SONS OF DEWITT COLONY TEXAS
© 1997-2007, Wallace L. McKeehan, All Rights Reserved

Green DeWitt
Green DeWitt

DeWitt Colony Papers
Documents and Correspondence
1824-1826
1827-1828
1829-1834
1835
1836

James Kerr
James Kerr

GREEN DEWITT TO AUSTIN.   Gonzales March 3rd 1829.  DR SIR The indians have been commiting some outrages on the people of this colony, by killing a few hogs and stealing one horse; and robed the camp of some men who were sawing some plank 3 miles above this place on the Guadalupe River---the hogs were stolen below---on the River, by the Tankawas---horse was stolen by the cados and taken from them again on the waters of the St Marcus by a party of 19 men which I sent after them. the Camp above mentioned was robed by the Tawaccanies---of about $100 worth of Tools---I sent a party of men out to find their course---after a march of 4 days on foot---they returned and reported that there were four in number---when they commited the theft, but were joined by about 25 more at the Cappoto---and bent their course for LaBahia, and crossed the San Antonio road 24 miles west of this place---I raised a party of 17 men besides myself and followed them within about 15 miles of LaBahia finding on their trail parts of saws which they had broken which convinced us they were the same indians there they had fallen in with a bout 40 more who had been encamped there during the last Storm, on that evening we struck their trail on their way from LaBahia with a Caviard of about 50 horses.---I put three spies ahead with orders to report should they see any Indians in about one hour, one of the spies discovered an Indian riding down from a prairie hill; when he broke in to full speed without reporting what he had seen---he was too far ahead to hear me when I ordered him to keep order---consequently he went on and those who had good horses went on---others whose horses were tired were a mile behind---when I arrived there were five men on the ground---and them scatered for the distance of two hundred yards I ordered them to form in a small bunch of muskeet trees in about 100 yards of the Indian horses---4 men besides myself formed there when Capt McCoy who was in the rear of me order a retreat to better ground, and reported that the Indians were a bout to cut off our men who were on tired horses and intirely behind us-this put the men in confusion, and the indians having made a bold charge upon us with a hot fire---in order to cover their own men who were then securing their horses---John and Andrew Tumlinson who had tied their horses in the edge of the same thicket where the Indians were almost surrounded one of their horses being slightly hit by a ball, broke a way and joined our horses the other horse being tied with two hard knots, was siezed by an Indian in a few Steps of John T, whose gun would not fire---the Indian untied the ho[r]se which got frightened at him; broke loose and Joined our company the Indians followed those men a few yards and stopt, two of whom were shot down by our men They then retreated in to their thicket, carrying off their dead---we were not able to charge in to their hold without great loss, as they were too superior in number---therefore we took our stand in the fork of a small creek in their view in order to draw them out---where we could be Sheltered by a few muskeet trees; where we remained for some time, but without any attack we then with drew Slowly for a few hundred yards when we discovered them in full chase on horse back---we then took our stand and drove them with the loss of two more of their number; it then being after dark we Struck our course for home; as I did not wish to hazard the lives of any the Citizen on such unequal grounds; for we were compelled to fight them at a place of [their] own selection; and---which was almost impenetreble. I have given you this detail of the affair precisely as it was tra[n]sacted, in order to show you we---were not the agressers, but were persuing our property and were fired upon first by themselves. Your Old friend Don G. Flores was robed of his horses between this and San Antonio and went home on foot as I am informed---I have received information from Bexar---that the Indians have stolen a great many horses from that place and that there are 200 Soldiers now in persuit of them. The fact is I believe the Caddos Wacos Comanches, and Tawaccanies are all concerned in the affair; and unless there is some precaution taken they will harrass the people on the frontiers of both of these Colonies; and the only means will be to keep troops of some discription on the alert from the Colorado to the Guadalupe, and thence to San Antonia which would be the means of giving information of their approach and put people on their guard so that they could protect them selves and property. I would wish you to take these things in to consideration; and should you approve of the measure---use your influence to affect it, either by a Company of Rangers, or the public troops which would be a great security to the people of San Antonia and LaBahia as well as to American Settlements. I have addressed a short note to the Alcalde at San Felipe on the subject of the expected election at this place which is very much wished for and needed as well for the Organization of the Militia as that of a civil officer in this place which I hope you will urge as soon as possible, as our Safety greatly depends on a well Organized Militia. Our place is strenghening fast, Mr. Lockhart has arrived in the Bay of Aransas---with 55 souls men women and Children bound for this place, he himself has been up and returned to the Bay with Wagons and Carts and horses for their transportation; and will arrive in a few days-- I would be happy to bear from you; often and get the news of the day, and have your opinion on the best means and measures in case the Indians should prove hostile.
G. DEWITT [Rubric]   Col Stephen F Austin


