Stockton's Proclamation to the San Diego Insurgents 151
STOCKTON'S PROCLAMATION TO THE SAN DIEGO
THOMAS MAITLAND MARSHALL
Up to the present time our knowledge of the events connected
with Commodore Stockton's occupation of San Diego in November,
1846, has been drawn from H. H. Bancroft (History of California,
V, 326-328), who. based his information upon a letter of Stockton
to George Bancroft of November 23, 1846, and upon Stockton's
official report. Unfortunately Bancroft misdated the report, dat-
ing it on February 18, 1847, when, in fact, it was dated at Wash-
ington on February 18, 1848. The report may be found in Hlouse
Executive Documents, 30 Cong., 2 Sess., Doc. 1, pp. 1037-1054
(Serial No. 537).
Bancroft's statement, in the main quoted from Stockton's letter
to George Bancroft of November 23, 1846, is in part as follows:
"The situation of the place was found to be most miserable and
deplorable. The male inhabitants had abandoned the town, leav-
ing their women and children dependent upon us for protection
and food. No horses could be obtained to assist in the transpor-
tation of the guns and ammunition, and not a beef could be had
to supply the necessary food," though, as the writer somewhat
contradictorily adds, Gibson had returned, "driving about 90
horses and 200 head of beef cattle into the garrison."' Meanwhile
the Californians held the region round about the town. Stockton
says: "On the afternoon of our arrival the enemy, irritated I
suppose by the loss of his animals, came down in considerable
force and made an attack; they were, however, soon driven back
with the loss of two men and horses killed, and four wounded.
These skirmishes, or running fights, are of almost daily occur-
rence; since we have been here, we have lost as yet but one man
killed and one wounded." Thus reported the commodore on
November 23d, the only definite date we have for these events.
That there were, however, any hostilities involving loss of life, I
think there is room for doubt."
A document fortunately came to my hand recently which throws
some additional light upon the San Diego situation. This is a
proclamation in Spanish issued by Stockton at San Diego on:
Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 20, July 1916 - April, 1917. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101070/. Accessed April 1, 2015.