The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 66, July 1962 - April, 1963

Southwestern Historical Quarterly

Office, estimated that headright, bounty, and donation grants
amounted to 36,876, 492 acres. He said, "All statements as to the
amount of land granted for any purpose are approximations
only. There was never a system of accounting kept in the land
office whereby anything like a definite knowledge could be had
as to the exact acres granted for any purpose."4 In his History and
Disposition of Texas Public Domain, Commissioner Bascom Giles
used the same figure as the amount given to immigrants and as
bounties. Then under a column headed "Donations to Veterans-
San Jacinto veterans" he used the figure 1,169,382 acres which
was the same figure cited by Robison for the veteran donation
grants voted in the acts of 1879 and 1881. Giles then listed the
figure 1,979,852 acres which is correct for the Confederate grants,
and added it to the above figure to show 3,149,234 acres as the
total amount granted to Texas veterans.5 Although these figures
are cited in Texas almanacs and Texas history texts, they are
incorrect.
The first step in clearing up the confusion concerning the
grants is to give the legislative history of the land grants to
soldiers. In order to understand this legislation one must take
a look at the Texas army which was composed of three groups-
regular army, permanent volunteers and short-term volunteers.
On November 24, 1835, the General Council provided for the
creation of a regular army of 1,12o men to be enlisted for two
years or for the duration of the war." On December 5 the council
passed an ordinance providing for the creation of an Auxiliary
Volunteer Corps to the Army of Texas which was to consist of
volunteers who tendered their service "for and during the war."7
Concerning the regular and volunteer army, Ralph W. Steen
has written:
Throughout the period of the revolution the regular army of Texas
was a paper army, consisting simply of elaborate plans, numerous
'Biennial Report of the Commissioner of the General Land Oice State of Texas.
Beginning September z, z9o8, and Ending August 31, g90o (Austin, 1910), 25-30.
5Bascom Giles, History and Disposition of Texas Public Domain (Austin, 1945),
17.
6H. P. N. Gammel (comp.), The Laws of Texas, x822-z897 (1o vols.; Austin,
1898), I, 925.
7lbid., 951.

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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 66, July 1962 - April, 1963. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101196/. Accessed March 26, 2015.