Theses and Dissertations

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



First Advisor

Dr. Charles Waite

Second Advisor

Dr. Christopher Miller

Third Advisor

Dr. George T. Díaz


During the United States Civil War, a Mexican national, Pedro Garcia, and hundreds of others like him came to Brownsville, Texas, looking for ways to strengthen their positions by joining the Union army. Eventually, the Mexican/Tejano recruits deserted in droves while the Union forces executed Pedro Garcia. The purpose of this research is to provide insight into the cultural clash of worldviews between the United States Union army and Rio Grande Borderlanders. This research will also provide awareness of the various methods the Mexican/Tejano used to create agency. This study uses a mixed methodology, such as Border theory as described by Oscar Martínez, Chela Sandoval, and Lisa Flores. This study will use various archival research methods, to analyze and evaluate primary source documents. Previous research has focused on why the Mexican/Tejano failed as soldiers in the Union army; however,this study found that the Mexican/Tejano recruits used well-established devices to secure survival and power for themselves.


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