GREEN DEWITT TO AUSTIN  To the Commandant of Arms LaBahia   Dear Sir, I have just returned from following the Indians, and only a bout one hour before your troops arrived there – the cause of my following of them was this a bout fifteen days ago a small party of them fell in at a camp where doing of our citizens had been sawing plank; and robed it of four acres, two hay saws, one swipe saw, one crop cut saw, and a number of other articles to the amount of was two hundred dollars. The next day I sent out a small party on foot to find out which way they had gone; they followed them up the Guadalupe River to a place called the Capoto 20 miles above this place, and found them to be four in number but were found at the Capoto by about 15 more, and steered their course to war at LaBahia. They (like men I had sent) came in and reported the above to me; and I started after them, and the evening before last I fell in with them; about forty five or fifty miles south of this place, where they had joined a party of about 30 more, making in all about 55 or 60, they had about 50 horses secured in a thicket; and were prepared to fight us as they had seen us no doubt, and saw we were inferior in number as I had only 17 men beside myself. I was well convened that the horses were stolen, and my determination was to retake them, and restore them to the owner. So soon as I approached near the horses they communed a fire on me with guns and arrows, and made a charge. I retreated about 20 yards and returned the fire, my men killed 2 of them dead on the ground, and they retreated. We then selected our position on both banks of a small creek and waited for their attack which they soon made, but at long shot we fought them there till dark, and my men killed two more and then they retreated in to their former thicket; and I found we were too weak to take the horses; and I started for this place without getting any of the horses, but had the satisfaction of lessing of them four in this number.   I think Sir, that is a few troops were stationed at this place, and kept on the alert between this and San Antonio, it would greatly secure you in LaBahia, and if you will recommend the measure, I will do all in my power to have them furnished with provisions as cheap as at San Antonio, and it will be con remembered by the citizens of this place as we now are in entire frontier. I think these Indians were of the Tawaccons and Wacos. Excuse the haste of my letter as the troops wait.  I am Sir your most excellence.  Green DeWitt  [From the Center for American History, UT Austin, contributed courtesy of John Moehring]


GREEN DEWITT TO RAMON MUZQUIZ.  Gonzalez 8th of May 1829. [From Bexar Archives].  DEAR SIR I feel it my duty to inform you that there is and has lately been a very considerable quantity of contraband passed on in the Direction of Bejar and I beleave both Mexicans and Americans are ingaged in that traffic- There are two roads formed within a few months which cross the Guadaluop below this place one about a league, and the other about three leagues below this Town---I have no troops at my command-and therefore it is out of my power to detect it without it should come through this town which they always avoid---This contraband is not owned by people under my Jurisdiction; neither do they wish it to pass through this neighborbood, least they should be blamed for incouraging it; And you well remember the censure which has been thrown on me at the Labaca on account of contraband of which I never took any part---And now again passing so near me compells me to give you this information; and hope there may be mean[s] taken to prevent its coming through our vicinity. The threats of the Indians I fear will greatly retard the settling of the country; but should a Campaign be sent against them in a properly manner I think there can be an end put to them at once. Could a few troops be furnished us at this time, it would greatly add to the settling of the colony, and there by strengthen the country. I would be truly happy to recieve a line from you respecting the Indians and the probability of our geting some troops at this place etc. Five days a go another family arrived here from Missouri; consist of a man and his wife and seven children. We have now in the Colony thirty families.  GREEN DEWITT [Rubric]. Gonzalez 8th of may 1829.  His Excellency Ramon Muzquiz Chief of the Department of Texas


