Today in Texas History – January 18

From the Annals of the Revolution –  In 1836, Jim Bowie arrived at the Alamo in San Antonio.  Bowie was notorious as an Indian fighter, duelist and land speculator.  He was actually involved in one of the largest attempted land swindles in U.S. history in Louisiana, but was never able to complete the scheme.  He was not only a slave owner and trader, but a slave smuggler as well with a scheme that made him rich off of smuggling, buying and selling slaves.  After coming to Texas, he renounced his U.S. citizenship, became a Mexican citizen and married into the influential Veramendi family of San Antonio.

He arrived at the Alamo with about 30 volunteers and initially was of the mind that the crumbling mission was indefensible against the Mexican Army on the march.  He later became convinced that San Antonio must be held at all costs – most likely by the commander James Neill.  One of his cadre, James Bonham circulated a resolution decreeing that The Alamo must be held and Bowie signed it.  It would be his death warrant along with the other defenders of The Alamo.

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