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"Big Drunk," Santa Anna, and a Curious Handshake.

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posted on Feb, 1 2008 @ 08:41 AM
"Remember the Alamo!" A shibboleth learned by all good Texans when they are still in diapers. A rallying cry that calls to mind the abject cruelty of Mexican President, Antonio López de Santa Anna and the heroism of Texas' favourite son, Sam Houston.

First, a little history:

Santa Anna answered Castrillón's intervention in Crockett's behalf with a gesture of indignation and, addressing himself to the sappers, the troops closest to him, ordered his execution. The commanders and officers were outraged at this action and did not support the order, hoping that once the fury of the moment had blown over these men would be spared; but several officers who were around the president and who, perhaps, had not been present during the danger, became noteworthy by an infamous deed, surpassing the solders in cruelty. They thrust themselves forward, in order to flatter their commander, and with swords in hand, fell upon these unfortunate, defenseless men just as a tiger leaps upon his prey. Though tortured before they were killed, these unfortunates died without complaining and without humiliating themselves before their torturers."

One cannot Remember the Alamo, without remembering the Goliad Massacre.

At the same time I could distinguish the heads of some of the men through the boughs of some peach-trees, and could hear their screams. It was then, for the first time, the awful conviction seized upon our minds that treachery and murder had begun their work ! Shortly afterward, Colonel Guerrier appeared at the mouth of the tent. I asked him if it could be possible they were murdering our men. He replied that ' it was so ; but he had not given the order, neither had he executed it.' "

Enter the Hero, "Big Drunk of the Cherokee", Sam Houston.
Ah... Sam Houston, the man who threw his duds into a fire as a sacrifice to Bacchus. Now there's a man who took his drink seriously.

Houston captured Santa Anna at the Battle of San Jacinto in 1836. Fresh in his mind would have been the brutal deaths that his men had recently suffered.

Surely Santa Anna would be spared no quarter?

Or at least would be turned over to face a military trial, where according to American Military Law, he would have undoubtably been found guilty of his atrocious crimes.

Maybe he would have faced a trial or worse had he not met Houston with an innocent seeming handshake and some odd gestures that, to the uninitiated, would have made no sense.

Brought before Houston, Santa Anna is said to have given the secret distress signal of the Master Mason. He denied having done anything wrong at the Alamo or Goliad -- but offered to make an example of Gen. Urrea, who carried out the executions. (Two years later, Urrea would launch a coup against Santa Anna, briefly controlling two states in nothern Mexico.)

Feeling edgy, Santa Anna asked for -- and got -- some of that familar pain-killer he saw being administered to the wounded Houston. And so they had a mellow conversation for the rest of the afternoon, the two men basically dividing up North America while stoned on opium. Santa Anna agreed to have the Mexican army retreat, and recognize an independent Texas with its border at the Rio Grande. (The Nueces River would have been more logical, having long been the Mexican state border for Coahuila y Texas. It may simply have been harder to find on a map.) Finding him so useful, Houston defied popular opinion, complied with his Masonic oath, and let Santa Anna live.

Roger Conger's article in the April, 1956 Texas Grand Lodge magazine article tells us:

"... met Houston with a hand clasp reputed to have been that of a Mason..."

"...filled the air with Masonic distress signals, and well he might have, as many Texans demanded his life without formalities..."

"... to a place of safety under a guard which included five Masons, and later freed..."

How are we to interpret this curious act of mercy?

What we see on the same magazines website today:

The self-styled "Napoleon of the West" received from a generous foe the mercy he had denied Travis, Crockett and Bowie at the Alamo and Fannin at Goliad. Sam Houston dictated to him the terms of Texas Independence.

[edit on 1/2/2008 by Beelzebubba]

posted on Feb, 1 2008 @ 08:58 AM
I'm not an expert on either Santa Ana or Houston, so it would be interesting to learn more. It is true that both were Masons.

However, Davy Crockett was also a Mason, and was killed at the Alamo, but the Castrillon story is possibly apocryphal (see the Wikipedia article here). The only thing known for sure is that Crockett didn't survive the Alamo.

posted on Feb, 1 2008 @ 09:15 AM
reply to post by Beelzebubba

The tradition of Masons forgiving and even helping eachother even when they are foes, is not unusual .. while I don't know Texan history, I don't find it odd at all.. had Houston killed Santa Anna, it could be possible that the war would have continued on for many more years, who knows, Texas could have lost.. but an act of generosity ended a war?

But, like I said, not unusual .. during the American Revolutionary War British soldiers would give medical aid to American Freemasons.. of course.. the government also destroyed Masonic lodges because they where used by the American government.

Another good example, is after battles in the Civil War, Union soldiers, or Confederate, would be walking among the bodies looking for wounded.. typically the foe was killed to spare suffering, or captured and sent to a hellish prison.. but Masons had been well known to help fellow Masons regardless of political loyalties.

A conspiracy? No.. its recognizing a commonality that unless your a Mason, may be hard to understand.

