The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 15, July 1911 - April, 1912 Page: 15
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The Aguayo Expedition
But the weight of contemporary Spanish sources on this sub-
ject seem incontrovertible. The letter of Fathers Espinosa and
Margil was written only ten days after the news of the happen-
ing at los Adaes had been received, and was sent to the viceroy at
the time. Had such an account come later, in self-defense, the
charge of fabrication might be considered; but it was written
under the stress of events. Furthermore, it is hardly conceivable
that such a tale could have been composed without any founda-
tion whatever, even under compulsion. The letter was in fact but
a logical sequel to those of 1717 and 1718 in which the govern-
ment had been warned of facts which would make such an occur-
rence possible. Another source of undoubted excellence is Espi-
nosa's Chronica Apostolica y Seraphica, and the essential facts
and details which it contains harmonize completely with the let-
ter of July 2.1 A later piece of evidence that the French did
make a hostile demonstration is found in the Pefia Derrotero. We
are told that on the arrival of Aguayo at los Adaes, the cazique
of that tribe expressed his joy at the Spaniards' return, saying
that "at the time of the French invasion,"2 his Tndians had been
forced by the French to remove from their lands, because they had
shown regret at the Spanish retreat, and that the French had per-
secuted them, taking their wives and children for slaves when they
left the country.3
Such is the evidence afforded by the contemporary Spanish
sources, and with it contemporary French sources are in complete
agreement. First, Bienville, two years after the event, says that
he ordered such an attack on the Spanish mission. He was at
the time of his statement, December 10, 1721, protesting against
a Spanish establishment at los Adaes, and after expressing sur-
prise at such a step, he adds, "Besides there is no one who does
not know of the order which I gave on the occasion of the declara-
tion of war to sieur Blondel, Commandant of said Natchitoches,
to go with a detachment to the place where the Reverend Father
'The Chronica, at this point was to a certain degree written in self-de-
fense, vindicating the missionaries of charges preferred by the secular
authorities. Yet the only difference between it and the letter, and it has
no bearing here, is that the former, page 451, says AlarcSn left Texas in
December; the latter, that he left in November.
'The italics are mine.
8Peia, Derrotero, 22.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 15, July 1911 - April, 1912, periodical, 1912; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101056/m1/19/: accessed December 15, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.