SONS OF DEWITT COLONY TEXAS
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Battle of Gonzales-Index

Battle of Gonzales
Old Come and Take It Flag
Eye Witness Reports & Correspondence

G. W. Davis to Mina 25 Sep
Bailey Opinion 26 Sep
Ponton to Musquiz 26 Sep
Misc. Bexar-Gonzales 27-29 Sep
Austin to Public 29 Sep
Austin to W.D.C. Hall 29 Sep
Saul to San Felipe 29 Sep
Clements to Castenada 30 Sep
Castaneda to Ugartechea 30 Sep
Ugartechea to Cos 20 Sep
R.M. Coleman to J.B. Miller 30 Sep
Martin et al. to Citizens 30 Sep
Cos to Ugartechea 1 Oct
Cos to Ugartechea 1 Oct
Cos to Alcalde 1 Oct
Moore to Stepp et al. 1 Oct.
Ugartechea-Castaneda 1 Oct
Ugartechea to Cos 1 Oct
Dr. William P. Smith's Address 1 Oct
Castaneda to Ugartechea 2 Oct
Fisher to Austin 3 Oct
Ugartechea to Cos 3 Oct
Castaneda Battle Report 4 Oct
Ugartechea to Austin 4 Oct
Austin to Unknown 5 Oct
Macomb Report to Austin 5 Oct
Smither to Council 23 Nov
Rusk Report of the Battle Dec
W.D. Dewees Dec 1835
William T. Austin 1844
Charles Mason's Description 1874
Ben Highsmith 1899
Creed Taylor ca. 1900

 


G.W. Davis to Mina Committee of Safety 25 Sep 1835.   To the Committee of Safety of Mina, and to J. H. Moore, Rio Colorado.   Gonzales, September 25th, 1835 I am directed by the Committee of Safety of Gonzales to address you for the purpose of procuring immediate assistance to repel an expected attack of the enemy. The circumstances which influence us to this measure are these. A demand, at the instance of Colonel Ugartechea, has been made for a piece of cannon, which has been in this town upaward of four years. This cannon is not needed in Bejar, for they have eighteen pieces there, all unmounted, besides those they have mounted; this piece was given us unconditionally, as we are informed, for the defence of this colony. From every circumstance, and from information, we are justified in believing that this demand is only made to get a pretext to make a sudden inroad and attack upon this colony for marauding and other purposes. The Alcalde, with the approbation of the people, has refused to deliever up the cannon; and we are satified that, as soon as Colonel Ugartechea is informed of the fact, he will immediately send a force against this colony at least, thinking us too weak to resist him. We therefore earnestly request you to send what force you can collect immediately to our assistance. You need make no delay about provisions, for we have plenty at your service. The time we think is most pressing, and the occasion most urgent. In haste, &c. By order of the Committee. G. W. Davis, Secretary


E. Bailey Statement Concerning Feeling of Gonzales Citizens 26 Sep 1835.   I am requested to give some information relitive to the situation and feelings of the people at Gonzalez and that vicinity.  I left Gonzalez on Wednesday last and the people of that place were then assembled to decide upon what answer to give to a file of Mexican soldiers who they expected in one or two days to demand a brass cannon which was in their possession, When I left there were but three names in favour of giving up the cannon, so that the retaiking of it seemed to be almost unanimous with the people. Several individual there named that they wanted assistance from this colony as they expected in refusing the cannon that Mexican troops would be sent immediately upon them to enforce the order and perhaps commit depredations upon their property. and if so nothing could save their provisions & stock but assistance from this colony. the Alcalde said to me that he had in possession about $1000. Dolls. and was fearful that the military could also demand that. Several families were talking of moveing. and some have actually prepared thier waggons to as so. They wish to move thier families this side of the Colorado and to return themselves to the defence of their frontier. a number more said they should move their families as they expected their refusing to give up the cannon would bring foraging parties of soldiers upon them as they (the military) at Bexar were short of provisions.  E. Bailey Sept 26th 1835


27 Sep 1835 Alcalde Angel Navarro, Bexar to Gonzales Alcalde expressing hope that the cannon will be given up since Ugartechea will use force.

27 Sep 1835 Col. Domingo de Ugartechea, Bexar to Gonzales Alcalde demanding delivery of the cannon.

27 Sep 1835 Ugartechea to Lt. Francisco Castaneda, Bexar instructing him to go to Gonzales and take the cannon by force if necessary.


Stephen F. Austin to Public 29 SepTo the People of Texas San Felipe, September 29, 1835. The committee has received a communication, under date of 25th inst., in the name of the people of Gonzales, stating that Colonel Ugartachea had made a demand for the piece of cannon at that place and that the people, in a general meeting, had refused to give it up. The present movements of the people of Texas are of a popular and voluntary character, in defence of their constitutional rights, which are threatened by military invasion of an unconstitutional character. The people are acting on the defensive, and therefore there can not be a doubt that it was correct in the people of Gonzales, under this principle, to detain the piece of cannon which was Oven to them by the authorities of a constitutional government to defend themselves and the constitution it is necessary. On this principle free people of this and every other section of the country, so far as the committee is informed, are ready to fly at a moment's warning to the defense of those people, should they be attacked. Companies of volunteers have already marched, and more are in readiness should they be necded to repel attack. This committee beg leave to suggest that, in as much as the position taken by the country up to the present time is purely defensive, it is very important to keep this principle constantly in view, and to avoid making attacks, unless they should be necessary as a measure of defense. S. F. Austin. Ch'm, Etc.


Austin to W.D.C. Hall San Felipe, 29 Sep 1835Dear Sir: War is upon us---there is now no remedy, the answer of Cos is positive that the individuals who have been demanded must be given up, and that the people must unconditionally submit to whatever the government chooses to do for them; he lays down the Principle that the General Government have the right to force us to submit to any reform or amendments, or alterations that congress may make in the constitution, &c. This is impossible---we had better leave the country at once, for we shall be, under Cos' doctrine, without any rights or guarantees of any kind. I therefore think that war is inevitable; We must prepare. What do you think of raising a volunteer corps to protect the Consultation; and have it ready without delay? I think it probable Cos will attack the people on Guadaloupe in a short time; they expect aid and ought to have it. I shall send to Nacogdoches immediately. Yours, S. F. A ustin W. D. C. Hall, Esq.


