The Angel of Goliad: Who was Francita Alavez?




Who was The Angel of Goliad?

I am excited to publish my newest historical fiction novel a time travel story in which one of the main characters is a woman by the name of Francita Alavez. She is known in Texas as The Angel of Goliad for her efforts to save Texian soldiers about to be killed in what came to be known as The Goliad Massacre.

Written about by survivors, many years after the Texas Revolution, her name was muddled and few details remembered other than her kindness and bravery. Her name in the remembrances was given variously as Francita, Francisca, Panchita, or Pancheta, and her surname as Alavez, Alvárez, or Alevesco. Most agreed she was the wife of a Cavalry Officer, Telesforo Alavez.

Researchers have been able to trace Telesforo to Toluca, Mexico, where he was born in 1803. Unfortunately, they have also found a wife, Maria Agustina de Poza, who he married in Toluca.

In 1836, Telesforo Alavez travelled with General Urrea into Texas to put down the Texian rebellion. Urrea was ordered to sweep up the Texas coastline to open up the ports of Copano, Velasco and Galveston for resupplying the army with men, food and other supplies.

Although some have written that Telesforo arrived in Texas via boat, landing at Copano, I think he travelled from Matamoros with General Urrea. It seems likely that he met Francita in Matamoros and took her with him on campaign.

The Mexican army at that time marched with a large contingent of camp-followers, Soladaderas. They were the wives, mistresses and children of the soldiers. The women did laundry, cooked, nursed and generally looked after their soldier.    

No one knows how or when Francita and Telesforo met. She was with him during the Texas Revolution and retreated with him to Matamoros. It is said that she accompanies him to Mexico City where he abandoned her. His wife, Maria, was seeking his army pay to support her and their children. Telesforo was a resident of Toluca in 1837, enumerated there with his wife and children. Francita is said to have returned to Matamoros where she continued to assist the Texan prisoners.  

Who was Francita? I doubt we will ever know.


For more information about my novel, The Angel of Goliad. Click on the button below. 





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