The odds were greatly against Texians and Tejanos who, united, wished to be free of Santa Anna’s tyranny. Santa Anna’s well-trained forces vastly outnumbered those under General Sam Houston’s command and he had General Houston on the run. But, God had an ace up his sleeve, so to speak, and it was a resident of Ohio who was that ‘ace’.
Francis Smith convinced the people of Cincinnati, Ohio, to aid the cause of the Texas Revolution, the Ohioans began raising funds to procure two cannons and their attendant equipment for Texas. Since the United States was taking an official stance of neutrality toward the rebellion in Texas, the citizens of Cincinnati referred to their cannon as “hollow ware.” This wasn’t exactly a lie – they were shipped without ammunition.
William Bryan, an agent of the Republic of Texas in New Orleans, took official possession of the guns on March 16, 1836. From New Orleans, the guns were placed on the schooner Pennsylvania and taken to Galveston Island where the two guns arrived at the beginning of April 1836.
April 21, 1836, saw the battle of San Jacinto and the securing of fame for the Twin Sisters. That afternoon near the banks of Buffalo Bayou the Texas army struck at Santa Anna’s unsuspecting troops. The Twins were probably near the center of the Texans’ line of battle and ten yards in advance of the infantry. Their first shots were fired at a distance of 200 yards, and their fire was credited with helping to throw the Mexican force into confusion and significantly aiding the infantry attack. During this battle, the Twins fired handfuls of musket balls, broken glass, and horseshoes, as this was the only ammunition the Texans had for the guns.
In minutes the battle was over. The fledgling volunteer army of Texians and Tejanos had defeated Santa Anna, a self-proclaimed “Napoleon of the West”.
When you chance to meet folks from Cincinnati, Ohio, remember to remember the Alamo and Goliad, and remember the Ohio Twins who were crucial to Texas independence.
Source of facts: Texas State Historical Association (TSHA) handbook online
May God bless Texas and may God bless the people of Cincinnati, Ohio.