Southwestern Historical Quarterly
delicately raised and of slender form, who could endure all these
I am sure that I slept about twenty four hours, till awakened next
morning to resume our march.
Some of the prisoners had worn out their shoes, some had given
their shirts or blankets away to get a few hours ride, now the reader
can imagine what these poor men suffered, considering the intense
cold they had to endure.
It was pitch dark when we reached our halting place this night, a
grove of cotton woods within thirty miles of El Paso del Norte; and
so tired were the men that the majority of them sunk supperless upon
the ground, too weak to cook the scanty ration of meal which was
distributed among them.
Resuming our march next morning we arrived about sunset at an
encampment directly in the mouth of the gorge through which the
Rio Grande forces its passage; this passage was within eight miles of
the large town of El Paso.
On December 18, 1884, the San Marcos Free Press published a
letter Erhard had written much earlier, but separate from his
reminiscences, which covered a portion of his return trip to Texas
In the Free Press of Aug. 23d, 1883, I read the faithful description
of the storm at "Last Island," Louisiana, written by Dan Dennet.
This article recalls to my memory also a fearful and tragic incident,
of which I was an eye witness.
Having been released from prison in Mexico, I returned via Tam-
pico, State of Tamulipas, Mexico, to New Orleans. There I met some
fifteen of my old comrades, who came there from Vera Cruz, who by
some cause must have been detained longer than their other com-
panions, for ere that the rest had all returned to Texas.
At New Orleans the Texas Consul procured for us a free passage
to Texas, on the steamer "Merchant." It belonged to Chas. Morgan,"'
and was the only steamer plying between the United States and Texas,
and at that only semi monthly, for the state as well as the people were
in a manner bankrupt.
With joyous hearts we went on board of said steamer about the
4th of Sept. 1842, for after over a year's absence and a great deal of
suffering as prisoners of war in Mexico, we hoped to see our adopted
Republic of Texas, and friends again.
The steamer "Merchant" brought news to New Orleans, that the
"Charles Morgan and Arnold Harris owned the Texas and New Orleans Mail
Line. Robert Greenhalgh Albion, "Charles Morgan," Dictionary of American Biog-
raphy (20o vols.; New York, 1928-1936), XIII, 164-165.
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 April 19, 2015.