The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 24, July 1920 - April, 1921 Page: 55
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Mirabeau Buonaparte Lamar
promise to keep the peace. In 1838, during the closing year of
Houston's administration, no effort was made by the government
to protect the frontier from the Comanches, and the President
went so far as to criticise the whites for provoking attacks from
the Indians by their imprudence. Lamar gave to the local move-
ments the moral support of the administration, and as far as pos-
sible the actual physical support. I shall follow out, as far as
possible, the relations with the western tribes, particularly the
Comanches, reserving a discussion for the relations with the immi-
grant tribes of East Texas until later.
In the latter part of January, 1839, three companies of volun-
teers were organized and placed under the command of Captain
John H. Moore, and ordered to move against the Comanches.
They marched up the Colorado. On the 14th of February they
came to within ten miles of the Indian village, and after dark
attacked a vastly superior force. After killing about thirty of the
Indians and losing one killed and six wounded, the Texans drew
off and did not renew the fight. In the latter part of February,
a party of Indians committed several murders in the vicinity of
Bastrop, and were attacked by about fifty Texans. The Texans
were forced to fall back, but were reinforced by General Burleson
with thirty men, and after a sharp battle the Indians fled. In
May, a force of thirty-five men under Captain John Bird discov-
ered a party of twenty-seven Indians on Little River. They pur-
sued them until the Indians came up with the main body of from
two hundred and fifty to three hundred. The Texans managed to
secure an advantageous position, and beat the Indians off with
The punishment that the Indians received in these engagements
caused them to be more wary in their attacks, and early in the
following year an effort was made to enter into a treaty with the
Texans. In February, 1840, some of the Indians came to San
Antonio for the purpose of making peace with Texas, and were
told by the commissioners to bring in the captives they had taken.
The Indians promised to do this, and on March 19, appeared with
only one captive. Twelve of the chiefs met the commissioners, and
when called upon to produce their captives produced only one
little girl. The Texans knew that the Comanches had other cap-
"Yoakum, History of Texas, II, 261-263; Report of Secretary of War,
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 24, July 1920 - April, 1921, periodical, 1921; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101078/m1/61/: accessed July 24, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.