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 ofothers like him came to Brownsville, Texas, looking for ways to strengthen their positions byjoining the Union army. Eventually, the Mexican/Tejano recruits deserted in droves while theUnion forces executed Pedro Garcia. The purpose of this research is to provide insight into thecultural clash of world views between the United States Union army and Rio GrandeBorderlanders. This research will also provide awareness of the various methods theMexican/Tejano used to create agency. This study uses a mixed methodology, such as Bordertheory as described by Oscar Martínez, Chela Sandoval, and Lisa Flores. This study will usevarious archival research methods, to analyze and evaluate primary source documents. Previousresearch 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 securesurvival and power for themselves.


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