San Antonio de Bexar: A Guide and History Page: 36
This book is part of the collection entitled: Rescuing Texas History, 2010 and was provided to The Portal to Texas History by the University of Texas Health Science Center Libraries .
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SAN ANTONIO DE BEXAR.
The Scholz well, on the River bank, flows water slightly brackish, and by
a separate pipe the same well supplies his establishment with gas.
At West End clear Artesian water was reached at a depth of only 250 feet in
one case, and 259 in another. These wells have their overflow into the artificial
lake of that suburb. In boring most of these wells, oil and gas were encountered,
but the most notable instance of this is that of Mr. G. Dullnig, near the Salado.
It has a flow of oil which is marketed. The apparatus on the ground is
extensive and altogether this subject is worthy the attention of visitors with
capital to invest.
Real Estate.-There are many reliable and old established Real Estate
firms in the city. The stranger should consult only such, and if purchasing, it is
well to get an abstract of title; this is easily obtained.
Amongst all the States, Texas is peculiar in her land matters, and differs in
many things, even from her ancient Spanish sisters. The United States owns no
public lands within her borders, save such small tracts and parcels as may have
been ceded for Military Posts, Cemeteries, or Public Buildings for Federal
purposes. The old Spanish vara (33- inches) is still a legal land measure,
though, curiously enough, the Mexicans have long since discarded its use for that
of the metre. We speak, too, of a "league," of a " labor," or of a " suerte "
of land. The titles to land in Texas are very variously derived and their origin
frequently curious. We have grants from the Kings of Spain, * grants to colonists
and individuals by the Republic of Mexico, and similar concessions by the
Republic of Texas. Then there are Headrights, and Locations on Scrip, issued to
supply the necessities of the infant State, or to reward veterans. Later we have
* Yoakum, who has done more for Texas History than any other man has or now can, relates an interest-
ing chapter on Land Titles in Texas. The following is an interesting excerpt, Vol. II, pp. 231 et seq.:
"The first grants of the Spanish government in Texas, of which we have any record, are those of the three
Missions of Concepcion, San Juan, and IJa Espada. The grants for the Missions of Valero and San Jose were
doubtless made earlier, and probably some individual grants, but we know of none now in existence. The three
first-named Missions were located in the first instance on the St. Mark; but such was the difficulty of procuring
water for irrigation, 'so necessary to the support of the people who were to be indoctrinated,' that on the 29th
of October, 1729, the viceroy of Mexico, Casa Fuerte. commissioned the Governor of Texas, the ex-guardian of the
apostolic college of Queretaro, and the president of the Texan Missions, to make a new settlement or location.
After some search, they made their selections of three places-two on the San Antonio river, and one on the 'Me-
dina,' below the junction of the two streams. They next proceeded to the neighboring tribes of Indians, to
whom 'they spoke, and explained the holy and benevolent purpose of their institution; and three tribes, among
others in the vicinity, viz., the Pacaos, the Pajalats, and the Pitalacs, agreed to settle the three places selected,
and to submit to doctrine.' The commissioners, having completed their labors, made a report to the viceroy,
and petitioned him to make the necessary decrees. The viceroy laid the matter before Ribera, former inspector
of thepresidios of New Spain for his opinion. The ex-inspector reported on the 22d of September, 1730, con-
curring with the report of the commissioners, except in regard to the location for the lower Mission 'on the
Medina river, at thirty leagues' distance from the presidios (San Antonio and La Bahia), where it may be liable
to attacks from the Apaches, who on many occasions appear in a hostile manner in that territory ........This
danger would not exist if the said Mission were located in the same vicinity with the other two.'
The viceroy, in conformity with this opinion, on the 2d of October, 1730, decreed that the captain of the
royal presidio of San Antonio, should issue a decree that the three Missions should be located as recommended
using his judgment as to the plan of locating the lower Mission. He further ordered that each Mission so to
be located 'be furnished with three soldiers for the term of two years, this time being considered necessary for
the instruction of the Indians in tillage, and at the expiration of this time one soldier shall remain in each Mis_
sion, the other two returning to their corps.'
On the 15th of December, 1730, the captain of the presidio of San Antonio de Bexar, in pursuance of this
order of the viceroy, remitted the same to Don Gabriel Costales, captain of the presidio of La Bahza del Espiritu
Santo, with orders to execute it, he being delegated as judge for that purpose, in the absence of any public or
royal notary. In making a return of his proceedings, Captain Costales says: 'A dispatch was presented to me
from the most excellent viceroy, through the captain of the royal presidio of San Antonio, which I kissed and
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Corner, William. San Antonio de Bexar: A Guide and History, book, 1890; San Antonio, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth143549/m1/78/: accessed January 16, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting University of Texas Health Science Center Libraries.