Notes and Documents
Records of tkh Co/ederate militaryy Coemmissio#
iH SaN AHtIoidO, ful 2-October 10, 1862
Edited by ALWYN BARR*
UNIONISM IN TEXAS BEFORE AND DURING THE CIVIL WAR WAS
strongest in North and in South Central Texas from the
Edwards Plateau to the coast. In the general area be-
tween Austin and San Antonio, ten counties voted against seces-
sion and five others expressed at least 40 per cent opposition.
Unionists continued to voice their opinions openly until the fall
of Fort Sumter in April, 1861, followed by the burning of
Unionist James P. Newcomb's Alamo Express office in San An-
tonio by ardent secessionists in May.?
In June, a Union Loyal League was organized in Gillespie
County by men who preferred to defend their homes on the fron-
tier rather than to fight in the Civil War against the government
to which they still felt strong ties. The organization remained
quiet and undisturbed until the spring of 1862, when citizens
with Southern sympathies protested that Jacob Kuechler, the
enrolling officer of state troops for that area, refused to enlist
anyone who was not a Unionist. Reports of opposition to con-
scription also began to be heard in the counties farther east, be-
tween the Brazos and the Guadalupe rivers. In March, the San
Antonio Herald reported similar sentiment in Bexar County,
where controversial efforts to maintain law and order by a secret
vigilance committee sometimes degenerated into terrorizing non-
members, including Unionists. Colonel Henry E. McCulloch,
the military commander of South Texas, advocated martial law to
stop the depreciation of Confederate money, to enforce conscrip-
*The editor wishes to express his appreciation to H. Bailey Carroll for making
him aware of the court record and suggesting that it be edited for publication, and
to Susan Park for transcribing it.
xFrank H. Smyrl, "Unionism in Texas, 1856-1861," Southwestern Historical Quar-
terly, LXVIII, 172-195; James P. Newcomb, Sketch of Secession Times in Texas
(San Francisco, 1863), 12.
Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 70, July 1966 - April, 1967. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101199/. Accessed February 11, 2016.