One concept that’s difficult to understand is that no hero is all good . . . and no enemy is all bad.
In the Bible, we remember Rahab the Harlot who hid two Hebrew spies and helped them escape from the city.
At the Battle of Goliad we encounter Francita Alavez–only that may not be her real name. It could be Francisca or Panchita. People assumed that she was the wife of Mexico’s Captain Alavez because she arrived with him, but in later years we learned that she was NOT his wife. (He’d abandoned his real wife back in Mexico.) So we really know almost nothing about her, but Dr. Joseph Barnard and Dr. Jack Shackelford, two of the Goliad prisoners who were spared, tell us that she was there and that she helped the Texas prisoners greatly.
“Francita” and Captain Alavez arrived late at Goliad, coming from Copano Bay where she took pity on Major William Miller’s Natchez volunteer prisoners who were being held by General Urrea’s men. They were bound so tightly they couldn’t feel their arms and hands. Francita took pity on them and persuaded the Mexican soldiers to loosen their ropes a little and to give them food. At Goliad, she used her powers of persuasion to convince Portillo not to execute Miller’s men with the other prisoners. She also helped several prisoners escape the night before the massacre, and she his them, thus saving their lives. Even when she had to leave with Captain Alavez to march on to Victoria, she continued to send messages and aid back to the prisoners she’s hidden.
When the Mexican army retreated after Santa Anna’s defeat at San Jacinto, “Francita” followed her captain to Matamoros. There again she found Texans held prisoner who needed her help.
When Alavez went back to Mexico City after the war, he abandoned “Francita” and left her penniless. The Texans she had befriended returned her favor by helping her in her time of need.
- Can you think of other enemies during the Texas Revolution who were not all bad?
- Can you think of some heroes during the Texas Revolution who were not all good?