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The Western Migration
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Courtesy of Archives of the Big Bend, Bryan Wildenthal Memorial Library, Sul Ross State University, Alpine, Texas [Casey, Alb. 4 f2015a]

Frontier Family in Texas

The Texas revolutionaries dashed the hopes of free African Americans. In 1836, they declared Texas an independent republic. Although black people had fought on both sides of the Mexican-Texas conflict, the Texans adopted slavery - which had been abolished when the area was part of Mexico - as a cornerstone of their new empire. Between 1836 and 1860, the enslaved population of Texas grew from 3,000 to 182,556. On the eve of the Civil War, African Americans in this state represented 93 percent of all black westerners.

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