The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 6, July 1902 - April, 1903 Page: 13
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Louis Juchereau de Saint-Denis.
presidio of Captain Diego Ramon, two leagues beyond the Rio
Saint-Denis presented to the commander of the presidio his pass-
port, wherein was exhibited the object of the expedition. Here was
a delicate question for Captain Ramon. The passport contained a
distinct proposition for the Spaniards to enter into commercial
relations with a foreign nation. As this was contrary to all prece-
dent, and to the declared policy of his government, the commander
did not feel competent to act without instructions .from the viceroy.
He therefore deferred his answer to Saint-Denis's proposition, and
detained the Frenchman and his companions till he could commu-
nicate with a higher authority. He had certainly sufficient ground
for caution. The Frenchmen had traversed more than four hun-
dred miles of Spanish territory without invitation or permission;
they were trespassers on foreign soil. It is possible also that
Ramon had received orders to be on the lookout for just such a
party as this, since the governor of Pensacola, in August, 1713, had
written the viceroy that a company of Frenchmen would try to
introduce merchandise into Mexico.' But though Captain Ramon
felt himself bound to arrest the intruders till he should have
instructions what to do with them, he accorded them the most cour-
teous treatment while they were awaiting the return of the messen-
ger who had been sent to the viceroy.2 Saint-Denis, Penicaut, Ja-
lot, and the surgeon he entertained in his own house, and provided
quarters for the others.3 February 15th, SaintDenis dispatched
some of his men secretly to the governor of Louisiana, to inform
him of what had happened since their arrival upon the Rio Grande.
He writes that, while he might escape by stealth, he does not wish
to do so, "As seeing a good fortune before my eyes and wishing to
put my name in repute, I rejoice at all that may happen, for I
'Dictamen Fiscal, Texas MSS., 127 vuelta.
'Saint-Denis in the letter cited above says, "The captain does not dare
to let us go without an order from the viceroy." Penicaut, p. 501, says
that the commander wrote to the governor of Coahuila for advice, who
sent in turn to inquire of the governor of Parral; and that after six weeks
the former sent a company of soldiers to convey Saint-Denis to his capital.
'The fact that Penicaut calls the commander Don Pedro Villescas after
having been in his house for several months rather casts a shadow upon
the truthfulness of his narrative.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 6, July 1902 - April, 1903, periodical, 1903; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101028/m1/17/: accessed November 18, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.