|View single post by Doc C|
|Posted: Fri Aug 13th, 2010 01:02 am||
|I've always wondered why a distant ancestor, Henry Hale Cone, was present at the Siege of Bexar (Dec 1835) but was not at the fatal defense of the Alamo months later in March of 1836. Exodus from the Alamo by Phillip Tucker helped shed some light on his absence. An excellent and well researched book not only about the Alamo but the years which preceded the battle or rather brief encounter. Briefly, a few points which Tucker interestingly brought up:
1) The Mexican Constitution of the 1820's made slavery illegal. This point angered the majority of the original American-Texas immigrants. One of the reasons for Santa Ana's march northward was not only to recapture the Alamo, teach the immigrants a lesson but to also free the many slaves. Thus the Battle for Texas Independence could be said to have been the first war over slavery in America.
2) The majority of the approximately 200 defenders were not the Davey Crockett woodsmen/soldier types but farmers, individuals from urban areas, recent european immigrants with little or no military experience indiference to the mythological movie versions.
3) The Alamo defenders failed to learn an important lesson from the siege which gave them control of the Alamo that it was indefensible with the small amount of manpower they had. It was said that to defend the area would require more than a 1000 soldiers rather than the 200 present. The Texans did little to improve the defensibility of the structure. The majority of defense construction was done by the Mexican General Cos who surrendered the Alamo to the Texans in Dec. of 1835. Cos and his army was paroled taking a great deal of the powder with them. Ironically Cos and his army failed to honor their parole and were one of the units which helped storm the Alamor on March 6th.
4) The storming and occupation of the Alamo on March 6 was a complete surprise to the Texans. This is evidence by the low casualty figures for the attacking Mexican Army - approx 300 (killed/wounded) with the majority being by fratricide. The battle inside the Alamo's confines was essentially over in 20 minutes.
5) The majority of Texans kia were outside the Alamo not inside. More than half were killed escaping by the Mexican Calvary units outside posted intentionally by Santa Ana to kill the escaping Texans.
6) Lastly - the answer to my initial question regarding my ancestor. After the siege of Bexar, the majority of Texans left and went either home or on an ill fated Matamoros expedition. Thus, I believe this is what my ancestor did rather than remain at the Alamo. Those left there, probably stayed with the idea and hope of many acres of land from the new republic if they stayed and served.
7) Texas was no different from other land grabs which the US had participated in earlier times. (Seminole, Creek, Cherokee, etc.) (IMHO)
In conclusion, a well written, well referenced treatise on maybe one of the most mythologic periods of our country's history.