I wanted to take the time to reflect upon Chapter 9 entitled: San Antonio de Béxar, Texas, ca. 1820-48, from the book entitled “EL NORTE” (2019). It goes without saying that history is complex, here with a focus upon Mexico and American war, and the annexation of Texas. I continue to commend the author for her thorough and well developed research with attention to detail.
As per previous chapter summaries / reflections, I have focused upon specific points of interest, especially where new learning is found, as well as to build upon previous ideas. I was excited to learn about the Texas cotton industry (p. 184). Many settlers heading to Texas from the United States saw potential for cotton and fertile lands. British demands for Texas cotton grew, this is also where we can connect the rise of the British Textile industry and increasing demand / supply for cotton from Texas. It is interesting that at present cotton picking maybe associated with pictorial images / inferences of slaves picking cotton in the fields. But this was not where and how the story of cotton began. There is room for re-learning here, as well as for the term of colonization. Colonization was viewed as a way to produce economic opportunity. This can be exemplified through the plan drawn out by Moses Austin and then later fulfilled by his son, Stephen Austin through the Empresario Agreement in Texas State (p. 184).
The Anglos created settlements in Mexico. Inter-relations with marriages and relationships were created with the Tejano, whose cultural style was described as completely Spanish. Britain was pro-abolishment, and recognized Mexico’s declaration of Independence in 1821. Mexico outlawed slave trade and of course a reluctant Spanish Empire did not want to give-up their lands and territory, but finally recognized Mexico’s independence in 1836 (p. 185 – 186). At this point in time California was also hustling and bustling into a small cosmopolitan, with ships from England, Asia as well as Russia. The Russia-American company was formed. Native Americans and Mexican arrived in these regions in search of work (p. 188).
Texas Annexation – Texas State was once known as the Republic of Texas. Texas joined the United States on April 12th 1844, this is known as the Texas Annexation. Britain wanted to purchase more Texas cotton, however; secret agreements with the United States led to Texas joining the US. The US saw benefits of a slave-holding state. Texas joined the US, this was especially done to draw away Britain’s anti-slavery pressures (p. 205 – 206). We can connect this thought to previous chapters where Britain desired to create relations with America, but once again halted from the United States leaders / territories.
I found it interesting to learn that the Spanish Americans desired to achieve equality through the races, yet today this idea might be perceived differently. Scott, Ulysses S. Grant, Robert E. Lee and Jefferson Davis who were military leaders, reflected upon the Mexico-America war and “called it ‘one of the most unjust ever waged by a stronger nation against a weaker nation’ ” (p. 218). I also reflected upon this point to the level of the individual to think about the mal-practice of utilizing vulnerable civilians as targets for war.
Gibson, C. (2019). EL NORTE The Epic and Forgotten History of Hispanic North America. New York: Atlantic Monthly Press.
Related Blog Posts:
- BOOK READING NOTES!
- “EL NORTE”
- EMERGING VOICES!
- ST. AUGUSTINE
- SUMMARY | CHAPTER 3!
- CHAPTER 4 | SUMMARY!
- CHAPTER 5 | SUMMARY!
- CHAPTER 6 | SUMMARY!
- CHAPTER 7 | SUMMARY!
- CHAPTER 8 | CONNECTIONS!
- Image 1 | Link | San Jacinto Monument, Houston, Texas, USA. This historical monument is the site for the Texan victory. The decisive battle for the Texas Revolution.
- Image 2 | Link
- Image 3 | Link
Further Information | San Jacinto Monument and Museum.
Notes | These thoughts were originally hand-written on July 10th 2021. Please note that these are my thoughts and views upon my reading to gain an understanding of American history of what interested me within this chapter, there are many more points that have not been discussed within my writing. Thank You!
With Love & Kindness! 🙂