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

Southwestern Historical Quarterly

He starts the expedition from the Trinity river on the La Bahia
road, with a force of nearly eight hundred troops. And after describing
their march, they arrived at La Bahia before day on the 14th of Nov.,
and only found one hundred and sixty troops in the fort'""-that they
marched in and raised their flag and found themselves in possession
of an abundance of military stores and the Spanish military chest'"'-
that they found in the Fort sixteen pieces of Artillery and the military
chest enabled them to pay to each of the troops all back dues. That
with the abundance of provisions on hand, made them contented.
They no doubt had a jolly time of it, feasting on dry bread, made
of meal pounded in a mortar by themselves; and beef broiled or boiled
on the open square where the dust and manure from the stock, sea-
soned their meat and thickened their soup. And the lice in the quar-
ters, contributed to lull them to repose after the fatigues of the day.
Passing over a hundred and one gross falsehoods, I notice he gives
them another jubilee at San Antonio in the distribution of the mili-
tary chest and abundance of spoils and provisions. He says "after the
execution of the prisoners, that Kemper and Ross and several others
of the officers abandoned the expedition; and that, the men being left
without the restraint of any lawful authority, abandoned themselves
to great excesses, and, while thus reveling in almost every specie of
dissipation they were surprised by a new enemy." They must have
enjoyed their roast beef and San Antonio water with a gusto, that
being their only means of subsistence for five months.'5s
These are a few specimens of his entire narrative of that expedition.
That are too incorrect and preposterous to pursue further. I find also,
in the Texas Almanac for 1861, a sketch of this expedition from its
incipiency until their arrival at San Antonio purporting to be fur-
nished by a Mr. Hall,'" who, is there given as a member of the expe-
158McLane says there were soo men in the garrison, but Villars says no troops
were in the garrison. Texas Almanac, z86z, p. 71.
1'This discussion of finding the Spanish military chest may be explained by
Villars. Villars says that one Don Bernardo, a citizen of the town, deserted, leaving
from three to five thousand dollars, which the Americans found and distributed
to the soldiers. At any rate, money seems to have been no problem as Ross told
Shaler that about the end of December, 1812, the expedition had "one hundred
thousand" in their treasury. Information derived from John Villars, in Gulick and
others, Lamar Papers, VI, 147; Shaler to Monroe, January io, 1813, Shaler Papers.
155Shaler received a report in June, 1813, that the republican army in San An-
tonio had no provisions other than beef. Shaler to Monroe, June 12, 1813, Shaler
Papers.
'66Warren D. C. Hall was born in Guilford County, North Carolina, in 1788.
He studied law under Judge William Murry at Natchitoches, Louisiana, 1811-1812,
and opened a law office there. He returned to Texas in 1815 as a member of the
expedition under Aury. In 1835 he returned once more and settled in Brazoria
County. He served as a member of the Committee of Safety at Columbia in 1835,

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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 September 1, 2014.