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 Research ACW US War Dept. Official Records HTML Ser. I, Vol. 1, Ch. VII–Reports.

THE
WAR OF THE REBELLION:
A COMPILATION OF THE
OFFICIAL RECORDS
OF THE
UNION AND CONFEDERATE ARMIES.

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CHAPTER VII.
OPERATIONS IN TEXAS AND NEW MEXICO.
February 1-June 11, 1861.
(Secession)
–––
REPORTS, ETC.

SUMMARY OF THE PRINCIPAL EVENTS.

February 1, 1861.– Ordinance of secession adopted by Texas Convention.
16, 1861.– United States Arsenal and Barracks at San Antonio, Tex., seized.
18, 1861.– United States military posts in Department of Texas surrendered by General Twiggs, U. S. Army.
19, 1861.– General Twiggs superseded by Colonel Waite.
21, 1861.– United States property at Brazos Santiago, Tex., seized. Camp Cooper, Tex., abandoned.
26, 1861.– Camp Colorado, Tex., abandoned.
March 1, 1861.– General Twiggs dismissed from the service of the United States.
7, 1861.– Ringgold Barracks, Tex., abandoned. Camp Verde, Tex., abandoned.
12, 1861.– Fort McIntosh, Tex., abandoned.
15, 1861.– Camp Wood, Tex., abandoned.
17, 1861.– Camp Hudson, Tex., abandoned.
19, 1861.– Fort Clark, Tex., abandoned. Fort Inge, Tex., abandoned. Fort Lancaster, Tex., abandoned.
20, 1861.– Fort Brown, Tex., abandoned. Fort Duncan, Tex., abandoned.
22, 1861.– Col. William W. Loring, U. S. Army, assumes command of the Department of New Mexico.
23, 1861.– Fort Chadbourne, Tex., abandoned.
29, 1861.– Fort Mason, Tex., abandoned.
31, 1861.– Fort Bliss, Tex., abandoned.
April 5, 1861.– Fort Quitman, Tex., abandoned.
13, 1861.– Fort Davis, Tex., abandoned.
21, 1861.– Colonel Van Dorn, C. S. Army, assumes command in Texas.
23, 1861.– United States officers at San Antonio, Tex., seized as prisoners of war. Company of Eighth U. S. Infantry (Lee’s) captured near San Antonio.
25, 1861.– Capture of United States troops at Saluria, Tex.
-, 1861.– Fort Stockton, Tex., abandoned.
May 9, 1861.– Capture of United States troops at San Lucas Spring, Tex.
June 11, 1861.– Colonel Canby, U. S. Army, reports that Colonel Loring has abandoned command of the Department of New Mexico.
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REPORTS.

No. 1.–Bvt. Maj. Gen. A E. Twiggs. U. S. Army, of the seizure of public property at San Antonio and surrender of military posts, &c., in the Department of Texas.
No. 2.–Capt. R. H. K. Whiteley, U. S. Ordnance Department, of the seizure of U. S. Arsenal at San Antonio.
No. 3.–Surg. E. H. Abadie, U. S. Army, of events at San Antonio.
No. 4.–Lieut. Col. William Hoffman, Eighth U. S. Infantry, of the seizure of U. S. property at San Antonio.
No. 5.–Bvt. Maj. Larkin Smith, Eighth U. S. Infantry, of the seizure of U. S. property at San Antonio.
No. 6.–Capt. John H. King, Eighth U. S. Infantry, of the seizure of U. S. property at San Antonio.
No. 7.–Col. C. A. Waite, First U. S. Infantry, of events from February 19 to April 23, 1861.
No. 8.–Lieut. Col. Gouv. Morris, First U. S. Infantry, of the surrender of Fort Chadbourne.
No. 9.–Capt. E. Kirby Smith, Second U. S. Cavalry, of the evacuation of Camp Colorado, Tex.
No. 10.–Maj. C. C. Sibley, Third U. S. Infantry, of the evacuation of Fort McIntosh, Tex.
No. 11.–Lieut. Col. Electus Backus, Third U. S. Infantry, of the evacuation of Fort Brown, Tex.
No. 12.–Bvt. Maj. O. L. Shepherd, Third U. S. Infantry, of the evacuation of Fort Duncan, Tex.
No. 13.–Maj. C. C. Sibley, Third U. S. Infantry, of the surrender of his command at Saluria, Tex.
No. 14.–Corporal John C. Hesse, Company A, Eighth U. S. Infantry, of the rescue of the colors of his regiment at San Antonio, Tex.
No. 15.–Bvt. Lieut. Col. I. V. D. Reeve, Eighth U. S. Infantry, of the surrender of his command at San Lucas Spring, Tex.
No. 16.–Col. Earl Van Dorn, C. S. Army, of the surrender of the United States troops in Texas, and of his subsequent operations.
No. 17.–Capt. James Duff, Texas troops, of the capture of a company of the Eighth U. S. Infantry near San Antonio, Tex.

No. 1.

Report of Bvt. Maj. Gen. D. B. Twiggs, U. S. Army, of the seizure of U. S. Arsenal and Barracks at San Antonio, and surrender of military posts, &c., in the Department of Texas.*

* These papers were forwarded by Colonel Waite, under date of February 26, 1861.

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF TEXAS, San Antonio, February 19, 1861.

SIR: I have the honor to inclose herewith the proceedings of a military commission, constituted by virtue of Special Orders No. 20 of this year, from this department, to meet the commissioners on the part of the State of Texas. It will be observed that the meetings of the commissioners were abruptly terminated by the entrance into this city, on the morning of the 16th instant (before day), of an armed body of State {p.504} troops, numbering over 1,000 men, under Col. Ben McCulloch. On that morning I received a summons requiring me “to deliver up all military posts and public property held by or under your [my] control.” It is herewith, marked No. 9. I immediately (with Major Nichols) proceeded to my office, and found the troops and public property surrounded by the Texans. After a conversation with the commissioners, in presence of all my staff and the officers of the post, it was agreed that the United States troops should march out of the city, taking with them their arms, clothing, camp and garrison equipage, and all the necessaries for a march out of Texas.

