The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 61, July 1957 - April, 1958 Page: 67
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Saluria, Fort Esperanza, and Military Operations
But enemy reaction crystallized in a determination to carry the
war to a military decision. By the end of the summer anxious
Texas eyes were turned to the coast, where the Federal Navy began
making itself sufficiently in evidence to raise apprehension that
Texas itself might in time become the object of invasion and
Jefferson Davis' military policy was a defensive one. It is prob-
able that he was the first Confederate to give attention to the
coast of Texas when in June, 1861,,he required Captain W. H.
Stevens to submit a "memoir" on the subject of its defense.
Among other estimates and recommendations pertaining to the
long Texas coast, Stevens submitted the following concerning
the Matagorda Bay area and Aransas Pass:
.. At Pass Cavallo, three 32-pounders and two companies. At
Aransas, two 24-pounders and one company. ...
Pass Cavallo, entrance to Matagorda Bay, from whence the prin-
cipal roads to Austin and San Antonio start, seven to ten feet on
the bar. Three 32-pounders, one on Decrow's Point and two at the
lighthouse, will do well. ...
Aransas-The bar has seven to ten feet water. From the mainland
a good road to San Antonio and Western Texas via Goliad ... .1
Stevens evidently envisioned the "two companies" as those
troops necessary to secure the guns proposed at Pass Cavallo, ani
estimate which proved him a better artilleryman and engineer
than all-round tactician, as events would demonstrate.
There is no evidence in the record that this interest at Rich-
mond was ever translated into specific activity on the Texas coast.
From the beginning Texas defenses depended almost entirely on
the initiative of whatever officer commanded the Department.
Some heavy ordnance appears to have been secured from New
Orleans during the fall of 1861, this going into the Galveston
defenses. Some was available from ordnance stores seized at United
States Army garrisons in the spring. Some guns were evidently
procured and furnished the authorities by private citizens. Little
was available from central sources to this outpost of the Confed-
eracy in 1861, and literally nothing would be available later.
1Stevens to Davis, June 12, 1861, War of the Rebellion: A Compilation of the
Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies (130 vols.; Washington,
1880-19go0), Series I, Vol. IV, 92.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 61, July 1957 - April, 1958, periodical, 1958; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101164/m1/87/: accessed January 24, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.