Letters and Documents
his arrival at Nacogdoches was announced as a Public officer
on important Public business. An officer with a detachment of
Cavalry was immediately Ordered to attend him to St. Antonio,"
that he there Met with Salsido [Salcedo] the Governor Gen-
eral,' soon after an Express arrived at Nacogdoches ordering
Govr. Herrera5 with all the troops & cannon to proceed to St.
Antonio, and that Capt. Burling has gone on towards Mexico,
it is now believed his business in that Country is not to buy
Mules. The Scenes lately acted in New Orleans are extraordi-
nary & astonishing. The Civil power Ought Certainly to be
able to prevent & Punish any Infractions of the Laws of the
Land, it is enough to drive a people to acts of desperation &
distraction to witness the necessity of the Civil Authority giving
place to Military power, it will hardly admit of a question
whether such a remedy is not worse than the disease, but
much more so If it is Usurped without Necessity, to know the
Existance of the fact without commenting upon it renders it
impossible to suppress feelings the Most horrid. I pray God if
it was Necessary I may never witness a repetition of it and
more ardently do I pray for the same. If it was done without
Spanish troops from Nacogdoches was in order to execute the "defense and
exclusion policy" of the Commandant General Nemesio Salcedo. He believed
that in spite of the temporary boundary agreement made by General Wilkin-
son and Herrera in 1806, the United States continued to plan aggressions
against Texas. Therefore, his plan was to concentrate forces at San Antonio
de Bexar, and exclude all immigrants from across the Sabine. The troops of
which Sibley speaks were moved from Nacogdoches to San Antonio where
they were remounted and reclothed. See correspondence of Herrera and
other officials, Provincias Internas, Vol. 201, pp. 15-70, B. L.; W. C. C.
Claiborne, Oficial Letter Books, II, 54-342.
8The Spaniards in their official correspondence seldom used the complete
title San Antonio de Bexar, employed the name "Bexar," omitting the
name "San Antonio." The Anglo-Americans never used the name "Bexar,"
preferring "San Antonio." Sibley anglicized the word san [saint] and
abbreviated it [st.].
4Commandant General Nemesio Salcedo ruled over the Interior Provinces
from his headquarters in Chihuahua; but because of continued rumors of
invasion of Spanish dominions after the Burr episode, and because of his
fear of Anglo-American aggression, he went to Texas on a personal tour
of investigation. He was in San Antonio in December, 1806, at the time of
the arrival of Captain Burling. Mattie Austin Hatcher, The Opening of
Texas to Foreign Settlement, 1801-1821 (University of Texas Bulletin,
No. 2714, Austin, 1927), 118.
5Due to the border friction between Spain and the United States in 1806,
Sim6n Herrera, governor of Nuevo Le6n, was ordered by Don Nemesio to
Texas with the troops of his provinces and those of Nuevo Santander to
assume chief command of military affairs in Texas. He held this office until
his assassination in April, 1813, when the army of Anglo-American volun-
teers led by Samuel Kemper and Jos6 Bernardo Gutierrez proclaimed Texas
independent of Spain. Henderson Yoakum, History of Texas (New York,
1856), II, 129.
"Sibley refers to the alarm and terror that was prevalent in New Orleans
during November and December of 1806, when General Wilkinson occupied
Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 45, July 1941 - April, 1942. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth146053/. Accessed June 30, 2015.