On this, the 175th anniversary of the concluding battle of the Texas Revolution.
“Houston disposed his forces in battle order about 3:30 in the afternoon while all was quiet on the Mexican side during the afternoon siesta. The Texans’ movements were screened by trees and the rising ground, and evidently Santa Anna had no lookouts posted.
“The battle line was formed with Edward Burleson’s regiment in the center, Sherman’s on the left wing, the artillery under George Hockley on Burleson’s right, the infantry under Henry Millard on the right of the artillery, and the cavalry under Mirabeau Lamar on the extreme right.
“The Twin Sisters were wheeled into position, and the whole line, led by Sherman’s men, sprang forward on the run with the cry, ‘Remember the Alamo!’ ‘Remember Goliad!’ The battle lasted but eighteen minutes…”
Hardly noticed by the politically-correct news media nowadays (don’t want to make the Hispanics mad, etc.), this anniversary of the Texian victory over the Mexican army of dictator Santa Anna, and his capture, still resonates with lovers of Texas history.
After all, as they say, “the modern destiny of Texas began” 174 years ago today. Meanwhile, part of the old battleground, ever crowded by the Houston Ship Channel and the petrochemical industry, is being threatened by development.
…is Monday, actually, the anniversary of the defeat of the forces of Mexican dictator/Gen. Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna at San Jacinto, in the bayous southeast of present-day Houston, practically in Galveston Bay. The Texian victory led to establishment of the Republic of Texas. The day is the last of what Texana author Mike Cox calls the High Holy Days of Texas history–Texas Independence Day on March 2, the fall of the Alamo on March 6, and the battle of San Jacinto on April 21. I would add March 27, Palm Sunday, the day of the Goliad massacre by Mexican troops–certainly the least defensible thing they did–which explains why some Texians wanted to hang Santa Anna after his capture.
A Dallas cousin and I, doing our Texas genealogies, recently rounded up a possible SJ combatant-ancestor cousin of ours, one John Matchett. We found a pay voucher for JM at the state archives dated in 1840 showing him to have been a member of Capt. Wyley’s Company in Sidney Sherman’s 2nd Regiment from April 1 to July 23, 1836. A few years ago, JM was listed on this unofficial roster but his name–along with all the other soldier names therein–has since been removed. Although he’s still on this, similar one. Still, he’s not on any of the official lists we can find, so we’re not sure what to think about it.
Meanwhile, in a little irony, Mr. B.’s second grade class starts its "Mexico Week" this year on, wait for it, San Jacinto Day. Multiculturalism at work, I suppose. I wonder if the school system did it on purpose?
MORE: Meanwhile, today is Patriot’s Day up north, commemoration of a time surely on Texan minds during the 1836 revolution.