The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 49, July 1945 - April, 1946 Page: 76
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
Notwithstanding its evident profit, the House of Barr and
Davenport suffered its setbacks. Chief among its losses were
bad debts among the Indians. In a summary of its activities
in the Indian trade the firm, in a letter addressed to the com-
mandant of Nacogdoches, set forth the many evils that were
undermining the commercial business. Barr and Davenport
pointed out that in 1799 they had paid another trader, Vicente
Micheli, one thousand one hundred twenty-five peltries which
the Nadaco and Nacogdochito Indians owed him for merchandise
he had given them. The Indians promised Barr and Davenport
to replace these peltries within a short time but had never
done so. Later Barr and Davenport send Don Jacinto Mora,
another trader, to the villages of these Indians; but he was
so poorly paid by the Indians that he refused to continue in
the business. At the request of Chief Cabez6n of the Nacog-
dochitos, Barr and Davenport sent Francisco Totin to the
Nadaco villages and Francisco Bael to the Nacogdochitos. These
two men carried on this work until 1803, when Totin died in the
village of the Nadacos, and Bael, who owed the firm a large
sum of money because he could not collect from the Indians,
ran away to avoid payment. In order to continue supplying
the Indians, Barr and Davenport appointed Chief Cabez6n and
his brother agents for these two tribes. As was to be expected,
these agents proved altogether unreliable. They failed to bring
the right number of peltries, and, as soon as the United States
established a trading post for them in Natchitoches, these and
other Indians commenced to go there.
To the Quichas and Towakoni, Barr and Davenport sent Don
Pedro Engle, who died in August, 1809. Before his death he
reported that the Quichas owed him a large number of furs.
Nevertheless, before collecting and at the request of Chief
Castor, Barr and Davenport sent Don Nicolas Pont, a trader,
to them and to the Texas.
In an effort to check the flow of Indian trade from Nacogdoches
to Natchitoches, the commandant general authorized Don
Marcelo Soto to set up a trading post at Bayou Pierre.33 This
diversion of trade was to the detriment of the House of Barr
The Embargo Act in the United States was another setback
33Barr y Davenport to Jos6 Maria Guadiana, September 2, 1808, MS.,
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 49, July 1945 - April, 1946, periodical, 1946; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth146056/m1/87/: accessed April 29, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.