The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 44, July 1940 - April, 1941 Page: 227
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De Bellisle on the Texas Coast
Island by him, and that he saw a large adder fifteen feet long
at a certain place where the next morning he saw a large
"rattlesnake rolled like a cable" which he killed with a spade.
This point is marked is marked on the map Pointe au Serpent.
The place where he buried the arms of France is marked Pointe
au Chtne. Leaving five men behind, Branger reached Biloxi
on November 20 after a journey of "twenty days of naviga-
tion." What happened to the four Frenchmen and the Negro
who were left behind among the Indians in order to make
friends with them is not known. Very probably the Indians
killed them or perhaps they made their escape to the Spaniards.
Benard de la Harpe, while still in Paris, was nominated
commander of the Bay Saint Bernard on November 19, 1720.8
Leaving Lorient on April 5, 1721, for Louisiana, de la Harpe
sailed from Biloxi on August 17, 1721. Captain Beranger com-
manded the small ship and among the small number of men
on board was Simars de Bellisle. The cartographer Devin ac-
companied the expedition and drew again a map of the "true"
Bay St. Bernard, which is reproduced here.
From Beranger's account the author translates the following
passages which, together with the map by Devin, establish
clearly that this time St. Bernard Bay was Galveston Bay and
that it was the same bay about which de Bellisle had wan-
dered two years previously.
I found her [the Baye] on 29 12m of Northern
latitude. . . . The mouth of the river of this bay is
one league and a half wide39 and on the North side;
the sand-banks which run towards the South are more
than three-quarters of a league; on the South side
there is another one which runs towards the South-
west for the same distance. The sandbar'" is easily
half a league long. . . . The Bay is eleven leagues
long. . . .' At the end of the Bay there are two
medium-sized rivers. . . 2 We entered this Bay the
27 of August, 1721.43
38Pierre Heinrich, La Louisiane sous la Compagnie des Indes (Paris:
Guilmoto, Librairie Orientale et Ambricaine, n.d.), 115 f.
39Doubtless Branger measures in sea leagues of 3 m. 45. The San
Jacinto River has a wide mouth.
4"Sandbar at the entrance of the Bay.
"Eleven sea leagues, or thirty-eight miles. Only Galveston Bay could
fit this description.
42Trinity River and San Jacinto River.
43Cf. a MS. copy of Beranger's account in the Edward E. Ayer Collec-
tion, "M4moires de la Louisiane" (MS. No. 293), 74 if. Cf. also H. H.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 44, July 1940 - April, 1941, periodical, 1941; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth146052/m1/250/: accessed September 23, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.