Thomas S. Saul to San Felipe Committee of Safety 29 SepCopy At Capt. Moores Colorado River, Sept. 29, 1835 To the Committee of Safety at San Felipe Gentlemen The frontiers are attacked Three hundred Mexicans will be tonivht in Gonzales- The citizens in the neighborhood are mustering as fast as they can---every exertion must be made to get the people to arms-from respectable authority now present, there are besides the troops at Bexar with Coss 2000 men are on the road.-- at La Bahia the enemy sent for horses, there were none, they then made the Citizens pack their baggage on their backs---Whipped the Alcalde and Ayuntarmento---From reports I expect 200 or 250 men will be in the neighborhood of Gonzales tomorrow and will give the enemy a specimen of their skill in rifle shooting. Thos. S. Saul Member of the Committee of Washington


Thomas S. Saul to Capt. Hoxie 29 SepAt Capt Moores Colorado River Sept 29th 1835 Capt Hoxie Dear Sir The inhabitants of Gonzales are moving their families from the Town. Mr Mitchell arrived yesterday at this place. Ugartechea sent to demand the cannon now at Gonzales. They refused to give it up in consequence of which they have sent three hundred men to fetch it who are expected in Gonzales this evening. What men we can muster will attack them tomorrow morning by way of annoyance but help must be immediately sent us Now is the time to strike the blow. Send on what force you can as soon as possible T. S. Saul A true copy---T. J. Pilgrim


Gonzales Regidor J.D. Clements to Castenada 30 SepSenor. [c. Oct. 1, 1835] Deviendo la aucencia del Alcalde la obligacion ha recaido sobre mi asegurando la comuniacion dirigida al mismo Alcalde de esta Villa demandando nuevamente un canon que existe en este lugar tambien conio una respuesta a su nota en la que decea abrir una negociacion sobre el obgeto. En respuesta a su primera demanda que hace sobre el dho. cacon el Alcalde espresa sus dudas de lo que era estrictamente su obligacion sobre esta materia, y decea consultarlo con el Gefe politico de este Departamento antes de decidir el positivamente en el caso de conclucion; este derecho de consultar a nuestro gefe, me parece se nos sera negado, la unica respuesta que puedo dar a V. No. puedo ni hare la entrega, agradable a mi parecer de propiedad, y estos son los sentimientos de los mienbros de este ayuntamiento queines se hallan presentes. El dho. canon esta ahora en esta Villa y si su fuerza q. se halla frente de nosotros es numrosa, la nuestra aunque somos pocos en numero jamas sucumbiremos contra lo que creemos justo a nuestros principios. Dios y Libertad. Jose D. Clements, Regidor

English version of Regidor Clements reply to Lt. Castenada.


Castaneda to Ugartechea 30 Sep 1835.  Today in the morning, I was on the bank of the river facing the village of Gonzales with the aim to speak with the Alcalde [Mayor] in respect to my mission, I was answered by a Regidor [town councilman] that the Alcalde was gone.  But that they would offer to go summon him to come back and that at four in the afternoon, I would be able to have a conference with him or that I could speak to the Regidor because of the absence of the Alcalde, and that the meeting would be at the same location we were at.   All of this was assured to me by said Regidor.  

Indeed, at the arrival of their indicated hour and where I was present at the cited location; there came the expressed Regidor who was accompanied by two others and a Mr. Smith. The outcome was that they refused to cross [the river] as I had suggested. However, they read to me from the other side the following communication, the original which I have sent to Your Excellency for your knowledge.

By it, Your Excellency will know that at the beginning and without a doubt, these ungrateful men worked and are working from bad faith I told them that under no means where they to keep and be in possession of the cannon, and that only by a favor, it had been loaned to them. And this, despite the fact of the outrage they made towards the corporal and the soldier that they held captive. But to everything, they refused to commit themselves in their responses.

By an Cochate [Coshatta--WLM] Indian, who appear before me this afternoon, escaping because [illegible] death to his companion, and after being many days with them [the Texans]; it is possible that the force they actually have is 140 men, and 300 more which should arrive this afternoon or by tomorrow from San Felipe and Tenoxtitlan in whose commission goes the mayor, [i.e.. The mayor requested this help.]

I have the feeling that I will not be able to complete fully the orders of Your Excellency because I was hindered at the river, and for me, it was impossible to carry it out to the environs of the village. This was because they have placed people in order to stop me from carrying it out [the retrieval of the cannon].

Therefore, if I do not receive orders from Your Excellency by tomorrow, t think that I will leave this location and follow the river till I retire myself sufficiently, and then be able to cross without hindrance.

God & Liberty In view of Gonzales September 30th of 1835 Seven at night
From: Francisco Castaneda, Lt.
To: Sir, Principal Commander., Colonel, Don Domingo Ugartechea
This is a copy, the 1st of October of 1835; Ugartechea,
[Borroel, Roger, FIELD REPORTS OF THE MEXICAN ARMY DURING THE TEXAN WAR OF 1836, Volume III, (LaVillita Publications, East Chicago, In., 2001) pp. 1-13, trans. by Borroel]


Colonel Ugartechea to General Martin Cos  30 Sep 1835.  Commanding General of the Interior States of the East Principal Commander of Coahuila y Tejas  Sir, General Commander -

From Ramon Musquiz, a political leader from this Department, I knew that in the village of Gonzales there was an 8-pounder of very good quality. And that by him, the military commander who was my antecessor, and by his request, it was granted as aid to the empresario of said village.  And with this, they began to form themselves [for protection].

The arrival of the mail schooner and the steamboat from San Felipe has made me think, that at such a time, they will use said piece against us. Therefore in order to avoid this, it occurred to the political leader from this Department to get back from the Alcalde of Gonzales, the cannon. 

