Hijos de la Gran Guerra: The Creation of the Mexican American Identity in Texas, 1836-1929
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Following the Texas Revolution, the Tejano community made a conscious decision to begin the long process towards accommodation within the American system. This included political alliances between the Tejano landholding elite and major Anglo Texan political figures, such as Sam Houston and John “Rip” Ford. During this era, the Tejano community made alliances of convenience with Anglo Texan politicians in support of the Southern Confederacy during the American Civil War. This alliance is best explained by parallels drawn by Tejano politicians between the ideals of Mexican Federalism and the local rule promised by the Southern Confederacy. By the turn of the twentieth century, Anglo-Tejano relations had resumed their antebellum status quo of racial violence and societal marginalization had returned. It is during the early twentieth century that the Tejano community made the decision to embrace a Mexican American Identity that emphasized political participation and loyalty to the United States. The Mexican American identity in the Tejano community was galvanized during these years by the upheaval caused by the Mexican Revolution, the Plan of San Diego and the First World War. The Mexican Revolution and the Plan of San Diego made many Tejanos reject their earlier Mexicanist identity. The United States military, the Spanish language print media and the Catholic Church played important roles in fascilitating the shift of Tejanos towards a Mexican American Identity. This dissertation concludes that the Tejano community embraced a Mexican American identity earlier that the prevailing scholarship believes. This is due in large part to the Tejano military participation in the First World War, the efforts of pro-American Spanish language newspapers and the Catholic Church.
Morales, Ralph Edward (2015). Hijos de la Gran Guerra: The Creation of the Mexican American Identity in Texas, 1836-1929. Doctoral dissertation, Texas A & M University. Available electronically from