History of Texas, together with a biographical history of Milam, Williamson, Bastrop, Travis, Lee and Burleson counties : containing a concise history of the state, with portraits and biographies of prominent citizens of the above named counties, and personal histories of many of the early settlers and leading families Page: 28
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28 tlISTOJ2Y OF 2'EXAS.~~~~~~~~~~~t
sist Mexico by land without a much larger
force than had ever been collected for the
purpose. On the way to Galveston Long
heard through Indian channels that a Mexican
force, 700 strong, under Colonel Ignacio
Perez, was rapidly on his track, at Cochlattee,
and at once sent orders to Cook immediately
to concentrate his outlying detachments at
that place. Of all the expeditions to Texas,
not one experienced a more speedy collapse
or swifter ruin than that of Long's. The
posts or "agencies" spoken of were suddenly
destroyed and the occupants killed or dis1ersed.
Long retired to New Orleans, where he
made the acquaintance of the Mexican patriots,
Milam and Trespalacios. The next
spring, 1821, still another "expedition " was
formed against the Mexican government in
Texas, with these men as leaders; but they,
too, were soon squelched. The next year,
1822, Long was killed in a private encounter.
Of course, at this time the condition was
deplorable, as the outlook for permanent
peace was absolutely forbidding. After the
expulsion of Long in 1819, every intruder
who had settled in the country was driven
off, his buildings destroyed and his cattle
driven away. The populated districts altogether
contained no more than 4,000 civilized
beings. Agriculture was almost entirely
neglected, and provisions were so scarce, even
in San Antonio, as to be a subject of frequent
report by Governor Martinez to the
commandant general at Saltillo. The northeastern
borders became the asylum of criminals
and the abode of bands of armed desperadoes
engaged in smuggling. L fitte's
piratical establishment had its ern ssaries
about the country, who drove Africans
through the land with impunity to New
Orleans, where they were sold; and savage
Indians, like the Comanches, were hovering
around almost every white settlement. This
was the darkest hour that Texas ever saw.
A panoramic review of the two decades
just treated is thus presented by H. H. Bancroft,
the great Pacific coast historian:
" If the reader will glance back at the history
of Texas, he will find that no advance
in the colonization of that fertile country
was made during the period of Spanish domination.
The reason of this, apart from the
exclusion of foreigners, lay mainly in the
aversion of the Spanish creoles to agriculture,
and the dangers to which settlers were exposed.
Enterprise in ' New Spain' was chiefly
directed to the development of mines, while
the cultivation of the soil was performed for
the most part by the passive Indians. In
Texas, an essentially agricultural province,
the conditions were reversed. There were
no mines to be developed, nor were there
peaceable natives who could be made to till
the ground. It therefore offered no inducements
to Spanish-Americans to migrate from
safe and settled districts to a remote region,
where a few ill-garrisoned presidios could
offer little or no protection to the cultivator
against the stealthy attacks of hostile Indians.
Thus the colonization of Texas was confined
to the establishment of a few settlers in the
immediate vicinity of these military posts.
Only two of these, San Antonio de Bejar and
La Bahia del Espiritn Santo, developed into
towns of any considerable importance. Later
attempts of Spain to colonize the country at
the beginning of the present century. met
with no success. The undertaking projected
by the Spanish government and placed under
the direction of General Grimarest failed of
accomplishment on account of the breaking
out of hostilities between Spain and England;
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Lewis Publishing Company, publisher. History of Texas, together with a biographical history of Milam, Williamson, Bastrop, Travis, Lee and Burleson counties : containing a concise history of the state, with portraits and biographies of prominent citizens of the above named counties, and personal histories of many of the early settlers and leading families, book, 1893; Chicago. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth29785/m1/29/?rotate=90: accessed January 19, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .