One day into the siege of the Alamo, on February 24, 1836, William Barret Travis wrote a desperate letter seeking aid from his fellow Texians and all Americans in the world. You see, rather than offer an easy and dishonorable surrender to the far superior forces surrounding them, Travis and his men were determined to use their last breath in the fight for cause of liberty.
Their plea, of course, went unanswered. I find myself wondering what I would have done back then? More importantly, of course, is to ask what will we do today? When liberty is threatened, do we embrace our creature comforts, or run to the action?
Will we, as the beneficiaries of their sacrifice, answer the call to the fight for liberty? Here are Travis’ words written that day from the Alamo.
To the People of Texas & All Americans in the World:
Fellow citizens & compatriots—I am besieged, by a thousand or more of the Mexicans under Santa Anna—I have sustained a continual Bombardment & cannonade for 24 hours & have not lost a man.
The enemy has demanded a surrender at discretion, otherwise, the garrison are to be put to the sword, if the fort is taken—I have answered the demand with a cannon shot, & our flag still waves proudly from the walls.
I shall never surrender or retreat.
Then, I call on you in the name of Liberty, of patriotism & everything dear to the American character, to come to our aid, with all dispatch—The enemy is receiving reinforcements daily & will no doubt increase to three or four thousand in four or five days.
If this call is neglected, I am determined to sustain myself as long as possible & die like a soldier who never forgets what is due to his own honor & that of his country—Victory or Death.
William Barret Travis