Cave Dwellings: More Texas History..and some “colorful” neighbors….
Cave Dwellings

Buckhorn Creek, Lake O' The Pines, Jefferson, TX

Monday, February 20, 2012

More Texas History..and some “colorful” neighbors….



“Francita (some say Francisca), Alavez came  from Compano Bay, TX, to Goliad with Col. Telesforo Alavez. History is not sure if he was her husband, but he was a colonel in the Mexican Army.  They were living in Goliad at the time of the Goliad Massacre. She is credited with persuading the officer in charge of the fortress not to execute the men, who had been brought from Copano to Goliad.  In addition, it is believed that Francita entered the fort the evening before the massacre and brought out several men and hid them, thereby saving their lives.

Francita and Colonel Alavez proceeded to Victoria, where she continued to aid the Texians held prisoner at Goliad by sending them messages and provisions. When the Mexicans retreated from Texas after Santa Anna's defeat at San Jacinto, Francita followed Colonel Alavez to Matamoros, where she aided the Texans held prisoner there. From that town, she was taken by Alavez to Mexico City and there abandoned. She returned to Matamoros penniless, but was befriended by Texans who had heard of her humanitarian acts on behalf of Texans captured by the Mexican army.

Dr. Joseph Barnard and Dr. John Shackelford, two of the Goliad prisoners spared by the Mexicans, later testified to Francita's saintly behavior, thus causing her deeds to be more widely known. She came to be called the Angel of Goliad and gained recognition as a heroine of the Texas Revolution.”



…Ever wonder why the margueritas are flowing on May 5th, Cinco de Mayo?? Well, it is because of this Mexican hero, General Ignacio Zaragoza…and here is why..

“Ignacio Seguin Zaragoza was born March 24, 1829 in Goliad, Texas across the street, so to speak, from the Presidio La Bahia. Ignacio's father was an officer at the Presidio La Bahia when Ignacio was born. The Family lived in a dwelling that was provided for the officers.( This site has been reconstructed by the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department and is now a State Historical site.)  He studied for the priesthood in Monterrey, Mexico but left his studies to become involved in the Civil War that ravaged Mexico.

On May 5, 1862, General Zaragoza and his command of 4,000 men defeated 8,000 men of Napoleon's III's army at Puebla, Mexico. This defeat was a great morale booster for the liberal Mexican army in the civil war that engulfed Mexico. Zaragoza died from typhus contracted from visiting his ill soldiers September 8, 1862. He was 33 years old at the time of his death. He was buried in the Liberal Mexican Army Cemetery in Mexico City. His body was transferred from Mexico City to the City of Puebla on May 5, 1962.

Cinco de Mayo (the 5th of May) is celebrated in honor of the victory at Puebla May 5, 1862. It is a national holiday in Mexico, and is celebrated in many south Texas towns and cities, including Goliad, his birthplace. “..Left photo is his birthplace, rebuilt.

I found it interesting that they moved his body back to the Mexican town he saved..very neat, in my opinion.  Even back in Sandwich, IL…far away from Puebla, MX,  our restaurants celebrate Cinco de Mayo…and the local Mexican Restaurant, the Sante Fe, REALLY  gets into it!! Of course, McGyver and I have never partaken in the celebratory event…yeah, right. 

I mentioned that we have some colorful new neighbors here at Goliad State Park.  We got to meet them yesterday, when they were outside sitting on the picnic table …..fluffing and adjusting their colorful “garb”..

I now present to you our new neighbors, Hank, age 37…and Jasper,(a girl) age 13…..



101_1841   101_1840

Yep …We got ourselves “the Macaws” living across the street.  As you may guess, I am a little distressed at being upstaged by these two guys…Their outfits FAR outshine my  humble colors…If this is to be a competition, I am going to have to “ramp up” my repertoire of ensembles to a more eye popping  blend of hues!!!  All I know is the bird’s names and ages…Why do I NOT know more?, you ask….I sent McGyver with the camera to get their photos because I was in my socks…Never send a man to do a very nosy woman’s photography…NAMES AND AGES?? THAT’S ALL I GET??? ARE THEY  UNDER SEVERE INTERROGATION??  Den did encounter their owner, but never inquired as to WHY she is has such  “bird brained” traveling companions….


…Trust me…If I get the chance I will find out the complete history of Hank and Jasper….FYI, when these birds squawk, the whole campground hears them…Surprised smile!!!!

So, yesterday was sunny for a change and I got to spend some time reading in the sunshine..That’s ONE day of sunshine and SEVEN days of gloom and /or rain, because today is the both gloomy AND rainy!!…I need to cozy up to those Sun Gods just a little bit closer!!  Thanks to those who are tolerating my zest for history. I understand that not EVERYONE has such interests, but if you did read this far you were rewarded by meeting Hank and Jasper, eh??  See ya again in a few days with more about these two potential Easter Bonnets..JUST KIDDING!!!


                                             ~ Mel Brooks


  1. Great history lesson, looks like you have made a couple bird friends too.My Donna had a couple of big cockateils named Zack & Zelda when we met.Evidently Zack didn't perform his manly duties so Zelda plucked every hair out of his head, and then shortly thereafter killed him. Watch out Den,Don't know if this is normal bird behaviour or what..Be safe out there. Sam & Donna..

  2. When I lived in Tucson, my buddy had two Macaws in a big cage, out in the back yard. It would sound like the jungle when those two bird-brains got going. I had neighbors come by and ask what we had. They are really cool parrots.

  3. Birds of a feather flock together...were your socks colorful? super history lesson...can't imagine someone travelling with those gorgeous creatures..and letting them outside...they're pretty pricy so I wouldn't want to lose one of em...they are gorgeous

  4. very colourful have some competition there Donna!..good luck with the birds!!

  5. We don't mind history! That's one of the reasons for touring this land of ours -- find out where and how it developed, with help (or interference) from our neighbors!

  6. Another great history lesson. Now I know the story behind Cinco de Mayo besides a reason to go out, act wild, drink and eat!

  7. Wait until the lovebirds leave Den a present on his shiny truck.
    Bet he'll get more info then.
    My cockatieles were 'dirty' birds and they were much smaller than a macaw.