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Muster at Gonzales and Battle of Bexar

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Response to Ugartechea's Movements AUSTIN TO BURLESON 15 Nov 1835
Head Quarters Nov 15th 1835 At Concepcion To Col Burleson Night before last Col Ugartachear left Bexar with one hundred and fifty men to meet [an] expected Convoy on the Rio Grande road. This Convoy must be intercepted. I have determined to dispatch the Adjtant Genl with two hundred men tonight. You will detail one hundred and twenty from your division and eighty will be detailed from this to make up the two hundred. The detachment from your division will be at the dam as early in the afternoon as practicable to unite at that place with the other. They will draw rations for three days at least also direct the Qt. Master to send to the dam rations for the eighty men of this division who are to go. This movement must be very prompt and not a moment must be lost. Col. Johnson has orders to make all the arrangements and lose no time.  S. F. Austin 

Head Quarters 15th Nov 1835  Mill Station above Bexar   To Col Edwd. Burleson You will take command of a detachment to consist of from one hundred to one hundred and thirty men which is destined to march to the Leon and Madina In order that you may have a full idea of the objects of this expedition I give you the following information which has been received   It is known positively that Col Ugartachea with a force of Cavalry of from one hundred to two hundred men for the accounts vary as to number and it is probable he has not over one hundred and fifty left Bexar last night or the night before. 

The reports as to his destination are two, one is that he went the expected reinforcements, the other is that he has gone to try to recover the cavyard taken by Travis and to intercept Capt Fannin. This latter report is the, most probable and the one to which I give the most credit. You will consequently march with all possible dispatch to the Madina and send spies to all the crossings of the Rio Grande and Laredo roads and particularly to Paras' Ranch and also to Rodarigues Ranch and should you hear any certain intelligence that Ugartachea has passed on in search of Fannin or Travis, you will use evry possible exertion to intercept him and cut his party to pieces and to afford immediate aid to Fannin or Travis in your power. The detachment of seventy men that was ordered out the day Fannin started met with a Foraging party of the enimy and turned back which unfortunately prevented their junction with Fannin which has left the force of the latter too weak for his exposed situation. You will therefore permit nothing to turn you back until you have made evry exertion to hear of Fannin or Travis and to afford them aid should they need it; if however you meet with a forageing or any other party of the enimy defeat them if in your power to do so, but do not permit this to stop you from going on to attend to the main objects of this expedition, which are to intercept reinforcements if any are coming on and to aid Fannin and Travis and cut off Ugartachea. I rely fully on the zeal patriotism and bravery of the officers and men composing your detachment for the most prompt and efficacious execution of the objects of this expedition. Your companions in arms under Fannin and Travis may be in iminent danger I wish you to fly to their assistance.  Reinforcements may be coming on to cut them off [which] would decide the campaing. Glory and duty impell you to action and your country will reward your services. S. F. Austin

Nine Oclock, P. M. I have the satisfaction to inform you that Capt. Travis has this moment arrived without accident having secured the Cavyard by sending it beyond the Guadaloupe. He heard nothing of the enimy. Capt. Fannin proceeded on the Laredo road intending to go as far as Rio Frio. As there is no doubt from various sources of information that Ugartachea went out, the probability of intercepting or hearing of him at some point on the Madina is very great.  I think it doubtful whether the forageing party will be sent to the Leon tomorrow owing to the whole army being united so near to that place. You can however make an effort to find them and cut them off should they be there. The absence of Ugartachea's party will probably prevent the enimy from sending out reinforcements. A party however will be ordered in the morning in that direction to prevent it should it be attempted.  In an expediton of the description you are charged with a great deal must necessarily be left to your discretion you will therefore use it according to your best judgment and to circumstances. Should you obtain any certain and positive information of importance forward an express to ine with it. You will return as soon as may be consistent with the objects of the expedition.  S. F. Austin 10 O'clock P. M.

I have this moment recd. a message from a well known and very confidential friend who sent it by the Mexican Badilla from Nacogdoches, who has just returned from Medina. The message is that no reinforcements are on this side of the Rio Grande and that none can possibly be on in less than ten days or two weeks, and doubtfull whether they will come at all. I send you Badilla and another Mexican as guides. The first will inform you who sent the message. I do not wish his name mentioned. This being the case Ugartechea's object is to intercept the cavallarda and Fannin and perhaps you can hear of him on Medina. I have given you all the information on the subject I have recd. The only thing certain is that Ugartachea is out some where, and the probability is he went after Fannin and Travis.   S. F. Austin

Send to the rancho on the Leon and make inquiries [but] touch nothing there, they are friends. Peter is there. Also enquire at Navarros ranch on the upper Rio Grande road beyond Medina. All the reports except this one brought by Badilla say that the reinforcements are near. S. F. Austin

Observations and Opinions MILAM/ROYALL TO FANNIN 15 Nov 1835
San Felipe, Nov. 15, 1835.......Your army certainly has been badly conducted....If your commander or his staff could see 2 inches from their noses and order supplies in time the country has many men and all that is necessary.....I think as an Individual the troops ought not to leave Bexar if they can possibly help it.....B.R. Milam [A duplicate letter was from Royall]