Very interesting post though OP .. any more information would be greatly appreciated, always love learning new history!

posted on Feb, 1 2008 @ 10:08 AM
reply to post by Masonic Light

I'm only speculating here, but perhaps Crockett, staying true to his mythical persona, was not the type to "sound" Santa Anna. Maybe his pride refused to allow him to take refuge in the brotherhood of Freemasonry when many of his comrades would not be given any such option.

Or perhaps Santa Anna just wasn't as merciful as Houston. Could Santa Anna have been slightly more discerning about which Mason's distress signals were heeded, especially when those Mason's were "gringo's?"

I think the idea that the Peña diary being a creation to paint Santa Anna in a more "diabolical light" is a bit absurd. The Goliad Massacre being more than enough evidence to prove that assertion.

[edit on 1/2/2008 by Beelzebubba]

posted on Jan, 13 2009 @ 07:22 PM
I would like to point out that there is no definitive source stating that General Santa Anna WAS a mason. I realize that lack of proof does not disprove, but from what I understand, there has yet to have been a lodge that claims he held membership.

Anti-masonic sentiment existed then as well.

The army of the republic was still vastly outnumbered and killing Santa Anna would have gained Texas nothing. Allowing him to live gave him the chance to end the war and spare many lives. This was no naive act on the part of Sam Houston. It is said that he even challenged Santa Anna to prove himself a man of honor by seeing that hostilities were truly ceased upon his return to Mexico.

Lush he may have been, but I thing Gen. Houston handled the situation better than most would have.

posted on Jan, 13 2009 @ 10:50 PM

One of his captors, Freemason James Sylvester claimed that Santa Anna had given the masonic sign of grief and distress directly to him and then later to Sam Houston. This story is also related by another mason. John Stiles, a soldier from Red River, who was also guarding Santa Anna. Allegedly, Santa Anna later presented his masonic apron to Stiles in gratitude for interceding on his behalf.

So, according to two Freemasons who were there, he was. No anti-Mason's making the statement, but Freemasons.

Apparently, Santa Anna had spurned Freemasonry before this event, and then cowardly embraced it, when he thought it might save his life.

Your explanation for the sparing of Santa Anna's life, however, does make sense.

[edit on 13/1/2009 by Beelzebubba]

posted on Jan, 13 2009 @ 10:58 PM
THis is a very intersting historic angle.

WHile I have not studied the Freemasonry connection, I have read a lot about Texas history.

Or at least would be turned over to face a military trial, where according to American Military Law, he would have undoubtably been found guilty of his atrocious crimes.

Maybe he would have faced a trial or worse had he not met Houston with an innocent seeming handshake and some odd gestures that, to the uninitiated, would have made no sense.

This does not make sense, historically. Other than that a lot of the recent immegrants to the Mexican state of Texas were American immigrants asked to settle the land(ironic, huh?) the USA was not involved in the Texas Independance war. There would be no reason to expect Santa Anna to be tried under American law.

Off the top of my head I would agree with Anon. Houston probably kept Santa Ana alive as a bargaining chip. It would better ensure the RoT's survival to forge a peaceful separation with Santa Ana than to kill him,and enrage the rest of Mexico.

posted on Jan, 13 2009 @ 11:50 PM
reply to post by Rockpuck

but Masons had been well known to help fellow Masons regardless of political loyalties. A conspiracy? No.. its recognizing a commonality that unless your a Mason, may be hard to understand.

I see it as they are at the forefront of the lie and realize that killing one of their own means killing the other side. Most recent wars have been proven to be false flag... they are in the top echelon of government, so why would we believe that they would want to kill someone on the same side...

Your reasoning is called cover story.... brotherhood... kill you brother but don't kill your lodge brother...

You masons make me sick...

sorry... S&F Thanks ('

[edit on 13-1-2009 by AllTiedTogether]

[edit on 13-1-2009 by AllTiedTogether]

posted on Jan, 14 2009 @ 01:09 PM
To play Devil's Advocate, I'll mention that knowing and being able to give certain grips, words, or other modes of recognition does not make one a Mason. It's possible that Santa Ana was, though I've read scholarly accounts that seem to dismiss such ideas. It's also possible that he wasn't, but knew the right things to do if he got in a bind.

Here's an interesting paper by the Great-Grandson of Sam Houston, posted on the Grand Lodge of Texas's website.
Why Did Sam Houston Spare the Life of Santa Anna at San Jacinto

posted on Jan, 20 2009 @ 12:47 AM
reply to post by JoshNorton

Devils advocate?

I checked out the link and noticed that they provide nothing but ????, I don't know, you tell me...

It is difficult to envision ...
Assuming that the sign was given, the question still remains...
Turning from conjecture to fact...

And although it may be a grandson writing it, he's a mason. That would be like having a cardinal from the vatican writing about their version of the pedophilia that goes on within the church, saying how they wouldn't allow it within the ranks of priests. Yet it happens more and more.

Not only within the church but other organizations that are closed to the public scrutiny....

SECRETs are what kills us...


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