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Antonio López de Santa Anna

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Antonio López de Santa Anna

Post by Guest on Sat Oct 02, 2010 4:05 pm

Public opinion was sharply divided. Some communities supported the rebellion for a variety of reasons. Others, including Gonzales, declared their loyalty to Mexican President Antonio López de Santa Anna's centralist government.[10] Local leaders began calling for a Consultation to determine whether a majority of settlers favored independence, a return to federalism, or the status quo. Although some leaders worried that Mexican officials would see this type of gathering as a step toward revolution, by the end of August most communities had agreed to send delegates to the Consultation, scheduled for October 15.[11] In the interim, many communities formed militias to protect themselves from a potential attack by military forces.[9][12]
On September 10, a Mexican soldier bludgeoned a Gonzales resident, which led to widespread outrage and public protests.[13] Mexican authorities felt it unwise to leave the settlers with a weapon.[14] Colonel Domingo de Ugartechea, commander of all Mexican troops in Texas, sent a corporal and five enlisted men to retrieve the cannon that had been given to the colonists.[13][14] Many of the settlers believed Mexican authorities were manufacturing an excuse to attack the town and eliminate the militia. In a town meeting, three citizens voted to hand over the gun to forestall an attack; the remainder, including alcalde Andrew Ponton, voted to stand their ground.[15] According to historian Stephen Hardin, "the cannon became a point of honor and an unlikely rallying symbol. Gonzales citizens had no intention of handing over the weapon at a time of growing tension."[13] The soldiers were escorted from town without the cannon.[13]





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