Monday, March 19, 2012

Did Santa Anna have a personal vendetta against Jim Bowie?

Two affronts that were committed by Santa Anna on the first day of the Alamo siege were probably aimed directly at Jim Bowie.  First Santa Anna hung his blood-red, death-flag from the top of the San Fernando Cathedral bell tower, then he placed his first battery of cannon in the backyard of the Veramendi Palace.  Better sites were available for both.

The death flag was located over a mile from the Alamo and could barely be seen from the walls, while the cannon could have been placed closer to the Alamo, with better cover, and still across the river from, and beyond the range of the Alamo sharpshooters.

The sites Santa Anna did choose were both significant in the life of Jim Bowie.  In the San Fernando Cathedral, on April 25, 1831, Bowie had married Maria-Ursula-Fructuosa Veramendi-Navarro, the beautiful daughter of the Vice-Governor of the Mexican state of Coahuila-Tejas.  In September, 1833, as the senior male member of the Veramendi family, Bowie had gained control of the Veramendi Palace, when his wife and children, and her parents, all died from Cholera.

After joining the Catholic Church and swearing allegiance to Mexico in 1830, Bowie had given every indication that he intended to become an exemplary, Mexican citizen.  But, following the death of his Texas family, Bowie became an instigator and leader in acts of rebellion against Santa Anna and his government.

Without a doubt these acts would have caused Santa Anna to consider Bowie a turncoat.

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