A single cannon shot changed the course of American history 182 years ago today.
On Feb. 23, 1836, 200 Texan volunteer soldiers stood against at least 1,800 Mexican troops to defend an old Spanish mission that had become a fortress.
Thirteen days later, Texans would vow to always “remember the Alamo!”
Unlike General Antonio Lopez Santa Anna’s Mexican army, the Texas defenders of the Alamo weren’t a regimented unit — they were simply men fighting for an independent Texas.
Those who fought for the Alamo represented at least 22 U.S. states and 6 foreign countries, but they all risked their lives to defend Texas.
When Santa Anna demanded Texas to surrender, Lieutenant Colonel William B. Travis answered with one cannon shot that began the war to free Texas from Mexico.
On March 6, 1836, Mexican forces finally broke through the outer walls and overpowered the small bastion of Texas soldiers. During the 13-day siege, the defenders never wavered.
Though Mexico broke through the rebel unit, a few people did survive, including Susannah Dickinson and her infant daughter, Angelina. Santa Anna sent Dickinson, who was the wife of Captain Almaron Dickinson, to Gen. Sam Houston’s camp at Gonzalez.
Santa Anna believed Dickinson would serve as a warning to the rest of the Texas rebels if they continued to revolt against Mexico.
He couldn’t have been more wrong.
Instead, Dickinson’s account of the heroic resistance at the Alamo inspired the Texans to fight on in remembrance.
On April 21, 1836, “Remember the Alamo” was the battle cry that helped Gen. Houston’s force of 800 men defeat 1,500 Mexican troops at the Battle of San Jacinto, near present-day Houston.
The Republic of Texas was born.
Though Texas officially became a state in 1945, the Alamo will never be forgotten.
This year, the city of San Antonio is once again hosting a 13-day event in remembrance of the Alamo. Texans from all over the state are also taking to social media to honor the fateful event that shaped Texas history:
Remember the Alamo, y’all!