A Guide to the Jóse Antonio Menchaca Reminiscences, 1807-1836.
Born in San Antonio to Juan Mariano and María Luz (Guerra) Menchaca, Texas, José Antonio Menchaca (1800-1879) fought as a Tejano officer during the Texas Revolution. Before his marriage to Teresa Ramón, the mother of his four children, in 1836 he also fought in several of Mexico’s battles for independence from Spain. Granted amnesty by General Santa Anna at the Alamo, Menchaca left before the battle and later entered the Texan Army. In the army, Menchaca, a captain, gained renown at the Battle of San Jacinto in 1836 with Juan N. Seguín’s company of Texas Mexicans. He returned to San Antonio afterward, where he was active during its development as an alderman and mayor pro tem in July 1838. In September 1842, under the leadership of General Adrián Woll he was injured while defending San Antonio against an invasion by the Mexican Army. Soon after being taken prisoner in a skirmish, Menchaca was released under the condition that he end his career as a Texas soldier. Menchaca never served in the military again. Later, Menchaca became an honored member of the Texas Veterans. Around 1870, he became an activist on behalf of the Tejano population, often testifying in court for members of the community. The town of Menchaca in Travis County, Texas, is named in his honor.
Coalson, George O. "Menchaca, Jose Antonio (1800-79),"Handbook of Texas Online. Accessed Feb. 11, 2011. http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/fme12.
Matovina, Timothy"José Antonio Menchaca: Narrating a Tejano Life, " in Tejano Leadership in Mexican and Revolutionary Texas, edited by Jesús de la Teja, 171-192.
The José Antonio Menchaca Reminiscences, 1807-1836, contains Menchaca’s unpublished memoir dictated to newspaper reporter Charles M. Barnes when Menchaca was 76 years old. In these volumes, Menchaca describes his imprisonment by the Spanish during San Antonio’s rebellion in the Texas Revolution, the Battle of San Jacinto, and includes other accounts of his military and personal accomplishments during and after the Texas Revolution. The memoir also focuses on Menchaca’s perceptions of Tejano culture and legacy.
This collection is open for research use.
Jóse Antonio Menchaca Reminiscences, 1807-1836, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, The University of Texas at Austin.
Basic processing and cataloging of this collection was supported with funds from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC) for the Briscoe Center’s "History Revealed: Bringing Collections to Light" project, 2009-2011.
Detailed Description of the Papers