On the 17th instant I received another summons from the commissioners (copy herewith, marked No. 10), to which I replied under the same date, a copy of which is herewith, marked No. 11. The commissioners replied to this (copy herewith, No. 12), stating the conditions of the march out of Texas (see letter referred to in the proceedings of the commission), and demanding the surrender of the guns of the light batteries, a demand to which I could not accede. The commissioners were instructed to demand that the route of the troops should be by way of the coast. I objected to this strongly until I found that, unless I yielded that point, there would be immediate collision, and deeming it probable that by yielding this I could save the guns of the light batteries, I reluctantly did so. (See my letter of the 18th instant, marked No. 13, addressed to that body.) The commissioners, in reply (copy herewith, No. 14), accepted my conditions. I have to remark that whilst the commissioners were in session the State troops were in rapid march upon the city of San Antonio. General Orders, No. 5, herewith (No. 15), will inform you of the disposition of the troops. A copy of the circular of the commissioners is also herewith, No. 16.*

I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

D. E. TWIGGS, Brevet Major-General, U. S. Army, Comdg. the Dept. of Texas.

Lieut. Col. L. THOMAS, Asst. Adjt. Gen., Headquarters of the Army, Washington, D. C.

* The inclosures have been renumbered for convenience of reference.

[Inclosure No. 1.]

Proceedings of a military commission constituted by virtue of the following order, viz:

SPECIAL ORDERS, No. 20.

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF TEXAS, San Antonio, February 9, 1861.

A military commission, to consist of Maj. David H. Vinton, quartermaster, Maj. Sackfield Maclin, paymaster, and Capt. Robert H. K. Whiteley, Ordnance Department, is hereby appointed to meet the commissioners on behalf of the Convention of the People of Texas-Messrs. Thos. J. Devine, Saml. A. Maverick, and P. N. Luckett-such times and places as may be agreed upon, to transact such business as relates to the disposition of the public property upon the demand of the State of Texas.

By order of Brevet Major-General Twiggs:

W. A. NICHOLS, Assistant Adjutant-General.

The commission met at 4 o’clock p.m., February 9, 1861.

Present, Maj. D. H. Vinton, quartermaster; Maj. S. Maclin, paymaster; Capt. R. H. K. Whiteley, Ordnance Department.

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The following communication was received from the commissioners of the State of Texas, viz:

SAN ANTONIO, February 9, 1861.

GENTLEMEN: The undersigned would suggest the hour of 12 as a suitable time for meeting, at such place as you may designate. Should that hour not suit your convenience, then such time and place this afternoon as may be decided upon by you.

Very respectfully,

THOS. J. DEVINE, S. A. MAVERICK, P. N. LUCKETT, Commissioners on behalf of the People of the State of Texas.

Maj. DAVID H. VINTON, Maj. SACKFIELD MACLIN, Capt. ROBERT H. K. WHITELEY, Military Commissioners appointed to meet Commissioners on behalf of the People of the State of Texas.

Considered, and answered as follows, viz:

SAN ANTONIO, TEX., February 9, 1861.

GENTLEMEN: We have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your communication of this date, in which you appoint 12 o’clock to-day, or at any hour this afternoon, for meeting you to consider the business connected with our several commissions. We regret that we have not been able to confirm to your appointment. The want of instructions from Major-General Twiggs, delayed by untoward circumstances, will prevent our meeting with you to-day, but we will, if it suits your convenience, have the honor to receive you at General Twiggs’ office on Monday, at 9 o’clock a.m., to enter upon the business you may then lay before us.

We are, gentlemen, most respectfully, your obedient servants,

D. H. VINTON, Major and Quartermaster. SACKFIELD MACLIN, Paymaster, U. S. Army. R. H. K. WHITELEY, Captain of Ordnance.

Messrs. T. J. DEVINE, S. A. MAVERICK, P. N. LUCKETT, Commissioners on behalf of the People of the State of Texas, San Antonio, Tex.

The subjoined instructions were received from department headquarters and read, viz:

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF TEXAS, San Antonio, February 9, 1861.

The following instructions are famished for the direction of the military commission appointed in Special Orders No. 20, of this date, from these headquarters, to meet the commissioners on behalf of the convention of the people of Texas:

1. An inventory of the munitions of war now in San Antonio, and, if requisite, inventories at the several posts, except the arms in the hands of the troops, will be laid before the commissioners of Texas for their information.

2. An inventory of quartermaster’s stores not required for the movement of the troops out of Texas will also be furnished.

3. Forage for the public animals, clothing, subsistence stores, medical and hospital supplies will not be taken into consideration.

4. The public funds in the hands of disbursing officers of the Department of Texas will not be surrendered, but will be retained for the payment of outstanding debts, as far as practicable, and for the incidental expenses of the movements of the troops.

5. The military commission will exercise such discretionary powers as may conduce to the interests of the troops, and as shall not contravene materially the fair demands of Texas.

6. The military commission will keep a daily record of their meetings, which upon a final adjournment will be compared with the minutes of the proceedings of the commissioners; and should they agree they will be signed and submitted to the commanding general of the department.

By order of Brevet Major-General Twiggs:

W. A. NICHOLS, Assistant Adjutant-General.

Adjourned to meet the commissioners of the people of the State of Texas in the office of the commanding general Department of Texas, on the 11th instant, at 9 o’clock a.m.

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The commission met pursuant to adjournment.

Present: Maj. D. H. Vinton, quartermaster; Maj. S. Maclin, paymaster; Capt. R. H. K. Whiteley, Ordnance Department, on the part of the United States; Thomas J. Devine, Samuel A. Maverick, P. N. Luckett, on the part of the people of the State of Texas.

Absent: J. H. Rogers.

The commissioners of the people of the State of Texas submitted copies of their credentials. These papers are hereto appended, marked Nos. 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7; also the letter of advice accompanying them, marked No. 2.

T. J. Devine stated for himself and colleagues that “we are authorized to demand, on behalf of the sovereign people of Texas, in convention assembled, the delivery of all the public property under the control of Major-General Twiggs, commanding the Department of Texas. The object of the commission now is, to ascertain whether or no said public property will be delivered up.”

After conversational deliberation, the commissioners of the people of Texas submitted a paper, of which the following is a copy, viz:

SAN ANTONIO, February 11, 1861.

