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

Notes and Documents

they have succeeded in planting 22 fanegas [about 22 bushels] of corn
and smaller quantities of beans, barley, cotton, peppers, melons, water-
melons, and pumpkins, as well as a quantity of such fruits as they
were able to bring. The most remarkable thing of all is that they
brought some grape cuttings from Coahuila, and they have taken root
and borne this year. The crops, in spite of the scarcity of rain, are
not suffering much at the present time.
As soon as the field work was sufficiently advanced to insure
sufficient food for the settlers, Almazdn turned his attention to
the orders of the viceroy regarding a survey of the town and the
distribution of lands to the settlers. The viceregal order directed
him to go west from the presidio, which then occupied the space
between the still existent Military Plaza and the San Pedro, a
distance of a gunshot, and on the spot later occupied by the
Market House to locate the center of the proposed city. As
AlmazAn had said in his letter of March g, however, he did not
consider that spot suitable for the center of the settlement because
of the difficulties which attended the securing of water and because
no money was available for improving the facilities. As time had
also become a consideration, he decided to place the settlement in
a more advantageous spot. Accordingly he directed his attention to
a spot a gunshot's distance to the east of the presidio and there
proceeded to attempt to execute the other instructions of the
viceroy.
The map which accompanied the order indicated the plan by
which it was intended that the town should be laid out. A few
moments study of this shows that had Almazin followed the direc-
tions accompanying the map, the church should have faced west.
Measuring from the spot he selected for the door of the church,
had he proceeded west the necessary distance for the prescribed
length of the plaza, Almaz;n would have run into the presidio
almost immediately. He was forced, then, either to put some of
his blocks west of the presidio, which was not in conformity with
his instructions, or to relocate the town. This he did by turning
the whole plan in the opposite direction-thus making the church
face east instead of west, as do most of the mission churches.
In the presidio, jurisdiction of the province of Texas and Nuevas
Philipinas, on the second day of July, 1731, I, Don Juan Antonio
Perez de Almazin, .. declare that, as the time has come when the 16

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, 2014.