For this purpose. I had sent the official letter that appears in copy below, in No. 1—Having ordered, I sent this dispatch with a corporal and five soldiers not believing that they would have a reason to deny the delivery of the piece which does not belong to the village, there was also a [gun] carriage in which to transport it to this city. But this mission was not able to be carried out; the Alcalde of Gonzales protesting, which appears in copy No. 2. —In virtue of this, the political leader of Bejar sent a dispatch that is marked No. 3 and No. 4, which is what I sent to the Alcalde by the commission of Lieutenant Don Francisco Castaneda who, with a section of 100 men, was ordered to march in order to bring back the aforesaid cannon.  Still, because of the cannon, they made a resistance, giving him the order which is manifested as copy No. 5. —Today at daybreak, I received the letter of Lieutenant Don Francisco Castaneda, which goes with No. 6, and a reply to it which you will notice. Your Excellency, by copy No. 7. -All of these steps have been agreed upon by myself and with the Gentleman, Colonel CondelIe, just as Your Excellency wanted. And the both

of us have agreed to withdraw the troops in order not to compromise the national honor; giving You Excellency the report by special courier in order to be cognizant of the fact that already in the colonies war is declared in a positive and sure manner. Be so kind as to decide the measures to be established that are the most convenient.   God & Liberty Bejar September 30, 1835

Prom: Domingo Ugartechea
To: The Commanding General of these States of the East
This is a copy. Goliad, October 1, 1835
M. M. Mendoza, secretary.
[Borroel, Roger, FIELD REPORTS OF THE MEXICAN ARMY DURING THE TEXAN WAR OF 1836, Volume III, (LaVillita Publications, East Chicago, In., 2001) pp. 1-13, trans. by Borroel]


R.M Coleman to James B. Miller, San Felipe Alcalde 30 SepGonzales 30th Sept 1835 Dear Sir I arrived at this place about 8 oclock last evening with 30 men from Bastrop. I left eight men on the way who will be here to day. John H. Moore also arrived last night with some 40 or 50 men our forces are slowly increasing the Mexicans are encamped on the oposite side of the River, report as to numbers differ from 100 to 150 there is probably 125---we have as yet no head there will be one chosen to day you will use evry exertion to forward men to our assistance, as we expect a reinforcement from Baxor ourly. I am for attacking those that are now heare we are divided on the subject something will be done so soon as there is a commander in chief we are all captains and have our views. Do not be surprised should you hear of a battle being fought on this day. The sword is drawn and it must not be sheathed until Texas is free of these incursors. Do all you can to forward I am yours in haste R. M. Coleman [Addressed: James B. Miller Sanfelipe]


Cos to Ugartechea 1 Oct 1835.  Colonel Don Domingo Ugartechea; Goliad, October 1st, 1835 My very esteemed friend: It does not surprise me that the village of Gonzales displayed a reluctance to hand over the piece [the cannon] which I had been waiting for its anticipated acquisition.  Neither does it offend me, that haughty pride, because we have not arrived at the truth or got close to the village. But on the other hand, I feel infinitely that this trivial sentiment has forced a declaration that is already to be expected, and that this is perhaps desired.

Go ahead and march as you said in the official letter, leaving a secure Bejar with the remaining force of the garrison, and with the confidence that the friend, Condelle will have to defend a more important location.

I have not yet settled on the course which I will have to follow, but I will inform you of it and very soon we will likely see it.

Since I have been informed about you, that you are brave, energetic and prudent, there is nothing I have in which to entrust to you particularly [at this time]. But, I offer you anew my assistance in your services and the particular affection as long a I am your true friend.

/s/ Martin P. Cos
[Borroel, Roger, FIELD REPORTS OF THE MEXICAN ARMY DURING THE TEXAN WAR OF 1836, Volume III, (LaVillita Publications, East Chicago, In., 2001) pp. 1-13, trans. by Borroel]


Cos to Ugartechea.  1 Oct 1835.  Commanding General of the Interior States of the East.

I have been informed in regards of what your Excellency said to me in your letter yesterday.  As a result, I have decided that Your Excellency be at the head of 100 cavalry and the preference companies from the Morelos [battalion] completely, until there is a equal number [of both branches].

Then, you will go at once to the village of Gonzales in order to demand and take from that city, an 8-pounder cannon, which is located there. While on your march, you take and incorporate the other 100 dragoons who are at the orders of Lieutenant Don Francisco Castaneda. Because, when you are already on the other side of the river, you will be able, Your Excellency, to have more security by combining your operations in case that town resists against said delivery [of the cannon].

Your Excellency will arrange to cross it [the river) some distance from the view of Gonzales, making sure to cover your movement and taking those precautions that you know how to in these movements. And if Your Excellency thinks that there will be combat, take along a piece [artillery cannon] in order to help out the infantry.

It is not good nor possible that you should tolerate the scandalous conduct from the authorities of Gonzales. And by the same circumstance, Your Excellency will work in the present with all necessary firmness. But always, your measures will be thought out and with prudence and circumspection that will stir up the respect for the Government, and the very State of the events.

Now, as soon as Your Excellency is at the other bank of the river, and at the environs of the village. Your Excellency will sent word as to pertaining the object of your mission and march. Then you will sent to that mayor the sealed letter that is enclosed, indicating an appointed time that is very decisive for the reply. It does not admit an moratorium of any type. However, it would be convenient that everything is arranged in a way that the hostilities are begun by the rebels, if by chance it is in this manner obtainable.

I recommend to Your Excellency very particularly and to him that is under your orders, that in the event you have to use the lasso/rope, do not permit excesses of any kind by your troops. And they [the troops] will act with extreme religiosity in respect of properties despite the fact that those persons are leading the rebellion. But, it is indispensable to let them (the rebels] know that the troops of the Supreme Government are disciplined and that they don't want nor do they desire any other thing [of theirs]. And that they respect the Laws and that the Citizens will not be bothered by them.

Lastly, there is no doubt of the skill and prudence of Your Excellency that is in this operation, and that you will fulfill completely my wishes and give honor to the Supreme Government.