GENTLEMEN: The undersigned, by virtue of the powers vested in us, do now demand the authority of the sovereign People of the State of Texas, of you, in the name and by in Convention assembled, as we have heretofore demanded of Bvt. Maj. Gen. David E. Twiggs, commanding in the Department of Texas, a delivery of all the arms of every description, military stores, including quartermaster’s, commissary, and medical stores and public moneys, and everything else under the control of the general in command belonging to the Federal Government. If an affirmative answer is not given to this demand, the following questions are submitted for your consideration, and answers to the same axe respectfully required:

Do you consent and agree to the following stipulations:

1. That everything under the control of the general commanding in the Department of Texas shall remain in statu quo until the 2d day of March next?

2. That no movement, change of position, or concentration of the troops shall take place?

3. That none of the arms, ordnance, military stores, or other property shall be disposed of before that time, ordinary consumption excepted?

4. That upon the 2d day of March the public property in Texas shall, without delay, be delivered up to the undersigned, or such other commissioners who may be authorized to act on behalf of the convention?

An answer is respectfully required.

We remain, gentlemen, very respectfully, your obedient servants,

T. J. DEVINE, S. A. MAVERICK, P. N. LUCKETT, Commissioners on behalf of the Convention.

Maj. DAVID H. VINTON, Maj. SACKFIELD MACLIN, Capt. ROBERT H. K. WHITELEY, Military Commissioners.

This paper is appended to these proceedings, and is marked G. [Omitted.]

Which having been read, the military commission requested time for its consideration, advising the commissioners of the people of Texas that a day and hour would be appointed to meet them in the future.

Adjourned to meet to-morrow, February 12, at 10 o’clock a.m.

The commission met pursuant to adjournment.

Present: Maj. D. H. Vinton, quartermaster; Maj. S. Maclin, paymaster; Capt. R. H. K. Whiteley, Ordnance Department.

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The letter from the commissioners of the people of Texas, dated the 11th instant, was deliberated on, and the following reply agreed upon, viz:

SAN ANTONIO, February 12, 1861.

GENTLEMEN: We, the military commission appointed by Major-General Twiggs, have had the honor to receive your communication of the 11th instant while in convention, demanding of its “in the name and by the authority of the sovereign People of Texas, in Convention assembled,” delivery of “all arms of every description, military stores, including quartermaster’s, commissary, and medical stores, and public moneys, and everything else under the control of the general in command belonging the Federal Government,” adding that, “if an affirmative answer is not given to this demand,” you submit the following questions for our consideration and reply, viz:

Do you consent and agree to the following stipulations:

“1. That everything under the control of the general commanding in the Department of Texas shall remain in statu quo until the 2d day of March next?

“2. That no movement, change of position, or concentration of the troops shall take place?

“3. That none of the arms, ordnance, military stores, or other property shall be disposed of before that time, ordinary consumption excepted?

“4. That upon the 2d day of March the public property in Texas shall, without delay, be delivered up to the undersigned, or such other commissioners who may be authorized to act on behalf of the convention?”

To the first of the foregoing interrogatories we have the honor to state that we are willing that everything shall remain in statu quo until the 2d day of March next, provided that the general commanding the department shall not receive orders from higher authority than himself to remove the troops from Texas, or find it necessary to resist the inroads of marauding parties of Indians-the enemies of Texas and of our common country-or at tack upon the troops or military posts in Texas by irresponsible parties coming from any quarter whatsoever.

With regard to your second proposition, it is hereby agreed that no movement or change of position of the troops shall take place unless the commanding general shall find it necessary to act under the contingencies mentioned in the next preceding answer.

To the third question we reply, that as it is not the intention of the commanding general to dispose of, or to place out of reach of the authorities of Texas, any of the property otherwise than to meet with it the common wants of the military service, so do we agree to your proposition.

And to your last inquiry we have to remark that a compliance with the demands of Texas, whether made through you or other commissioners appointed for the purpose, will be yielded under the following conditions, viz: That the moneys in the hands of disbursing officers being out of the control of the commanding general, and considered as peculiarly a matter of individual accountability to the Treasury of the United States by those officers, involving the responsibility of their bondsmen, and being necessary for the payment of the troops and debts already contracted in Texas, they will not be relinquished on the demand of Texas. That, the troops now in the Department of Texas shall retain their legitimate arms in possession, and march out of Texas with them, the requisite ammunition, clothing and camp and garrison equipage, quartermaster’s stores, subsistence, medical and hospital stores, and such means of transportation of every kind as may be necessary for an efficient and orderly movement of the troops from Texas, prepared for attack or defense against any aggression from any source. That the officers of the general staff at department headquarters, their families and movable property, shall be transported in their egress from Texas by the public means now at this depot, which means shall be retained for that purpose; and when such service shall have been performed, the said means shall be surrendered to the regularly-authorized persons to receive them. That all property delivered up to the authorities of Texas under the foregoing stipulations shall be receipted for by agents appointed by said authorities.

We are, gentlemen, very respectfully, your obedient servants,

D. H. VINTON, Major and Quartermaster. SACKFIELD MACLIN, Paymaster, U. S. Army. R. H. K. WHITELEY, Captain Of Ordnance, Military Commission.

Messrs. THOS. J. DEVINE, S. A. MAVERICK, P. N. LUCKETT, Commissioners on behalf of the Convention of the People of Texas.

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Also, to advise the commissioners of the people of Texas to meet the military commission at the office of the commanding general Department of Texas, to-morrow morning, February 13, 1861, at 11 o’clock a.m.

Adjourned to meet to-morrow morning at 10 o’clock.

The commissioners met pursuant to adjournment.

Present: Maj. D. H. Vinton, quartermaster; Maj. S. Maclin, paymaster; Capt. R. H. K. Whiteley, Ordnance Department, on the part of the United States; Thomas J. Devine, Samuel A. Maverick, P. N. Luckett, on the part of the people of the State of Texas.

The military commission laid before the commissioners on the part of the people of Texas their reply to the specific demands made by the latter in their communication of the 11th instant, after perusal of which they requested time for deliberation; whereupon both commissions adjourned to meet to-morrow morning, February 14, 1861, at 10 o’clock, that being the hour designated by the commissioners on the part of the people of Texas.

The commission met pursuant to adjournment.

Present: Maj. D. H. Vinton, quartermaster; Maj. S. Maclin, paymaster; Capt. R. H. K. Whiteley, Ordnance Department, on the part of the United States.

