History and Southwest

$55.00 hardcover

Add to Cart

The Lynching of Mexicans in the Texas Borderlands

Nicholas Villanueva, Jr.

Winner of the 2018 NACCS Tejas Foco Non-Fiction Book Award

Winner of the 2017 Southwest Book Award from the Border Regional Library Association

More than just a civil war, the Mexican Revolution in 1910 triggered hostilities along the border between Mexico and the United States. In particular, the decade following the revolution saw a dramatic rise in the lynching of ethnic Mexicans in Texas. This book argues that ethnic and racial tension brought on by the fighting in the borderland made Anglo-Texans feel justified in their violent actions against Mexicans. They were able to use the legal system to their advantage, and their actions often went unpunished. Villanueva’s work further differentiates the borderland lynching of ethnic Mexicans from the Southern lynching of African Americans by asserting that the former was about citizenship and sovereignty, as many victims’ families had resources to investigate the crimes and thereby place the incidents on an international stage.


Nicholas Villanueva Jr. teaches in the Ethnic Studies Department at the University of Colorado.


“This deeply researched history of anti-Mexican prejudice and violence in the Texas borderlands in the era of the Mexican Revolution and World War I offers valuable insight into anti-Mexican lynching and the responses of persons of Mexican descent in the United States.”


Michael J. Pfeifer, author of The Roots of Rough Justice: Origins of American Lynching

“Offers fresh insight into how populist US Americans justified both the exclusion and lynching of ethnic Mexicans in South Texas during the decade of the Mexican Revolution. Uncovers personal narratives and newspaper accounts of unjustified racial violence against Mexicans and Tejanos on the Texas-Mexico border, leading readers to reevaluate dominant versions of Texas history and to understand the importance of what it means to be ‘Mexican’ in the United States.”


John E. Dean, author of How Myth Became History: Texas Exceptionalism in the Borderlands

6 x 9 in. 232 pages 15 halftones