The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 8, July 1904 - April, 1905 Page: 127
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De Witt's Colony.
There seems to have been no fixed time for sessions of the Gon-
zales ayuntamiento. In some cases the members agreed before
adjourning as to the time of their next meeting. Extraordinary
sessions were convened as occasion demanded.' During the year
1834 the house of Thomas R. Miller was rented as a place of
meeting, the price being eighteen dollars.2
Among matters actually dealt with by the ayuntamiento of Gon-
zales, as shown by the minutes, a few of interest are the following:
They appointed the surveyor3 and appraisers of town lots, trans-
lator, secretary, treasurer, and teacher of Spanish schools for the
colony; supervised the distribution of town lots and the manage-
ment of roads and ferries, tolls, and road corvies; imposed fines for
minor offenses, namely, use of firearms in the jurisdiction, selling
of liquors to Indians, removing surveyors' stakes, running horses
through streets, etc.; granted license for wholesale and retail mer-
chandizing; fixed the rate of interest in the colony; and collected
money due the government for lands granted to colonists.4
On March 4, 1834, the congress of Coahuila and Texas passed a
law providing for the appointment of primary judges in towns
whose population did not exceed five thousand, and yet was suffi-
cient to entitle them to an ayuntamiento. The purpose for which
these judges were created was to relieve the alcaldes in those duties
pertaining to the administration of justice that had heretofore been
entrusted to them. The method of the appointment of primary
judges was rather unusual. On the second Sunday of October the
ayuntamiento must form a list of four persons for each judge re-
quired for the town and send these lists to the political chief. The
chief might change the order of the names on the lists before re-
office of Harwood and Walsh, Gonzales, Texas; the second portion, in a
scrap-book in the possession of the University of Texas.
1 Minutes of the ayuntamiento of Gonzales, 1833, 1834. See appen-
"Minutes of the ayuntamiento of Gonzales, 1834, article 1. See appen-
8 It would seem that when a surveyor was appointed for a colony it
might be understood that he was to survey also lots of all towns of that
colony. But Byrd Lockhart, surveyor of De Witt's colony, was by act of
the ayuntamiento appointed surveyor for the town lots of Gonzales (see
appendix VI, article 12 of the minutes for 1833).
'Minutes of the ayuntamiento of Gonzales, 1833, 1834 (see appendix
VI) ; correspondence of the ayuntamiento of Gonzales with the governor,
1835 (scrap book in possession of the University of Texas).
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Texas State Historical Association. The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 8, July 1904 - April, 1905, periodical, 1905; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101033/m1/129/: accessed May 29, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.