A communication was received from the commissioners of the people of Texas, stating they were unable to reply to our communication at 10 o’clock a.m., but would be ready at 4 o’clock this afternoon. This paper is appended to the proceedings, marked No. 8.

Adjourned to meet at 4 o’clock p.m., February 14, 1861.

The commissioners met pursuant to adjournment.

Present: Maj. D. H. Vinton, quartermaster; Maj. S. Maclin, paymaster; Capt. R. H. K. Whiteley, Ordnance Department, on the part of the United States; Thomas J. Devine, P. N. Luckett.

Absent: Samuel A. Maverick, sick, on the part of the people of the State of Texas.

The commissioners on the part of the people of Texas presented a paper, hereto subjoined purporting to be in answer to the communication, dated the 12th instant, of this commission, which being received, an adjournment was had, notifying the commissioners on the part of the people of Texas, at the same time, that notice would be given them of our next meeting so soon as we shall be prepared to give them a reply.

The military commission adjourned to meet to-morrow morning at 10 o’clock.

SAN ANTONIO, February 14, 1861.

GENTLEMEN: The undersigned, commissioners on behalf of the Convention of the People of the State of Texas, acting through the committee of public safety, have had the honor to receive your communication of the 12th instant, while in conference, and have the honor to reply to the answers contained in your note, as follows:

We are unable to accept as satisfactory your answer to that question in our note of the 11th instant, relating to the movements or position of the troops in Texas, as your reply, by a reasonable construction of its language, if not in express terms, asserts the right and intention of the general in command of the Department of Texas to make any movement by the troops that may be ordered by an authority higher than himself. The question is, consequently, left unanswered so far as it relates to the object which the undersigned had in view in presenting this question for consideration, which object was fully set forth in the conference of the 11th instant.

(NOTE.–In explanation of the words “which object was fully set forth in the conference of the 11th instant,” on second page, the undersigned refer to the conversation {p.509} had at that time with reference to the movements of the troops toward the Kansas and Now Mexico frontier, and the Indian country east of Red River.)

If the question be considered as answered by your reply to it, then the undersigned are constrained to consider it as a substantial denial of their demand on that subject.

The non-acceptance of the terms contained in your second answer rests upon the same reasons as those set forth in reply to your first answer.

The third answer is as the undersigned had reason to believe it would be, and is accepted.

The terms embraced in your reply to our last inquiry are acceptable, with the following conditions, viz: 1st. That all moneys in Texas, for the payment of the troops, or the liquidation of debts of every description incurred on behalf of the Federal Government shall be considered applicable to those purposes, and be turned over to the commissioners for their disposal accordingly, and guarantees will be given by the undersigned for the prompt payment of the same; and all funds in Texas held for the Federal Government, not included in the above exceptions, shall be given up and receipts by the undersigned accordingly given. That portion of the last answer is accepted which claims the retention by the troops in Texas of their arms and clothing, camp and garrison equipage, quartermaster’s stores, subsistence, medical and hospital stores, and such means of transportation of every kind as may be necessary for an efficient and orderly movement of the troops from Texas, prepared for attack or defense against aggression from any source; provided, the troops shall march to the coast, and in detachments of not more than 200, each detachment to be at least three (3) days’ march apart, and upon arriving at the point or points of embarkation, the teams or means of transportation, with the artillery (if any be taken by the troops), shall be delivered up to the agents authorized to receive and receipt for the same. The remaining portion of the last answer, relating to the means of transportation, &c., for the officers, their families, servants, and property, is accepted according to its terms.

We are, gentlemen, very respectfully, your obedient servants.

THOMAS J. DEVINE, P. N. LUCKETT, S. A. MAVERICK, Commissioners on behalf of Committee of Public Safety.

Maj. DAVID ]EL VINTON, Maj. SACKFIELD MACLIN, Capt. R. H. K. WHITELEY Military Commissioners, acting on behalf of Maj. Gen. David E. Twiggs.

The military commission met pursuant to adjournment.

Present: Maj. D. H. Vinton, quartermaster; Maj. S. Maclin, paymaster; Capt. R. H. K. Whiteley, Ordnance Department, on the part of the United States.

The reply of the commissioners of the people of Texas to our communication of the 12th instant was deliberated on, and the following answer returned, viz:

SAN ANTONIO, February 15, 1861.

GENTLEMEN: In acknowledgment of your communication of the 14th instant, wherein you disagree as to certain points in our letter of the 12th instant, the undersigned have the honor to say that the conditions you prescribe for the movement of the Federal troops from Texas will necessarily check, for a short time at least, further conferences with you on that subject, inasmuch as it is one over which we have no control. The commander of the department, whoever he may be, whether acting under his own judgment or by the advice or instructions of his superiors, has exclusive authority in such cases; and to him must we refer the present one, with a report of all our proceedings for his approval or disapproval; and in view of an immediate change of commanders of the Department of Texas, General Twiggs having been superseded by Colonel Waite, all the proceedings of the military commission appointed by the former officer must be submitted for this consideration and sanction of the latter, whose duty it will be to execute whatever measures that may be recommended and adopted under the action of that committee.

The undersigned would respectfully remark that they cannot but regret that the reasons given in objection to the relinquishment of the funds in the hands of Federal disbursing officers have not met, with acquiescence on the part of your commission. They can only hope that, upon reconsideration, your views may undergo a change. Under any circumstances, we trust that the commissioners appointed by the Texas committee of safety will exercise their influence to avert violence, either on the part of any irregular forces or organized military parties of whatsoever size. Believing that everything may be done in a manner honorable to the present contending parties and for {p.510} the quiet and safety of the community in which we reside, we have full faith that your commission will so act as to bring about results which may prevent a collision between the troops of Texas and those of the Federal Government.

We are, gentlemen, very respectfully, your obedient servants,

D. H. VINTON, Quartermaster, U. S. Army, S. MACLIN, Paymaster, U. S. Army, R. H. K. WHITELEY, Captain of Ordnance, Commissioners on the part of the United States.

Messrs. THOMAS J. DEVINE, SAMUEL A. MAVERICK, P. N. LUCKETT, Commissioners on the part of the Convention of the People of Texas.