God & Liberty Goliad, October 1835 11:30 P.M., at night
From: Martin Cos, commanding
To: Sir, Colonel Don Domingo Ugartechea Principal Commander of this State.
This is a copy. J.M, Mendoza, secretary.
[Borroel, Roger, FIELD REPORTS OF THE MEXICAN ARMY DURING THE TEXAN WAR OF 1836, Volume III, (LaVillita Publications, East Chicago, In., 2001) pp. 1-13, trans. by Borroel]


Ugartechea to Castaneda 1 Oct 1835.  The Principal Commander of Coahuila y Tejas In my official dispatch, dated yesterday, you were informed that if by the time you receive it, and nothing had been achieved upon the delivery of the cannon, you are to retire to this city, safe guarding the cavalry. Now, do what you told me in your official dispatch, dated the 30th, reiterate that order so that the honor of the Mexican arms are without compromise, carrying out said withdrawal.
God & Liberty Bejar, October 1, 1835
From: Domingo de Ugartechea
To: Lt Don Franisco Castaneda
[at the margin] Ugartechea
[Borroel, Roger, FIELD REPORTS OF THE MEXICAN ARMY DURING THE TEXAN WAR OF 1836, Volume III, (LaVillita Publications, East Chicago, In., 2001) pp. 1-13, trans. by Borroel]


Ugartechea to Cos, 1 Oct 1835.  Principal Commander of Coahuila y Tejas -No. 205

At this moment, I have just received a new dispatch from Lt. Castaneda in which a copy is enclosed to Your Excellency, it is marked as No. 1. And a sealed letter that is in English which was given to him by the Regidor of Gonzales who was acting mayor because the proper mayor was absent.

In order not to compromise by an uncertain way the honor of Mexican arms, I have repeated to him the order that goes under No. 2. -These new reasons need to be placed in more clarity; that in an instigating manner, the colonies have risen up in insurrection, that this demands that Your Excellency be so good as to adopt measures that are judged to be timely and suitable. 
God & Liberty  Bejar

From: Domingo de Ugartechea
To: The Gentleman, Commanding General of these States
[Borroel, Roger, FIELD REPORTS OF THE MEXICAN ARMY DURING THE TEXAN WAR OF 1836, Volume III, (LaVillita Publications, East Chicago, In., 2001) pp. 1-13, trans. by Borroel]


Castaneda to Ugartechea 2 Oct 1835. Hoy a las cinco de la manana fui atacado en la habitacion de Ia Perra por doscientos Americanos mas que menos, con una piesa mediana y un esmeril, y tanto pr. La superioridad de las fuerzas contrarias como pr. las repetidas orns. de VS. he emprendido mi retirada pa. esa Ciudad en donde dare a VS. un parte circunstanciado de todo lo ocurrido.= No ha habido mas desgracia que un Soldado de la la. permte. de Tamaulipas de bala de carabina.= Dios Y Libd.- Campo del Carrizo Octubre 2. de 1835.= a la una de la tarde= Frnco. Castaneda.= Sr. Comte. pral. Corl. D. Domingo Ugartechea.= Es copia Bejar Octe. 3. de 1835.= Ugartechea.

Castaneda to Ugartechea 2 Oct 1835.  Today, at five in the morning, I was attacked at the dwelling of the Perra by 200 Americans, more or less and with an average piece and a small cannon. And because of the superiority of the enemy forces, as by the repeated orders of Your Excellency, I have begun my withdrawal for Bejar where I will give to Your Excellency, a detailed report of everything that had occurred there.
We have lost a Soldier who was from the Permanent Tamaulipas [company] by a carbine bullet.
God & Liberty Camp at the Carrizo
October 2, 1835, at 1 P.M. in the afternoon,
From: Francisco Castaneda
To: Sir, Principal Commander, Colonel Don Domingo Ugartechea
This is a copy, Bejar, October 3, 1835. Ugartechea.
[Borroel, Roger, FIELD REPORTS OF THE MEXICAN ARMY DURING THE TEXAN WAR OF 1836, Volume III, (LaVillita Publications, East Chicago, In., 2001) pp. 1-13, trans. by Borroel]


Ugartechea to Cos 3 Oct 1835.  Principal Commander of Coahuila y Tejas, -No. 216.  I have just received the dispatch of Lt. Castaneda, a copy which is enclosed. By it Your Excellency will be informed of the fact that the insurgents from Gonzales have attacked the section that was at the orders of the expressed lieutenant. (The insurgents] lacking good faith, and offering to enter in a debate relative to the delivery of the cannon which is as illegal [for them to have] as well as a disconcertment because they still have it in their power.

This event proves more and more, if only this, to not to expect surrender by the authorities of the Department of the Brazos of the revolutionary ringleaders. But, that said authorities are certainly, the principal movers [of the insurrection}. And that together, they have already started the insurrection in the colonies.

God & Liberty Bejar, October 3, 1835
From: Domingo Ugartechea
To: Sir, Commanding General of these Slates
[Borroel, Roger, FIELD REPORTS OF THE MEXICAN ARMY DURING THE TEXAN WAR OF 1836, Volume III, (LaVillita Publications, East Chicago, In., 2001) pp. 1-13, trans. by Borroel]


Cos to Gonzales Alcalde 1 Oct 1835.  Comanda. Gral. c Ynspon. de los E.E. Ynts. de oriente. Ha Ilegado a notivia de esta Comada. gral. q. haviendosele reclamado a V. un canon que ecsiste en esa Villa indevidamte. se ha negado a eiitregarlo, V como esta cotiducta sumamente escandalosa, producira males de mucho tamano principalmte. a V. sl no hace inmediatamte. la comunleada entrega, quiero q. antes q. obre la fuerza, refleccione sobre su cituacion v advierta los males que va a causar con su manejo.= Hagalo V. asi y en caso de dedirse a proseguir en la marcha q. ha empreendido entienda q. la responsavilidad de las consecuencias pesara esencialmente sobre su persona, y q. no va a pelear con solo la pequena Seccion q. se le presentara a la vista, sino con toda la Nacion Mejicana q. lo admitio en su seno y lo tolera pr su rondad caracteristica.= Dios y Libd. Goliad Octube. lo. de 1835.= A las once v inedia de la noche.= Martin Perfecto de Cos.= Al Alcalde lo. de la Villa de Gonzales. Es copia. M.M. Mendoza. Secreto


Col. Moore to Stepp, Sutherland and Kerr 1 Oct 1835Gonzales, Oct. 1st, 1835. I inform you that we have about 150 men, and are expecting inore troops hourly, and earnestly request that you should spare, no pains to send us as much aid as possible. Our situation requires that all of Texas should now aid us. It is the most important crisis that the people of Texas have ever experienced., and our welfare for the future, does depend a great deal on the first stroke that is made. The enemy is now just on the opposite side of the river; in number about 200 troops, and is reinforcing rapidly. Spare no pains in sending us aid, immediately. At all events send us Expresses and state the situation of the troops and affairs generally. Respectfully, &e. John H. Moore, Commandant A true Copy. W. H. Wharton [To Messrs. Stepp, Sutherland & Kerr]


Col. Ugartechea to Lt. Castaneda 1 Oct 1835. Comandancia Principal de Coahuila y Texas.= En mi oficio fecha de ayer previne a V. qe. si para cuando lo reciviera nada. habia logrado sobre la entrega del canon, se retirase a esta ciudad conservando la Caballada; ahora impuesto de quanto V. me manifuesta en su oficio fecha 30. reitero aquella orden para q. sin comprometer el honor de las armas Mejicanas verifique dicha retirada= Dios y Libertad. Bejar Octubre Io. de 1835.= Domingo de Ugartechea.= Sor. Ten. D. Fran. Castaneda. Es copia Bejar Octubre 1o. de 1835. Ugartechea.

