The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 64, July 1960 - April, 1961 Page: 479
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himself by his cool and courageous actions. He later learned more
of the Indian ways through a trading venture which took him
among the red men.3
Caldwell, with his wife and three boys, arrived in Texas on
February 2o, 1831, and settled in Green DeWitt's Colony. On
June 21, 1831, he applied for one league of land on Lavaca Creek,
situated approximately nine leagues from Gonzales and three
leagues below, the Austin road. The sitio, or 4428.4 acres, was
awarded him on July io, 1831.4
Caldwell did not settle on this immense tract of land, but made
his new home in Gonzales. This was the capital of DeWitt's Col-
ony and the population was large enough to man a fort and give
mutual protection against Indians. The Caldwells lived in a cabin
in the inner town but farmed and took care of cattle in the outer
Gonzales was the westernmost point of early Anglo-American
settlements and thus bore the brunt of Indian and later, Mexican
attacks. There is no record of any fighting that Caldwell may have
engaged in for the first four years of his life in Texas. He is only
mentioned in the minutes of the ayuntamiento of Gonzales, as
being a regidor (or commissioner) in 1833 and a sindico pro-
curador (or city attorney) in 1835.6
The silence, however, did not last long. In the spring of i835,
fifteen French and Mexican traders with pack mules and goods
were traveling the road from Natchitoches, Louisiana, to Mexico.
Toward evening they reached the vicinity of a cabin occupied by
John Castleman, another immigrant from Missouri, who had
settled fifteen miles west of Gonzales on the San Antonio Road.
Castleman went out to warn them of Indians because he had
seen signs, and invited the traders to camp in his yard. They
declined his offer and no sooner had Castleman returned to his
cabin than one hundred Indians attacked and killed the traders.
Castleman did not fire from his cabin and thus was not attacked,
sSam H. Dixon, The Men Who Made Texas Free (Houston, 1924), 81.
4Spanish Archives (General Land Office of Texas), XII, 315-318; Ethel Z. Rather,
"DeWitt's Colony," Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, VIII, 126,
BEthel Z. Rather, "DeWitt's Colony," Quarterly of the Texas State Historical
Association, VIII, 126, 163.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 64, July 1960 - April, 1961, periodical, 1961; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101190/m1/516/: accessed December 18, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.