The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 98, July 1994 - April, 1995 Page: 512
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
muster roll for Presidio San Antonio de B6xar, on the spot where the
Spanish Governor's Palace and City Hall are today on the Plaza de Ar-
mas in downtown San Antonio. Included were El Bar6n de Ripperdi,
who was both the governor of Texas and captain of the presidio; three
lieutenants; two sergeants; six corporals; and seventy soldiers. Most inter-
estingly, the muster roll tells what each soldier was doing on that signifi-
cant day: Twenty were present for duty at the presidio, or fort;
twenty-four were "en la caballada," or out guarding the horseherd; four-
teen were "en reconocimiento de Indios," or out reconnoitering Indians;
twenty were detached to "elfuerte del Zivolo [Cibolo]," a small fort midway
between San Antonio and La Bahia (now called Goliad); and four men
were dispatched to San Luis Potosi to carry the mail and bring back the
military payroll. The document was signed and dated at Presidio San An-
tonio de B6xar by Texas Governor Bar6n de Ripperdi on "4 de julio de
1776." This document gives one a little better idea of what was going on
in Texas at this special time in history."
It should be remembered that most of the Western Hemisphere, in-
cluding Texas, belonged to Spain from 1492 until 1821, a span of time
exceeding three centuries. In 1691 Texas received both its official desig-
nation as la provincia de Texas 6 las nuevas Filipinas (the Province of Texas
or the New Philippines) and its first governor, Domingo Terin de los
Rios, who among other achievements, is remembered for officially estab-
lishing the Camino Real (or King's Highway).
At the time of the American Revolution, Spain owned or claimed all
the land of the North American continent west of the Mississippi River
plus the "Island of New Orleans," as it was called. This vast territory, ex-
tending from Panama indefinitely northward, was called Nueva Espaiia
(New Spain). The viceroyalty of New Spain, in turn, was divided into
provincias, or political provinces. Extending from the Pacific Ocean to
the Gulf of Mexico were the northernmost provinces of California,
Sonora, Nueva Vizcaya, Nuevo Mexico, Nueva Estremadura (or
Coahuila), Nuevo Le6n, Nuevo Santander, and Texas. A line of pre-
sidios (forts) to protect the northern frontier of New Spain stretched all
the way from the Gulf of California to the Gulf of Mexico.'
The province of Texas extended generally from the Nueces River on
the south and west to the Red River on the north and east, and from the
Gulf of Mexico on the south to the "Arctic snows" on the north-quite a
large chunk of territory that would theoretically include much of the
SCompaaida de San Antonio de Bexar, 4 dejulio de 1776, Bexar Archives, CAH.
See Thonhoff, The Texav Connecrton with the Ameruan Revolution, 1-18, for the historical set-
ting of Texas during Spanish times
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 98, July 1994 - April, 1995, periodical, 1995; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101216/m1/582/: accessed March 29, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.