2 October 1835 Gen. Cos, Matamoros, to Col. Ugartechea, Bexar informing him that he has no funds to support him and that Ugartechea is to make out the best he can.


William Fisher to Stephen F. Austin 3 Oct 1835. Gonzales, October 3, 1835. Your letter of September 27, has been received, and we are rejoiced to hear that volunteers are on their march to our assistance. The rubicon is crossed, and it is now of vital importance to Texas that we should be immediately reinforced. About 12 o'clock on the 20th the military, about two hundred in number, arrived on the western bank of the Guadalupe, and attempted the passage of the river, but were repulsed by eighteen men (the whole force then in this place,) they then encamped on the mound at DeWitt's. On the 1st of October, about 12 o'clock, they then took up their march and encamped about seven miles above this place, in a very strong position. Suspecting that their object in this movement was either to wait for reinforcement from San Antonio, or to cross at the upper crossing, about fifteen miles above, it was determined to attack them before their plans could be carried into execution. Accordingly, on the same night, the whole force, on foot, amounting to about one hundred and sixty men, from the Guadalupe, Colorado, and La Baca, commanded by Colonel J. H. Moore, crossed the river, attacked the enemy, about daybreak, and put them flight without the loss of a single man. Inasmuch as we expect a formidable attack from Ugartachea, should the forces long remain idle, the determination is to attack San Antonio, as soon as we can receive reinforcements, to prevent this country, as far as possible, from becoming the battle ground. This committee, therefore, earnestly desire that you would use your influence to send to this place, as soon as possible, as many volunteers as possible. Yours respectfully, Wm. Fisher  Chairman Colonel S. F. Austin, Chairman of committee of Austin.


The Report of Lieutenant Castaneda to Colonel Ugartechea 4 Oct 1835.  On the Skirmish at Gonzales-October 4, 1835-In carrying out the order of Your Excellency, I departed from this city [Bejar] on the 27th day of the past month in the direction towards Rosillo, where I spent the night. On the morning of the 28th, I started the march up to the location of Carrizo, about 45 miles ahead. On the 29th, I arrived close to the Village of Gonzales. And in accordance with the official order from Your Excellency of the 21st of the cited month, at about 12 miles before the arrival at the village, I forwarded the official letter [two soldiers were sent ahead with this letter] for the Alcalde of Gonzales, that I was bringing.

I continued my march and about 7 1/2  miles before arriving at the river, I met the two soldiers who were on the errand with said letter. But they were not able to reach Gonzales because they happened to run into a soldier from the Alamo [company], Isabel de la Garza, who was in the company of corporal Casimiro de Leon, These men were ordered by Your Excellency beforehand, to be with the carts that were needed to transport the cannon, I made known to them that I was commanding, and that they were not to cross the river. Also, corporal Casimiro and the other two soldiers had been prisoners the day before in Gonzales. [there had to be another soldier on hand, hence, "Casimiro and the other two soldiers . . ."-Ed.]

In spite of this, I continue my march since to remain in place would be dangerous, until I placed myself in front of the village. I proceeded to carry out the inspection of the river crossings and I observed that there weren't any on either side. However, on the opposite side there was a flatboat and canoes with a guard of about 20 men [Texians] in their parapet made up of wood that appear to be constructed there.

I decided to take the sealed letter to the Alcalde of Gonzales with the citizen, Juan de los Santos Coy, who decided to cross by swimming which in fact happened on the same day, the 29th, at four in the afternoon. With the expressed Santos Coy, I sent my own letter besides the one from Your Excellency, requesting a meeting with the cited Alcalde.

About two hours later, from the other bank, a cart driver under my command, had said that a Regidor told him that the Alcalde was not there but that he would return shortly, and then he would answer me. I waited all night for the reply, without any change.

On the 30th, in the morning of that day, I saw that the reply was being delayed, therefore, I went to the pass with a soldier who spoke English, and by his mediation interrogated the guard.   I asked them where was the Alcalde, to which they answered that although he was not coming, the Regidor would come to the bank within a short period of time to speak to me. In a little while, the Regidor came who told me he had sent for the Alcalde because he couldn't decide upon the cannon.  Therefore, nothing was agreed upon with me at that time.

But that if by four in the afternoon, the Alcaide did not come, he would cross in order that we could talk upon this business. But, only on the condition that his personal safety would be guaranteed. So, I offered it, and we came to agreement, and made the meeting for said hour.  

The hour arrived, and I went to the same location in which we had agreed upon. A short time later, the Regidor arrived, and started to deny everything in regards to the delivery of the cannon and the arrested soldiers, which I had proposed to him earlier. And then he told me that only by force will the delivery of the cannon be accomplished. This same event is vouched for in the original letter that I sent you. Your Excellency on the night of the cited day.

The regidor left and the night was without any other occurrence. I received the order from Your Excellency in which to prepare myself, that if there was no river crossing and if I did not succeed with the Alcalde over the delivery of the cannon, I was to withdraw, taking the horses. On the 1st day [of October] at about ten in the morning, I began my march, and at twelve, I arrived by the habitations of the Perra I arrived late in order to pass the night and so that the cavalry could rest themselves and be able to pasture.

At that location, a foreigner arrived, a Mr. Smitten (sic) with a passport from Your Excellency, and a private letter in which I read that said Smitten (sic) was going to influence [them] in order to avoid a quarrel, and that the cannon be delivered [over].

