Maria Gonzalez and soldaderas, South Texas border 1900-1920.
Soldaderas were female soldiers who fought alongside men during the Mexican Revolution (1910-1920). The word is also used to refer to camp women who traveled with the troops but did not fight.
According to Onda Latina at the University of Texas:
Maria Gonzalez was part of Cruz Blanca, an organization formed in Laredo to provide medical aid for the soldiers and volunteers in Venustiano Carranza’s armies. The women in Cruz Blanca made their way to battlefields, often provided their own armed protection while in movement and raised their funds in cities across the United States and Northern Mexico. Their key organizer, Leonor Villegas de Magnon, based herself out of Laredo, and wrote a fictionalized autobiography about her work with armed reform movements in Mexico and South Texas.
Robert Runyon was the society photographer in Brownsville and Matamoros, and was called on to offer his services when dignitaries came to the border. This photograph reflects the presence of the Revolution in the respectable parts of South Texas society.