Notes and Documents
sufficient for the families who are now here and for those who may
come soon), shall measure from the door of the church, passing over
the four squares above mentioned, 1,093 usual varas containing 3,280
geometric feet in a straight line from the church door in one direction,
making up twelve blocks. From the door of the church, including the
church itself, he shall measure 1,093 varas in the opposite direction
in which there shall be included twelve other squares and streets.
From the same door, on the other side, he shall measure 1,093 varas in
which shall be 12 other blocks and streets-all of the same size, each
block containing 24o feet square-each geometric foot equal to a
third of a usual vara-and each street between the blocks 40 feet
wide. Having thus formed a cross with the church as a center, he
shall make a square on the four sides of the whole area or plan with
a cord 1,093 varas long, and shall place at each of the four corners
of the square a large stone in a hole which he shall have dug, in order
that the plan destined for the present and future town may be laid out.
He shall make a furrow with a plow along the four sides of the
square marked by the cord, in order that willows and other trees may
be planted to mark out the four sides of the area of the inner town.
They will serve not only to beautify it, but as soon as they grow to
the height of a man their branches will furnish shade to the set-
In order that the dwellings may be beautiful they shall be of
the same size and similar to each other with patios and corrals in
which the horses and other work animals of the owners may be
kept. The houses shall be adapted for defense, for cleanliness, and
for the health of the inmates, and shall be built so that, as indicated on
the map, the four winds, north, south, east, and west, may enter the
four angles or corners of the town and of each of the houses, making
them more healthful.
When this measurement has been made in the form and manner
prescribed, the governor, using the usual vara of three tercias, shall
measure 1,o93 varas from each of the furrows, which he has made at
right angles to each other on the northeast, southeast, northwest, and
southwest in forming the square about the above mentioned plan,
making this measurement in the same direction, and placing large
stones in the corners to mark the boundaries of the commons.
From these boundaries he shall begin another measurement, and
lay off 2,186 varas-that is twice the 1,o93 varas in the same directions,
placing stones in holes in the corners of the squares to mark the
boundaries of the territory containing the land destined for pastures.
He shall set apart a fifth of this for propios. From the boundaries of
this square he shall begin another measurement, and mark off
2,186 varas in each direction above mentioned. All the land within
this square he shall set apart for farms; and, having reserved 1/5 for
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 December 9, 2013.