We decided to return to the village when we sighted three foreigners on horseback on the road. Smitten (sic) offered to go and speak to them, which he did. He returned and told me that said foreigners were coming with the aim to reconnoitre the habitations in order to see if the troops would take the opportunity to provoke them, and to see if I was going to withdraw towards Bejar or if I was going to camp there with the intention to remain permanently. The same foreigners by the mediation of Smitten (sic), invited me and him to go back the following day to Gonzales in order to handle the problem in question. We then decided to go in the morning of the following day since there was no agreement to let me come before the invitation. The foreigners then left, and for a precaution, I set up an advance outpost at the same location where the foreigners were first spotted in the afternoon.

From this hour till three in the morning, nothing of note happened; but then there was grenade fire at the advance outpost, so I placed the troops at ready and under arms. Then the corporal of the advance outpost arrived, and he gave a report warning that the Americans had passed through the woodland by the river with a piece [cannon]. As a result of this warning, the state and location that I found myself did not seem appropriate enough to me. So, I had the troop mounted and went to occupy a raised ground, staying there till daybreak of the 2nd [of October].

On the morning of said day, it was gloomy, dark and foggy in which I was not able to perceive the number of the Americans that were found hiding in the woodland by the river. At about six in the morning, they left the thicket, and at once they began to fire with carbines.  

I ordered Lieutenant Don Gregorio Perez to attack with 40 dragoons, which he did at once.  While his operation was ongoing, I was at his rear with the rest of the troops in order to protect him if the action got worse and I had to intercede.

At the moment that they saw the troops charge, they at once fled in a direction towards the woodland from where they shot at us with a small cannon. The fire died down, first by one side, then the other, t returned at once to the high ground that was occupied in order to await the dissipation of the fog in order to work [on the defenses]. There appeared there, one wounded soldier by a carbine who was from the Permanent | company].

There I was for an hour and a half and already the morning was clear, and I was able to see that the Americans had seized the house, and the location that I had abandoned, finding that their number was 200 to 220 [men].

In a short time, in view of both camps, a foreigner with a white flag was calling for a parley.   I went to where he was, and by the means of an interpreter that came with him, he told me to surrender at discretion, and that there was no other way He then told me to wait a moment, that he was going to the commander of the force [the Texian Force], and that he would return very soon with his commander.

By said commander, it was repeated to me about two or three times, with intimidation, to surrender myself. But, to everything [he said], I refused explaining to him that there was no motive for it, and then I interrogated them by what reason they had in attacking me. To this, they answered, because I was a Centralist, and they were Federalists. I then made them see, that this was not so, that up to the present time, the Government of the Nation existed under this form (of government), and that their aggression was unjust, and that they will bring upon themselves deadly results of which they will be solely responsible for.

To this, they did not reply, but again wanted me to surrender; however, I insisted in the negative. We separated and hardly had I arrived at the camp, they once again commenced to fire the cannon. And by the orders of Your Excellency, I withdrew so as not to compromise the honor of the Mexican arms, thus, I carried it out to the environs of Clao, where I passed the night without incident.

At three in the morning, I left and arrived at Rosillo, and today in the morning, I arrived at this city where I completed my duty to give to Your Excellency, this detailed report so that you know that your orders were followed and obeyed as directed [by Your Excellency].

I also believe the following cannot be omitted, but should be placed at the knowledge of Your Excellency that the force actually gathered at Gonzales had to have passed 500 men. This is because according to a Cochate (Coshatta-WLM] Indian who assured me that when they left to attack me, there were

two hundred men. Plus, as many as three hundred came from San Felipe, already, and some from Tenoxtitlan. But when I arrived at the banks of the river, they had only about one hundred and forty men.

Be so good. Your Excellency, to acknowledge the remonstrances of my consideration and respects.
God & Liberty Bejar, 4th of October, 1835
Francisco de Castaneda
Sir, principal Commander of this State, Colonel Don Domingo Ugartechea
[Borroel, Roger, FIELD REPORTS OF THE MEXICAN ARMY DURING THE TEXAN WAR OF 1836, Volume III, (LaVillita Publications, East Chicago, Il., 2001) pp. 1-13, trans. by Borroel].


