James H. C. Miller and Edward Gritten.
JAMES H. C. MILLER AND EDWARD GRITTEN.
EUGENE C. BARKER.
In the summer of 1835 James H. C. Miller and Edward Gritten
strove earnestly, each in his own way, to check the increasing mis-
understanding and friction between Texas and Mexico which cul-
minated in the Texas Revolution. For this history has ill re-
quited them, characterizing 'the former as a traitor and the latter
as a spy.' Of Miller this judgment is too harsh, and of Gritten it
is entirely unfounded.
Little, in fact, is known of Miller. John Henry Brown with un-
necessary fervor congratulates himself for his inability "to name
the State of the Union that gave him birth," because "the common-
wealth is not responsible for such involuntary stains upon its es-
cutcheon."2 He settled at Gonzales, in De Witt's colony, between
1831 and 1835.3 He was a physician; and, from the fact that on
at least one occasion he commanded a party of old settlers in an
expedition against the Indians,- one might conclude that he was a
man of recognized ability and consequence.
In considering the charge against Miller two things should, in
justice to him, be borne in mind: (1) that upon settlement in
Texas colonists, constructively at least, swore allegiance to the gov-
'Yoakum says of Miller (History of Texas, I, 344): "But there were
spies at San Felipe, watching and reporting to Ugartechea the move-
ments of the war-party. Dr. James H. C'. Miller, of Gonzales, .. ."
Brown says of him (History of Tcxas, I, 352): ". . . there was a
spy in the camp at San Felipe, one who had in a short residence at
Gonzales made a favorable impression, but who now developed the loath-
some attributes of a to.ry and a traitor. This disgrace to our race was
known as Dr. James H. C. Miller. . . . This creature was doing the
foul work of a spy for Ugartechea."
Of Gritten Yoakum says (I, 341, note): "There remains now but lit-
tle doubt of his treachery"; -and Brown says (I, 310): "Gritten de-
veloped into an enemy of Texas." Gritten has recently suffered the addi-
tional misfortune of being made the "villain" of an historical novel
(The Lone Star, by E. P. Lyle).
"Brown, History of Texas, I, 3512.
'See map 4 in Rather, De Witt's Colony, TIHE QUARTERLY, VIII, fol-
lowing p. 192.
4See Brown, History of Texas, I, 284-285.
Texas State Historical Association. The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 13, July 1909 - April, 1910. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101051/. Accessed April 26, 2015.