1 The following is the text of the order sent to Dr. Sutherland by President Burnet:

Harrisburg , 3 April, 1836.
Dr. John Sutherland,
I have written to Mr. McLaughlin to repair to this place as soon as he is through with the press of business at the ferry and to leave two confidential men in charge of the ferry to assist the passage of other families coming on.

You will please return here as soon as your presence at the ferry can be dispensed with. You will take care that the families which are still on the road be enabled to cross with as little delay as possible for we entertain a hope that as soon as THESE are in a place of safety the MEN will turn their faces to the enemy and THEN he will soon be routed and pushed across the Rio Grande.
In haste,
Your ob’t Sr.,
David G. Burnet, President of the Republic.

2 Bexar was the name by which San Antonio was known at the time of the incidents herein related.

3 Spanish for bunch of saddle horses.

4 Despatch, old form.

5 Jacales are Mexican shacks or huts.

6 It seems that General Woll was a German or Austrian and not an Englishman, as understood by Dr. Sutherland.

7 The following record of events at this point in the history herein related, is taken from Dr. Sutherland’s earliest draft of the FALL OF THE ALAMO: After John W. Smith left Gonzales on Saturday with the twenty-five men before named, we received a letter from Colonel Fannin at Goliad stating that he had sent Captains Desock and Chenoworth with a company of men to Seguin’s "Rancho" on the San Antonio River to get provisions and beef, to bring to the Seguin crossing of the Cibolo, and had crossed over the San Antonio River at Old Goliad, three hundred men with cannon, to join any troops from Gonzales; urging all to come on that could. This letter was dated and the hour of the day given.

On Sunday morning the writer in company with Dr. Alsbury and ten other Americans, crossed the Guadalupe River at Gonzales and fell in with and waited on Captain John N. Seguin, who with twenty-four of his men, was getting ready to go on to meet Colonel Fannin’s division; but Captain Seguin and men were detained so long in getting ready that we failed in overtaking Smith at the Cibolo crossing with the twenty-five men alluded to before. We reached the Cobolo crossing on Monday night after dark and Smith left there at sun set . . . . We waited on Colonel Fannin’s division until Wednesday at midnight, when we retreated, expecting to meet reinforcements but were disappointed. We got back to Gonzales on Thursday 3rd of March . . . . On our return to Gonzales we met another letter from Colonel Fannin, dated the same day as the first but one hour after the former, stating that a council of war had been called, and had determined not to send any reinforcements to Travis, that they would have use for all their troops, and had re-crossed the river at Old Goliad.

The same day we got back to Gonzales, Captains Desock and Chenoworth, being notified by one of Seguin’s men of the Ranch, that the army (Mexican) had heard of their getting provisions and had sent a party after them, left, and in their flight, fell in with Seguin’s men waiting for Fannin, and they too, got back to Gonzales on the same day that we did.

8 Dr Sutherland was very strongly of the opinion as shown above, that Santa Anna did not arrive at San Antonio until March 3. On this point however, Colonel Rip Ford in his Memoirs, differs from him and quotes in support of his opinion, Sergeant Becerra as saying, "General Santa Anna’s army numbered about four thousand men. He determined to take the Alamo by storm but concluded to await the arrival of General Tolza with two thousand men . . . . On the third day of March General Tolza arrived." Colonel Ford concludes, "Hence the display mentioned by Dr. Sutherland . . . . The fact of the presence of General Santa Anna at San Antonio during the whole continuance of the siege is borne out by Sergeant Becerra in his account, and is generally admitted."

We may not be able to know beyond doubt which historian is correct, but attention is hereby called to the other side of the question, that the student of history may take into consideration both views of the matter in forming an opinion.

9 Abbreviation for poetic form, "or ever."

10 Being informed of this circumstance by Mrs. Dickinson and Travis’ boy, I had some curiousity to see the place and when in Bexar nearly two years after the fall, I visited the room which Colonel Bowie had occupied and in which he was killed, when upon examination, I found the stain of his brains yet upon the wall precisely as it had been represented to me by the persons mentioned. The stain remained upon the walls of the room until they were replastered. I frequently visited the place and pointed out the spot to others. The room has since been demolished, together with the walls which Travis defended, and the barracks are all gone. The Vandal hand of progress has done its work. The old church alone, where Dickinson fell, remains, and the wandering tourist is pointed to this room or that within it, and told that here or there is where the noble Travis, or Bowie, or Crockett fell, when in truth they fell not in the church at all, but, as I have said on the ground outside, while the truck cart of traffic rumbles over the identical ground that drank in the life blood of those devoted men.

11 The monument referred to above was destroyed when the capitol was burned in 1881. Another memorial to the heroes of the Alamo has been erected in its stead.

12 It was said that no less than thirty-three widows were left in the town of Gonzales and vicinity, in a manner destitute.

Provided courtesy of Randall Tarin, Alamo de Parras

2006, Wallace L. McKeehan, All Rights Reserved