Col. Ugartechea to Stephen F. Austin 4 Oct 1835. Bexar 4 Oct 1835 Stephen F. Austin Esq. My Worthy Friend, I have just received your letter of the 15 ult. and am glad to learn your happy arrival at S Felipe; the more so, as I believe that your presence, and the direct influence, which as a good Mexican you should exercise in the affairs of Texas, will cause them to be managed with the skill and circumspection required by the present delicate circumstances, which have been rendered important by the excitements of the enemies of order, whose proceedings with which I believe you are well acquainted, have induced the supreme Government, who abounds in resources, to adopt measures fit to procure a permanent and firm peace in that interesting part of the Republic, without leaving unfinished crimes and abominations. In the understanding therefore that you are well acquainted with the events that have happened previous to your arrival. I shall only give a sketch of the principal ones, that you may be convinced of the necessity and justice of the measures which have caused so much alarm and given rise to sinister interpretations. You cannot be ignorant of the outrage committed at Anahuac against the detachment placed there under the orders of Cap Antonio Tenorio, of which the force was so small as to be barely sufficient to fulfil its object of preventing the smuggling, which to the notorious prejudice of the national revenue and with such frequency was carrying on at Galveston measures which ought not to have caused the Colonist to entertain apprehensions of another nature. Neither can you be ignorant that when the State Legislature was dissolved, those who are discontented with the present Government, or rather, the parties interested in the Decree for alienating 400 leagues of Texas, proceeded to the interior (Texas) there propagating alarming reports for the purpose of kindling the torch of discord and in a direct manner bringing about in San Felipe [rebellion] against public faith and all right, the intercepting opening and publishing of the official and very confidential correspondence addressed to said Cap Tenorio, after having arrested, molested outraging the soldiers who were the bearers. If such proceeding were to remain unpunished, it would be believed that the Mexican Nation is unjust, or perhaps that she wanted force and energy sufficient to make herself respected. She therefore considered herself in the necessity of proving the contrary and of adopting with regard to the delinquents and only with regard to them, measures, which by no means made connection with the good and peaceable inhabitants of Texas. This has been repeatedly manifested to them by myself and the Commandant General to the political Chiefs of Nacogdoches and Brazos although unhappily without effect, on the contrary it appears that such manifestations have been viewed with contempt, without viewing the Mexicans are patient of suffering, but valient, full of honor and capable of making their Government be respected then the Commandant General suspended the march of troops in order to do away with apprehension and show that he had no distrust of the good sentiments of the Colonists provided the delinquents were delivered up for trials by the competent authority, fresh motive occurs for supposing that there exists strong intention of provoking a disastrous war, which it is important in time to prevent. When the authorities of Gonzales were repulsed by this Political Chief to deliver the piece of artillery lying there, as it had been lent to the "empresario" of that Colony by my predecessor and it belongs to this military jurisdiction, those authorities not only refuse to deliver it up but say they will give it up to force only. Such conduct placed me under the necessity of sending a party of 100 men to exact their delivery and I gave orders to the Commander to send a new communication to the Alcalde of Gonzales, manifesting to him the injustice of wishing to detain an article which does not belong to that municipality, and that if against expectation he did not deliver up the gun, the said commandant was then to employ force, either from fear or malice, the Alcalde of Gonzales aware that it was an outrage to arrest the corporal and soldiers who were the first bearers of the communication from the political Chief, caused the inhabitants residing on this side of the river to leave their houses, alarmed the Citizens and in order to impede the passage of the troops withdrew to the other side the ferry in canoes, so that when the commander of the party arrived on the banks of the river he was met by that obstacle.  Notwithstanding which, he solicited an interview with the Alcalde but in vain although he was informed that within three hours he would come, not being in town, when that time expired the next Regidor made his appearance and made known that he had to consult with the Political Chief of the Brazos and without his sanction he could not, would not deliver up the cannon, I was informed of this occurrence and then ordered the commandant of the party to withdraw, in the belief that on the political Chiefs answer the gun would be delivered up, so far from that however, the inhabitants of the town acting on the wrong belief that the troops retired through fear came out, pass the river and committing the outrage of attacking the party and intimating surrender to the Commandant. A report was made to me of that event and that besides the Citizens of Gonzales 300 men from San Felipe had collected and as I did not wish to see that small force compromitted, I ordered it to withdraw, and shall march tomorrow with the knowledge of the Commandant General with a force of every discription of arms, sufficient to prove that the Mexicans can never suffer themselves to be insulted.

There are in the Colony some individuals, who, like yourself know me to be frank in my proceedings, and also that I possess the character and energy characteristic of my country. I may therefore assure you that if you make use of your influence with the political Chief to have the gun delivered up to me, wherever it may meet me, from that spot I will return immediately, if not I will act militarily and the consequence will be a war declared by the Colonists, which shall be maintained by the Government of the nation with corresponding dignity. I know you are right to complain of Thompsons proceedings, which I do not approve much less as they are arbitrary, and having no authority for acting in such a manner but some sacrifice is requisite in favor of peace, which, if it disappear from Texas, will be caused only by the opposition of the colonists to what is just, and I am convinced of your good sentiments in favor of your adopted Country, notwithstanding your sufferings and have not doubt that in favour of this country you will continue to make fresh sacrifices and cooperate effectually in removing the evils which threaten, for which important purpose you may reckon upon me for the use of my influence with the Supreme Government and with the Commandant General, and I can assure you if peace should be sincerely established and unalterably so, the introduction of troops into those departments will be dispensed with, I am your friend likewise a friend to the Colonist, if I have been sometimes obliged to fight with them, it was an absolute fulfilment of my duty, but in personalities I have always treated them like a Gentleman, both before and after fighting with them, I have observed the same conduct with as many as have entered into this city, where they still remain, notwithstanding they have not behaved well in Gonzales towards the Mexicans. In a P. S. to your letter which I now answer you say you enclose a paper, which I have not received, I know that the said paper is in circulation in your department, and that in it you strongly recommend peace and due gratitude to the Supreme Government avail yourself of some opportunity for forwarding it to me and in the mean while I remain your attached Friend etc Domingo de Ugartechea A true copy of the original, which I certify Bexar 4 Oct 1835

Ugartechea Signature-Benson Collection UT
(Courtesy of Roger Borreol)


Stephen F. Austin to Unknown 5 Oct 1835. San Philipe, Oct. 5, 1835. There is a report just come which I rely on, that the Mexicans at Gonzales have been defeated , and forty killed besides wounded, no less on our side; the fight was in the woods. The enemy had cavalry. All goes on well. Upwards of one hundred leave here today, some from Trinity; fifty will go on tomorrow. I think there will be 800 on the frontier in a week. The enthusiasm increases daily; there are no peace-men, no parties here now-all are war-men. I have remained here because it was thought that I would be of more service to unite opinions and hurry out men. I sliall go to the frontier soon. The enemy must cross the Nuasus before the campaign ends. We will then organize a government for Texas. I recommend despatch in sending to the United States. Let them know how matters stand, and that the country is united and firm, and therefore invincible. Yours respectfully, S. F. Austin. A true copy of the original from Austin to the committee of vigilance and safety. A. Hotchkiss, Chairman. San Augustine, 13th Oct. 1835.


