The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 66, July 1962 - April, 1963 Page: 556
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
Mexican lady, apparently a widow, came to see us; she selected some
five of us youths, and accompanied by the sergeant of the guard she
took us to her house-outside the house we squatted down, and soon
she sent us a supper of frijoles and tortillas, of which we boys eat
our fill. While we were eating, she held a conversation with our
guard, who I had no doubt in a Bombastic Fiuroso style, extolled the
valor of the more than 1,ooo New Mexican Volunteers who captured
(through treason) one hundred and fifty or sixty half starved Texans.
Of course I did not understand the conversation, in which the kind
lady seemed much interested, and if I had, I would not have listened
to it much, for I was more interested in the supper; however I heard
the guard say we were a set of heretics and rebels.
After we had eaten, the guard took us back to where our men were,
and if I remember right I think that tyrant Capt. Salezar did that
evening issue no rations to our men, the brute did not care if we died,
the feebler we got, the less he thought we would have a hope or make
an attempt to escape, besides that, he perhaps thought that the supplies
we got from charitable women on that day's march was sufficient.
Marching further on the next day we passed a pretty ranche on
which were many apple trees, and some Mexicans offered to sell them
to us; but alas we had no money. Some of our men found out that
the buttons of our pants were marketable, and privates as well as
officers tore off the buttons in exchange for apples, though they were
small and insipid, they still sated hunger. In all Mexico I never tasted
a good apple, I do not think it was owing so much to the climate, as
for a proper manner of getting good stock and pains to cultivate and
It looked ridiculous to see our men pick up mesquite thorns to
fasten their pants, but necessity knows no law.
On rising next morning, it was found that a man named Ernest"
had died during the night-died from hunger, cold and fatigue, and
even the man lying beside him was not aware of it till called to
resume our next day's march. The poor man, exhausted as he was,
fell asleep that knows no wakingl Not a groan escaped him, there
was no death struggle.
Capt. Salezar, on learning the facts, ordered one of his men to cut
off and preserve the dead mans ears, as a token that he had not
escaped, and then the poor fellow was stripped of his clothes and
thrown in a ditch, for dogs to devour him.
Scarcely had this event occurred, when we were ordered into line to
be counted before resuming the march, (we were counted every morn-
ing before resuming the march to see that none of us had escaped),
even before we could finish the cooking of our scanty supply of meal
"Felix Ernest of Company D was from Tennessee.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 66, July 1962 - April, 1963, periodical, 1963; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101196/m1/596/: accessed May 25, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.