James W. Fannin Jr.: A Biography
This thesis is a biography of Colonel James W. Fannin Jr., a pivotal and controversial but often marginalized figure in the Texas Revolution. Showing brilliant potential in the 1835 campaign, he was later caught up in the midst of a constitutional crisis in the Texas Provisional Government. He struggled to reckon with conflicting duties and unrealistic expectations in the face of the rapidly advancing Mexican Army. Fannin did not live to see the outcome of the Revolution, meeting his death in a bloody episode known commonly to Texas historiography as the Goliad Massacre. This study makes use of Fannin’s own frank, often introspective correspondence, accounts from the survivors of his command, and even more heretofore unutilized sources, and endeavors to describe Fannin in his rightful historical context: as an American, Southerner, and Texian.