Signed by the Mexican General who was Never Defeated in the Texas War

“Mi Corazon mexicano palpita al aspecto del orgullo de la llamada república de Tejas”

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558. URREA, José. José Urrea, Comandante General, y gobernado nombrado de Sonora. [text begins]: Compatriotas! Despues de algunos años de ausencia del lado de vosotros; despues de varias vicisitudes por las que tiene que pasar el hombre público que no puede alcanzar la posibilidad de sustituir el egoismo al patriotismo.... Mexico: Imprenta de Torres, calle del Espíritu Santo, No. 2, 1842. [2] pp., folio (32 x 22.3 cm). Heavily water-stained, edges chipped with some loss of blank margins, worm hole costing a few letters, several tears (some into text). Dated in type: Guymas, 1842, and signed in ink by Urrea (p. [2]). A rare survival.

     First edition. Not in Streeter's biblography of Texas, or other standard sources. No copies on OCLC. In this statement, Urrea, who had just become governor of Sonora, states that now that the latest period of strife is done, he wants to advance the wellbeing of the state and its citizens, whom he urges to great efforts. He remarks, however, that continued problems with the area’s Native Americans are a difficulty that must still be solved, probably by providing more and better troops, he concludes. He states that his other main concerns are improving education and the justice and police systems. He includes a somewhat resentful, bitter paragraph about the Texans who are seeking to expand into New Mexico (“Mi corazon mexicano palpita al aspecto del orgullo de la llamada república de Tejas”) and calls on his fellow citizens to defend the state’s borders.

     José Urrea (born at Tucson 1797-1849) is one of the heroes of Mexico, having held a number of political or military positions in Mexico, Texas, and the Borderlands. He served on Santa-Anna's expedition to Texas and held various commands.  (A Texas rarity is his Noticias interesantes.... Toluca, 1836; Streeter 896, in which he reports triumphantly on engagements defeating the Texans in the early battles of the Texas Revolution). Although in command of Goliad when Fannin’s men were massacred, he was not present at the event. He opposed retreating from Texas and after the war published an important work defending his role in the Texas Revolution (Diario de las operaciones campaña de Tejas... Victoria de Durango, 1838; Streeter 940, & p. 219). His forces were never defeated in Texas. He served the Mexican military for forty years. Handbook of Texas Online: José de Urrea:

José de Urrea, military officer, was born in 1797 in the presidio of Tucson, Sonora (now Arizona). He was a military cadet in the presidial company of San Rafael Buenavista in 1809 and a lieutenant in 1816, participating in battles in Jalisco and Michoacán. In 1821 he supported the Plan of Iguala of Agustín de Iturbide. He participated in the anti-Iturbide Plan of Casa Mata and the siege of San Juan de Uluá. Affiliated with the Plan of Montaño, Urrea was separated from army service, but in 1829 he reentered and fought in Tampico with Antonio López de Santa Anna against Isidro Barradas. He intervened in the Plan of Jalapa against the government of Vicente Ramón Guerrero and when Anastasio Bustamante came to power (1829–1830), Urrea was named to the secretariat of the command in Durango. He was made a lieutenant colonel in 1831. In July 1832, along with Santa Anna, he declared for Gómez Pedraza, and in 1834 he assumed the command of the permanent regiment of Cuautla, near Cuernavaca, after having received the rank of colonel from Francisco Ellorriaga, whom he had supported. As acting general in July 1835, he was sent to fight the Comanches in Durango, where he was commandant general and then governor in September and October. He participated in the expedition to Texas in 1836 and was engaged in the battles at San Patricio, Agua Dulce Creek, and Coleto. Urrea was opposed to the withdrawal of Mexican troops ordered by the captive Santa Anna after the battle of San Jacinto. In 1837 he was named commandant general of the departments of Sinaloa and Sonora. In December, upon being passed over for the appointment of governor, he proclaimed the two departments under the federal system, whereupon he was designated constitutional governor and protector. He then turned over his executive office to the vice governor and marched on opposing forces at Mazatlán, where he was defeated. He fled to Guaymas and finally to Durango, where he became involved in yet another uprising. In 1839 he was captured and sent to Perote Prison. Later during an imprisonment in Durango he was rescued by his partisans to take part in a revolt. In 1842 he assumed the executive power of Sonora, which he held until May 1844. In 1846 he fought against the United States in the Mexican-American War. He died in 1849.

     This unrecorded imprint bears the very rare signature of the one of the key players in the Texas Revolution, and a man deeply involved in major military and political events on Mexico.


Auction 23 Abstracts

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