A note was ordered and sent, inviting the commissioners on the part of the people of Texas to meet the military commission at General Twiggs, office to-morrow morning, February 16, 1861, at 11 o’clock. Adjourned.

The military commission met pursuant to adjournment, and finding that during the past night the town of San Antonio had been invaded by armed bodies of Texans, who had seized the property belonging to the United States, it was deemed that no further proceedings on the part of the commission would be of any avail, and they therefore respectfully submit their proceedings at this point for the consideration of the major-general commanding the department, and adjourned sine die.

D. H. VINTON, Major and Quartermaster. SACKFIELD MACLIN, Paymaster, U. S. Army. R. H. K. WHITELEY, Captain of Ordnance, Military Commission.

[Indorsement.]

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF TEXAS, San Antonio, February 16, 1861.

Approved.

D. E. TWIGGS, Brevet Major-General, U. S. Army.

[Inclosure No. 2.]

SAN ANTONIO, February 9, 1861.

GENTLEMEN: I inclose for your perusal copies taken by me carefully of certified copies shown to General Twiggs two days ago, viz:

Joint resolution* of the legislature concerning the Convention.

Resolutions of Convention on committee of public safety.

Resolution of Convention on committee of public safety.

Resolution of committee of public safety for four commissioners.

Commission and powers of the four commissioners.

Respectfully, your servant,

S. A. MAVERICK, One of the Commissioners.

Major VINTON, Major MACLIN, Captain WHITELEY Board, &c.

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[Inclosure No. 3.]

JOINT RESOLUTIONS concerning the Convention of the People of Texas, called in pursuance of the bill of rights.

Whereas the People of Texas, being much concerned for the preservation of the rights, liberties, and powers of the State and its inhabitants, endangered by the political action of a majority of the States, and the people of the same, have, in the exercise of powers reserved to themselves in the bill of rights, called a Convention, composed of two members for each representative in the legislature from the various districts established by the apportionment law of 1860, to assemble on the 28th day of January, 1861, at the city of Austin, which Convention, by the terms of the call made by numerous assemblages of citizens in various parts of the State, was, when elected and assembled, to have powers to consider the condition of public affairs, to determine what shall be the future relation of this State to the Union, and such other matters as are necessarily and properly incident thereto, and in case it should be determined by said Convention that it is necessary for the preservation of the rights and liberties aforesaid that the sovereignty of Texas should resume the powers delegated to the Federal Government in the Constitution of the United States and by the articles of annexation, then the ordinance of said Convention resuming said delegated power’s and repealing the ratification by the people of Texas of said articles of annexation should be submitted to a vote of the qualified electors of this State for their ratification or rejection: Therefore,

1. Be it resolved by the legislature of the State of Texas, That the government of the State of Texas hereby gives its assent to and approves of the Convention aforesaid.

2. That this resolution take effect and be in force from and after its passage.

With a protest against the assumption of any powers on the part of said Convention beyond the reference of the question of a longer connection of Texas with the Union to the people.

Approved, 4th February, 1861.

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Austin, Tex., February 5, 1861.

I, the undersigned, secretary of state of the State of Texas, do hereby certify that the above and foregoing is a correct copy of the original joint resolution on file in the department of state.

Given under my hand and the seal of the department of state the day and year first above written.

[With the seal.]

W. CAVE, Secretary of State.

[Inclosure No. 4.]

THE STATE OF TEXAS, County of Travis:

By virtue of the authority vested in the committee of public safety, as will appear by the accompanying resolutions, adopted by the Convention of the People of the State of Texas, by their delegates in Convention assembled, at the city of Austin, on the 28th day of January, 1861, you, Thomas J. Devine, Samuel A. Maverick, P. N. Luckett, and J. H. Rogers, are hereby appointed commissioners to visit Major-General Twiggs, commanding the Eighth Division, stationed at San Antonio, and confer with him, and in the name and by the authority of the people of Texas, in Convention assembled, to demand, receive, and receipt {p.512} for all military, medical, commissary, and ordnance stores, arms, munitions of war, and public moneys, &c., under his control, within the limits of the State of Texas, exercising all due discretion for the securing and safe-keeping of the same, to be held by you without loss or injury, subject to the orders of the committee of public safety, and in obedience to the provisions of, such rules as the Convention may prescribe.

Witness my hand and the order of the committee of safety. Done at the city of Austin, this 5th day of February, 1861.

JOHN C. ROBERTSON, Chairman of Committee of Public Safety.

Attest: THOS. S. LUBBOCK. JOHN A. GREEN.

[Inclosure No. 5.]

Resolved, By the People of the State of Texas, by delegates in Convention assembled, That should the standing committee of public safety deem it essential to the public safety to appoint commissioners, officers, or persons, in reference to taking possession of any of the Federal property within the limits of this State, they shall have power to appoint such, and assign to them their duties, and give them the instructions under which they shall act; but this power shall only extend to such cases in which the committee may deem prompt action and secrecy absolutely necessary.

That a copy of this resolution, signed by the president of this Convention, and the appointment and instructions signed by the Hon. J. C. Robertson, chairman of said committee, shall be full authority to the person or persons acting under the same, and a full justification for all acts done in pursuance thereof.

Done by the People of Texas, in Convention assembled, by their delegates, at the city of Austin, this 2d February, A. D. 1861.

O. M. ROBERTS, President of the Convention.

Attest: JOHN A. GREEN.

[Inclosure No. 6.]

Resolved, That Samuel A. Maverick, Thomas J. Devine, Philip N. Luckett, and James H. Rogers be appointed commissioners to confer with General D. E. Twiggs with regard to the public arms, stores, munitions of war, &c., under his control, and belonging to the United States, with power to demand in the name of the People of the State of Texas, and that said commissioners be clothed with full power to carry into effect the powers herein delegated, and retain possession of said arms, munitions, stores, &c., subject to the order of the Convention of the People of the State of Texas, and report their acts and doings in the premises to the committee of public safety.

I certify the foregoing to be a true copy of the resolution adopted by the committee of public safety on the 4th day of February, 1861.

Witness my hand, this 4th day of February, A. D. 1861.

JOHN C. ROBERTSON, Chairman of Committee of Public Safety.

Attest: THOS. S. LUBBOCK. JOHN A. GREEN.

