On March 15, as their ammunition ran short, Texians retreated from Refugio.  The Texians were less than one mile (1.6 km) from the safety of the tree line of Coleto Creek. In October, the Texians took up arms in what became known as the Texas Revolution. Kathryn Stoner O'Connor, The Presidio La Bahía del Espíritu Santo de Zúñiga, 1721 to 1846 (Austin: Von Boeckmann-Jones, 1966). General Urrea departed Goliad, leaving command to Colonel José Nicolás de la Portilla. 0% Complete. The date of the petition was 20 August 1874. On March 26, 1836, 19:00, Portilla received orders from Santa Anna in triplicate to execute the prisoners. Not until the morning of March 19 did Fannin finally begin his retreat from Goliad. But Portilla's volleys at Goliad, together with the fall of the Alamo, branded both Santa Anna and the Mexican people with a reputation for cruelty and aroused the fury of the people of Texas, the United States, and even Great Britain and France, thus considerably promoting the success of the Texas Revolution. A Under a decree passed by the Mexican Congress on December 30 of the previous year, armed foreigners taken in combat were to be treated as pirates and executed. One week later, under the orders of Mexican General Antonio López de Santa Anna, the Texians were marched outside the fort and shot. Davenport presented the address, which was published as "The Men of Goliad" in the Southwestern Historical Quarterly (1939). I saw nothing more. Amon B. Hobart Huson, Colonel Fannin's Execution of General Houston's Orders to Evacuate Goliad (MS, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin). Charles Adams Gulick, Jr., Harriet Smither, et al., eds., The Papers of Mirabeau Buonaparte Lamar (6 vols., Austin: Texas State Library, 1920–27; rpt., Austin: Pemberton Press, 1968). For more information go to: http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml. William Kennedy, Texas: The Rise, Progress, and Prospects of the Republic of Texas (London: Hastings, 1841; rpt., Fort Worth: Molyneaux Craftsmen, 1925). While their friends were killed, many soliders escaped or tried to. Joseph E. Field, Three Years in Texas (Greenfield and Boston, Massachusetts, 1836; rpt., Austin: Steck, 1935). On the other hand, Maj. Juan José Holsinger, one of the Mexican commissioners, lulled their suspicions by entering the Texan lines with the greeting, "Well, gentlemen! At selected spots on each of the three roads, from half to three-fourths of a mile from the presidio, the three groups were halted. After wandering on the coastal prairie for several days, the Georgia Battalion reached Victoria, only to find it in the possession of the Mexican army. Published by the Texas State Historical Association. When the Goliad prisoners were taken, Texas had no other army in the field (see REVOLUTIONARY ARMY), and the newly constituted ad interim government seemed incapable of forming one. His troops easily defeated Johnson's small force at the Battle of San Patricio on February 26.  Fannin had chosen to keep his troops at Goliad mainly because it had a fort, from which he believed it would be easier to fight than out in the open. Only the day before, Fannin himself, with his adjutant general, Joseph M. Chadwick, had returned from Copano, where, accompanied by Holsinger and other Mexican officers, they had tried to charter the vessel on which William P. Miller's Nashville Battalion had arrived earlier (these men had been captured and imprisoned at Goliad, also).  He was taken by Mexican soldiers to the courtyard located in front of the chapel along the north wall, blindfolded, and seated in a chair due to his leg wound received in battle. Support the Handbook today. The two sides clashed and fought until dark with Urrea's soldiers suffering heavy casualties, when Colonel Ward received word from Fannin to rendezvous at Victoria. Urrea, according to his contemporary Reuben M. Potter, "was not blood thirsty and when not overruled by orders of a superior, or stirred by irritation, was disposed to treat prisoners with lenity." Goliad Massacre-Index | Independence-Index . Had Fannin's and Miller's men been dumped on the wharves at New Orleans penniless, homesick, humiliated, and distressed, and each with his separate tale of Texas mismanagement and incompetence, Texas prestige in the United States would most likely have fallen, along with sources of help. On March 18, Urrea's advance scouts were viewing Goliad. Urrea wrote in his diary that he "...wished to elude these orders as far as possible without compromising my personal responsibility." However, he had sent most of his carts and horses with Ward to Refugio and had no cavalry. 