral ground,"
a lawless no-man's land and home of des-
OF TEXAS. 45
Circumstances along the eastern boun-
dary of Texas, in the United States and
in Spain and Mexico conspired to lead
venturesome Americans to try their for-
tunes west of the Sabine, and several ex-
peditions were led into Texas for the
purpose of making it independent of
Spain, alone or in conjunction with
On behalf of the expeditions of this
era, it must be said that the spirit of
adventure was not unmixed with the zeal
of patriotic Texans and Mexicans for
throwing off the oppressive Spanish yoke
and establishing an independent democ-
racy in Texas, alone or in conjunction
with Mexico. The success of the young
United States of America, together with
the spreading doctrines of the French
Revolution, was largely responsible for
the flame of revolt that swept Latin
America from 1810 to 1830, largely re-
moving Spanish sovereignty.
The Green Flag.
The most noteworthy of these attempts
to free Texas from Spain was the Magee-
Gutierrez expedition of 1812-13. Augus-
cus Magee, an army officer of the United
States stationed in Louisiana, became in-
trigued by the plans of Bernardo Gutier-
rez, a Mexican who had been an adher-
ent of Father Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla
in his unsuccessful attempt to free Mex-
ico 'n 1810-11. Magee resigned his com-
mission in the army and, with Gutierrez,
had little difficulty in collecting a force
of venturesome men along the turbulent
border. Marching westward, the little
army captured Nacogdoches, Goliad and
San Antonio, Magee dying a mysterious
death at Goliad, however.
This Republican Army of the North
marched under the Green Flag, which is
recognized by some authorities as having
a legitimate claim to a place among the
*sovereign flags of Texas. Admission of
this claim would raise the customarily
recognized six flags to seven flags.
Whether the expedition deserves the dig-
nity of a place among the flags of Texas
possibly is a matter of definition. No
recognition was ever given by any for-
eign government to the new state, yet
it is a fact that during four or five
months in the spring and summer of
1813, Spanish sovereignty in Texas was
completely deposed, a formal declaration
of independence issued and a constitution
written. Capital of the new state was
at San Antonio. In view of the difficul-
ties Spain was having in Mexico, it might
have been a successful new nation, but
dissension arose among the members of
the expedition and the capable Gutierrez
was deposed from leadership. The Re-
publican Army of the North finally met
defeat at the Battle of Medina on the
Medina River southwest of San Antonio,
Aug. 18, 1813, in an extraordinarily
bloody conflict in which most of the
2,000 or 3,000 members of the expedition
*A full account of this expedition is found in
Green Flag Over Texas. by Julia Kathryn Gar-
rett The Cordova Press, Inc, New York and
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Texas Almanac, 1941-1942, book, 1941; Dallas, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth117164/m1/47/: accessed June 28, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.