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The Texas Revolution involved the U.S. State of Texas, then part of Mexico, and the Mexicans themselves, led by Santa Anna.

The Revolution was years in the making. The U.S. had longed to acquire Texas, but had given up its claims in 1819 in the Adams-Onis Treaty with Spain, in exchange for Florida. However, Mexico declared independence from Spain in 1822 and seized Texas, but the Americans were eager to gain more territory. Americans soon settled in Texas, but Mexico’s anti-slavery laws angered the slave-holding settlers.

Battle of the Alamo by Percy Moran Library of Congress

Battle of the Alamo by Percy Moran
Library of Congress

Eventually, in 1835, Texas officially rebelled against Mexico’s government under President Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna. There were many operations during this war, but probably the most notable is the Battle of the Alamo, fought in March of 1836. The Mexicans had about 2,500 soldiers when they began the attack on March 6, and the Texans had between 180 and 250 soldiers, none of whom survived the battle. Among these able men were William Travis, James Bowie (yes, the guy who has that knife named after him), and the famous American, Davy Crockett. Between 400-600 Mexicans were killed during the battle, a relatively high casualty figure, and massacred the Texans, going as far as shooting their dead bodies.

At the Battle of San Jacinto in April of 1836, The Texans won their independence, shouting cries of “Remember the Alamo!”, and captured many Mexicans, including Santa Anna himself, and forced him to sign a treaty allowing for Texan Independence. Samuel Houston, the leader of the Texans, was himself wounded during the battle, but came out on top.

The heroism of the Texans will never be forgotten, but the results of this war came with a price: Americans divided over whether to accept Texas as a state or leave it an independent country, but the slaveholding south ensured that Texas was admitted as a state in 1845, leading to the Mexican-American war of 1846, and also the American Civil War.

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