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Word Count: 680
ALAMO SAN ANTONIO TEXAS In many books about of the Alamo all said The phrase Remember the Alamo an often misquoted reference to the 1836 battle actually does very little to help us remember the real Alamo Largely ignored are the years following the 1793 secularization of Mission San Antonio de Valero Until recently this period of the Alamos history seemed doomed to remain hidden forever The history of the Alamo begins long before 1836 It is the story of a thriving community whose citizens lived and died within the shadow of the missions walls Built by Spanish priests and their Indian converts the mission San Antonio de Valero later became the home to the Spanish soldiers whose company name Alamo de Parras would forever be a part of that place THE ALAMO FORT In the early 1800s expansionists like Aaron Burr called for the invasion of Spanish territory causing Spain to look toward the United States with great anxiety With the purchase of the Louisiana territory in 1803 the Spanish made plans to repel any possible foreign invasion by concentrating Spanish troops on the Texas frontier As the first of several reinforcement efforts the Alamo de Parras Company marched under orders from Chihuahua to Texas to San Antonio de Bjar to bolster the existing Bjar Presidio Most of the soldiers arrived on the Rio San Antonio by January 1803 with their families following that spring The existing soldiers of the Bxar Presidial Company had already established their own residences in the area and so readily relinquished their quarters to the new arrivals What the company found was less than satisfactory as Francisco Amangual the commander of the Alamo de Parras Company found the barracks on Plaza de Arms in poor condition Evaluating his options he moved his men and their families across the San Antonio River and into the partially abandoned mission of San
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