The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 43, July 1939 - April, 1940 Page: 54
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
partly political and partly religious. As Dunn relates, one of these
colonization enterprises was the settlement on the San Saba River
near the present town of Menard. There had been a cessation of
the long period of hostility between the Spaniards and the Apaches,
and the time was regarded as propitious for the reduction of these
Indians to mission life. Accordingly, in the spring of 1757, the
mission of San Saba and the protecting presidio of San Luis de
las Amarillas were established for that purpose.
The founders were soon disappointed in their hopes of per-
suading the Apaches to submit. The natives were friendly, but
were firm in their refusal to abandon their life of freedom. After
a year everyone but Father Terreros, the president of the mission,
had given up hope for its success, and its future was being debated
when it was attacked and destroyed by a large number of northern
tribes, chiefly Comanches and Wichitas.
Early on the sixteenth of March, 1758, these hostile Indians
appeared outside the mission. As they had professed peaceful
intentions, they were allowed to enter. After a short time fighting
suddenly started and soon the buildings were in flames. Most
of the inhabitants escaped but several, including two of the three
missionaries, were killed. A relief party sent out from the presidio
was driven back. In fact, as most of its garrison was absent at
the time, it was feared that the military post itself might suffer
the same fate. The Indians, however, only made demonstra-
tions and departed early on the morning of the eighteenth.
Don Diego Ortiz Parrilla, the commander of the presidio,
immediately sent out calls for aid, but all other places were too
anxious about their own safety to respond. Even in the more
distant province of Coahuila, where Apache treachery was sus-
pected as the cause of the attack, there was fear of a similar fate.
In Mexico City the viceroy contented himself with ordering the
presidios nearest to San Antonio and San Saba to send any avail-
able troops. Naturally none felt that it could afford to send any
aid. Before anything further was done, the official report on
the attack was awaited.3
Father Molina, the only priest to survive the destruction of the
3Dolores to Parrilla, Mar. 30, 1758, Asalto, pp. 107-10. Martos to Vice-
roy, Mar. 25, 1758, Asalto, pp. 21, 25-6. Parrilla, auto, Mar. 27, 1758,
Asalto, pp. 89-90. Rivera testimony, Apr. 2, 1758, Asalto, p. 94. Trujillo,
testimony Apr. 2 1758 Asalto, pp. 92-3. Viceroy, decrees, Apr. 9, 1758,
and Apr. 19, 1758, Asalto, pp. 33-34, 37.
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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/m1/62/: accessed August 24, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.