The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 40, July 1936 - April, 1937 Page: 30
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
These groups of volunteers, fresh from the United States, made
up the greater part of Fannin's troops in his ill-fated plan to
After the fall of Bexar, serious differences arose among the
Texan leaders concerning the most advisable plan of war. Should
they assume the offensive by sending an expeditionary force to
Mexico, or the defensive and await attack on Texas soil? As it
finally resolved itself, Fannin was authorized to lead an expedi-
tion against Matamoras. Houston was opposed to sending the
main force of the army to the frontier, and it is doubtful if he
would have led the expedition in any case. At the time he was
engaged under a commission from the provisional governor, Henry
Smith, to negotiate a treaty with "the Cherokee and associated
Indian tribes." The purpose of the mission was to insure Texas
against a rear attack by the Indians during the difficulties with
Mexico, and if possible to "enlist . .. a force from them to
act against our common enemy [Mexico].'"1 With him, Houston
took William Goyans, a free Negro, as interpreter, "which ap-
pointment . .. he filled with much credit to himself."'4
On January 8, 1836, Fannin published a call for volunteers
to undertake the expedition to Matamoras, naming San Patricio
as the rendezvous between January 24 and 28. Peter Allen, late
from Pennsylvania, intended to be there at the appointed time,
so he "joined the army and served therein as a musician in
Captain Wyate's company under the command of Col. J. W.
What kind of an instrument Peter Allen owned, we are not
told, but he played as Fannin marched to Goliad. It was by this
time known that the Mexicans were invading Texas in force and
Fannin decided to await them in the Goliad fortress. The main
force of the Mexicans besieged the Alamo from February 23 to
March 6, when they took it by storm without quarter. About the
middle of March, Fannin received orders from Houston, who had
meanwhile been appointed commander-in-chief of all armies, to
"Samuel Houston to Colonel Bowl or Tewulle, February 5, 1835. Lamar
Papers, I, 317. Sam Houston and John Forbes to Henry Smith, February
29, 1836. J. H. Brown, History of Texas, I, 551-553.
"'In addition, William Goyans "served in the army of Texas during her
dark hours of the revolution, shoulder to shoulder with the white man."
Senate Journal, Fourth Legislature, 340.
5"House Journal, Seventh Legislature, 499.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 40, July 1936 - April, 1937, periodical, 1937; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101099/m1/38/: accessed February 20, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.