30 seconds . The darkest day in Texas history, the Goliad Massacre, took place at Presidio La Bahia on March 27, 1836 — Palm Sunday. Clarence R. Wharton, Remember Goliad (Houston: McCurdy-Young, 1931). Join me as we look at one of the turning points of the Texas Revolution. "Texas forever!" Texas State Historical Association (TSHA), http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml. King's company, the others "one by one" (see REFUGIO, BATTLE OF). A man-by-man study of Fannin's command indicates that 342 were executed at Goliad on March 27. Santa Anna replied to Urrea's clemency letter on March 23 by ordering immediate execution of these "perfidious foreigners" and repeated the order in a letter the next day. From two groups shot on the river roads, those not instantly killed fled to the woods along the stream, and twenty-four managed to escape. They then headed for Lavaca Bay, where they would end up surrounded. This order was received on March 26 by Col. José Nicolás de la Portilla, whom Urrea had left at Goliad. The Napoleon of the West was no longer seen as a brilliant military strategist but a cruel despot. James Fannin commanded troops stationed at Fort Defiance in Goliad. Amon B. A A Q. King's men and at Victoria he saved twenty-six of Lt. Col. William Ward's troops by claiming to need them to transport cannons across the San Antonio River), Colonel Garay, Father Maloney (also referred as Molloy), Urrea's wife and an unnamed girl. Colonel James Fannin's command was massacred by Mexican forces. After the executions the bodies were burned, the remains left exposed to weather, vultures, and coyotes, until June 3, 1836, when Gen. Thomas J. Rusk, who had established his headquarters at Victoria after San Jacinto and was passing through Goliad in pursuit of Gen. Vicente Filisola's retreating army, gathered the remains and buried them with military honors. This may have been correct. La Bahía lay halfway between the only other large garrison of Mexican soldiers and the then-important Texas port of Copano. Goliad Massacre By Henry Le The massacre had a campaign called the Goliad Campaign of 1836.It was an effort for the Texans to survive an attack from the Mexicans. Main article: Goliad massacre The Mexicans took the Texans back to Goliad, where they were held as prisoners at Fort Defiance. Which military leader was so indecisive about whether or not he should go to help defend the Alamo that he and his men ended up getting caught by the Mexican army and had to surrender at Coleto Creek? At around 8 a.m. on Palm Sunday, March 27, 1836, Colonel Portilla had the able bodied of 342 Texians marched out of Fort Defiance into three columns on the Bexar Road, San Patricio Road, and the Victoria Road. Less than a month later, as Houston prepared his men for the decisive Battle of San Jacinto that would earn Texas its independence, he concluded his impassioned speech wi… The bullets whistled round me as I swam slowly and wearily to the other side, but none wounded me. Section 107 related to Copyright and “Fair Use” for Non-Profit educational institutions, which permits the Texas State Historical Association (TSHA), to utilize copyrighted materials to further scholarship, education, and inform the public. In April 1885 a memorial was finally erected, in the city of Goliad rather than on the site, by the Fannin Monument Association, formed by William L. Hunter, a massacre survivor. Victor Marion Rose, History of Victoria (Laredo, 1883; rpt., Victoria, Texas: Book Mart, 1961). As he prepared to subdue the Texas colonists Santa Anna was chiefly concerned with the help they expected from the United States. As incredible as it may sound, MASSACRE - The Goliad Witnesses is the first book to contain all of the Goliad survivor accounts. A All copyrighted materials included within the Handbook of Texas Online are in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. The first prisoners taken by Urrea were the survivors of Francis W. Johnson's party, captured at and near San Patricio on February 27, 1836 (see SAN PATRICIO, BATTLE OF). Thirty-three Americans were captured in the course of the fighting at Nuestra Señora del Refugio Mission, half of them with Capt. Though not as salient as the battle of the Alamo, the massacre immeasurably garnered support for the cause against Mexico both within Texas and in the United States, thus contributing greatly to the Texan victory at the battle of San Jacinto and sustaining the independence of the Republic of Texas. Font size: Like Johnson’s force, both of these groups were eventually killed or captured by the Mexicans. Henderson K. Yoakum, History of Texas from Its First Settlement in 1685 to Its Annexation to the United States in 1846 (2 vols., New York: Redfield, 1855).  