William Mosby Eastland was born in Kentucky on March 21, 1806 to General Thomas Butler Eastland and the former Nancy Mosby. William was one of at least about six siblings, mostly males, born to the couple before Nancy died in 1814. Shortly afterward, his father remarried and at least three more children were added to the family. The Eastlands were a military family. As he came up through the ranks, Thomas Butler is known to have served as Army quartermaster in Kentucky before William was born. Prior to the War of 1812, the family relocated to White County, Tennessee where they apparently remained until Thomas Butler died in 1860.Continue reading William Mosby Eastland
The Fredonian Rebellion was in some ways a foreshadowing of the Texas Revolution. In 1826, an empresario named Haden (or Hayden) Edwards, who had been operating under a colonization grant of 1825 from Mexico, clashed with Hispanic residents of the area near Nacogdoches. His grant authorized him to settle 800 families in the area. Edwards posted notices asserting land rights to the designated area, including land already occupied by other Hispanic families (apparently in violation of his contract with Mexico). Essentially, Edwards’ group felt that their land rights were superior to those of the Hispanic residents. This was not an uncommon situation in early Texas, and the Hispanic residents led by Gil Y’Barbo resisted. With deference to the Hispanic residents, Mexico nullified or rescinded Edwards’ grant. Edwards then declared that the area he had been granted was no longer subject to Mexican rule. He called it Fredonia, believed to be a modified form of the word freedom.
Joel Poinsett is not known to have ever resided in Texas but was a career public servant and diplomat whose efforts could possibly have led to the addition of Texas to the United States prior to the Texas Revolution.
On December 7, 1835, Ben Milam was killed by a Mexican sniper during the Siege of Béxar in which Mexican forces were driven from the San Antonio area. After the battle, the Texas forces occupied the Alamo and surrounding areas, setting the stage for Gen. Santa Anna’s own siege to retake it several weeks later.
There is some speculation about the location of the actual tree that was used by the sniper, but it is traditionally thought to be in the center of the town as it then existed and close enough to provide a line of sight to the Veramendi Palace, located on the west side of the river.