DRT celebrates Gonzales Day

Submitted to the Empire-Tribune

Oct. 2 is Gonzales Day, which marks the Battle of Gonzales and the beginning of the Texas Revolution.

It is one of 12 Texas Honor Days designated by The Daughters of the Republic of Texas to commemorate important events and people in Texas history. Significant are the pioneers who fought in the Battle of Gonzales, which took place on Oct. 2, 1835.

Pictured is a portion of a museum mural of Texian soldiers fighting in the Battle of Gonzales, which was referred to as the "Lexington of Texas" because it was the first battle of the Texas Revolution.

The events surrounding the battle centered on a small cannon provided to the citizens of Gonzales in 1831 for defense against hostile Indians. When Santa Anna issued a disarmament decree in 1835, a request was made for the return of the cannon. Soldiers were sent to collect the cannon, but Gonzales citizens refused. 

Additional Mexican troops were sent to carry out the order and the citizens of Gonzales called for Texian help. Tensions escalated, and on the morning of Oct, 2, 1835, the Texians attacked the Mexican detachment.

During the skirmish, the leaders of the Mexican and Texian forces met and the request for the cannon was made again. In response, the Texians pointed to the cannon, which they had positioned at the rear of the Mexican troops, and said, "There it is — come and take it." The little cannon was fired, and after a few rifle volleys, the short fight ended and the Mexican troops withdrew.  Known as the "Come and Take It" cannon, this little cannon fired the first shot for Texas independence.

Though the Battle of Gonzales lasted only a few minutes, and the shot of the cannon was harmless, it provided the catalyst for Texans to realize that there was no turning back. The Texas Revolution had begun! 

For more information about the Daughters of the Republic of Texas go to www.drtinfo.org. For information about joining the local Bosque River Chapter call chapter registrar Carol Dismukes at (972) 977-7727).

The Daughters of the Republic of Texas is dedicated to the preservation and education of Texas history. For more information on Texas Honor Days and the work of the DRT, please visit the website at www.drtinfo.org. Information on membership can be found on that website or call Bosque River Chapter Registrar Toni Morgan at (254) 396-1162. 

The next meeting of the Bosque River Chapter is scheduled for Oct. 13 at 2 p.m. The place is to be determined but you may call Chapter President Judith Moore D’Amico (254) 898-0535) for details.