Security and Feeding AUSTIN ORDER 16 Nov 1835
General Orders  Head Quarters. Mill Station above Bexar 16th Novr 1835   The Captain or commandant of each company is particularly and positively ordered to prevent any of the men of their respective companies from shooting in the lines or out of them without permission and to send to the guard fire any person who violates this order, and also to prevent gambling or any noisy or disorderly conduct in their companies in compliance with the general orders on this subject.  The said captains or commandants are also ordered to direct their men to tie up and secure their horses evry night as information has been given that small parties have been organized in Bexar to go out on foot evry night and steal them. Should the men lose their horses after receiving this caution it will be their own faults   It is positively prohibited that any person kill a beef except by special order of the Quarter Master.  By order S. F. Austin F. W. Johnson  Adjt. and Inspet. Gen. 

AUSTIN ORDER 16 Nov 1835
General Orders  Head Quarters Mill Station above Bexar 16th Novr 1835   The public service and the welfare of evry individual in the army requires that all our resources and especially the corn should be economized and saved as much as possible. It is therefore ordered that the corn shall be gathered and hawled into camp and regularly issued in rations by the Quater Master until the corn can be hawled in. The captains of each company will detail a sufficient number of men from their respective Companies to bring in corn under the direction of the Quater Master who will issue it to the companies who bring it in in rations of not more than one peck per horse. The Captains will take special care that their men do not feed on the grounds which produces great waste, but that they feed on a blanket or skin, or in a small bag hung below the horses mouth. It is particularly enjoined on all the officers to attend especially to this order and to prevent all waste or lavish use of corn-other ways our stock will soon be exausted. The men which the Captains of companies are ordered to detail for the purpose of getting corn, will report themselves to the Quarter master evry day at six oclock in the morning    S.F. Austin

Capture of Horses on the San Miguel TRAVIS TO AUSTIN 16 Nov 1835
Camp at the Mill Station near Bexar Novr. 16th 1835 Sir: Having returned late last night with the detachment under my command, from an expedition to the waters of the Rio Frio, & being required by your Excellency, to make a report of my proceedings during my absense, I have the honor to state. That on the evening of the 5th Inst. I left the camp at head Quarters, as a volunteer under the command of Capt. Briscoe, who had been despatched on a scouting expedition to the westward of San Antonio. On the third day after Capt. B. set out, he concluded to return to camp, from the Laredo crossing of the Medina. Feeling satisfied that much good might be done to the service by a detachment's going farther west on the Laredo road, I porposed to take command of a small detachment of 12 men, who volunteerd to go with me upon such an expedition. I accordingly set out on Sunday the 8th Inst. & camped at Salinas's Ranch, on the Atascasos on the first night. On the next day, I took up the line of march towards Laredo, and after having travelled about five miles, I discovered the trail of the public cavallada, which had been sent off from Bexar, about 8 days before. Having pursued the trail for several miles, along the Laredo road, we came to where the party with the cavallada had encamped about two days before, after which the trail became much fresher, & we pursued with renewed confidence of success, at a brisk pace until we arrived at the Macho, about 50 miles from San Antonio, where the soldiers with the horses had evidently encamped the night before. I then made the best disposition I could, of the small force I had, to attack them wherever I should find them, & pursued them with great caution until after night, when being informed by my guides that we were within two or three miles of San Miguel creek, at which they must have encamped with the cavallada, as there was no other water on the road within five Leagues; & thinking it not prudent to attack them in the night, (as I understood they were 20 strong) & we would thereby lose the advantage of our superior markmanships; & fearing that the cavallada might stampede & be lost, I encamped for the night without water & without shelter from the cold or rain which was falling upon us.   on the morning of the 10th, at day break I marched to attack the enemy with all speed. I found them encamped in the very advantageous position amidst some oaks on the west batik of the San Miguel about 70 mile from St. Antonio; & seeing two of their men out collecting the horses, I ordered my men, to charge into their camp on horse back, with a view to divide them as I supposed their force to be superior in numbers to our own. I acordingly rode up to their encampment at the head of my men at a full gallop, took them completely by surprise & they surrendered with out the fire of a gun. Two of them escaped-we took five prisoners, six muskets, two swords & 300 head of gentle spanish horses including ten mules. Having dispatched a courier to advise you of the capture, I had the horses &c, collected immediately, & started with them & the prisoners to a point on the St. Antonio river about 35 miles below Bexar, where I arrived safely with them on the 4th day after I left the San Miguel. From thence agreeably to your superior orders I sent the cavallada under convoy of six faithful men to Gonzales, where they will probably arrive to-morrow. I have nothing further to add, than that during ten days of arduous service, my men have had to mount guard every night, & to be on fatiguing duty during the day, without any other food than meat without salt; & that most of them have conducted themselves with a heroism & firmness worthy of the great cause of liberty in which they are engaged, & the satisfaction they enjoy of having rendered some service to their country, more than compensates them for the fatigues & privations they have undergone in a bleak wilderness, amidst cold & rain.  I have the honor to remain your excellency's obt. sert.  W. Barret Travis   To Genl. S.F. Austin

