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beaten in every contest and skirmish, which has proved the superiority of the volunteers, and given confidence to every

Our undisciplined volunteers, but few of whom were ever in the field before, have acquired some experience, and much confidence in each other and in themselves, and are much better prepared for organization, and to meet a formidable attack than they were before.

“ The post at Goliad has been taken by the volunteers, and the enemy deprived of large supplies which were at that place, and of the facilities of procuring others by water, through the Port of Copano, which is also closed upon them by the occupation of Goliad. The enemy has been driven from the river Nueces by a detachment of the volunteers who garrison Goliad, and by the patriotic sons of Ireland from Power's colony. More than one hundred of the enemy, including many officers, have been killed ; a great many have been wounded, others have deserted, and a valuable piece of brass cannon, a six-pounder, has been taken, and another preserved (the one that was at Gonzalez) from falling into the hands of the enemy. Three hundred head of horses have been taken, and the resources for sustaining an army in Bexar are all destroyed or exhausted, so that an enemy in that place is at this time more than three hundred miles from any supplies of bread-stuff, and many other necessary articles. All this has been effected by the Volunteer Army in a little more than one month, and with the loss of only one man killed in battle, and one wounded, (who has nearly recovered,) before Bexar ; one wounded at Goliad, and one at Lipantitlan, on the Nueces. In short, the moral and political influence of the campaign is equally beneficial to Texas and to the sacred cause of the Constitution and of liberty, and honourable to the Volunteer Army. This army is composed, principally, of the most intelligent, respectable, and wealthy citizens of the country; and of volunteers from Louisiana and Alabama-men who have taken up arms from principle, from a sense of duty, and from the purest motives of patriotism and philanthropy. They have bravely sustained the rights of Texas and the cause of Mexican liberty, and patiently

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borne the exposure and fatigue of a winter's campaign during the most inclement, wet, and cold spell of weather known in this country for many years. The most of them are men of families, whose loss would have made a fearful void in our thin community. They might have been precipitated upon the fortifications of Bexar, which were defended by seven or eight hundred men and a number of cannon, and taken the place by storm, against superior numbers; and Texas might, and in all probability would, have been covered with mourning in the hour of victory. On consultation with the officers in councils of war, deemed most prudent not to hazard so much in the commencement of the contest, when a disaster would have been so materially injurious; and the system was adopted of wasting away the resources, and spirits, and numbers of the enemy by a siege, the ultimate success of which appeared to be certain, without any serious hazard on our part. That the fall of Bexar within a short time, and with a very little loss, will be the result, I have no doubt.

“I consider the Volunteer Army to be the main hope of Texas at this time, and until a regular army can be organised; and I recommend that it be sustained and provided for in the most effectual and efficient manner.

“ Before closing this communication, I deem it to be my duty to recommend to the consideration of the Provisional Government the situation of the inhabitants of Bexar and Goliad. The necessary and indispensable operations of the war have compelled the army to make use of a considerable amount of their property, particularly corn and beef cattle. So soon as circumstances will permit, I respectfully recommend, that some system be adopted to ascertain the amount of property thus used, and to provide for a just compensation. This recommendation also extends to horses or other property lost by the Volunteers.

“I will present to government another Report, on a special subject of importance.”

The Report alluded to at the close of the preceding document was transmitted by Mr. Austin to the Provisional Government on the 2nd of December. It related to the preparations then in progress by the Centralists for the invasion of Texas, and the consequent necessity of calling a new Convention.

“At the time of the former elections, the people did not and could not fully understand their true situation ; for it was not known then, to a certainty, what changes would take place in Mexico, what kind of government would be established, or what course would be pursued towards Texas. It was only known then that the Central party was in power, that all its measures tended to the destruction of the Federal System, and that preparations were making to invade Texas.

“But, at the present time, the people know that the government is changed-that Centralism is established by the decree of the 3rd of October last, and that they are threatened with annihilation. In short, the whole picture is now clearly before their view, and they see the dangers that are hanging over them. Can these dangers be averted by a provisional organization, which is based upon a declaration that is equivocal, and liable to different constructions? Does not the situation of the country require a more fixed and stable state of things? In short, is it not necessary that Texas should now say in plain, and positive, and unequivocal language, what is the position she occupies, and will occupy: and can such a declaration be made without a new and direct resort to the people, by calling, as speedily as possible, a Convention, with plenary powers, based upon the principle of equal representation in proportion to the population ?

“These are questions of the most vital importance. I respectfully submit them to the calm deliberation of the Provisional Government, in the full confidence that all the attention will be given to the subject which its importance merits.

“ Without expressing any individual opinion of my own, as to the time or day when the new elections ought to take place, which would, perhaps, be indecorous in such a com

munication as this, the object of which is to lay facts before the Provisional Government, I deem it to be my duty to say, that so far as I could judge of the opinions and wishes of the citizens who were in the Volunteer Army when I left them on the 25th ult., they were in favour of an immediate election of a Convention, with plenary power.”

The Consultation which had established the Provisional Government for Texas had adjourned until the 1st of March, to be convened sooner at the discretion of the Governor and Council, whom they authorised to advise a new election of delegates with ampler powers than they possessed. It was the opinion of many that the functions of the Consultation should have ceased with the occasion of its meeting, it being intended rather to act as a General Council, under a great emergency, than as a legislative body. The representation of the different municipalities, although the best, according to circumstances at the time of ordering the election, was unsatisfactory —the number of delegates not being proportioned to the amount of population in the several jurisdictions. The Consultation was chosen, too, at a period when the country was distracted by conflicting opinions --some disbelieving that the Federal System was destroyed, or had even been attacked—others, moved by intemperate zeal, clamouring for independence —the majority being decidedly in favour of declaring, in clear and unequivocal terms, for the Constitution of 1824. For these reasons, rendered weightier by the very critical situation of public affairs, did the Colonists desire the election of a new Convention, with plenary powers. With the overthrow of the Federal Constitution, the struggle had assumed a more solemn aspect. To the people of Texas it was no longer a question of forms of government, but of life or death. The first to forewarn and the last to inflame, Stephen Austin, true to his inherited trust, discerned the gathering of the thundercloud beyond the Rio Grande, and gave timely intimation to those over whose dwellings and fields it was destined to spread havoc and desolation.

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