The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 12, July 1908 - April, 1909 Page: 275
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The Navy of the Republic of Texas.
appointed post-captain at Galveston, where Alex. Thompson, the
chief hydrographer for Texas, had selected a suitable site for a
navy yard1 for the Republic. The interest that the Texan Congress
took in the release of the prisoners, and President Houston's atti-
tude toward the effort have already been noticed.2 In his message
of November 21, 1837,3 Houston recites the unsuccessful attempt
of the government, through the agency of John A. Wharton, to
secure an exchange; but consoles himself with the fact that some
of the prisoners escaped and that President Bustamente set the
others free in October. Before learning of their release, Congress,
spurred on by Houston, passed a joint resolution authorizing re-
prisals upon Mexico; but this was withdrawn upon their arrival
at Galveston, November 4.
On December 14, 1837, Congress appropriated $250,000 for
back pay of officers, soldiers, and sailors, and a joint resolution of
December 18 authorized the auditor to settle with Thomas Bren-
nan, purser of the Independence, the claims of the officers and crew
of that vessel.4
There was one other vessel connected with the Texan naval es-
tablishment. Her mission seems to have been a peaceful one.
This was the receiving vessel Potomac. She was purchased from
Captain L. M. Hitchcock,5 formerly a lieutenant on the Invincible,
for $8000. Later, by recommendation of the secretary of the
navy, she became a pilot boat at Galveston.
Here ends the history of the first navy of Texas. As early as
1836, however, the Republic of Texas was anxious to have a
stronger navy, and Congress passed favorably on measures for
procuring a new and stronger fleet, composed principally of steam
vessels. The account of this movement, the acquisition of the
vessels, and their history, is distinctly separate from that of the
first navy of the Republic, and it will be given next.
1Burnet issued a decree on April 21, 1836, establishing a naval depot
at <Galveston Island. .See Texas Almanao, 1869, p. 57.
2See pp, 263-264, above.
8Telegraph and Texas Register, November 25, 1837.
4Gammel, Laws of Texas, I, 1398, 1399.
'See House Journial, 3d Tex. Cong., 18.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 12, July 1908 - April, 1909, periodical, 1909; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101048/m1/313/: accessed April 28, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.