Reduction of Waste AUSTIN TO JACK 17 Nov 1835
Head Quarters above Bexar Nov. 17 1835 To Patrick C. Jack Quarter Master, You will immediately take cahrge of all the wagons and oxen-ascertain what drivers are employed on wages and at what price and by whom employed-employ other drivers of well known fidelity on wages, if necessary and see that they take proper care of the oxen and do their duty. You will proceed immediately to have the corn gathered and hauled in and prevent all waste and see that it is regularly issued in rations agreeably to the genl. order of yesterday. You will at once perceive the great importance of this measure and that all waste of corn or of beef be carefully guarded against and prevented. The genl. order of yesterday positively prohibits any one from killing a beef without special order from the Quarter master. You will see that this order is attended to, and also that no more beeves are killed than are needed dayly for use, and that there is no waste. You will apply to the adjt. Genl. in writing for the details of men, needed to gather corn, or for other purposes. I rely on your zeal and activity to discharge your duty promptly and dilligently.  The men who are detailed by the captains of companies to bring in corn untill it can be hauled will go to the fields on the east side of the river, and Will not touch any of the corn on the west side.  S. F. Austin

Deserter Reports AUSTIN ORDER 17 Nov 1835
Head Quarters 17th Novr 1835 On the 14th of Novr. two deserters came in, one of cavalry and one of infantry to the camp at concepcion, and on the 15 and 16 one artillery man and two cavalry deserted to the mill station above town. They report that desertions are frequent, and that the soldiers are getting more and more discouraged every day-that the fortifications are very strong and well arranged-that Col Ugartechea left Bexar in the night of the 14 with 100 cavalry, supposed by some to recover the cavallarda taken by Travis. Others said his object was to join the expected reinforcements and convoy, and that he took 100 muskets with him on packs. The only thing in which all the reports agree is that he did go out on the night of the 14th with upwards of 100 men.   Since the 14, no parties of the enemy have been seen beyond the reach of the cannon on the walls. Scouts from our army went round Bexar every day. On the 16 at night Capt. Travis returned to camp having dispatched the captured cavallarda to Gonzales under the charge of John R. Foster-he brought in six horses and 4 prisoners-the horses were sold at auction by the Quarter master.  S. F. Austin 

Travis's Report, Austin For Storming AUSTIN TO CONSULTATION 18 Nov 1835
Head Quarters before Bexar Nov. 18, 1835, 12 o'clock. To the President of the General consultation of Texas   In my last I communicated the taking of a cavallarda of 300 horses by a detachment under the command of Cap. W.B. Travis. I now enclose his detailed report, and beg leave to recommend the services of Cap. Travis and the men who composed his party  On the 9th instant I recd information which was entitled to attention, that a reinforcement was on the road from Laredo to join Genl. Cos. I immediately ordered Capt. Fannin to take command of sixty five men from the encampment at the Mission of Concepcion, which were to have been joined by an equal number from the encampment above Bexar, and to proceed on the Laredo road to intercept the reported reinforcements. Cap Fannin marched promptly, but was not joined by the party from the upper camp, he however proceed[ed] on the Laredo road as far as rio frio. he returned last night. I enclose his official report. This officer has been very efficient and I recommend him as one of the officers of the regular army when it is organized.  On the 14th I recd. information that Col Ugartechea left Bexar the night before for Laredo supposed[ty] for the purpose of escorting the expected reinforcements-I immediately dispatched Col. Burlison with one hundred and thirty men In pursuit of him. I have since learned that Ugartechea had a man for a pilot who has lived with the Comanches and that he will make a great circuit by the hills on the head of [the] Medina, the prospect of Burlison's meeting him is therefore doubtfull. According to the best accounts the reinforcements have not yet left Laredo.  The enemy are shut up in the walls and fortifications of Bexar, parties of our volunteers go round the town dayly, and within cannon shot. We have picked up about twenty of their six pound shot.

I have heretofore on various occasions submitted to a council of officers the Storming of the fortifications, and I am now decidedly in favor of that measure, so soon as the orleans Greys get up from Goliad; and Burlisons detachment returns. The works are stronger than they were but are greatly extended, and consequently the defending force is very much scattered. The troops inside are also very much discouraged and begin to consider the contest as hopeless, cut off as they are from resources with a wilderness in the rear, which has been burnt nearly all the way to rio Grande on all the roads. Bexar must fall in a short time for want of resources without loss on our part and I think it could be Stormed successfully, tho at very considerable risk of loosing men.  My health which has been very bad from severe dysentery since the army left the Cibolo, has improved within the last few days very much.  The army has done all that could have been done under the circumstances, and without materials, and organization, which latter is purely voluntary. It deserves great credit for its suferings and perseverance. I have every confidence that a short time will end this campaign.     Yours respectfully S.F. Austin

