Theses and Dissertations - UTB/UTPA

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



First Advisor

Dr. Irving Levinson

Second Advisor

Dr. Charles Waite

Third Advisor

Dr. Maritza De La Trinidad


This study demonstrates the success of the Mexican American leadership of Starr County in maintaining their hold on power in defiance of Anglo American migrants in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. What aided Mexican American leadership in Starr County was that the major figure Manuel Guerra was highly educated, and his ancestors had settled the region as early 1767, which led many Mexican Americans both upper class and lower class to be loyal to him and those closely allied with him. The tactics used by Manuel Guerra and his allies were equal to the tactics used by political bosses across the United States. Using scholarly works on the subject, newspapers and election records, this study details what transpired during the period from 1880-1920. This study looks at how Mexican Americans under Manuel Guerra maintained power and landownership through the use of violence, elections, and protecting working-class Mexican Americans.


Copyright 2014 Jesus Perez. All Rights Reserved.

Granting Institution

University of Texas-Pan American

Included in

History Commons