The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 72, July 1968 - April, 1969 Page: 516
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
The deathless story of the battle of the Alamo will always bear re-
telling. Future generations will continue to be indebted to those who
gave their lives there for Texas. There is more pathos, if possible, in
the results of the action at Goliad. The problems of command exem-
plified here will forever provide object lessons for military history.
With all the weight that can be given to logistics, tactics, and strategy,
the human element is still decisive.
From the tragic debacle of La Bahia to the glorious victory of San
Jacinto is a study in contrast which the history of few peoples display.
Here a combination of fortuitous circumstances and a determined
spirit gave the Texans under old Sam Houston a decisive victory
against superior numbers and material. Again it was the human ele-
ment which was decisive.
The battle of the Neches should never have been fought. Intransi-
gence on both sides decided an issue by the sword which could have
been otherwise resolved. A peaceful solution could have added an
industrious people already well on the way to assimilation.
The battle of Plum Creek, though significant, has more elements
of comic relief than the others. The audacious Comanches seem to
have gone forth on something of a lark. The sight of them in the
stolen finery of the hapless inhabitants of Linnville-stove pipe hats,
brass buttoned coats and with the horses taken at Victoria rigged out
in ribbon streamers and loaded with plunder-excites us even today,
tempered with pity for the white captives barbarously maimed or slain.
It was not the last Indian invasion en mass as is sometimes supposed.
The Elm Creek Raid and second battle of Adobe Walls must also be
considered in that category.
The battle of Palo Alto is dominated by Zachary Taylor, the despair
of the West Pointers. His deficiencies were more than compensated
for by his common sense, his physical courage, his ability to inspire
in his men confidence in his fairness, and his willingness to listen to
others, to entrust them with responsibility, and to allow them to receive
The battle of Sabine Pass will remain one of the unlikely classics
of military history. Dick Dowling deserves to be enshrined among the
folk heroes of Texas.
For sheer human interest, the battle of Adobe Walls ranks high.
There comes to mind the sight of old man Keeler stalking doggedly
to the well to draw a bucket of water to give a drink to a dying
Here’s what’s next.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 72, July 1968 - April, 1969, periodical, 1969; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth117146/m1/470/: accessed July 25, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.