Background to The Sake of Freedom

The idea for this story has been percolating for many years. I am a descendant of the Baylor family and one of our family stories (which I have substantiated with the historical record) concerns that of John Walker Baylor, Jr., a relatively obscure member of the family, whose actions brought the Baylor family to Texas from Mississippi and Alabama.

Walker has the distinction of being the only person who survived what I call the “Big Three” of the Texas Revolution: The Alamo (he was a courier), The Golaid Massacre (he was a scout), and the Battle of San Jacinto. In a bit of irony, Walker received a minor leg wound at the Battle of San Jacinto, so minor that he did not report it, which ended his life a mere four months later.

During the summer of 1836, Walker was furloughed to Mississippi and while there, he visited his uncle, Judge Robert Emmett Blesdoe Baylor in Cahaba, Alabama. Before he died, he named this uncle as his heir. Three years later, Judge Baylor came to Texas and claimed the land bounty, which was due his nephew for service in the Revolution, then promptly deeded the land to Walker’s siblings. Judge Baylor then settled in the area of Independence, Texas and within fours years co-founded Baylor University.

Now, on to my story!

It’s 1835 in Texas and Mexican authorities are fundamentally changing the governmental structure, moving from a “federalist,” or state autonomy system, to a “centralist” system in which personal freedoms are removed while all power is consolidated in Mexico City. Two states revolt – Zacatecas and Texas. The revolt in Zacatecas is brutally and sufficiently dealt with. As my story opens, the authorities have now turned their attention to Texas.

Melina Parker (aka Mel), is an early 20-something spunky anglo woman who, much to the chagrin and frustration of those around her, never followed the society’s rules for women, was captured by a high ranking Mexican soldier.  After being held prisoner she managed to escape but within a few months begins to have nightmares of him.  When the anglo colonists begin to prepare for the Mexican authorities’ crack down, Mel dresses as a boy and joins the fray to track down the soldier and take him out.

Thanks for journeying with me.  I hope it’s worth your time!

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