Presentation on theme: "Foreigners in Their Own Land. Loss of Land After the Treaty of Guadalupe was signed, only about 2,000 Mexican headed South of the new border. The majority."— Presentation transcript:
Foreigners in Their Own Land
Loss of Land After the Treaty of Guadalupe was signed, only about 2,000 Mexican headed South of the new border. The majority stayed behind in the land they still called home (about 100,000 by some estimates) Many disputes followed regarding the rightful ownership of Mexican Land by its owners in US Courts even up to this day.
Loss of Cultural Rights US citizens of Mexican descent lost some 20 million acres of land and the guarantee that the new government would respect their culture and language was often violated. In Texas, English became the official law of the land and kids were punished for speaking Spanish in schools.
Racial Injustices On the frontier areas, US merchants often exaggerated the fear of “Mexican bandits” because this way the US would build military installations that would purchase goods and services of local businesses. (Acuna 2000:59) US merchants even fought Mexican merchants in border towns like Brownsville and Matamoros. In 1855, US merchants lynched 11 Mexicans along the Nueces River. Two years later white traders killed 75 Mexican competitors in San Antonio. At Goliad, the townspeople killed several Mexicans because the Mexicans drove carts on public roads (Acuna 2000:63)
Texan Rangers In Arizona, Texan “Cowboys” formed gangs that raided defenseless Mexican villages. The Texans showed little respect for women or children. Without violence the white elite could not have maintained control. The Texans Rangers played the role of the enforcer. From multiple accounts and documents, the Texan Rangers were in many case paid assassins.
California Gold Rush On January 24, 1848 James W. Marshall found gold on John Sutter’s property. Thousands of outsiders flooded into California. It made the Mexicans in California an instant minority! By mid-1849, nearly 100,000 miners were panning for gold- 80,000 were white, 8,000 were Mexicans, 5,000 were South Americans, and several thousand were Europeans.
Decline of the Californios With the Gold Rush almost over, the Yankees turned their attention to securing more land for themselves. In 1851 the US Congress set in motion a way to challenge all Spanish and Mexican land grants by establishing a land court and requiring all owners to prove legal title. Some of the forty-niners who failed at mining wanted something to show for their trouble. So they took land-- some of which belonged to the Californios. Some miners squatted, or lived on the ranchos without the permission of the landowners. Many squatters seized land violently, killing cattle, burning crops, and chasing Californios out of their homes. Others used the courts to make unfair claims on the Californios' property.
Governor Andres Pio Pico Last Mexican Governor of California who was of Spanish, African, Italian and native American descent. He was born in San Gabriel Mission in 1801 and became governor in 1832. During the Mexican American War, his army killed 18 North Americans in Battle of San Pascual. Ultimately, his forces are outnumbered and he is forced to surrender in 1847.
Acts of Violence Juanita, a former prostitute, killed a white miner who forced himself into her house and tried to force himself on her. She killed him with a knife to defend her honor. She was tried quickly and sentenced to be hanged publicly, eventhough she was pregnant. It is estimated that 597 Mexicans were lynched in the US between 1848 and 1928. At least 163 Mexicans were lynched in California between 1848 and 1860 (Acuna2000:115).
Vigilante Committees Several “vigilante” groups formed throughout the large cities in California to “keep order”. In fact, many of them committed acts of violence against Mexican miners and other “foreigners”. On July 15, 1849, a group attacked a Chilean community in San Francisco where they killed a mother and sexually assaulted her daughter (Bean and Rawls 1988:110)
Joaquin Murrieta Some myths say he was Chilean but he was originally from Sonora. And the best known “bandit” in California. He was a miner who was discriminated by Anglo miners of 1849 legend in Northern California. Stories tell of his brother being hanged and his wife being raped. He formed a group of about 50 to 80 other outlaws and robbed stagecoaches and got revenged on the men that killed his brother and raped his wife. He was just 18 years old when this started and killed several law enforcement who were sent out to kill him. They finally killed him in 1853, cut his head and parade it throughout several towns.
Juan Cortina Juan “Cheno” Cortina was another Mexican Outlaw from the region of Brownsville Texas. He came from a well off family. Legend has it he killed an officer who was pistol whipping a Mexican worker he knew and insulted him. So he shot him. In 1859, he left to Mexico with some of his followers because he knew he would not get a fair trial in the new Anglo courts. Cortina went to Tamaulipas where from 1861 to 1867 he defended the state against the French and became for a time its military governor as well as a general in the Mexican Army. From his Mexican base Cortina allegedly led rustling operations against Anglo ranchers north of the border. (Acuna:65).
Tiburcio Vazquez He was born in Monterey in 1835. About 1853, he was involved in a shooting of a law enforcement and fled to the mountains with other followers (or social rebels) attracted by the social inequalities of the times and who also saw an easy opportunity to enrich themselves by stealing. His “gang” operated for about 20 year until he was caught and hanged.
Outlaws or Social Bandits? What do you think?
Californios Disappear In Southern California, White Americans became the majority in the 1870’S. Lower class Mexicans were also called “greasers” and “cholos”