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A video can be viewed at: InGeneral Santa Ana, the hero of Puebla, rode north to settle the matter of illegal immigration and slavery once and for all. After initial success in Bejar, where the rebels had overrun federal troops garrisoned in an abandoned mission, tragedy struck.
Mexican forces were defeated, and the general taken hostage. Words are slippery things, they make pictures, and with much telling, become myths. Though the Alamo is the very image of Texas, its story has the power to cause both pride and pain. On June 13 around 7 p. Loaded in back was a huge statue of St. Anthony, curiously mounted on an armature that transected the white figure at mid-point. Four men lifted the figure from the truck bed, and after setting it on the ground, flipped the statue upside-down.
A small replica of the Alamo church seemed to crush the saint as it rose to the top of the inverted figure, which was hoisted on shoulders and then slowly marched through the plaza. A group of men and women holding lilies followed behind as the procession wound its way around the square to the sound of music. Rounding the streets, a second procession, this time classic low rider cars and trucks from the O. Traditions and Latin Playaz car clubs, made the paseo.
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After several passes through the plaza, the procession, now joined by passersby and filled with children, came to a rest under the trees in front of the Alamo. The statue of St. Anthony was set on a table, and a request was made to the saint, whose image was spun while the band Los Nahuatlatos played. Anthony are often put on their head and stuck in a corner when making a request to the saint. Anthony, patron saint of this town, which is the center of Aztlan.
We are in the center that touches the south, Mexico, center of four directions … we ask St. The four actors who carried the statue, for instance, represent a Latino illegal immigrant of today, an illegal immigrant of the pre-Republic era, a slave, and a pachuco. I am not saying to the Alamo to do away with their myth. I understand that myths are very important, what their function is. If you go inside the Alamo the displays have a section about Mission life.
But it lacks in some details, like the slavery issue. It is there, but you have to read a lot. Montemayor was speaking from personal experience.
Born in South Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on May 22, his parents divorced when he was five and his father moved to Mexico City. He had no qualms about telling family and friends about his delinquency, using the stories as a means to teach others about values.
As a young adult he said he had no interest in school, was truant most of the time, ran away twice from home, once to Father Flanagan's Boys Town in Nebraska, and once to Pennsylvania and New York. He forged his birth certificate to join the Navy at the age of fifteen. He survived the sinking of his ship and when his true age was discovered he was honorably discharged and sent home.
When he returned to San Antonio, his mother, Berta Urcullu, being at her wifs end, sent him to his father, Arturo, in Mexico to " straighten him out. Instead he was greeted with a warm embrace and his father asked, "What's the matter with you, Ernest? Why are you giving your mother so much trouble?
He told him that many of the persons in the book were his ancestors, including Diego de Montemayor, the founder of Monterrey, and Alberto del Canto, the founder of Saltillo. All of a sudden Montemayor recalled, "I felt ten feet tall. Recently, when I started to write his memoirs, he confessed to me that his delinquency was the result of his search for a father figure who could give him the guidance, love, and discipline he sorely needed, a void not unusual for a child growing up in a broken home.
After his visit with his father, he dedicated himself to finishing school and obtained an advanced degree while in the Air Force.
When he came back home from Mexico, he went to the San Antonio Public Library and began to copy book and magazine articles and any other information he could find about his ancestry. Thus began the life-long habit of accumulating a library. One of his main objectives was to use his library in support of a Hispanic hereditary society. He found that there existed approximately societies in the country, such as the Sons and Daughters of the American Revolution, but none dedicated to the Spanish pioneers of America.
In he incorporated a non-profit organization under the name "The Society of Spanish Pioneers and Patriots of America" but sadly, was never able to launch this part of his dreams.
One of his ancestors, surnamed Grima, had served under Galvez during the American Revolution, and he was very disappointed that Galvez, a governor of Louisiana, and-in effect-the commander in the Deep South during the American Revolution, has never received proper recognition for his courageous deeds in American history.
During the U. Government approval is required to accept gifts from foreign countries and the Spanish Ambassador, Jaime de Alba, called on Col. Montemayor, who knew the King, to make the presentation in justification to Congress.
The statue was accepted and is now located next to the U.
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Montemayor inspired many other persons to follow his lead in genealogical research. His first cousin, Gloria Villa Cadena, who passed away inwas the wife of the late honorable Judge Carlos Cadena. She paid him a visit when he lived in Washington D. C and became inspired by his library. She came back home to start her own research and library and founded Los Bexarenos Genealogical Society, a self-help group organized to train other persons in the art of ancestral research.
She was a self-taught translator of Spanish colonial documents and one of the best in the field.
She could read those difficult paleographic documents as if she were reading the Sunday papers. There are many similar examples of persons who followed this new trend as a result of the activities the Colonel set in motion. He helped create a grass-roots movement that continues to grow as people become aware of the role of our ancestors in the discovery, settlement, and growth of the Americas. The great legacy that he left was heightened awareness of the significant contributions made by the Hispanic pioneers of America that are only now beginning to be recognized in our popular history.
His godfather and good friend.