Borderrhetorics Wiki

Why were Land Grants Issued?[]

Pioneers came to what we now know as the Texas and New Mexico regions from the early 17th century up until the 19th century in hopes of attaining land that could possibly be granted to them on certain conditions by the King of Spain. The land was free as long as the new settlers could prove that they were of Spanish descent, their “proven loyalty to the Spanish Crown”, that they were cultivating the land, “and procreate loyal subjects of the King” (The Brownsville Harold, 2013). Many early pioneers were able to do just that and were granted the land which had been promised based on the criteria.


Historic Spanish Land Grants Date Back Centuries-0

Even though many pioneers were able to prove their connections and “loyalty to the Spanish Crown”, the United States has still not granted the land to them (The Brownsville Harold). Land was officially granted to many early settlers before the Mexican-American war; however, after the Mexican-American war, which resulted “with the signing of the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo in 1848” not all the land grants were honored (Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, 2014).

The treaty was a document that entailed that those who had bee

Spanish & mexican land grants

Land Granted

n granted land would be honored to keep that land. The United States asked those early settlers to attain documentation that proved they had indeed been granted that land. A few of the settlers were granted the land after they proved their rights, but many families were left with nothing even after attaining the proper documentation. The United States did away with signing away any further land, and people were left with undocumented property. The discourse has been stressed by many in order to gain the legal rights to the property that belongs to the original grantees, and some land has been granted but many “porciones” are still waiting to be granted even after centuries have passed.

Importance of Speaking out towards Reclaiming the Border

“Since 1848 there have been hundreds of court cases citing the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo as a basis for land claims, but few Mexican claimants were successful in retaining the land” (Griswold, 2006). Reies López Tijerina formed an activist group in 1960 called the “Alianza Federal de Mercedes” also known as the “Federal Alliance of Land Grants” (Cisneros, 2014). Tijerina was well known and a great public speaker. The Alianza’s discourse was used in hopes of attaining the property and cultural rights for those who were unable to speak for themselves. “Public speeches, newspapers, local radio, letters, marches, protests, and even confrontational activities” took place by the Alianza (Cisneros, 2014). The rhetoric used by Tijerina and the Alianza argued amongst many issues that Mexican Americans were dealing with along the border, including the Land Grants.

Many “official” dates have been scheduled and still to this day no “official” settlement has occurred for “Porciones” No. 93, 94, or 95

Spanish Heirs win access to Energy wealth in Texas Legislature Houston weather, traffic, news FO

 or for many of the other “porciones” that had originally been granted. The Land Grant Justice Association was established in order to assist the grantees in receiving their intended mineral and oil rights and in August 2, 2012 the president Mr. Al Cisneros wrote a letter to provide a sense of urgency in the associations attempt to settle the matter. He along with the board of the organization provided a few dates to keep the grantees up to date with the process; however, still many grantees have yet to hear any form of resolution.

The last we heard the “official” date that the State of Texas should be working on this Land Grant was scheduled for June 27, 2014. The state should have determined who the grantees would be and Mineral and Oil Rights would be issued to the grantees family members by January of 2015. The documentation and the history of the family are quite unique from any other families coming to America. The mineral and oil rights are not as important to that of actually understanding where one really comes from and how they came to be in the location they are living in. == Works Cited == Cisneros, Al. The Land Grant Justice Association: Paving the Path to Unclaimed Mineral Royalties. 16 July 2014. Cisneros, Josue David. "Reclaiming The Rhetoric Of Reies López Tijerina: Border Identity And Agency In “The Land Grant Question”." Communication Quarterly 60.5 (2012): 561-587. Communication & Mass Media Complete. Web. 26 June 2014. Fowler, E.M., Spanish and Mexican Land Grants. (2004-2014) Web. 25 June 2014. Garcia, L., “The Brownsville Harold.” The Longoria-Chapa dynasty in South Texas and

Northern Mexico. 11 Feb. 2013. Griswold del Castillo, R. War’s End. Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo. 14 Mar. 2006. "Treaty Of Guadalupe Hidalgo: Definition And List Of Community Land Grants In New Mexico: GAO-01-951." GAO Reports (2001): 1. MasterFILE Premier. Web. 26 June 2014.

By: Marissa Alaniz