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Remember the Alamo! Remember the Goliad!

January 31, 2013 Leave a comment

In the 1700’s, Spain established mission throughout the “new world”, including in what is now known as Texas.  Possession of this land changed hands several times, from the Spanish, to the Mexicans, and eventually to the new country of Texas.  Two of these missions – Mission Spiritu Santo and the Presidio La Bahia near Goliad on the San Antonio river, were to play a vital role in Texas independence.  A short version:

The missions, and the nearby Alamo, were captured from Mexico by the new Anglo settlers from the east.  Goliad was the scene of the Signing of the Texan Declaration of Independence, essentially creating the new country of Texas.  Santa Anna, now dictator of Mexico, was determined to recapture the land and laid siege and eventually defeated the Alamo.  Certainly one of the most famous battles in Texas history.  He also was determined to re-take the Goliad and sent General Urrea to capture the fort.  He issued the Tornel Decree, which simply stated take no prisoners.

After a prolonged battle at Coleto Creek, the Texians, under James W. Fannin, surrendered.  Urrea followed Santa Anna’s order and marched the 400 surviving Texians out of the Goliad and into the woods.  There, he shot and killed all, although a few survived to tell the tale.

This act so outraged the Texians that the Goliad became a rallying cry in their battles with Santa Anna. In 1836, Sam Houston and his troops defeated him at San Jacinto with cries of “Remember the Alamo! Remember the Goliad!”.

fannin 1

A view of the bastion La Bahia

Inside the Chapel

Inside the Chapel at La Bahia

One of the canons at Bahia

One of the canons at La Bahia

A view of the Mission Spiritus Santo

A view of the Mission Spiritu Santo

Courtyard in the mission

Courtyard in the mission

Inside the sacristy

Inside the sacristy

The area of the battle of Coleto Creek

The area of the battle of Coleto Creek

The flag Fannin's men adopted: "I'd sooner give my right arm"

The flag Fannin’s men adopted: “I’d sooner give my right arm”