Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy




Ignacio Martinez


“The General Claims Commission & The Land Grant Heirs of South Texas: A Struggle for Restitution” examines how the General Claims Commission of 1923 fundamentally changed how Spanish and Mexican land grant heirs fought for legal restitution. Before the commission, the Texas legislature attempted to resolve the land grant question in South Texas by validating a large percentage of presented land titles through the Bourland and Miller Commission and later through the court system. However, questions about illegal land dispossession continued to linger in the region. This study will show that, although the creation of the General Claims Commission was initially meant to address losses of U.S. investments in Mexico caused during the Mexican Revolution, Mexico used the commission to argue that Mexican nationals living in Texas had been illegally dispossessed of their lands and thus deserved financial restitution for a total of $193 million. Previously, Texas land grant heirs had sought to validate their titles. However, after 1923, they no longer sought to regain their right to the land and instead sought financial compensation for the displacement of their ancestors.




Recieved from ProQuest

File Size


File Format


Rights Holder

Juan Carlos Varela

Available for download on Wednesday, December 31, 2031

Included in

History Commons