Theses and Dissertations

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



First Advisor

Dr. Linda English

Second Advisor

Dr. Michael Faubion

Third Advisor

Dr. Russell Skowronek


The history of the Rio Grande Valley and the role it played in the Civil War is a developing field for both history and archaeology. This work helps to fill the existing gap that is present in academia and shows the archaeological and historical potential of this unique coastal area. The Brazos Island was heavily used during the Civil War by both the Confederacy and the Union. This thesis shows the rich history of Brazos Island and its archaeological potential through a multi-interdisciplinary lens, although rooted in the field of history. It covers a brief overview of the road to the Civil War nationally, Texas’s unique vote for secession, entry into the Confederacy, the beginning of the Civil War along the Rio Grande river, and the Matamoros cotton trade. It also dives into the struggles the Confederacy faced, The Rio Grande Expedition is examined, and the end of the Civil War in the Rio Grande Valley. It elaborates on the function of Brazos Island and Brazos Santiago, during the war. The impact of two hurricanes and how they affected the history of Brazos Island and its archaeological record are covered. Finally, this thesis covers the evolution of the modern archaeological record produced on Brazos Island and Brazos Santiago until the late 1990s.


Copyright 2016 Robin L. Galloso. All Rights Reserved.