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[Inclosure No. 7.]

Resolved, That, the standing committee on public safety shall continue in session during the recess of this Convention; that they hold their meetings at such times and places as in their judgment the public interest requires; that said committee may grant leave of absence to its members, provided such leave of absence shall not reduce the members left to a less number than nine.

Resolved, 2d, That said committee shall keep a full and accurate journal of their acts, in a well-bound book, and report the same to the Convention on the reassembling of the same on the 2d day of March next.

Done by the People of Texas, in Convention assembled, by their delegates, at the city of Austin, this 4th day of February, 1861.

O. M. ROBERTS, President of the Convention.

Attest: JOHN A. GREEN.

[Inclosure No. 8.]

SAN ANTONIO, February 14, 1861.

GENTLEMEN: I regret to state that we are unable to reply to your communication of the 12th at the hour we mentioned, but we will be ready at 4 o’clock this afternoon.

With great respect, your obedient servant,

P. N. LUCKETT, One of the Commissioners.

Maj. D. H. VINTON, Maj. SACKFIELD MACLIN, Capt. R. H. K. WHITELEY, Military Commission.

[Inclosure No. 9.]

SAN ANTONIO, February 16, 1861-6 o’clock a.m.

SIR: You are hereby required, in the Dame and by the authority of the People of the State of Texas, in Convention assembled, to deliver up all military posts and public property held by or under your control.

Respectfully, yours, &c.,

THOS. J. DEVINE, S. A. MAVERICK, P. N. LUCKETT, Commissioners on behalf of the Committee of Public Safety.

To the OFFICER IN COMMAND of the Department of Texas.

[Inclosure No. 10.]

SAN ANTONIO, February 17, 1861.

SIR: In our communication of the 16th instant we required a delivery up by you of the positions held and public property held by or under your control as commander in this department. As no reply, save your verbal declaration (which declaration was that you “gave up everything") has been given to our note, and as the undersigned are most anxious to avoid even the possibility of a collision between the Federal troops and the force acting on behalf of the State of Texas-a collision which all reflecting persons desire to avoid, and the consequences {p.514} of which no man can predict-we again demand the surrender up to the undersigned of all the posts and public property held by you, or under your control, in this department.

Please answer immediately.

We have the honor to remain, your obedient servants,

THOS. J. DEVINE, S. A. MAVERICK, P. N. LUCKETT, Commissioners on behalf of the Committee of Public Safety.

Bvt. Maj. Gen. DAVID E. TWIGGS, Commanding Department of Texas.

[Inclosure No. 11.]

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF TEXAS, San Antonio, February 17, 1861.

GENTLEMEN: In reply to your communication of this date, I have to say that you are already aware of my views in regard to the delivery of the public property of this department, and I now repeat that I will direct the positions held by the Federal troops to be turned over to the authorized agents of the State of Texas, provided the troops retain their arms and clothing, camp and garrison equipage, quartermaster’s stores, subsistence, medical, hospital stores, and such means of transportation of every kind as may be necessary for an efficient and orderly movement of the troops from Texas, prepared for attack or defense against aggression from any source.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

D. E. TWIGGS, Brevet Major-General U. S. Army, Comdg. Dept.

Messrs. THOS. J. DEVINE, S. A. MAVERICK, P. N. LUCKETT, Commissioners on behalf of the Convention of the People of Texas.

[Inclosure No. 12.]

SAN ANTONIO, February 17, 1861.

SIR: In reply to your communication of this date, we have to say that we accept the terms therein set forth, with the conditions stated in our note of the 14th instant, viz, that the troops shall leave Texas by the way of the coast, and, upon arriving at the point or points of embarkation, will deliver up to the authorized agents, appointed for that purpose, all means of transportation of every kind used by them, as likewise the artillery, if any be taken.

Respectfully, &c.,

THOS. J. DEVINE, S. A. MAVERICK, P. N. LUCKETT, Commissioners on behalf of the Committee of Public Safety.

Bvt. Maj. Gen. DAVID E. TWIGGS, U. S. Army, Commanding Department of Texas.

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[Inclosure No. 13.]

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF TEXAS, San Antonio, February 18, 1861.

GENTLEMEN: Your communication of the 17th instant, which you say is a reply to mine written yesterday, the 17th instant, was received last night. I consent to the conditions that the troops shall leave Texas, by the way of the coast, with the provision expressed in my communication of yesterday.

As to the condition of surrendering the guns of the light batteries, that, you must see, would be an act which would cast a lasting disgrace upon the arms of the United States, and under no circumstances can I believe that the State of Texas would demand such a sacrifice at my hands, and more particularly so; after I have yielded so much to meet what I deemed to be due to the State, and to avoid any unnecessary collision between the Federal and State troops. In this view of the case, I am sure you will not insist in a demand which, you must see, I am not at liberty to grant.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

D. E. TWIGGS, Brevet Major-General, U. S. Army, Comdg. Dept.

Messrs. THOS. J. DEVINE, S. A. MAVERICK, P. N. LUCKETT, Commissioners on behalf of the Convention of the People of Texas.

[Inclosure No. 14.]

SAN ANTONIO, February 18, 1861.

SIR: In reply to your communication of this date, we have to say that we accept the terms therein stated, viz, that the two batteries of light artillery, with the arms for the infantry and cavalry, shall be retained by the troops under your command; all other public property, as set forth in our previous communication, to be delivered up to agents authorized to receive it.

We remain, respectfully, your obedient servants,

THOS. J. DEVINE, P. N. LUCKETT, S. A. MAVERICK, Commissioners on behalf of Committee of Public Safety.

Bvt. Maj. Gen. DAVID E. TWIGGS, U. S. Army, Commanding Department of Texas.

[Inclosure No. 15.]

GENERAL ORDERS, No. 5.

HDQRS. DEPARTMENT OF TEXAS, San Antonio, February 18, 1861.

The State of Texas having demanded, through its commissioners, the delivery of the military posts and public property within the limits of this command, and the commanding general desiring to avoid even the possibility of a collision between the Federal and State troops, the posts will be evacuated by their garrisons, and these will take up, as soon as the necessary preparations can be made, the line of march out of Texas by way of the coast, marching out with their arms (the light batteries with their guns), clothing, camp and garrison equipage, quartermaster’s stores, subsistence, medical, hospital stores, and such means {p.516} of transportation of every kind as may be necessary for an efficient and orderly movement of the troops, prepared for attack or defense against aggressions from any source.

