The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 4, July 1900 - April, 1901 Page: 30
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30 Texas Historical Association Quarterly.
field may serve as an argument here. He offered a valuable prem-
ium to whoever could point out a valid defect, and many connois-
seurs, desiring to win the prize, as well as to add to their reputation,
having pronounced it perfect, a farmer's son sought and gained
admittance to the gallery, and readily pointed out the defect, say-
ing: "Where those pretty birds light on the wheat in my father's
field, their weight bends the stalks on which they light, but the
stalks on which the painter has placed them are very straight."
Though not a professional critic, he had seen wheat fields.
'The suggestion that Cabeza de Vaca may have visited the bar-
ranca while peddling, is another idle thought, without considering
any of the known collateral facts. While peddling none of the
Spaniards were with him; and the only one he knew of was Oviedo,
who remained on the Isle of Mal-Hado, and whom he visited
every year. After meeting Dorantes, Castillo and the negro, he
was given to the one-eyed Mariame .as a slave, and did not peddle
any more., So if he had gone to the barranca near Raton mountain
while peddling, D'orantes -could not have been with him; and the
greatest .distance he mentions going north after meeting his com-
rades was to where they ate the nuts, thirty leagues from the prickly
pear region in which they finally left their masters and went to, the
Avavares. So it is presumed that the story of his going through
the barrnca with Dorantes is due to Castafieda's imaginative
genius; as are many of the statements he makes.
The expressions of the bearded, blind man, given by Jaramillo,
may be brought nearer the bounds of credibility. "Among whom
there was an old blind man with a beard, who gave us to under-
stand, by signs which he made, that he had seen four others like us
many days before, whom he had seen near there and rather more
toward New Spain, and we so understood him, and presumed that
it was Dorantes and Cabeza de Vaca and those whom I have men-
This implies that the blind man had an idea of New Spain and
its direction from where he was; and from the statements of Cabeza
de Vaca, it seems that those of Mal-Iado also had a knowledge of
there being such a country. The old man may have followed the
"Fourteenth Annual Report of the Bureau of Ethnology, Part I, pp.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 4, July 1900 - April, 1901, periodical, 1901; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101018/m1/36/: accessed February 18, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.