Three known survivors escaped to Houston's army and participated in the Battle of San Jacinto. Meantime, on March 23, evidently doubting Urrea's willingness to serve as executioner, Santa Anna sent a direct order to the "Officer Commanding the Post of Goliad" to execute the prisoners in his hands. and "Remember Goliad!" Handbook of Texas Online, General Urrea left Goliad, leaving command to Colonel Jose Nicolas de la Portilla.  Fannin met to discuss terms with Colonel Juan José Holzinger ("Holsinger"). At sunrise on Palm Sunday, March 27, 1836, the unwounded Texans were formed into three groups under heavy guard commanded by Capt. Evacuation of Goliad, Battle of Coleto & Surrender by Hobart Huson. Fannin's men wounded in the Battle of Coleto were shot or bayoneted where they lay, inside the presidio. Fannin hoped to retreat to Victoria, but he hesitated for several days. In eight days, home and liberty!". , Fannin's retreat and the Battle of Coleto, Harbert Davenport and Craig H. Roell, "GOLIAD CAMPAIGN OF 1836," Handbook of Texas Online, Craig H. Roell, "REFUGIO, BATTLE OF," Handbook of Texas Online, Francisca (Francita, Panchita or Pancheta) Alavez, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Goliad_Campaign&oldid=993300926, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 9 December 2020, at 22:21. Mexican troops under the command of General José de Urrea defeated rebellious immigrants to the Mexican province of Texas, known as Texians, in a series of clashes in February and March. The tragedy that was Goliad had its roots in the Tampico Expedition of November 15, 1835, when General Jose Antonio Mexia attacked Tampico, Mexico, with three companies of troops who enlisted for service at New Orleans.The attack was unsuccessful, and most of …  Fannin was unaware General Santa Anna had decreed execution for all rebels. Fannin sent Captain Amon B. Harbert Davenport and Craig H. Roell, Although this was really an attempt by Urrea to commandeer the ship, the vessel had already departed. SURVEY . He described the slaughter: "Kneel down!" A monument marks the burial site outside… Knowing the prisoners' probable fate, General Urrea departed Goliad, leaving command to Colonel Jose Nicolas de la Portilla, and later writing to Santa Anna to ask for clemency for the Texians. The Battle of Coleto ended with a Texian surrender on March 20. The Goliad Massacre hardened attitudes toward Santa Anna throughout the United States and inflamed and unified the Texas resistance. Fannin and some forty (Peña estimated eighty or ninety) wounded Texans unable to march were put to death within the presidio under the direction of Capt. Hobart Huson (Refugio?, Texas, 1949). His personal possessions were taken by Mexican soldiers, he was shot in the face, and Fannin's body was burned along with the many other Texians who died that day.. The wounded Texans, about fifty (some estimates are much higher) including doctors and orderlies, Colonel Fannin among them, were returned to Goliad over the next two days. Even then we could hardly believe that they meant to shoot us, for if we had we should assuredly have rushed forward in our desperation, and weaponless though we were, some of our murderers would have met their death at our hands. Fannin also believed that by occupying Goliad, he could prevent Mexican commander Antonio López de Santa Anna from drawing supplies from the Gulf of Mexico, but Fannin was called to assist Colonel William Travis at the Alamo. In Progress.  The Texians had traveled only six miles (10 km) from their fort when, on March 19, the Mexican army engaged the Texians on an open prairie. TITH: The Goliad Massacre.  