David B. Macomb Report to Stephen F. Austin 5 Oct 1835. Sir---Agreeably to request before I left San Felipe, I proceed to give you all the information I have been able to gather. I unfortunately arrived after the battle on the opposite side of the river with the Mexicans had taken place. The Mexicans, to the number of two hundred, all mounted, arrived on the bank of the river, opposite to this place, on Tuesday. They sent a despatch from Colonel Ugartachea, and one from the Political Chief of Bejar, to demand the cannon which the citizens of this place were in possession of; and also, a communication from the commander of the troop, requesting a conference with the commander of our forces. At that time, the actual force of this place consisted of only eighteen men, commanded by captain Albert Martin. To obtain time, the captain informed them that the alcalde was absent, but would be in town in the evening. The captain of the Mexicans then removed his troops, and took up a position about half a mile from the ferry, out in the prairie. The next day, our force had augmented to about one hundred men from the Colorado and Brazos. One or two feints were made by the Mexicans during the day at the ford, half a mile below, and at the ferry, but finding themselves likely to be opposed vigorously, they retired, and took possession of the mound about three hundred yards from the ford, where they encamped for the night. In the meantime our troops were arriving hourly, and on Friday an attack was determined on, and carried into execution in the following manner; Our numbers had increased to one hundred and sixty-eight men, and in an election for field officers, the lot fell on John H. Moore, as Colonel, and J. W. E. Wallace as Lieutenant-Colonel. About seven o'clock on Thursday evening, our troops crossed the river; the horses to the amount of fifty, and the infantry at the ferry, together with the cannon, (one brass six pounder) tolerably well mounted. The Lieutenant Colonel then formed the line of march, placing the cavalry in advance of the cannon, two companies of flankers, and two open columns on each side, with a company of infantry in the rear. The whole march was conducted with the greatest order and silence; and when arrived at the point intended to be occupied, one of the advanced guard was fired on by the picket guard, and slightly wounded in the nose. This alarmed the whole Mexican troop, who were soon formed, and our own men were placed also in order of battle; the two columns deploying into line on the right and left, the cannon in the centre, and the cavalry occupying the extreme right. The enemy then left the position which had been occupied by them during the night, and formed in order of battle on a high mound. This movement took place about four o'clock on the morning of Friday during the prevalence of a very thick fog, which enabled the enemy to effect it unobserved. Our position had been taken in the vicinity of a skirt of timber, and our troops remained under cover of it until the exact position of the Mexicans was ascertained, which did not take place until daylight. Our troops then advanced in order of battle, under cover of the fog, into the open prairie, to within about three hundred and fifty yards of the enemy. Our scouts in advance having discharged their rifles came into the main body, having been followed nearly in by a small troop of Mexicans. We immediately opened our cannon upon them, and the whole body retired precipitately and took possession of their old position, about three to four hundred yards distant. Our troops then moved on in good order, and placed themselves in a cornfield, the late occupied ground of the enemy, where we found some few horses and some baggage that had been left. The fence was then leveled opposite our cannon. A parley was then sounded by the Mexican commander, and a Mr. Smithers, who had been taken prisoner by the Mexicans on his way from Bejar to Gonzales, arrived and informed Colonel Moore that the Mexican commander desired a conference, which was agreed to, but in the meantime we posted to get possession of Williams' plantation, houses, &c., which we occupied. At this time the fog had entirely dissipated, and presented both armies fairly in view of each other, about three hundred and fifty yards distant. The commanders of both armies then advanced to the centre, our's accompanied by Lieutenant Colonel Wallace, and the Mexican by one of his officers. The Mexican commander, Castonado, then demanded the cause of our troops attacking him, and the reply by Colonel Wallace was, that he had been ordered to demand our cannon, and had threatened, in case of a refusal, to take it by force; that this cannon had been presented to the citizens of Gonzales for the defence of the Constitution, by the constitutional authorities, under the confederation, and that none but constitutional authorities should be obeyed; that he (the Mexican commander) was acting under the orders of Santa Anna, who had broken down all the State and Federal constitutions, except that of Texas; and we would fight for our rights under that until the last gasp. Castonado then replied that he was himself a republican, and two thirds of the Mexican nation were such, and that he was still an officer of the federal government, although that government had undergone considerable changes; that the majority of the States having decided upon that change, we, the people of Texas, were bound to submit to it; that he did not want to fight the Anglo-Americans of Texas; that his orders from Ugartachea were simply to demand the cannon, and if refused, to take up a position in the vicinity of Gonzales until further orders. Colonel Moore then demanded him to surrender or join our side, and he would be received with open arms, and retain his rank, pay and emoluments, or to fight him instantly, that there were his troops, he might see them in full array. The commander said be was obliged to obey his orders, and the conference then broke up, and each officer retired to their respective armies. Colonel Wallace immediately ordered the cannon to fire on them, and our troops advanced in double quick time, and perfect order, and when within about three hundred yards, the cannon still playing away upon them, the Mexicans fled, and continued to fly until entirely out of sight, on the road to San Antonio. It is believed that one or two Mexicans were wounded or killed by the advanced guard at the first onset, and a very considerable number killed and wounded by the discharge of the cannon. Our troops have taken possession of the field, and being without horses, except fifty which were left on the bank of the river, collected whatever baggage, &c. was left behind by the Mexicans, and marched in good order and high spirits, without losing a man, to Gonzales, where they arrived about two o'clock P.M. yesterday. It appears that Castonado, when attacked on Friday morning, was waiting for a reinforcement, and further orders, and by the information received that night from San Antonio, Ugartachea has determined to put all his disposable force in motion, and is determined to take a sufficient number to effect his purpose. The reason assigned by Castonado for flying without giving battle, was that we had cannon, and he had none; but that when he should receive a reinforcement, Colonel Ugartachea would bring on cannon sufficient to burn and reduce the whole town to ashes. We therefore look for another attack soon, in considerable force, and if our troops arrive soon enough, they will enable us to repel the attack successfully, and even, if thought politic, to take up the line of march immediately for San Antonio. We have positive information that can be relied on, that there are only five hundred men in San Antonio, and two cannon mounted; about two hundred of them are convicts, with ball and chain, for having attempted to desert; and at least one hundred must remain to keep down the citizens, who it appears are strongly opposed to centralism. It is highly important that we should be strongly reinforced; we shall probably have, in two or three days, about from three hundred to three hundred and fifty men, and if we had about five hundred men, we could, without fear of defeat, take San Antonio, Labahia, and in fact drive the enemy entirely out of Texas. It is also ascertained that Cos has not arrived with troops at the Copano; now, then, is the "appointed time." Let our citizens come on, the spirit is up among us, and victory and Independence certain. San Antonio once taken and garrisoned by our own troops, no hostile Mexican would dare to put his foot in Texas. We hope and trust that our citizens are now of one mind as to the intentions of Santa Anna. "The other States have submitted," and the people of Texas must embrace centralism,---So says their commander. We object to the premises, and of course, to the conclusion. We are well supplied with beef and bread, and corn for our horses. We have a grist mill, which has been repaired by our men, and we are now in abundance. We shall grind plenty of meal in advance, for those that are coming. In fine, the Anglo-American spirit appears in every thing we do; quick, intelligent, and comprehensive; and while such men are fighting for their rights, they may possibly be overpowered by numbers, but, if whipped, they won't stay whipped. DAVID B. MACOMB


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