The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 47, July 1943 - April, 1944 Page: 324
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
Ten principal persons of the Tribe called the Bedies9 who live
Alternately on the Sea Shore & Back upon the Brasos [Brazos]
& Collerado [Colorado]. I have held friendly Talks with all of
them and made them such presents as in my Judgment were
Suited to the Occasion. I took much pains to display & explain
to them a United States Flag & to inform them it was Such as our
Ships carried and when they saw a Vessel off their Coast with
Such a flag they would know whose it was and that the people On
Board were their friends, & If any of our Vessels in a Storm
should be driven a Shore & Broke; It was the request of their
great Father the President of the United States,7' that they
should be kind to the unfortunate people, & Assist them all in
their power in Saving the property in the Vessel, and Conduct
the people (should they require it) to where white people live.
All which with one Accord they promised to do. I hope that
the Amicable Arangements I have made with these people
may be the Means of Saving the lives & property of any unfor-
tunate Vessels Crew Who may be Cast upon the Dangerous
Shore they Inhabit. The Indians were here on the 4th
of July, the firing of Cannon seemed to make a Considerable
impression upon them being the first they ever heard or Saw.
They were well pleased and went Away apparently gratified
with their Visit. The Chiefs Said, "now they had found out the
Road they should frequently visit Natchitoches for the pur-
pose of trading at the factory."7'
I have so many Guns, farming Utensils etc to get repaired
for the Indians. I Could get it done much Cheaper & Better &
with less difficulty If I had a set of Smiths Tools. I beg there-
fore you will be pleased to Order a Set to the Care of Mr Saul
of New Orleans for me, or Otherwise as you may think proper.
I want likewise Eight or Ten Indian Chiefs Medals, to fulfill
some promises I have made.
I am Sir with very Great Esteem
Your Obt. Hble. Servant
Honourable Samuel Eustice
Secretary of War
(To be continued)
69In Sibley's historical sketches he spells the name Bediees; the Spanish
form is Bidai. Bolton classifies the Bidai, Orcoquiza, Deadose, and Atta-
capa as members of the Attacapan family. Bolton, Texas in the Middle
Eighteenth Century, 3.
7OPresident James Madison.
v"Perhaps the reason for Sibley's tampering with Indians in Spanish
Territory was that he was pursuing instructions sent to him in 1805.
He was to use all means at all times to conciliate Indians, who, in case
of a rupture with Spain, would be "either useful or mischievous to the
United States," and to direct his attentions to Texas Indians as far as
San Bernardo Bay. Secretary of War to John Sibley, May 25, July 8, 1805,
Letter Book B, April, 1804-July, 1809, 80-81, 89, I.A.D.I.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 47, July 1943 - April, 1944, periodical, 1944; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth146054/m1/357/: accessed April 29, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.