GREEN DEWITT TO RAMON MUZQUIZ.  Gonzales 8th May 1829.  [From Bexar Archives].  DEAR SIR, On last evening a man by the name of Jesa McCoy who is a resident of this colony who has been with the Comanches for several weeks passed arrived here, and gave me the following information. He says that a few days ago, the principal chief of the Tawaccanes, and the principal chief of the Wacoes, called upon the head Chief of the Comanches and solicited him to join them the Wacoes and Tawaccanes in a general war against the Mexican and American settlements---Saying at the same time that the Mexicans had taken from them a Caveard and the Americans had killed some of there men, and therefore they had declared war against both; He further states that the Comanches intirely refused to Join in the warfare; saying that they were now at a perfect peace with the people of this country and wished to remain so, I beleave my informant to be a man of truth and that what he has stated may be relied upon.  God and Liberty Gonzales 8th May 1829.  GREEN DEWITT [Rubric].  His Excellency Ramon Muzquiz Chief of the Department of Texas


GREEN DEWITT TO RAMON MUZQUIZGonzales May 8th 1829.  [From Bexar Archives].  I have Just received information by two men immediately from Bejar; that a large party of Indians, supposed to be 100, all mounted have crossed the road leading from this place to Bejar, at the 52 mile tree---about 24 miles from here---and have bent their course for la Bahia---My number here is too weak to follow them, as it is beleaved that there is also another party in the direction of the Colorado---and I am only able to keep out spies and to watch them, least they should make an attack on this place---I have ordered an express this morning to La Bahia, and hope he will be there in time to alarm the inhabitants that they may have the troops on the alert; and that they may therefore defeat them in their designs, which I have reason to beleave is to both kill and rob, this I send you, for your information: God and Liberty
GREEN DEWITT [Rubric].  His Excellency Ramon Muzquiz Chief of the Department of Texas.


JAMES KERR TO AUSTIN. [Austin Papers] Alto Moreales, August 5, 1830. Letter concerning surveying.

BYRD LOCKHART TO AUSTIN [Austin Papers] Lavaca, October 25, 1830. Letter concerning surveying.


ORDER FOR THE ARREST OF MARTIN PALMER 26 Apr 1831.  The Political Chief of Texas, to the Military Commander of Texas.  The Citizen Alealde of the town of San Felipe de Austn in a communication of the 16th inst. informs me that Martin Palmer, a citizen of the U. S. of North America, and one of the principal leaders of the outbreak in the Village of Nacogdoches toward the end of 1826, passed through that town on the 10th inst. with a passport from the Mexican Consul at New Orleans, on his way to the new town of Gonzales. As the communication of his Excellency the Commanding General Inspector of these States, which your Lordship has been pleased to transmit to me yesterday alludes to that man, and also to the entry by land of his son, Isom Palmer, to join him, and considering that he may attempt to disturb good order and public peace in this Department, I have thought it to be my duty to suggest to your Lordship the expediency of arresting both these men. I will on my part give orders to the Commissioner of the Supreme Government to the Town of Gonzales to call upon the assistance of the Empresario and Commissary of Police, in order to secure the persons of these individuals, and to deliver them to the scouting party, which I hope your Lordship will send there with your instructions on this subject.  God and Liberty. Bexar, April 26th, 1831.  Ramon Musquiz Chieftancy of the Department of Bexar.  (From the Nacogdoches Archives, Texas State Library)


AUSTIN TO SAMUEL M. WILLIAMS(Last Paragraph only).  Leona Vicario May 8, 1831.   A very absolute order has been issued, which finally settles the point between DeWitt and Deleon. All the families settled by the former, within the original limits of his colony, are to be included as of his contract and Navarro is ordered to give them titles accordingly. I hope Padre Muldoon is with you before this---remember me to him affectionately. I have great confidence in him---remember me to Burnett and Mrs. W and Elisa. hasta la vista en esa. S. F. A..  Suffer no one at all to select any land in the ten League reserve east of Brazos


RAMON MUSQUIZ TO ALCALDE OF SAN FELIPE.  Villa de Goliad 26 de Mayo de 1831. Gefatura del Departamento de Bejar.  En 15 del Ines de Abril popo. finalizo el termino de los seis anos quese consedieron al Empresario Gren DeWitt pa la introducion de familias estrangeras con que ofrecio colonizar: con tiempo solicito una prorroga pa recivir las que le faltan alo que so resolbio pr el Exmo. Sor. Gobor del Estado en Orden de 28 del sitado mes de Abril no haber lugar por prohivirlo la Ley del congreso gral de 6 de Abril del ano pasado de 830 y en esta virtud encargo aV muy particularte no permita la introducion de familias estrangeras que bengan con destino ala colonia del sitado, Empresario Gren DeWitt.  Dios y libertad.  RAMON MUSQUIZ [Rubric].  [Addressed:] Ciudno Alcalde Constitucional de la Villa de Austin