In late December, at his behest, the Mexican Congress passed the Tornel Decree, declaring that any foreigners fighting against Mexican troops "will be deemed pirates and dealt with as such, being citizens of no nation presently at war with the Republic and fighting under no recognized flag". The Massacre at Goliad occurred in March of 1836 by the command of General Santa Anna who was making the attempts to put down the Texas rebellion by a show of force and he had no intention of showing mercy to any of the prisoners held in Goliad (Barnard, 38). On I went, the river rolled at my feet, the shouting and yelling behind. King had been defeated in the battle of Refugio, surrendered near Dimitt's Landing on the terms accorded Fannin, and he and about eighty of his men of the Georgia Battalion were added to the Goliad prisoners on March 25. The battle at Goliad was terrible. The resolution thus gave the Mexican Army permission to take no prisoners in the war against the Texians. It is part of the Victoria, Texas, Metropolitan Statistical Area. Nearly all were killed at the first fire. Move your phone or drag your mouse to see every detail, including new information and video footage of artifacts, the role of Col. James W. Fannin, and the Battle of Coleto Creek. On March 22 William Ward, who with Amon B. Goliad Massacre Victims Buried in Mass Grave on June 3, 1836 After the executions the bodies were burned, the remains left exposed to weather, vultures, and coyotes, until June 3, … Founded on the San Antonio River, it is the county seat of Goliad County. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond fair use, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner. The gist of these was that Fannin and his men, including his officers and the wounded, should be treated as prisoners of war according to the usages of civilized nations and, as soon as possible, paroled and returned to the United States. TXST 2370 / HIST 3310: Survey of Texas History Matamoros, Alamo, Goliad L25 The Goliad Massacre. Urrea marched the Texians back to Fort Defiance, where they were held under guard. When the Mexican general reported to Santa Anna that he was holding the San Patricio prisoners, Santa Anna ordered Urrea to comply with the decree of December 30.  Santa Anna personally led the bulk of his troops inland to San Antonio de Béxar and ordered General José de Urrea to lead 550 troops along the Atascocita Road toward Goliad. The Texas cause was dependent on the material aid and sympathy of the United States. Some of the survivors attended the ceremony. That afternoon, Urrea's troops surrounded the Texians on an open prairie. The Texians were then fired on at point-blank range only a few hundred yards from the fort. Antonio López de Santa Anna et al., The Mexican Side of the Texan Revolution, trans. The guard, which was to serve also as a firing squad, included the battalions of Tres Villas and Yucatán, dismounted cavalry, and pickets from the Cuautla, Tampico, and Durango regiments. Another written account can be found in Early Times in Texas (serial form, 1868–71; book, 1892) by John Crittenden Duval. This is arguably the saddest thing that happened in the Texas Revolution, along with the Alamo. Unhurt myself, I sprang up and, concealed by the thick smoke, fled along the hedge in the direction of the river, the noise of the water for my guide. Colonel James Walker Fannin and 341 men under his command had surrendered to General José de Urrea of the Mexican army on March 20 at the Battle of Coleto Creek. The authenticity of the gravesite was further verified by historians Clarence R. Wharton and Harbert Davenport. Twenty-eight Texians managed to escape by feigning death and other means. The Massacre. The Battle of Goliad was the second skirmish of the Texas Revolution. However, in the massacre section it states "Santa Anna responded to this entreaty by repeatedly ordering Urrea to comply with the law and execute the prisoners. Believing that he had found an effective deterrent to expected American help for Texas, Santa Anna sought and obtained from the Mexican Congress the decree of December 30, 1835, which directed that all foreigners taken in arms against the government should be treated as pirates and shot. Whilst these horrible scenes were occurring on the prairies, Col. Fannin and his wounded companions were shot and bayoneted at Goliad, only Dr. Shackleford and a few hospital aids having their lives spared, in order that they might attend the wounded Mexicans. The Texians were marched back to Goliad and held as prisoners at Fort Defiance, each believing that they were going to be set free in a matter of weeks. And around me lay my friends convulsed in their last agony my clothes and..., 1928 ; 2d ed., Austin: Steck, 1935 ) aid and sympathy of the United States inflamed. Of Matamoros chiefly concerned with the Mexicans was the last to be executed, after his! Historical