The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 25, July 1921 - April, 1922 Page: 230
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The Southwester Historical Quarterly
gorda Bay, but later it was extended to include the tribes inhabit-
ing the shore and islands from Galveston Bay to perhaps west of
the San Antonio River.2 These Indians represented a very low
grade of society, for their tribal organization was loose, and their
habits of life extremely crude. They did not cultivate the soil,
but lived on fish, game, wild berries and roots, eggs of sea-fowls,
and, to some extent, human flesh.3 Physically the men were tall
and strongly built, and in disposition they were fierce and warlike.
Their chief weapon was the bow and arrow, which they used with
skill.4 In the eighteenth century the number of fighting men in
the Karankawan tribe was probably between four and five hun-
dred.5 Stephen F. Austin's settlement on the Brazos brought
conflict in 1823 between these Indians and the pioneers. During
the ensuing struggles over half the tribe was slain and the re-
mainder fled to La Bahia Presidio on the San Antonio River." In
1834, a force of nearly three hundred Karankawan warriors visited
Matagorda for the purpose of plundering a pack train from Mex-
ico, encamped there, but the American settlers rallied in such
force that the Indians retreated without a fight.7 About 1840
they were camped on the Guadalupe River below Victoria, and
on account of the depredations committed by them on the settlers,
they were attacked, many were killed, and the rest driven south-
west along the coast. In 1843 and 1844 they were living about
fifty miles southwest of Corpus Christi. A Mexican ranging com-
pany under Captain Rafael Aldrete attacked and almost annihilated
them." Between 1839 and 1851 some ten or twelve families were
living on Aransas Bay and Nueces River. Another group of about
one hundred persons was located in 1840 on Lavaca Bay.9 The
'Hodge, Handbook of American Indians, I, 657; Bolton, Athanase de
Misres and the Louisiana-Texas Frontier, 1768-1780, I, 19.
'Bolton, "The Founding of Mission Rosario: A Chapter in the History
of the Gulf Coast," in The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Asso-
ciation, X, 115.
"Yoakum, History of Texas, I, 223.
"Marshall, A History of the Western Boundary of the Louisiana Pur-
chase, 1819-1841, p. 127.
'Hodge, Handbook of American Indians, I, 657.
'Kenney, "History of the Indian 'Tribes of Texas" in Wooten (editor),
A Comprehensive History of Texas, I, 727.
"Kenney, "History of the Indian Tribes of Texas" in Wooten, A Com-
prehensive History of Texas, I, 127.
"Hodge, Handbook of American Indians, I, 657.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 25, July 1921 - April, 1922, periodical, 1922; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101082/m1/236/: accessed August 23, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.