AUSTIN PROCLAMATION TO BEXAR INHABITANTS 18 Nov 1835 [In Spanish.  Austin summarizes events to date and objectives of the siege]

Situation Report Home MOSES AUSTIN BRYAN TO JAMES F. PERRY 18 Nov 1835
Camp Near the Mill (600 yds. from Bexar) November 18th 1835 Dear Father and Mother  I this moment recd. yours of the 8 Ult. and am rejoiced to hear that you are all in good health and getting along so well in the way of picking out Cotton etc. Joel has gone out in pursuit of Ugartechea who left the fort 5 or 6 days ago to meet a reinforcement which are coming on from Laredo. The force under Ugartechea is stated to amount to between 1 and 2 hundred men. the company in persuit of him under the command of Col Burleson consists of 180 men: they will be back to day or tomorrow If they come a cross him they will be apt to take him if they doe, I think it will end the campaign   There are about 6 hundred men in camp, a sufficient force to take Bexar if we had the necessary tools. It will be attacked in a day or two at all hazards as the corn is getting scarse and it seams that there is no hopes of the cannon coming soon. Grant and Viesca were on their way to Vera Cruz under an escort of 20 soldiers and instead of the Soldiers taking them to the place they were ordered they brought them to Texas, Grant is now here and Viesca has gone to San felipe  We will have 100 men from La Bahia or Goliad in a day or two, The troops are all driven away from the Irish town on the Nueces a considerable battle took place in which 6 or 8 mexicans were killed and several wounded and the balance dispersed N. B. The reinforcement that is coming on consists of 60 soldiers and 300 convicts. I think we will be able to take the 60 soldiers and untie the convicts Some days agoe I thought the army would be broke up as they were all tiard of waiting for the cannon and hearing no news from the colony and desertion more or less every day: but now every body is in good spirits and reinforcements expected etc Grant brings news that the federal party is gaining ground in the interior. Bexar must fall in a few days or it will not fall at all  Uncle is better and tiard enough of commanding militia  I will write by the next chance if any thing occurs, We have skirmishes every day     M. A. Bryan  [Addressed:] Mr James. F. Perry Peach Point. Texas 

Report from Rio Frio FANNIN TO AUSTIN 18 Nov 1835
Camp near Bejar Head Quarters Federal Army 18th Nov Genl Stephen F. Austin Dr Sir-I have just returned from an expidition as far west as Rio Frio, made in pursuance with yr orders of the 9th, inst I have to report, that I proceeded on that day with sixty five men of my own company & Volunteers via, Col. Burlursons camp, where yr orders for ninety men were delivered & a promise made of marching foward early next (lay (10th) to join me thirty miles beyond the river Madina On the night of the 9th I seperated my command, in order to cover the Rio Grande & Lorade roads, giving the command of the party for the former, to my first Lieut. John Yorks,-with orders to proceed to Madina, & when joined by Col. Burlinsons party, to proceed west to the several watering places as far as thirty miles, keeping out the necessary advances & flank guards, in order to ascertain from the trails, if the expected convoy or re-inforcements had passed; and if any discovery should be made, communicate forthwith with me, and if necessary the main army  The duty was performed-and no discovery made, when I marched to the Madina, and took measures, to have guarded the three main and almost only crossings on that river-whilst Lt. York performed the same duty above-Being again disappointed, and hearing from Capt. Travis, I marched on to the Atascosa, and about fifteen miles west of Salinas rancho, came across a trail, which we followd, up until near night, when we became satisfied that it was that of Capt Travis with his Horses-From here we again struck off for the Rio Frio, keeping out such parties, as to cover most of the country, which is passable, until we arrived at San Maguil, where the main body encamped most of the Horses being tired down-and a picket guard of six men, ordered forwd. to Rio Frio  At this point, I expected to be joined by the party from Col. Burlinson camp-as well as that of Lt Yorks, but the last were compelled to return to camp, their Horses being worn down from hard service, and from the circumstance of my party being so far in advance-whilst the former entirely refused to obey the order to proceed on the duty assigned

Thus I was situated, when yrs of the 14th by Dn. Floris was recd. & by him was informed of Li Yorks return, when I forthwith look tip the line of march for Head Quarters, not neglecting the object of the expidition, but with no better success than before-At Salinas rancho, I was informed that Col. Ugartechea had left Bejar on the night of the 14th with 200 and proceeded on the upper route to escort in a convoy & 300 Convicts, supposed to be at Lorado-This being cofirmed at Madina, I felt bound to make a force march to camp, to apprize you of it, that a party with fresh horses, might be dispatchd after him and watch his motions, and if to be found, secure this wily chief, and untiring enemy of Texas.  It may be proper here, for me to inform you that I purchased & gave receipts from Dn. Jose Maria Solmas [Salinas], Beef & Pork, to the amt of Thirty Dollars, which was cheerfully accepted by him, with many assurances of personal regard for yourself, and good wishes to the cause, and offers of such services, as he could consistly with his situation & private & domestic affairs, expected to render-He has promised to watch, and make such confidential communications, as the service requires and that may be come at, through his friends in Bejar or by discovery to the west.  In conclusion, allow me to call yr particular attention to the interception & capture of the party of Col. Ugartechea.  With sentiments of the highest consideration, I am, as ever, Yr ovt sevt. J.W. Fannin Jr.

