The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 43, July 1939 - April, 1940 Page: 18
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
the New Orleans Greys, were the working members of Colonel
9. FANNIN AT GOLIAD
Soon after his arrival at Goliad, his evil genius prompted Colonel
Fannin to strengthen and rebuild the fort. This was unwise for two
reasons: little good could be had from such fortifications; and the
time spent in this relatively useless labor was badly needed for
training his men. An American volunteer could not be made to
labor unless he was first interested in his work. Convinced of the
importance and usefulness of his labor, he proposed to stay around
and see the results.
Even though much of their six weeks at Goliad was so wasted,
Colonel Fannin's men, in the battle with Urrea, were much the
best trained and most efficient army that Texas, as State or Re-
public, ever placed in the field. The weakness of Texan armies in
1835 and 1836 was the unwillingness, and inability, of the average
frontiersman to subject himself to military command. He was
invincible with flanks and rear protected-in his own language,
when "Fighting from the brush"-but a prudent enemy was un-
likely to afford opportunities for many Concepcions. Offensively,
a frontiersman's army could only be used, as at San Jacinto, in a
single headlong rush, at the end of which, win or lose, it was
entirely out of hand. An attack of that nature could not be risked
where there existed the possibility of hidden enemy reserves.
Colonel Fannin was well aware of this fundamental weakness
of the Texan armies; and with the efficient help of Captains Brooks
and Chadwick, he accomplished miracles in taking it out of his
Goliad men. They were not frontiersmen, but came from cultured
homes in settled communities, and could be made to understand
the necessity for discipline, and of military training and drill.
Their want of frontier training was a weakness, however, in
another respect. Such details of life in Texas as yoking and
driving wild oxen, and keeping and riding horses, "on the grass,"
were without the scope of their knowledge; and this ignorance, in
the long run, cost them dear. And instead of such learning, they
spent their precious weeks at Goliad strengthening the old fort.
This was done under the tutelage of Captains Brooks and Chadwick,
and of the Polish engineers. Strangely, it was the Virginian,
rather than the son of New England, who was the inventive genius
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 43, July 1939 - April, 1940, periodical, 1940; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101111/m1/26/: accessed August 21, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.