Among the litany of heroes who count themselves among the Friends of Jinx, none is more esteemed than the 189 brave Texians who died defending the Alamo from the approximately 4,000 bloodthirsty Mexican troops under the leadership of General Santa Ana in 1836. Though most Americans are at least somewhat familiar with the story of the Alamo, we here at the Project feel that it is much more than a patriotic tale for schoolchildren. Rather, the story of the Alamo is an archetype in our nation's history of what we like to call the "Jinx Ideal": an exemplary display of bravery and character in the face of unspeakable danger. For this reason, we require all Project members to know the story in some detail, and we present it for your edification here.
The men of the Alamo were "Texians," citizens of the Republic of Texas, as opposed to the later term "Texans," which describes residents of the state of Texas. They were fighting to free the newly declared Republic from the yoke of Mexican oppression, and their sacrifice in March of 1836 was pivotal in the Texians' eventual victory. The battle bought time for General Sam Houston to gather the forces that would defeat the Mexicans at the triumphant Battle of San Jacinto a few months later.
Among the great heroes who gave their lives for the freedom of Texas were men who would go down in history for their courage and valor. Davy Crockett, famed for his coonskin cap and his role as king of the wild frontier, died along with every other Texian who was present defending the Alamo. He is said to have been one of the last to be killed, and that he went down fighting the ever-increasing swarms of Mexican troops. Also killed in action was Jim Bowie, the inventor of the Bowie knife, who, though confined by severe illness to a sickbed, refused to give up the fight until he had been brutally shot to death by Santa Ana's marauding troops.
Perhaps the most glorious story of the Alamo, however, revolves around Captain William Travis, the acting commander of the Alamo, and his line drawn in the sand. Several days into the siege, the greatly outnumbered Texians began to realize that to continue the struggle would mean death. Travis decided that the principles of freedom and truth were worth dying for, and he gathered the defenders together for an epic moment in the history of danger. Travis told the defenders that though death was certain, he would stay in the Alamo and fight. He drew his saber from its sheath and, after drawing a line in the dusty, red earth, he asked all those who would join him to cross over the line and into the annals of greatness. All the inhabitants of the Alamo crossed the line, save for one cowardly Frenchman who escaped over the wall. Jim Bowie, confined to his sickbed, asked the others to carry him across the line.
Though they embodied the proud Jinx ethic in the highest degree, the defenders of the Alamo would not survive the onslaught of the 4,000 troops who besieged them. When the fighting finally stopped on March 6, 1836, the Mexican flag was raised over the Alamo. The vengeful Santa Ana, determined to make an example of the rebels, had slaughtered the Texians to the last man. But just a few months later, the brave Sam Houston and his men would drive the Mexicans from Texas for all time at the Battle of San Jacinto. Texas would be a free and independent nation for 9 years before joining the United States in 1845. Ironically, it would be less than 20 years before Texas would fight another battle against a far-flung and arrogant oppressor, though this time they would be defeated.
Therefore, it is in the brave spirit of the Defenders of the Alamo that we ask all Friends of Jinx to draw their line in the sand! Stand up, brave soldiers, and slay the murderous Mexican hordes within your heart! We will snap the yoke of the tyrant in an instant once we harness the purity and unity of purpose that so possessed the brave 189 men who died that day in Texas. Indeed, for those members of the Jinx Project who have dedicated themselves to the cause of freedom, remembering the Alamo is far more than a dry historical exercise. It is an essential act of defiance from the deepest recesses of our hearts.