Many last names in the Southside ISD community date back to settlers who arrived in San Antonio in 1718 and were known as “Los Primeros” or the first to arrive. Colonel Miguel Menchaca’s great-grandfather was among them and include other familiar last names such as Losoya, Martinez, de la Garza, Lopez, and Garcia, among many others.
While in his 30’s, Colonel Menchaca bravely led a group of Tejanos in the first revolutionary battle for independence from Spain during the Battle of Medina in 1813. Historians have documented that a Spanish soldier fatally shot Menchaca in the neck during the violence. Afterwards, his troops hurriedly buried his body on Blue Wing Road near the Medina River. In 1968, human remains believed to be Col. Menchaca’s were uncovered on Blue Wing Road along with the musket ball found near the neck and copper buttons from military breeches. Archeologists from the Witte Museum later examined the remains in 1974.
Menchaca Elementary opened in August 2018. The new campus is on land that was part of El Camino Real; royal routes during the colonial period that connected far-flung regions to Mexico City and is within the area where the Battle of Medina was fought.
The people of the Southside community played a major role in the history of the United States. Prior to fighting for independence from the Spanish, the Southside community provided cattle to feed General George Washington and his revolutionary soldiers fighting the British in the American Revolution.