Indian wars and pioneers of Texas / by John Henry Brown.

70

INDIAN WARS AND PIONEERS OF TEXAS.

Ego." The whole of their camp equipage, horses
and cattle, one man, five women and nineteen
children fell into the hands of the victors. Among
the prisoners were the mother, three children and
two sisters of John Bowles.
Our loss was one Toncahua wounded and the
brave Capt. Lynch of the volunteers killed -shot
dead while charging among the foremost of the
advance.
The prisoners were sent under a guard commanded
by Lieut. Moran to Austin, together with
important papers found in the camp.
Col. Burleson made his official report next day
to Gen. Albert Sydney Johnston, Secretary of
War, from which these details are derived. He

then continued his original march, scouring the
country up Pecan bayou, thence across to the
Leon and down the country. Several bodies of
Indians were discovered by the scouts
one being
large-but they fled and avoided the troops.
Two soldiers deserted on the trip, and both were
killed by the hostiles. Among others in this
expedition were Col. Wm. S. Fisher, Maj. Wyatt,
the gallant Capt. Matthew Caldwell, Lieut. Lewis,
Dr. Booker and Dr. (then Capt.) J. P. B. January,
who died in Victoria, Texas, a worthy survivor
of the men of '36.
A few months later, after an amicable understanding,
the prisoners were sent to their kindred
in the Cherokee Nation, west of Arkansas.

Bird's Victory and Death in 1839.

In 1839 the savages, flushed with many trophies,
became exceedingly bold, and were constantly
committing depredations. The settlers on the
upper Brazos, Colorado and Trinity called upon
the government for some measure of relief and
protection. Under an Act of the Congress in the
beginning of that year several companies of three
months' rangers were called out.
The fraction of a company, thirty-four men,
recruited in Houston, and under the command of
Lieut. William G. Evans, marched from that city
and reached Fort Milam the 3d of April, 1839.
This fort, situated two miles from the present town
of Marlin, had been built by Capt. Joseph Daniels,
with the Milam Guards, a volunteer company, also
from Houston. William H. Weaver was Orderly
Sergeant of Evans' Company. Evans was directed
to afford all the protection in his power to the
settlers.
A company of fifty-nine men from Fort Bend
and Austin counties, was mustered into the service
for three months, on the 21st of April, 1839,
under the command of Capt. John Bird, and
reached Fort Milam on the 6th of May. Capt.
Bird, as senior officer, took command of both companies,
but leaving Evans in the fort, he quartered
in some deserted houses on the spot where Marlin
now stands.
Nothing special transpired for some little time,
but their provisions gave out, and the men were
compelled to subsist on wild meat alone. This

occasioned some murmurs and seven men became
mutinous, insomuch, as, in the opinion of Bird, to
demand a court-martial; but there were not
officers enough to constitute such a tribunal, and
after their arrest he determined to send them under
guard to Col. Burleson, at Bastrop. For this purpose
twelve men were detailed under First-Lieut.
James Irvine. At the same time Bird detailed
twelve men, including Sergt. Weaver, from Evans'
command, to strengthen his own company, and
determined to bear company with the prisoners
on a portion of the route towards Bastrop.
They reached the deserted fort on Little river on
the night of the 2oth of June and camped. Next
morning, leaving Lieut. Wm. R. Allen in charge,
Bird and Nathan Brookshire accompanied the
guard and prisoners for a few miles on their route
and then retraced their steps towards the fort.
On the way, they came upon three Indians, skinning
a buffalo, routed them and captured a horse
loaded with meat.
About 9 o'clock a. m., and during Bird's absence,
a small party of Indians, on the chase, ran
a gang of buffaloes very near the fort, but so soon
as they discovered the Americans they retreated
north over the rolling prairie. Sergt. Weaver
was anxious to pursue them, but Allen refused,
lest by so doing they should expose Bird and
Brookshire. So soon as the latter arrived, and
were informed of what had been seen, Bird directed
an examination into the condition of their arms,

Brown, John Henry. Indian wars and pioneers of Texas / by John Henry Brown.. Austin, Tex.. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth6725/. Accessed July 26, 2014.