Notes and Documents
A Jy4ster Solved, }lelry Smith's Charcs
Against DZo Carlos barrett, 1s35
Edited by HERBERT GAMBRELL
E XACTLY WHAT WERE THE CHARGES GOVERNOR HENRY SMITH
levelled at Don Carlos Barrett, the most assiduous member
of the General Council on December 17, 1835? The mes-
sage containing them does not appear in the Journal of the Gen-
eral Council, although Henderson Yoakum apparently had access
to a copy of Smith's message and summarized the charges in his
History of Texas, II, 45. John Henry Brown in his History of
Texas, I, 449-450, and in his Henry Smith, 152-155, quotes part of
the message but omits the charges and the conclusion. Instead he
adds: "Here follow six charges which were, if true, of too grave a
character to justify deposition of official power in the hands of Mr.
Barrett, and the Governor asserted that they could be sustained."
Eugene C. Barker, in his "Don Carlos Barrett," Southwestern His-
torical Quarterly, XX (October, 1916), 143, gives Yoakum's sum-
mary of the charges and says "Smith's original message ... is not
Thirty years ago Thomas W. Streeter visited the historical
exhibits in the Hall of State during the Centennial Exposition.
He told me he had acquired from John Henry Brown's elderly
daughters the original Travis letter from the Alamo which Brown
had quoted in his Henry Smith. Baffled by the missing list of
charges, the thought struck me that the message might be among
the Brown papers in the University of Texas Archives. Sure
enough, a copy is there in the script of a clerk.
There are actually seven charges, not six, the seventh declaring
him unworthy to sit in the council. Although Smith does not
specifically ask for Barrett's expulsion, he declared it to be the
council's "duty" to suspend him pending trial on the governor's
Here is the omitted portion of the famous message of Decem-
ber 17, 1835:
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 May 26, 2015.