3. The Alamo was about to be abandoned before the battle
In December 1835, in the Battle of Bexar, Texian forces captured San Antonio de Béxar (now San Antonio), from the Mexican forces commanded by General Martin Perfecto de Cos, the brother-in-law of Santa Anna. Texian soldiers then established a garrison at the Alamo. By January 1836, the garrison was short on provisions and had fewer than 100 soldiers. This led to Colonel James C. Neill, the acting Alamo commander, to request the provisional Texas government for troops and supplies. Sam Houston, Commander-in-Chief of the Texas Army, instead sent Colonel James Bowie with 30 men to remove the artillery from the Alamo and destroy the complex. However Neill persuaded Bowie that the location shouldn’t be abandoned due to its strategic importance.
4. The Mexican army to retake the Alamo was led by Santa Anna
Few reinforcements arrived at the Alamo in February 1836 including cavalry officer William B. Travis with 30 men. Colonel Neill left Alamo to recruit more reinforcements and gather supplies transferring the command to Travis. However, Travis shared command with Colonel James Bowie due to the demand of the volunteers. In mid-February, the Mexican army entered Texas. It was led by Santa Anna, the most prominent Mexican politician and general who was known as the “The Napoleon of the West”. Santa Anna had vowed to retake Texas personally to avenge Mexico’s honor.