Garcia, Luciano (unknown–ca. 1830)

By: Jesús "Frank" de la Teja

Type: Biography

Published: 1952

Updated: February 24, 2021

Luciano García, Spanish commander in Texas, came to the province as a captain with the Nuevo Santander militia that participated in the reinforcement of the frontier following the Louisiana Purchase. Among the various assignments that he undertook, he visited the new outposts of Santísima Trinidad de Salcedo and San Marcos de Neve the East Texas border, and American Indian camps. He was near La Bahía when the Casas Revolt occurred in January 1811, but refused to follow Casas’s orders for the arrest of the deposed presidio commander. Considered a royalist, he was elected to serve on the junta that governed the province until Governor Manuel Salcedo returned to power. He was either out of the province or escaped capture by the Republican Army of the North at the time of the Gutiérrez-Magee Expedition, and joined Commandant General Joaquín Arredondo’s forces. He fought at the battle of Medina and afterwards Arredondo sent him to reorganize the presidial company at La Bahía and to bring it to its full complement as specified in the Regulations of 1772. García was promoted to Lt. Col. in 1814 and commander of the cavalry corps of Arredondo’s army, for which reason he probably left Texas sometime about 1815. The new commandant general for the Provincias Internas de Oriente, Felipe de la Garza, appointed García ad interim governor of Texas on June 16, 1823, and he assumed the office on July 8. Shortly thereafter the national government issued a decree separating civil and military authority and García surrendered the political governorship in September. García’s authority in Texas came to an end in February 1824, when another national government decree ordered that the commander in each military district be the officer with the most seniority. On arrival of the order, García turned over military command of Texas to Juan de Castañeda and made his way to Tamaulipas. During his brief tenure as governor, García was supportive of Stephen F. Austin's colony, helping it in every way he could. On July 17, 1823, García completed the governing system for the colony by appointing the Baron de Bastrop as commissioner to extend land titles. Garcia’s friendship with Austin extended to his brother J.E.B., who visited the retired officer at his Rancho de la Luz outside San Carlos, Tamaulipas, in 1826. It was there that Garcia died sometime in 1830.

Carlos E. Castañeda, Our Catholic Heritage in Texas, Vol. 6, The Fight for Freedom, 1810-1836 (reprint; New York: Arno Press, 1950). Vito Alessio Robles, Coahuila y Texas en la época colonial (Mexico City: Editorial Cultura, 1938; 2d ed., Mexico City: Editorial Porrúa, 1978). Eugene C. Barker, ed., The Austin Papers (3 vols., Washington: GPO, 1924–28). Bexar Archives, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin.

  • Military
  • Soldiers
Time Periods:
  • Mexican Texas
  • Spanish Texas
  • East Texas
  • Upper Gulf Coast

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

Jesús "Frank" de la Teja, “Garcia, Luciano,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed May 22, 2022,

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

February 24, 2021

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