GONZALES AYUNTAMIENTO TO RAMON MUSQUIZ.  Aug 1832.  To His Excellency Ramon Musquez.   By the inhabitants of Green DeWitt’s colony in accordance to instruction.   SIRE---As we have never been officially informed, either by the present reigning Government, headed by the Vice President Bustamente, or by their opponents, headed by Gen. Santa Anna, of the nature of these differences which exist between them; and as Citizens of a polity amenable only to our Federal head, we are as yet perfectly satisfied with measures heretofore pursued by that head in relation to us; and, were it otherwise, we feel our insufficiency to step between them and their explanations of the Constitution and laws of our adopted country! Moreover, having never had laid before us in a tangible shape, the difficulties existing between the Colonists of Austin and the Commandants of the Forts Anahuac and Velasco: we are therefore, at this time, equally unable to decide as to the merits or demerits of either of the contending belligerents! Therefore, to you, Sir, as our organ of Governmental correspondence we would have it made fully known, and by them perfectly understood, that we, the colonists of Colonel Green DeWitt, are by our present unprotected situation, liable to be cut of by the savage foe consequently, unable to render any physical assistance, if so requested, to our brethren of Mexico, of Vera Cruz, or of Texas. Humbly trusting, that our precarious condition will be a sufficient excuse for our neutrality---not only to you, Sir, who know our state experimentally, and who have more than once expressed a fatherly solicitude for our preservation---but to that Government you represent, on whose paternal care and munificent generosity we implicitly rely!!


WILLIAMS TO DE LA GARZA.   16 Dec 1832.  We acknowledge the receipt of your Lordship's communication of the 22nd of November, 1832, in which you request this body to say how far they have taken part in the convention held in Austin's colony, for the purpose, it is said, of making representations to the government. They answer that in no manner have they been officially concerned in said convention, and that the colonists of this jurisdiction have taken officially no part in it. God and Liberty..  EZEKIEL WILLIAMS, Alcalde


PATRICK TO RAMON MUZQUIZ.   27 Apr 1833.  The Ayuntamiento of Gonzales heartily concurs in the action of the convention of April 1, at San Felipe, on the subject of separate State organization for Texas, being of the opinion that the people of Texas are in the legally prescribed condition for such a step, and they approve of the appointment of Stephen F. Austin, James B. Miller and Erasmo Seguin, on the part of friends of that measure, to represent them at the capital.


AYUNTAMIENTO OF GONZALES TO POLITICAL CHIEF.  Ayuntamto de la Villa de Gonzalez No. 10.  Hoy á las tres de la tarde consiguiente al haver recibido pr estraordinario las comunicaciones de V. S. con fha. 17 del presente mes, se combocó el Ayuntamto de esta Villa sobre el asunto de, las mismas y ha acordado bacer presente á V. S. q. ya so havia retratado de lo q. havia hecho en haver adoptado las representaciones del de Austin la dicha retractacion q. acompaño á V. S. ha sido hecha en el dia de su fha., pero pr mera inadvertencia no so havia remitido á V. S. con las ultimas correspondencias; lo, q. se servira V. S. dispensar; y este Ayunto dice ademas q. con obsequio de la candida invitacion de V. S. diputará dos personas acreditadas q. iran dentro de cinco ú ocho dias contados desde esta fha.á esa de Bejar con el fin de recibir respetuosamte informaciones generales sobre nuestra actual situacion con relacion á lo q. ha sido hecho hta. ahora en los referidos asuntos. Lo q. de orden del Ayunto digo á V. S. en contestacion á las referidas estraordinarias comunicaciones de V. S. Dios y Libertad Villa de Gonzalez á los 22 dias del mes de Juno de 1833.  J. B. Patrick Alcalde--Silas Fuqua, 1er Regidor---Juan Franco Buchetti Secreto interino S. Gefe del Departamto de Bejar Es Copia Bejar Juno 26 de 1833. J. MARIA BALMACEDA [Rubric]

Next page--1835


SONS OF DEWITT COLONY TEXAS
© 1997-2007, Wallace L. McKeehan, All Rights Reserved