Texas Independence Day
LA PORTE, April 21, 2012 - The battle for Texas took place on the marshes of the San Jacinto River. On the afternoon of April 21, 1836, General Sam Houston’s battle plan called for a charge the next day at dawn, but after discussions with his troops he decided not to wait any longer.
In broad daylight, General Houston and 700 Texas freedom fighters, including Capt. Juan Seguin's Tejanos (Texans of Spanish descent), marched double-time in a single line to independence – taking on a professional army more than twice their size.
The Texans charged yelling, “Remember the Alamo! Remember Goliad!” Santa Anna's army, caught napping, was routed. Most of the enemy were killed or wounded. Those remaining were captured or disappeared - the victory was stunning. The rest, as they say, is Texas history..
To the dismay of those that had lost loved ones at the Alamo and Goliad, General Santa Anna’s life was spared. Instead, General Houston held Santa Anna as a prisoner of war until negotiations between the two countries could be made.
Texas became a free and independent nation that day. While Texas had declared her independence from Mexico a month earlier on March 2, it was at this moment that she actually became a Republic and remained so for nine years.
In 1936, Texans built the San Jacinto Monument (pictured right) to honor the Texas War of Independence and General Houston’s victory. It looks like the Washington Monument with a star on top – but of course, it’s taller.
Not much is said now-a-days about Texas Independence or San Jacinto Day. It is not even a school holiday anymore. But this weekend, proud Texans will be at the San Jacinto Battleground to honor the few brave Texans and Tejanos that fought for freedom from Mexico.