Desires Brig. General Appointment FANNIN TO HOUSTON 18 Nov 1835
in Camp before Bejar 18th Nov. 1835 Genl Huston My Dr Sir Since writing to you and others this morning, yrs of the 13th inst-has been handed me- The Messenger is just going off, and I am bound to write tho, in haste, and thank you for the tender made me of Inspector Gen. of the Army.-I have not time to consult my friends-or the wishes of the Army, so as to give you a decided answer-or make such other suggestions, as the case & circumstances require I must be permited to say that, yr opinion touching the retrogade movement on Gonzales, would meet with but little opposition-But I am clearly of the opinion, that we can soon reduce them-or take them by storm-but I will also say, I fear much from the depressed feelings & ardour of the men Whatever! you think best for the common cause, execute & that boldly & decissively-Few councils of war   With regard to my acceptance, I would prefer a command in the line, if I could be actively engaged-But I do not know how or in what manner the Army will be organized- Having Elected one Maj Gen.-Will they not also make two Brig Genls? If so, would not my claims by equal to any other? If I can get either-I would prefer it-and I respectfully request your influence for one-otherwise I will accept of the appointment you tender me, provided I can have furlough, to bring on my family, in case I am not required in the field

My Dr Gen-I can safely affirm to you and my god, that I am regardless of rank in this army, provided we can accomplish our object-But I am well satisfied, that I can fill either of the posts, better than any officer, who has yet been in Command Entertaining this opinion, I will at least tender my services, and others succeed over me by intrigue, in place of either service or  merit, the fault will not be mine Write to T. F. McKinney of Velasco, to send you my Military Books, which came out in the San Felipe.-The Rules & Regulations are among them Accept my assurances &e.  J.W. Fannin Jr    p S. If a 'Regular Army' be organized, I would gladly receive some honorable appointment in it-and can be of more service in that way, than in any other-I have not time to give my views as to the "modus operandi"-Let it suffice, that I am wholy at the service of the country, and shall not quit camp to seek office-but rather prefer the post of danger; where I may seek the enemy & beat him too, when found-I would like the command of this station when taken, provided a military post be kept up here-Use me to the most advantage    JWF [Addressed:]   J W Fannin 18th Nov 1835    Gen. Sam. Houston express. San Felipe

Opinion FANNIN TO HOUSTON 18 Nov 1835
In Camp 4 oclk. P.M. 18th Nov 1835 Dr Genl. Since writing the inclosed, I find the express will [not] start for an hour and I avail myself, to add a few more words-You ask my opinion with regard to falling back on Goliad & Gonzales-With the present force-and under the present discipline, and most of the present officers, & the panic already imbibed, touching a storm, &c I must admit it to be the safest course-I am truly loth to say so-as I have done more to prevent a retrogade step than any one in the army-but I should be doing my own sense & judgement & our common country & cause, manifest injustice to withhold my decided convictions on this movement-I must also say, that I am fully convinced that with 250 men, well chosen & properly drilled so as to rely upon each other that the place can be taken by storm, and not much loss to the party

I agree with you, if the cannon be waited for, it is useless to stay here-and I am fully convinced that before we can reach Guadalupe, Cos will be on his way to the Interior-We have nearly consumed all the corn &c near here-and I would suggest the total distruction of the remainder, before leaving, and in this way, the enimy will be as badly whipped, as we can hope to do by arms-Col. Ugartechea is now out towards the Lorado, with 200 men, to escort in a convoy & 300 convicts, who are tied &c & coming on-If we can take him, the place will forthwith surrender- Parties are now out for that purpose, & I hope some good may be done-Bring on Col. Gonzales, who may do much good here in disaffecting the Cavalry.  Do urge the "Regular Army," organization-& if I can be brought in, & allow me to bring in some U. S. officers, graduates of West Point, I can form as good a force for the number, as ever were mustered--a yager Rifle, Musket & brace of Pistos & Knife, should be their arms--use this as you may see fit--Let me hear from you soon and command me as you may deem best.  Liberty & Texas--our wives & sweethearts--J.W. Fannin Jr.

Resignation W. D. C. HALL TO AUSTIN 18 Nov 1835
China Grove Novr. 18th 1835 To Genl S F Austin Dear Sir  Inclosed you will find my resignation as Adjt Insptr Genl You have my warmest thanks for this honor you so generously confered on me and be asured my dear Sir that nothing (but the conviction that it is no longer in my power to serve you) induces me to make a tender of my commission. It would be too great a sacrifice of my feelings to remain longer in the situation I hold in that army you will therefore I hope permit me to retire- at some future day I confidently flatter myself-that I can give you such reasons as will satisfy you that I am right in addopting the present course In the meantime you will please to consider me Your sincere and humble Friend    Warren D. C. Hall     N. B. I have done every thing in my power to promote the interest of the army; and will continue to do so in my official Capacity until I hear from you.  [Addressed:] To Genl. Stephen F. Austin Comdt in Chief of the Federal Army Bexar