The troops will carry with them provisions as far as the coast.

By order of Brevet Major-General Twiggs:

W. A. NICHOLS, Assistant Adjutant-General.

[Inclosure No. 16.]

CIRCULAR.]

SAN ANTONIO, February 18, 1861.

The undersigned, commissioners on the part of the State of Texas, fully empowered to exercise the authority undertaken by them, have formally and solemnly agreed with Bvt. Maj. Gen. David E. Twiggs, U. S. Army, commanding the Department of Texas, that the troops of the United States shall leave the soil of the State by the way of the coast; that they shall take with them the arms of the respective corps, including the battery of light artillery at Fort Duncan and the battery of the same character at Fort Brown, and shall be allowed the necessary means for regular and comfortable movement, provisions, tents, &c., and transportation.

It is the desire of the commission that there shall be no infraction of this agreement on the part of the people of the State. It is their wish, on the contrary, that every facility shall be afforded the troops. They are our friends. They have heretofore afforded to our people all the protection in their power, and we owe them every consideration.

The public property at the various posts, other than that above recited for the use of the troops, will be turned over to agents to be appointed by the commission, who will give due and proper receipts for the whole to the officers of the Army whom they relieve from the custody of the public property.

THOS. J. DEVINE, P. N. LUCKETT, S. A. MAVERICK, Commissioners on behalf of Committee of Public Safety.

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No. 2.

Report of Capt. R. H. K. Whiteley, U. S. Ordnance Department, of the seizure of the U. S. Arsenal at San Antonio, Tex.

TEXAS ARSENAL, San Antonio, February 16, 1861.

COLONEL: I have the honor to inform you that the troops of Texas entered San Antonio early this morning, and have taken possession of the arsenal and all public storehouses in the city. No property has been disturbed to this hour (1 o’clock p.m.), and I think matters will remain in statu quo until the 2d proximo, when an agent will be sent by the convention of the people of Texas to receive and receipt for public property.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

R. H. K. WHITELEY, Captain of Ordnance.

Col. H. K. CRAIG, Chief of Ordnance Department, Washington City, D. C.

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No. 3.

Report of Surg. E. H. Abadie, U. S. Army, of events at San Antonio, Tex.

MEDICAL DIRECTOR’S OFFICE, San Antonio, Tex., February 17, 1861.

SIR: I have the honor to report the political changes which will or have already closed our military functions in this department.

In the night, or a little before day, of the 10th, some 1,200 or 1,500 Texan troops, commanded by Maj. Ben. McCulloch, acting under the orders of commissioners appointed by the Convention which had passed the ordinance for the secession of Texas, quietly took possession of the arsenal and arms, quartermaster and commissary property at this depot, and demanded its unconditional surrender by General Twiggs. After a stormy conference between the department commander and the commissioners, who had been here with their demands since the 8th instant, the general has acceded to their demands, and the two companies of United States troops marched out of the town in the afternoon and went into camp until arrangements could be made to transport them to the coast.

No orders have as yet issued from the headquarters, nor is it known what disposition will be made of the remaining troops. The medical and hospital property is yet under my charge, nor has the hospital been disturbed. So soon as orders issue they will be duly communicated.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your most obedient servant,

E. H. ABADIE, Surgeon, U. S. Army, and Medical Director.

Brig. Gen. THOS. LAWSON, Surgeon-General U. S. Army, Washington City, D. C.

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No. 4.

Report of Lieut. Col. Wm. Hoffman, Eighth U. S. Infantry, of the seizure of U. S. property at San Antonio, Tex.

HEADQUARTERS SAN ANTONIO BARRACKS, Texas, March 1, 1861.

SIR: Pursuant to the orders of the commander of the department, I have the honor to submit the following report of the taking possession of the public property in San Antonio on the morning of the 16th ultimo:

That the matter may be clearly understood, I will premise by stating that when I assumed command of this post (on the 11th) negotiations were in progress to fix the terms on which the public property would be turned over to the State authorities. Soon after the receipt of the order relieving General Twiggs, and placing Colonel Waite in command of the department, it was reported that a body of State troops were being collected to come into the town to take possession of the property by force. To meet such a state of things I inquired of the general commanding under what circumstances I should use ball cartridges. He replied, under no circumstances, and added that he would not be the first to shed blood, or to that effect. I gave orders accordingly, and directed that the arms should not be loaded; but on reflection I deemed {p.518} it best to have them loaded, and told the general I would understand his order to give me this latitude, the men being ordered not to fire except to resist an attempt to disarm them.

On the evening of the 15th, having what seemed to be reliable information that the troops of Texas, acting under the authority of the State commissioners, would during the night enter the town and take possession of the storehouses, I ordered that the guard at the quartermaster’s store should make no resistance to any organized force, but should report its presence to the quartermaster. I directed further that on the approach of troops, or the occurrence of any unusual excitement in the town, it should be reported to me, and that company officers and the companies should be warned to be ready for any emergency. I would have preferred to have left the depot in charge of the quartermasters watchman, as with these orders the guard would only be acting in that capacity; but the general thought it advisable to have the guard as security against individual depredations.

Soon after 4 o’clock of the morning of the 16th I was notified that there was some excitement in town, and on repairing to my office, adjoining the quarters of Company I, First Infantry, I heard the corporal of the guard report to the officer of the day that in consequence of a demand by a large force that he should surrender he had withdrawn his guard from the depot.

In a very short time the building used as an arsenal was taken possession of, and companies of armed men occupied the streets near where our companies were quartered, and in front of the commissary building. A thousand to twelve hundred men are reliably said to have been in the town at the time. Things remained in this state, without any noise or disturbance of any kind, till some time after daylight, when, supposing the Texas commissioners were conferring with the general, to whom I had reported these occurrences, I returned to my quarters for a short time. In a few minutes a note addressed to the commander of the Department of Texas, from the Texan commissioners, was brought to me through a misunderstanding, which I delivered to Major Nichols, assistant adjutant-general, and I notified the commissioners that the general would be in his office after breakfast.