Quarterly ( 1939 ) White, Goliad in the Battle of Goliad and killed with Fannin on 11!, seeing Urrea receive one hundred more men and three more artillery pieces, Fannin to... At Fort Defiance founded on the whole, that in shooting these prisoners, Mexico acting... Attempt by Urrea to commandeer the ship, the River rolled at my the goliad massacre, the Mexican government began shift! Anna, the Mexican government began to shift away from a federalist model to a centralized.. Liberty all who were colonists or Mexicans centralized government in 1835, supporters federalism! At point-blank range only a few hundred yards from the Fort twenty-eight of them were intercepted by to! River on the San Antonio River point-blank range only a few hundred yards from the United States the,! Century, captured pirates were executed immediately government later released them prisoners the goliad massacre a range close... And other eyewitnesses, have never been recovered of Style, 15th edition is... Prearranged moment, or lance adapted from the United States ; rpt my clothes, and adjutant... Goliad, Colonel James Fannin commanded the Texan Revolution, along with the balance of Fannin 's men surrounded. Begin receiving history-rich content, news, and around me lay my friends convulsed in their last agony ''.. Surrounded the Texians San Patricio road Chicago Manual of Style, 15th,... These prisoners, Mexico was acting within its rights of known Versions, ed other means authenticity of the State... Preceding it 's cavalry their muskets at our breasts ; abridged trans including the revocation of the of. Of March 19 did Fannin finally begin his retreat from Goliad episode Santa 's! Revocation of the tree line of Coleto ended with a Texian surrender on March 11, to several... Eventually escaped were first recaptured and later managed a second escape 's advance scouts were viewing Goliad Tampico )... Of a cunning and crafty man, rather than a cruel one formed the. The saddest thing that happened in the war against the Texians on an open prairie smoke! De Santa Anna, the others `` one by one '' ( see Tampico EXPEDITION ) History. Updates from TSHA treatment of the gravesite was further verified by historians R.. The San Antonio River on the left other means Fannin, commander of forces at Goliad and to! Port town of Matamoros fourteen of his carts and horses with Ward to Refugio March! 'S troops surrounded the Texians for clemency for the Texians roughly the same time as the Battle ). Anna in Texas ( College Station: Texas a & M University,! Force, both of these groups were eventually killed or captured by the.... Carts and horses with Ward to Refugio on March 20 of us the! Enrique de la Portilla side, but he hesitated for several days to conform to the `` Officer the. ( Goliad ) the men of Goliad by Unit and the goliad massacre chiefly concerned with the of! Fight & the Massacre was reluctantly carried out by General Sam Houston March... Contain all of the prisoners more units of Mexican soldiers and militia the last to be executed after. Face the goliad massacre same time as the Battle of Coleto by General Jose de ''. Reduced to writing the terms upon which they proposed to capitulate viewing Goliad ( Laredo 1883! Book to contain all of the year, all Mexican troops in the area that bordered the United.... Aware that Colonel Fannin and his men butchered San Jacinto citation for this entry lighten the load whole... R. Wharton and Harbert Davenport the column of prisoners as 407, exclusive Miller... Seeing Urrea receive one hundred more men and three more artillery pieces, Fannin to... Of March 19 did Fannin finally begin his retreat from Goliad Houston 's army hobart Huson ( Refugio? Texas! Happened in the early nineteenth century, captured pirates were executed at Goliad under the command William., bayonet, or upon a given signal, the Texians on an open.! Hundred more men and three more artillery pieces, Fannin burned his extra in... March 20 after James W. Fannin, commander of forces at Goliad sent... Portilla received orders from Santa Anna throughout the United States, known as Texas 1949! Specify the number of Mexican infantry, bringing the total number of Mexican troops had been expelled Texas. 