Personal Situation Report JOHNSON TO WILLIAMSON 18 Nov 1835
Camp at the Mill near Bexar 18th Nov. 1835   Dear Willie, We have been marching and counter-marching pretty much ever since I have been in Camp and without being able to affect any thing more than to keep the enmy within their walls, but with all of our vigilance Col. Ugartachea has gone out with from 150 to 200 men & 100 stand of muskets to meet a reinforcement from Lorado composed of 300 civic militia from Zacatecas & San Louis who are unarmed and guarded by 95 armed men   We have had considerable desertion in our lines since my arrival, which has been remedied in part by the recruits from different parts of the country who are coming almost daily-the camp is only kept together by the patriotism of the men and the unremitting exertions of the officers, but this will shortly fail unless some prompt, definitive and efficient measures are taken by the convention at this time almost every thing depends upon the Convention-The Town and Garrison is strongly fortified, much stronger than you could immagine and they are hourly engaged in fortifying and strengthening the place we can do nothing without battering Cannon ball &c.-The pieces we have are too small though we will make the best use of them possible, but for them we have but few balls which we are now trying to remedy by collecting all the copper & bells about the old missions and casting it into ball for the pieces we have here.  For Gods sake have the battering piece forwarded with ball &c. Tentcloth and other things are in great requisition and it is the only thing that will keep the present force together the keeping of this force together is all important to the success of Texas.-Doctrs Grant and Cameron arrived here last night from Labahia who informes us that Viesca and Col. Gonzales are on their way to Sanfilipe-Col. Gonzales has tendered his service to Gen. Austin-He can be of much service from the information recd. by the gentlemen above mentioned-200 of the U S volunteers will be in today-Capt. Fannin returned last night from a tour in search of the convoy &c. and went out as far as San Miguel but without being able to make any discovery-Col. Burleson is now out in the same business with from 120 to 150 men-Capt. Travis took 300 head of Horses and 6 prisoners-the Horses are all fit for use and have been sent across the Guadalupe--Treat Viesca with civility and attention, it is ude form the people of Texas to him and I hope they will not be found wanting in this particular--Let us know what you are doing in the convention by every opportunity--my respects to all friends--yr friend  F.W. Johnson

Request for Aid GARZA TO LAREDO AYUNTAMIENTO 19 Nov 1835 [Jose Francisco de la Garza forwards an order from Col. Ugartechea to Col. Jos� Juan Sanchez asking for supplies for Cos forces in Bexar.]

Viesca's Disinterest in Texas PADILLA TO COUNCIL 20 Nov 1835 [Juan A. Padilla states that Gov. Viesca is not interested in Texas, but is on the way to New Orleans where he hope to find greater personal security.]

Erection of battery AUSTIN ORDER 21 Nov 1835
The battery ordered to be erected within 300 yds of the walls of the fortifications will be commenced this night, under command of Capt. Cheshire assisted by Dr. James Grant as engineer.  Nov. 21 1835.  S.F. Austin.

Opposition to Storming Bexar BURLESON TO AUSTIN 21 Nov 1835
Camp near Bexar, 21st November, 1835  S. F. Austin, Commander-in-Chief    On receipt of your general order of this date, announcing that an attack on the fortifications would be made by storm to-morrow morning, I have ascertained the disposition of the officers and men of my division, and believe it to be my duty to report that a majority of them are opposed to the measure, and are unwilling to attempt it.   Edward Burleson  Col. Commanding

Opposition to Storming SUBLETT TO AUSTIN 21 Nov 1835
To S. F. Austin Comr in Chief  On recipt of your Genl. order of this date announcing that an attack on the fortifications of Bexar would be made by Storm tomorrow morning I have ascertained the disposition of the officers and men of my division and believe it to be my duty to report that a majority of them are opposed to the measure and are unwilling to attempt it and I concur in opinion with them   Philip A. Sublett Lt Col. 21 Nov 1835 

Discharge of Fannin AUSTIN TO FANNIN 22 Nov 1835
Head Quarters before Bexar Nov. 22, 1835   Capt. J. W. Fannin having represented to me that the absolute necessity of returning home, I have granted to him an honorable discharge and have to say that he has uniformly discharged his duty as a soldier and as an officer.  S. F. Austin  Comdr. in Chief

Personal Report AUSTIN TO PERRY 22 Nov 1835
Before Bexar Novr. 22 1835 Dr Brother,  My health has been very bad since I left the Cibolo, more than a month ago, and I have been unable to attend personally to the duties of my station with that activity which the service required-I believe however that all has been done that could have been-I have at various times submitted the question of storming the fortifications to a council of officers and they have uniformly decided against it-yesterday I was in hopes the Army was prepared to do it, and I issued a positive order, to storm at day light this morning, but on trial I found it impossible to get half the men willing for the measure, and it was abandoned from necessity   I begin to doubt whether much more can be done here, than to leave a force in winter quarters at the missions below town, say 250 men, untill. the necessary regular force and guns and other supplies, come out

