To develop and defend the province of Texas, Mexico adopted a risky strategy:
- Mexico invited American settlers into Texas
- In return for cheap land grants, Americans had to agree-
o to become Mexican citizens
o worship as Roman Catholics
o accept the Mexican Constitution which banned slavery
Mexico hoped this strategy would convert American settlers from a potential threat to an economic asset.
Stephen F. Austin- led Americans to settle east of San Antonio and founded the town of Austin.
- By 1835 there were 30,000 Americans settlers in Texas.
- The Americans were known as Anglo-Texans
- Mexican Texans were known as Tejanos
- Anglo-Texans outnumbered Tejanos 6:1
Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna- Mexican general who seized power in Mexico City
- favored a centralized, authoritarian government dominated by the military
In 1835, Texans rebelled against Mexican rule – seized forts at Goliad and San Antonio.
In 1836, Texas declared independence and became the LONE STAR REPUBLIC.
The Battle of the Alamo- Santa Anna led his army into Texas to crush the rebellion of the Lone Star Republic.
- March 1836- Santa Anna attacked the garrison at the Alamo which was a fortified mission outside of San Antonio.
- 12 days of cannon fire before the Mexicans overran the Alamo
- Santa Anna killed all of the Alamo defenders instead of taking them prisoner (Jim Bowie, Davy Crockett, and Colonel Travis were among those defenders lost)
- The slogan “Remember the Alamo” rallied the Texans and attracted more volunteers from the southern US
Sam Houston- led Santa Anna into a trap following the slaughter at the Alamo. In April of 1836, he surprised and crushed the Mexican Army at the Battle of San Jacinto.
- Houston’s men killed 630 and captured 730
- Santa Anna was among those captured
- to avoid execution, Santa Anna signed a treaty recognizing Texas independence
- the government in Mexico City refused to recognize the treaty he signed which gave generous boundaries to Texas
Texas elected Sam Houston their first President. He asked the US to annex Texas!
Northern reaction to request was not positive in that they did not want to add another slave state.