The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #103340   Message #2113782
Posted By: Uncle Phil
29-Jul-07 - 12:45 AM
Thread Name: Remember the Alamo?
Subject: RE: Remember the Alamo?
Well, if nothing else this thread has got me reading Texas history again, particularly stuff written during the Texas revolution. (Wallace O. Chariton,,ed; 100 Days in Texas; ISBN 1-55622-131-2).

The last letters included from the Alamo itself were on 3 March, 3 days before the final Mexican assault. Three were from Travis and one from Isaac Millsap to his wife (Chariton notes that the Millsap letter may be a forgery in a long footnote). Travis and Millsap sound worried, but express hope that reinforcements will arrive. Who knows what went through the defenders minds over the next few days when no reinforcements showed up and the Mexican siege tightened.

The Alamo, in the end, was a victory for the veteran, disciplined Mexican regulars. Santa Anna's attack order lists only veteran units to participate in the attack, and goes on to say "Recruits deficient in training will remain in their quarters".

The Alamo held a large collection of cannon and of muskets captured from the Mexicans the previous December. It may be that each Texican marksman had a stack of loaded Mexican muskets by them on the walls when the final attack began. It took discipline, and some serious cajones, for the Mexican army to charge those walls with bayonets and scaling ladders, not once but three times before the fort was taken. But the losses they suffered were just too heavy to be sustained -- the trained disciplined regular army veterans could not be replaced by recruits.

The rest is, as they say, history. The siege of the Alamo took 13 days, the actual battle at San Jacinto only took 20 minutes. The hastily organized and outnumbered Texicans easily routed a large part of Santa Anna's remaining regular army, captured Santa Anna, and lines on maps began to move.

- Phil