The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 26, July 1922 - April, 1923

Memoirs of Major George Bernard Erath

5. At San Jacinto, 1836
General Houston had retreated from Gonzales to the Colorado
River to a place near where Columbus now stands. On the 20th
of March about fourteen hundred men were at that place under
his command. I had joined Captain Billingsly's company from
Bastrop, Burleson's regiment. There was great eagerness among
us to fight, but in a few days General Houston ordered the retreat
to the Brazos River. This caused over four hundred men to leave.
us. Although we were constantly receiving volunteers the army
did not number but about one thousand at San Jacinto. Seven
hundred and eighty fought the battle; the rest were fifteen miles.
away scouting the baggage at Harrisburg.
About the first of April heavy rains set in, impeding our prog-
ress, and for nearly two weeks we were encamped in the Brazos
bottom near where Hempstead now stands, while Santa Anna
occupied San Felipe, and moved down the river to cross at Fort
Bend. The delay had a good effect in disciplining us, and giv-
ing us information about military tactics.
We crossed the Brazos about the fourteenth, and traveled on to
Harrisburg as rapidly as the state of the roads would permit.
Santa Anna with a small portion of his men had really got ahead
of us, and was going down the bay in the direction of Galveston.
After burning Harrisburg, he met at New Washington two vessels
carrying supplies for his army. Putting part of these supplies,
on flatboats, and part on several hundred pack mules, he again
advanced up the country to meet with us at San Jacinto.
I have based my views of what took place at this time on
reflections deduced afterward from that of which I was an eye
witness and participant, and on positive information obtained
from Mexican officers.
'This account of the San Jacinto campaign being a rationalized one
should be compared with such studies of the campaign as appear in THu
QUARTERLY, IV, 237-260, and in Bancroft, North Mexican States and
Texas, II, 243-265.


Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 26, July 1922 - April, 1923. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. Accessed February 7, 2016.