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MENCHACA, JOSE ANTONIO [1795-?]

MENCHACA, JOSÉ ANTONIO (ca. 1795–?). Antonio Menchaca (Manchaca), Mexican loyalist during the Texas Revolution, the son of José María and María Rivas Maldonado Menchaca, was born in Texas around 1795. Apparently he settled in the Neutral Ground in Natchitoches, Louisiana, where he married María Feliciana de los Santos Sanches on August 1, 1825. The couple had several children, among them José Antonio Menchaca (not to be confused with the pro-Texas revolutionary of the same name). In 1827 they moved to Nacogdoches. On August 23, 1835, while serving as síndico procurador in Nacogdoches, Menchaca wrote to Governor Leona Vicario informing him that Texans there were determined to oppose Antonio López de Santa Anna and planned to "disarm all the Mexicans so that they cannot help defend the Government." He further warned against allowing immigration of so many Americans. He was a captain in the Texas militia when, on August 6, 1838, he was commanded by Maj. Gen. Thomas J. Rusk to order members of his company who were participating in the Córdova Rebellion to return home and obey the laws. Although he visited the rebel camp and reported their strength to Rusk, he was later arrested and jailed, along with others, and charged with treason. Menchaca was tried in San Augustine and sentenced to death. He was pardoned by President Mirabeau Lamar on February 18, 1839, and agreed to leave the republic, but some years later he returned to Nacogdoches, where he evidently remained until his death. In the 1860 census his occupation was listed as a tailor. The year of his death is not known, but his name still appeared in the census as late as 1870.

BIBLIOGRAPHY: 

Carolyn Reeves Ericson, Nacogdoches, Gateway to Texas: A Biographical Directory (2 vols., Fort Worth: Arrow-Curtis Printing, 1974, 1987). Charles Adams Gulick, Jr., Harriet Smither, et al., eds., The Papers of Mirabeau Buonaparte Lamar (6 vols., Austin: Texas State Library, 1920–27; rpt., Austin: Pemberton Press, 1968). John H. Jenkins, ed., The Papers of the Texas Revolution, 1835–1836 (10 vols., Austin: Presidial Press, 1973).

Roderick B. Patten

Citation

The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this article.

Roderick B. Patten, "MENCHACA, JOSE ANTONIO [1795-?]," Handbook of Texas Online (http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/fme13), accessed October 23, 2014. Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.