December 16th, 1826 – The Fredonian Rebellion

Today-In-History

Benjamin W. Edwards was an American colonist in early Texas, and it was on December 16th, 1826 that he rode into Mexican-controlled Nacogdoches, Texas, and declares himself ruler of the Republic of Fredonia. Five days later saw the outbreak of what became known as Fredonian Rebellion.

Fredonian Rebellion 680

The rebellion (December 21st, 1826 – January 23rd, 1827) was the first attempt by Anglo settlers in Texas to secede from Mexico. The settlers, led by Empresario Haden Edwards, declared independence from Mexican Texas and created the Republic of Fredonia near Nacogdoches. The short-lived republic encompassed the land the Mexican government had granted to Edwards in 1825 and included areas that had been previously settled. Edwards’s actions soon alienated these established residents, and the increasing hostilities between them and settlers recruited by Edwards led the Mexican government to revoke Edwards’s contract.

fredonian-rebellionIn late December 1826, a group of Edwards’s supporters took control of the region by arresting and removing from office several municipality officials affiliated with the established residents. Supporters declared their independence from Mexico. Although the nearby Cherokee tribe initially signed a treaty to support the new republic, overtures from Mexican authorities and respected Empresario Stephen F. Austin convinced tribal leaders to repudiate the rebellion. On January 31st, 1827, a force of over 100 Mexican soldiers and 250 militiamen from Austin’s colony marched into Nacogdoches to restore order. Many of the participants, including Edwards, fled to the United States. A local merchant was arrested and sentenced to death, but later paroled.

The rebellion led Mexican President Guadalupe Victoria to increase the military presence in the area. As a result, several hostile tribes in the area halted their raids on settlements and agreed to a peace treaty. The Comanche abided by this treaty for many years. Fearing that through the rebellion the United States hoped to gain control of Texas, the Mexican government severely curtailed immigration to the region from the US. This new immigration law was bitterly opposed by colonists and caused increasing dissatisfaction with Mexican rule. Some historians consider the Fredonian Rebellion to be the beginning of the Texas Revolution. In the words of one historian, the rebellion was “premature, but it sparked the powder for later success.”

“Today in History” on The Pandora Society dot com is primarily focused on Victorian and Edwardian history and does not always have a direct connection to Steampunk, Dieselpunk, or whatever punk; in fact it rarely does, but it is our hope that in sharing these historical events they might serve as some inspiration to the writers in our community to create potential alternative history stories which we look forward to reading 🙂


 

One Response to “December 16th, 1826 – The Fredonian Rebellion

  • Ah, Freedonia. Where women can be doctors, writers, actors. At least if her name is Martha Jones.

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