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The front page ofElRegidor, May 13, 190g. Edited by Pablo Cruz, the San Antonio-based newspaper reflected and contributed to the transborder nature of opposition to the regime of Porfirio Díaz. Frontier ofDissent: El Regidor, the Regime of Porfirio Díaz, and the Transborder Community Ana Luisa Martinez-Catsam* On September 26, i8gi, San Antonio's El Regidor, a Spanishlanguage weekly newspaper edited by Pablo Cruz, informed its readers that American authorities had arrested Paulino Martinez, editor of Laredo's El Chinaco newspaper, for violating American neutrality laws. Days earlier Martinez, a revolutionary and an ardent adversary of Mexican president Porfirio Díaz, defended Catarino E. Garza's border rebellion against Diaz and encouraged Mexicans to rise up against the president-turned-dictator. Colleagues of Martinez denounced the arrest as unjust. As the publication had done in other cases where it perceived injustice against Téjanos—and people of Mexican descent in general—El Regidor defended Martinez, claiming that under the neutrality law, journalists could not be prosecuted for penning their views ofa foreign government.1 While El Regidor did not openly advocate insurrection, its defense of Martinez and the right ofjournalists to criticize foreign administrations indicated support for Diaz's critics. As Diaz secured his authority during the 1890s, opposition—both in Mexico and in Texas—to his governance increased. El Regidofs criticism of the policies and actions of the Diaz regime during the 1890s reveals a transborder community ofjournalists and editors who increasingly condemned the Mexican administration. El RegidoYs reportage on Mexican politics and its support for the rights of Téjanos and Mexicans illustrate the bonds of the transborder Tejano and Mexican community in the decades immediately before the 1910 Mexican Revolution. By igio resistance to the Porfiriato (as Diaz's 1876-igio regime has *Ana Luisa Mardnez-Catsam received her doctorate from Texas Tech University in 2003. She is currendy an assistant professor of history at die University ofTexas of die Permian Basin in Odessa, Texas. Her areas ofspecialization include Chicano history, Texas, and nineteendi-century United States. 1 El Regidor (San Antonio), Sept. 26, 1891; Ana Luisa Martinez, "The Voice of die People: Pablo Cruz, El Regidor, and Mexican American Identity in San Antonio, Texas 1888-1910" (Ph.D. diss., Texas Tech University, 2003), 73-74, 90-96. Vol. CXII, no. 4 Southwestern Historical QuarterlyApril 2009 3goSouthwestern Historical QuarterlyApril come to be known) rooted in the i8gos transborder opposition movements erupted in bloody revolution. The i8gos not only marked an increase in antagonism towards the Diaz regime but also witnessed the emergence of a transborder coalition of liberal journalists who condemned Diaz for violating the Mexican Constitution of 1857. This article explores El Regidofs 1890s rhetoric as part of the growing transborder opposition to Diaz. Significant collaboration occurred between El Regidor and the liberal Mexican press, reflecting a cross-border relationship.2 While providing its own perspective and reporting on the Diaz government , El Regidor also reprinted pieces from liberal Mexico City papers such as Diario del Hogar and El Independiente on issues related to government persecution of the press and Diaz's consecutive réélections. El Regidofs use of opposition newspapers rather than pro-administration publications further reflected its liberal perspective. El Regidofs founder and editor, Pablo Cruz, was a prominent San Antonio leader. Unlike many other members of the liberal Mexican press who settled in Texas during the Porfiriato, Cruz was not a political refugee. He came to Texas at the age of ten, moving from the city of Monclova, in southeastern Coahuila, along with his younger siblings, his paternal grandmother, and his uncle in the summer of 1877 to reunite with his widowed father Abraham Cruz Valdez, who had settled in rural Lodi, Texas. The Cruz family moved to San Antonio in 1883, and by 1888, twenty-two-year-old Cruz established El Regidor, which continued publication until 1916. Cruz emerged as a prominent entrepreneur running a successful print shop in conjunction with his newspaper. In addition , he owned several properties in San Antonio, participated in local politics, and served as trustee on the San Antonio Independent School Board in 1907. His Spanish-language weekly kept readers informed of local, national...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1558-9560
Print ISSN
0038-478X
Pages
pp. 388-408
Launched on MUSE
2011-07-06
Open Access
No
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