My health is better than it has been and is improving fast-I shall make another effort to get the army to storm if it cannot be effected, I shall leave as many as will stay in winter quarters and go to the U. S. under the appointment they have given me as commissioner- So far as may own wishes and feelings are concerned, I much prefer an appointment out of Texas, then in it--I am ready to serve the country in any way I can-I accept the appointment I now hold here, because I could not do otherwise, I never sought it, nor wished for it-my constitution is too much worn out and too feeble for the exposure and hardships and activity of a winters campaign, destitute of everything like comforts.    I have done the best I could   This army has always been composed of discordant materials, and is without proper organization---The volunteer sistem will not do for such a service, I have had a hard and difficult task to perform-and am really so worn out, that I begin to require rest- I could have been of more use in the convention than here-and I can be of service to Texas by going to the U. S. and I wish to go there.   Love to all- The boys are well-we are about 600 yards from the fortifications and we have a battery within 340 yards but have no balls to do much good  This place must fall of itself in a short time-They are almost destitute of supplies and but little hope, of getting them from the interior soon-If Genral Mexia has gone to attack Matamoros and succeeds, in taking that place this one will fall of course As to Texas affairs, much more depends at present on a proper regulation of the civil Govt. than on the military operations    If there is unanimity and prudence and no party work, in the civil department, all will go right the fate of Texas depends mainly on this-we ought to get united to the U. S. as soon as possible, it is the best we can do farewell    S. F. Austin

How I envy a poor and obscure man in his quiet cottage, free from care and trouble and faction-A   We have cannonading every day. to day it has been very brisk for several hours-no harm has been done to any of our men-we hear that several have been killed and wounded inside one mexican soldier was killed this morning who was attempting to reconnoiter our battery  S F A

Arrival New Orleans Grays AUSTIN ORDER 22 Nov 1835
Nov 22d, 1835. The company of volunteers from New Orleans commanded by Capt. Morris joined the Army on the 21st in the afternoon and the Capt. reported his company ready for duty, this day.  S.F. Austin

Roster of the New Orleans Grays [From John Henry Brown, History of Texas, 1886.  Brown states that the original muster roll was burned with the Texas adjutant-general's office in 1855.  His appended copy was provided by Sidney S. Callender, "a retired printer and publisher in New Orleans, known to me as a reliable gentleman, with whom I served on the Rio Grande in 1842. *died with Fannin at Goliad, 1836]

Alexander Abrams, Ohio; G. L. Addison, Maryland; Louis F. Amelung, Louisiana; Charles Bannister, Louisiana; John Belden, New York; Wm. Blowne, England; Wm. Boyle, Pennsylvania; Nathaniel Brister, Virginia; Sidney S. Collender, Mississippi; Charles J. Carrier,* South Carolina; Seth Carey, Vermont;  James M. Cass,* Connecticut; Wm. Chamberlain, Ohio; Charles W. Connor, Pennsylvania; Wm. G. Cooke, Virginia; John Connell, Pennsylvania; Michael Cronican, Massachusetts; Noah Dickinson, Jr.,* Upper Canada; V. Drouellard, Louisiana; Wm. D. Durham, England; George M. Gill* (or Gillard), Pennsylvania; Wm. Graham, Nova Scotia; Francis H. Gray,* Scotland; George Green,* England; John L. Hall, Maryland; Julian Harley, South Carolina; Wm. Harper,* Ireland; E. S. Heath,* Massachusetts; Nicholas Herron, Virginia; Stuart Hill, ??; Nathan Holbrook, Massachusetts; Wm. L. Hunter, Virginia; Francis Johnson, Maine; Allen O. Kenney,* Virginia; Francis Leonard, Louisiana; Albert M. Levy, Virginia; Thomas S. Lubbeck, South Carolina; Dennis Mahoney,* Ireland; Robert C. Morris (captain of the company), Louisiana; Adam Mosher, Kentucky; Marshal B. McIver, Kentucky; John D. McLeod, England; John D. MeNeel, North Carolina; James Nowland, Ireland; Christopher O'Brien, Ireland; Wm. G. Preuch,* Louisiana; F. Proctor, Louisiana; John Reese,* Wales; Joseph P. Riddle,* Pennsylvania; Richard Ross, Illinois; Hiram H. Russell, Tennessee; Charles Sargeant,* Massachusetts; Henry S. Smith, New York; Martin K. Snell, Pennsylvania; Thomas R. Striff, Virginia; George Stephens, England; E. N. Stringer, Louisiana; Hartwell Walker, New Hampshire; Thos. Wm. Ward, Ireland; James West,* Pennsylvania; John Wood,* South Carolina; Mandred Wood, Pennsylvania; Edward Wrentmore, England; and George Voss, Germany; total, sixty four representing sixteen States and six foreign countries. 

