James W. Fannin, Jr., in the Texas Revolution
JAMES W. FANNIN, JR., IN THE TEXAS REVOLUTION
RUBY CUMB1 SMITH
FANNIN AND THE MATAMOROS EXPEDITION
1. The Inauguration of the Expedition and the Quarrel Between
the Governor and the Council
Before noticing in detail Fannin's connection with the Mata-
moros Expedition, let us turn to the workings of the Provisional
Government of Texas and consider how this expedition was in-
augurated, and how because of it the Provisional Government
failed completely and could not provide for the defence of Texas
in the Campaign of 1836.36
Ever since the beginning of the Revolution, the Matamoros Ex-
pedition had had many advocates, especially in the Council of the
Provisional Government. It will be recalled that the Consulta-
tion on adjourning had approved the plan for such an expedition,""
and after the adjournment of the Consultation, the Council had
urged it as the natural step, if the declarations of that body to
restore the Constitution of 1824 and their promise to co-operate
with the Mexican Liberals in an effort to overthrow the Central-
ists were to be regarded as sincere. P. Dimit, the commandant
at Goliad, was one of the first to urge the government to consider
the matter. In a letter"3 dated December 2, he says:
If this [the expedition to Matamoros] or some other movement
like this, is not adopted, which will enable us to hurl the thunder
back in the very atmosphere of the enemy, drag him, and with
him the war out of Texas, her resources and her blood must con-
tinue to flow, from the centre to the frontier. If this is done,
the paralyzing effects, and the immediate calamities of war, will
be greatly mitigated. The revenue of the port of Matamoros, now
applied to support an unprovoked, unnatural, and unjust war,
against us, would then be used in defraying the expense of the
war, against him. .
"This section is mainly the summary of an article by W. Roy Smith,
"The Quarrel between Governor Smith and the Council of the Provi-
sional Government of Texas," in THE QUARTERLY, V, 269-346.
"Smith, as cited, THE QUARTERLY, V, 288.
"Foote, Texas and the Texans, II, 184-5.
Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 23, July 1919 - April, 1920. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101075/. Accessed July 6, 2015.