Steps Toward Independence

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Convention of 1836- At the Convention of 1836, delegates wrote the Declaration of Independence and Constitution of Texas. The introduction to the​ Declaration stated that Santa Anna had violated liberties that were guaranteed under the Constitution of 1824. They charged that they had been denied freedom of religion, the right to trial by jury, the right to bear arms, and the right to petition the government. They also noted that the Texan's protests were met with military force.

Delegates modeled their constitution on the U.S. Constitution. It established three branches of government—the executive, legislative, and judicial and gave the president a great amount of power to carry out the duties of office. Like the U.S. Constitution, it contained a Bill of Rights that guaranteed basic rights such as freedom of religion, press, and speech, trial by jury, and other guaranteed freedoms. It established civil freedom, political freedom, and religious freedom in Texas. However, it didn't treat all citizens equally. Enslaved people were given no rights and weren't given the right to be freed. Native American rights were also left out of the Constitution. A treaty with the Cherokee was written granting them rights to their land but the convention didn't approve it. Since there wasn't time to hold general elections to approve the Constitution and elect a leader, a temporary government was established.

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