The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 2, July 1898 - April, 1899 Page: 226
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226 Texas Historical Association Quarterly.
provided for the colonists. He was to attend to the matter with the
zeal and energy that its great importance warranted, with the cer-
tainty that a favorable beginning would largely determine the sub-
sequent ease and well-being of the colonists.26
Having made due provision for a reasonable amount of this
world's goods for the colonists, the viceroy finally turns his atten-
tion to the spiritual needs of his new municipality. He issues a de-
cree to the Bishop of Guadalajara, to send a resident of the oratory
of San Carlos, a zealous person, to administer the sacraments and
perform the other religious duties for the inhabitants of Texas' new
capital. The person selected is to act both as curate and as eccle-
siastic vicar judge. He is to be given a salary of 400 pesos, and
his pay is to begin on the day he departs for his new field. He is
also to hasten the erection of the parish church.27 It is interesting
to note that the corner-stone of this edifice was not laid uptil 1744.
With this decree the viceroy ended his hard day's work. It cer-
tainly seemed that he had taken every caution that human ingen-
uity could devise for the successful founding and the steady growth
of this distant outpost of Spanish civilization. But the viceroy
lived in the days when the Spanish monarchy had degenerated,
and was working against an almost insuperable obstacle to rapid
growth, in the person of the fierce Texas Indian, and with most in-
efficient means in "the fifteen families, consisting of fifty-six per-
sons, come from the Canary Islands, for the purpose of colonizing
the Presidio of San Antonio de Bexar." One has but to read the
later criticisms of Father Morfi28 to realize the futility of all pater-
nal legislation, and especially of this experiment on the frontier of
Texas. But the experiment, unsuccessful as it was in its realization,
resulted in the founding of the first Texas municipality.
2* Viceroy to Governor of Texas, same date.
27 Viceroy to Sr. Dr. Don Nicholas Carlos Gomes de Cervantes, Nov. 28,
28 Memorias para la Historia de Texas. MB.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 2, July 1898 - April, 1899, periodical, 1898/1899; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101011/m1/230/: accessed April 23, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.