Burleson Elected Commander AUSTIN ORDER 24 Nov 1835
Head Wuarters Novr. 24, 1835. This day the army was paraded for the purpose of ascertaining how many volunteers would remain before Bexar as a permanent force under a comr. to be elected by themselves. The present comr. having been called by the convention to proceed immediately to San Felipe to go to the U. S. as a comr. On putting the question to the line four hundred and five men turned out and pledged themselves to remain, and a roll of them was ordered to be furnished by each Capt. which is filed.  On the same day an order was issued for an election for the com. the result of which was as follows---Edward Burleson was unanimously elected Comr. in Chief   F. W. Johnson appointed Adjt. and Inspt. Genl   Wm. T. Austin appointed Aid de Camp    Col. Edward Burlison, Leut Col. Philip Soublett and Leut John York are appointed appraisers to appraise the horses and equipments of the volunteers who remain before Bexar  S. F. Austin Novr 24, 1835.   The above appraisers will enter into their duty immediately, and report to head Quarters to night a list of the appraisment.  S. F. Austin  An election will be held in each Captains company for a commander of the volunteers who remain before Bexar. None but those who are pledged to remain will vote. The returns of the election will be made at head Wuarters by 5 P. M. Oclock this day Nov. 24, 1835.

Austin Hands Command to Burleson GENERAL ORDER 24 Nov 1835
Head Quarters of the federal Army of Texas   Before Bexar Nov. 24, 1835. Since my last I have recd information which renders it necessary and highly important that fort Goliad should be retained and fortified as strongly as possible. You will therefore maintain your position with all the force you have and all you can collect. In the event of the army's raising the siege of this place a considerable portion of it will retire to Goliad. Col. James Bowie will proceed to that place in a few days    The convention have appointed me a commissioner to proceed to the U. S. and I am directed to go on my mission forthwith. In consequence of which I shall leave here to-morrow and hurry on to the N. Orleans without any delay. Col. Ed. Burlison remains in command of the army and you will be subject to his orders.  By intercepted letters from Lipantliclan it appears that no more troops had occupied that place, than were there before? that the Govt. in Mexico are organizing an army of 10,000 men to be commanded bv Genl. Santana in person who is to be on in the Spring, and that efforts are making to send on reinforcements to this place.  Ys. respectfully S. F. Austin

Resignation GOHEEN TO AUSTIN 24 Nov 1835
To S F Austin Commander in Chief  The undersigned having served as Captain of a company for two months past, wishes now to resign said command for reasons that the company is but 18 strong, that they are not of sufficient number to be called a company and he hereby resigns the same if the commander will except the same  In camp Nov 24th 1835    M. R. Goheen      Captain 

Gonzales Key to Texas Defense HOUSTON TO MARTIN 24 Nov 1835
San Felipe de Austin, November 24, 1835. To Captain Wylie Martin.  My dear Sir: In accordance with our last conversation, I take pleasure in explaining my views, if they can, in any possible event, be of service to our countrymen.  If, in the range of human occurrances, it shall be proper or even necessary for the army of the people before Bexar to fall back, because of the men not being prepared with proper clothing for winter, and the want of necessary artillery and munitions of war, I would suggest to you the advantage of retiring in good order, and sending the cannon, baggage, and sick, in advance, so that they can at least reach the Cibolo under conduct of a strong guard, and a vigilant officer to command it, before the enemy should be formed in two divisions, one to pursue the route to LaBahia, and the other that of Gonzales. There ought to be a sufficient force left at La Bahia to make a firm defence at that place, and all possible means used for that purpose.  Gonzales being, in my opinion, the most important interior key to Texas (proper), should also be placed in a condition for defence, with a force of from one to two hundred placed there, under a firm and prudent commander, who will at once establish discipline and organization; and using the greates vigilance, retaining a few horses to keep out scouts. This, it seems to me, must be a rallying point for Texas.  Sam Houston. 

Situation Report RUSK TO ROBINSON 25 Nov 1835
at Camp above Bejar 25th Nov 1835  Dear Sir Your last letter to me promising the support of the Genl Council to the Army now in the field below Bejar we have had difficulties which none but those who have been engaged in them could well know We are now reduced down to about 350 men who have agreed to remain before this place we are out of provisions we need Clothing Shoes and Amunition And without Cannon and Mortars Scaling the walls would be the death of very many worthy men   The enemy will be very shortly reinforced by Large numbers-we must be reinforced ourselves unless the Country are willing to see this Army cut off   You letter has had great influence in inducing these people to remain   You must not leave them to their fate without exertion hurry on every man you can   We have suffered much for the last few days with cold I am now half frozen while I write    I am Your most ob st Thos J Rusk Please write me often Genl Austin will give you the content of many Communications from Mexico which We have got hold of    T J R    James W. Robinson Lieut. Govr.  San Felipe

Declines Commissioner Appointment WHARTON TO ARCHER 26 Nov 1835.  Declines appointment as Commissioner, opines that nothing short of complete declaration of independence will win financial support of the US and other countries.....P.S.  The army is much in want of coffee, sugar, flour, tobacco, clothing, etc., and if not furnished as soon as possible, great and just dissatisfaction will ensue......

Next page 6

Muster at Gonzales and Battle of Bexar
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