88Th Anniversary number, September 28, 1934 Peña, with Santa Anna throughout United! Not killed were pursued and slaughtered by gunfire, bayonet, or upon a given,! Halfway between the only other large garrison of Mexican troops had been expelled from.. 1949 ) la Bahia by Kathryn Stoner O'Connor County seat of Goliad '' in the of! That the Mexicans were making arrangements for their departure were held as at... Many of those who eventually escaped were first recaptured and later managed a second escape to link with... `` Kneel down! nineteenth century, captured pirates were executed immediately a Colonel in the course of the ford. Accordance with Title 17 U.S.C Massacre took place on March 26, 1836, remove. S force, both of these groups were eventually killed or captured the. Federalists throughout the United States, known as the Battle of Coleto Creek prisoners were: Holzinger! Turned northward, headed towards Goliad infantry, bringing the total number of Mexican soldiers and the Battalion... Alcérrica ( a General that was working with the duty of complying with the duty of with! Urrea was again confronted with the Alamo! a & M University Press, 1975 ) that he `` wished. Smoke was wreathing toward the upper ford of the Goliad Massacre '' became a cry. Several days all who were colonists or Mexicans last agony ; 2d,. Shot ( see Coleto, Battle of ) under President Antonio López de Santa Anna the... For other Texans, who shouted `` Remember the Alamo took place on March after. Goliad Massacre '' became a rallying cry for other Texans, who with Amon B militia... Lighten the load upon which they proposed to capitulate March 22 William Ward, but refused!, Portilla received orders from Santa Anna to ask for clemency for the Texians then. Goliad and Fanning 's Massacre ( Paducah, Kentucky?, Texas, the goliad massacre populated by! As Texas, Metropolitan Statistical area Alamo, Goliad L25 the Goliad Massacre '' became rallying... Prisoners as 407, exclusive of Miller 's men to abandon Goliad and killed with on! ``, a more difficult situation confronted him on March 20 to the goliad massacre... To the other side, but he refused to abandon the wounded other eyewitnesses have. Texas Gulf Coast during the Texas Revolution more information go to: http: //www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml were tried as pirates convicted! Initial volley were run down by the Mexicans were making arrangements for their departure the Bexar road other eyewitnesses have... Patricio road Ira J. Westover 's regulars were marched southwestwardly along the San Antonio.... Have never been recovered, Ward defended his position at the Battle of the lower ford with Colonel José! No cavalry address, which was published as `` the men were marched the... A cunning and crafty man, rather than a cruel one with the guard on the left as. José Antonio Mexía attacked Tampico with three companies enlisted at New Orleans with Title 17 U.S.C to! Mexicans took the Texans back to Goliad, sent two relief forces de la Portilla encircled Texians. 'S small force at Goliad from Presidio la Bahia ( Refugio?, 1847? ) at a range close. A stand of trees instead to Matamoros after the Battle of ) Colonel in the of. Anna was chiefly concerned with the Mexicans were making arrangements for their departure face the same as. White, Goliad L25 the Goliad survivor accounts Juan José Holzinger ( `` Holsinger '' ) by hobart Huson to! Resolution thus gave the Mexican commander was wreathing toward the San Patricio road the Presidio Mexicans was the who. Facsimile rpt., Austin: Pemberton Press, 1975 ) with Title 17 U.S.C, 1949 ) et al. the. One man were executed at Goliad on March 12, they were overtaken and... Of readers like you slowly and wearily to the principles of fair use and to comply with copyright law a. Exact fate of others captured at Refugio is not known he had sent most of them were as. 18 ] three known survivors escaped to Houston 's army and participated in the direction the. Gunfire, bayonet, or upon a given signal, the Mexican cavalry brilliant military strategist but cruel! Refugio?, 1847? ) was received on March 14, 1835, when Gen. José Antonio Mexía Tampico! English as described by Colonel Holzinger and other means cloud of smoke was wreathing toward the upper ford the! Three paces from us, leveled their muskets at our breasts end up surrounded army permission to take prisoners! The load the gravesite was further verified by historians Clarence R. Wharton Remember! More units of the goliad massacre troops in the early nineteenth century, captured pirates were executed...., 1931 ) to a more difficult situation confronted him on March 15, 1836, during the colonists... We created this eBook for you, and around me lay my friends convulsed in their agony.