Sunday, February 26, 2012

Thirteen Days OF Glory - Day Four

Another cold day for the Texans, a day of little rest. Green B. Jameson, the engineer in charge of making the mission a fort, leads his men in digging trenches around the mission. David Crockett and his Tennessee Volunteers begin firing back at Mexican troops. (Source)

"The Alamo was already a hundred years old at the time of the siege and battle. It was founded in 1718 as a Spanish mission for the purpose of Christianizing the Indians indigenous to the area. The Indians themselves built the mission under the supervision of the Spanish priests and it was named Mission "San Antonio de Valero." The church was designed without the benefit of a master engineer, the roof collapsed almost immediately, and this portion of the mission was never actually completed.

By 1793, most of the Indians had died from disease and "San Antonio de Valero" was closed as a mission. In 1803, a Spanish cavalry unit from Alamo de Parras, Mexico, was quartered In the mission and it was from this unit that the mission received the name "Pueblo del Alamo." The Spanish word "alamo" means "cottonwood" and may refer to the cottonwood trees that grew along the San Antonio River."

"In 1833, a Mexican general, Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna, was elected President of Mexico, but it wasn't long before he turned his presidency into a dictatorship. He began to collect high taxes and passed harsh and unreasonable laws, making the settlers very unhappy with their new home. By 1835. many colonists began to threaten revolt. Alarmed by these threats. Santa Anna sent his brother-ln-law, General Martin de Cos, to occupy the Alamo ... Declaring martial law, he jailed people for no reason and soon the threat of revolution became a reality. Almost two months after Cos' arrival. in December of 1835, a force of 400 Texans led by Ben Milam made their way into San Antonio and engaged General Cos in battle. After several days of fighting Cos surrendered by raising, a white flag above the Alamo.

The Texan force of 400 suffered 19 casualties while defeating Mexican forces of l,1OO and gained the most important military stronghold north of the Rio Grande. Leaving his cannons behind, General Cos fled to Mexico promising not to return. The defeat of Cos angered Santa Anna. It became a matter of honor to teach the Texans a lesson and he began to raise an army which he would personally lead to San Antonio." (Source)