Life and Death on the Border 1910-1920
Texans had divergent reactions to revolution in Mexico.
As much of the nation's attention was focused overseas on the First World War, the Texas-Mexico border was experiencing its own violent conflict. Fueled by concerns over revolution in Mexico, longstanding fears and prejudices gave rise to violence, vigilantism, and retaliation in the decade between 1910-1920. In the aftermath, the Mexican American civil rights movement was born.
In new exhibition Life and Death on the Border 1910-1920, rare artifacts, photographic records, court documents, newspapers, family histories, and eyewitness accounts examine life in the region at this pivotal period in history.
Life and Death on the Border 1910-1920 is organized by the Bullock Texas State History Museum. Support for the museum's exhibitions and education programs provided by the Texas State History Museum Foundation.
Exploring a violent decade in Texas history
January 05, 2016 (Austin, Texas) -- JANUARY 5, 2016 (AUSTIN, TX) — "Life and Death on the Border 1910-1920," a groundbreaking new exhibition produced by the Bullock Texas State History Museum, opens in Austin on January 23, 2016 and explores a violent decade in Texas history during which some of the worst racial violence in United States history occurred. Photographs, court documents, newspapers, family histories, eye-witness accounts, and rare artifacts, such as a saddle belonging to Pancho Villa and a decoded page of the Zimmerman Telegram, offer a re-examination and fresh perspective on this difficult chapter of history that also saw the rise of the Mexican Revolution and World War I. The violence in Texas would spur the Mexican American civil rights movement and inspire a renaissance of literature, art, and music along the Texas-Mexico border. View Press Release
In The News
January 22, 2015, Tom Dart, The Guardian -- Hundreds, if not thousands, of Mexicans and Mexican Americans were killed in a little-known but brutal border conflict a century ago, with members of the celebrated law enforcement agency implicated in many of the deaths. The consequences of the violence have echoed for generations through race relations in the Texas borderlands. View Article
February 25, 2016, Danielle Lopez, Alcalde -- Two Texas Rangers sit on their horses and proudly pose for a photo in 1915. Attached to the ends of their ropes, dragging on the ground, are four dead Mexican-American “bandits” who had just been killed by U.S. soldiers in a raid on King Ranch. When all was said and done, the Texas Rangers had come in and set up the image to convey a single message—they were in charge. View Article
January 21, 2016, Marty Schladen, El Paso Times -- It’s better late than never that Texas is fully acknowledging state-sanctioned violence that took place along the Mexican border a century ago, scholars said Thursday. View Article
January 31, 2016 , Elaine Ayala, San Antonio Express News -- The decade 1910 to 1920 was a tumultuous one on the border. On one side, Mexico was in the midst of revolution. On the other, only 65 years after becoming a part of the United States, South Texas was undergoing revolutions of its own. View Article
Jan. 21, 2016 , Rachel Griess, UT News -- Photos and artifacts from one of the most violent decades in Texas history — a period often glossed over or forgotten — will be on display in a new exhibition at the Bullock Texas State History Museum that is the culmination of a University of Texas at Austin research initiative. View Article
January 16, 2016, Daniel A. Flores, Valley Morning Star -- South Texas College history instructor Trinidad O. Gonzales grew up hearing of violence perpetrated by Texas Rangers against those in the Rio Grande Valley, including in his own family. View Article
February 3, 2016, Cindy Casares, Latina -- A new exhibit in Austin, Texas examines a little-known chapter in the state's history, a time when Texas Rangers and white, civilian vigilantes massacred hundreds—if not thousands—of Mexican Americans or Tejanos between 1915 and 1919 in what historians have called some of the worst state-sanctioned racial violence in the U.S. View Article
January 17, 2016, Daniel Flores, The McAllen Monitor -- South Texas College history instructor Trinidad O. Gonzales grew up hearing of violence perpetrated by Texas Rangers against those in the Rio Grande Valley, including in his own family. View Article
February 21, 2016, Michael Barnes, The Austin American-Statesman -- In 1910, Antonio Rodríguez, a 20-year-old Mexican, was accused of killing Effie Greer Henderson at her ranch home near Rocksprings, close to the jagged southern slopes of the Edwards Plateau. A posse took him to the Rocksprings jail, but two days after the killing, a mob yanked him from his cell and burned him alive at the stake. View Article
February 5, 2016, Virginia Alvino, Texas Public Radio -- Texas is a state proud of its history. But, like any history, the Lone Star State’s has largely been written by its victors. View Article
January 29, 2016, Lucia Benavides, KUT -- Paulino Serda was a small ranch owner near Edinburg, Texas, in 1915 when a group of Mexican bandits came through town. They demanded he open the gates that connected the ranches so the group could pass. View Article
January 29, 2016, Lucia Benavides, TexasStandard.org -- Paulino Serda was a small ranch owner near Edinburg, Texas, in 1915 when a group of Mexican bandits came through town. They demanded he open the gates that connected the ranches so the group could pass. View Article
October 7, 2015, Latino Centric -- State-sanctioned racial violence on the Mexico-Texas border against Mexican Americans from 1910 through 1920 was some of the worst violence ever perpetrated in this country. It prompted a struggle for justice and civil rights. View Article