I had ordered that our men should not leave their quarters, but should be prepared to resist any attempt to take their arms; and between 9 and 10 o’clock, wishing to relieve them from this constraint, and to avoid any chance of accidental collision, I proposed to move the command into camp at a convenient distance from town. The commissioners objected to this arrangement, unless I would assure them that I would not move from the camp except to leave Texas by the coast. I told them I could give no such assurance without the consent of the general commanding, as I might be otherwise ordered. After some discussion of the feasibility of the plan of the troops going out by Indianola and up the Mississippi, with the approbation of General. Twiggs, who was present, I gave the assurance asked for, and immediately issued the necessary orders for the companies to go into camp. The headquarters of the post and Eighth Infantry and band of the Eighth remain in town.

As required by the colonel commanding the department the reports of Major Smith and Captain King are submitted herewith. [Nos. 5 and 6.]

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

W. HOFFMAN, Lieutenant-Colonel Eighth Infantry, Commanding.

ASSISTANT ADJUTANT-GENERAL, Headquarters Department of Texas, San. Antonio, Tex.

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No. 5.

Report of Bvt. Maj. Larkin Smith, Eighth U. S. Infantry, of the seizure of U. S. property at San Antonio, Tex.

CAMP SAN PEDRO, TEX., February 23, 1861.

COLONEL: In compliance with instructions that I should report such information as I possess on the subject of the events which transpired in San Antonio on the 16th instant, I have the honor to state as follows:

For several days previous to the 16th there were many rumors of the formation of forces to take possession of the public property at the depots. They were not generally credited until the 14th, when more reliable information was received that a strong force of citizens was collecting from the counties to the east and northeast. This was confirmed on the 15th, and it was generally understood that several hundred men would enter the city the next morning. The orders given to the guard were, that they should not resist a large organized force, but to preserve the public property from depredation by individuals or any mob, as usual. The troops, consisting of Company I of the First, and A of the Eighth Infantry, were to form at quarters and await further orders in case of the approach of any considerable force.

At fifteen minutes of 4 o’clock on the morning of the 16th, I received a message from the officer of the day that a large armed force was entering the city. Repairing to my company quarters, a low, one-story building, marked B on the accompanying plot,* situated in the yard used as a depot for ordnance, the men were formed, and ordered to remain at their quarters. I then proceeded to the Army offices in the building marked A, where officers were awaiting developments rather than orders, it being understood that no resistance would be made. A few minutes after, some eighty armed citizens took position across the street at the point C, and another party in the lot at H. Returning towards my company quarters, I found a strong party on the street leading to the plaza, some of them ascending the stairs to the second story of the ordnance building, D. Approaching them, I was accosted by two persons, who seemed surprised at being observed. One of them was announced as Colonel McCulloch. I informed him that the house on the corner was occupied by, soldiers. He said he could not help that. I asked, “Perhaps you will tell me what you intend to do,” to which he replied that his force was in commanding positions, and would take possession of all the public property, after which, if anything was wanted, it would have to be asked of the commissioners, and that the persons of my men were secure, and would not be molested. During this conversation, he gave me to understand that the force on the east side of the river served to prevent my company and that of the First Infantry at F from uniting. In the mean time his people were mounting to the roof of the ordnance building, of the house adjoining on the south, and of the Masonic Hall at G. About one hour after this conversation, having beard that it was intended to demand the arms in the hands of our men, I sought Colonel McCulloch and asked him if I had understood him rightly that the persons of the soldiers would not be molested. He answered, “Yes.” I stated that they would consider their persons very much molested if their arms were interfered with. He replied, “That is a question for the commissioners {p.520} to determine.” I added that such an attempt would be followed by serious consequences, which would be painful to all concerned, and suggested that he would confer with his commissioners on that subject if he bad not been instructed upon it. He signified his intention to obey their instructions, whatever they might be, at any cost, and added: “Some of you had better arrange this matter quickly, or my men will do it for you,” thus intimating that they might not be controlled.

Near 7 o’clock Colonel McCulloch came to me with a letter, addressed to the commander of the Department of Texas. I informed him that I was not the officer, and referred him to you as commanding the post. These matters were all reported to you.

At 10 o’clock I particularly reported the situation of my company, in contracted quarters, and so completely surrounded and commanded by the citizens’ force that no man could move without having several hundred guns pointed at him, at the option of that force, and that they bad been in this situation nearly six hours. You notified the department commander of this. It seemed to be of consequence, in yielding to the Texas commissioners, that these two companies should leave the State “by the way of the coast.” On this point you are better informed than I am; my knowledge of it is incomplete. I understood, however, that our troops would not be permitted to leave their quarters if this demand was not acceded to, and that it was the one measure to restore quiet.

About 11 o’clock the order was given to prepare to go into camp, and at 3 p.m. the two companies marched out of the city, and formed their camp at this place.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

LARKIN SMITH, Major by Brevet, Captain, Eighth Infantry.

Lieut. Col. WILLIAM HOFFMAN, Eighth Infantry, Commanding San Antonio Barracks.

* Omitted.

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No. 6.

Report of Capt. John H. King, Eighth U. S. Infantry, of the seizure of U. S. property at San Antonio, Tex.

CAMP SAN PEDRO, TEX., March 1, 1861.

SIR: By your order I report to you that I was on duty as officer of the day at San Antonio Barracks on the 15th ultimo. At night the guard at the Alamo had orders not to load their muskets, and not to resist in case an armed force attempted to seize the public property. Some time before daybreak the corporal at the Alamo reported to me that the citizen troops we had been expecting for a day or two had arrived in the city. Our soldiers were notified of it, and the sentinels withdrawn from their posts.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JNO. H. KING, Captain, First Infantry.

Lieut. Col. W. HOFFMAN, Eighth Infantry, Commanding San Antonio Barracks, Tex.

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No. 7.

Reports of Col. C. A. Waite, First U. S. Infantry, of events from February 19 to April 23, 1861.

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF TEXAS, San Antonio, February 26, 1861.

COLONEL: I have the honor to report that in compliance with Special Orders No. 22, Adjutant-General’s Office, Washington, January 28, 1861, I assumed command of the Department of Texas on the 19th instant.

I send herewith, by Bvt. Lieut. Col. D. T. Chandler, U. S. Army, a communication, dated the 19th instant, of Brevet Major-General Twiggs, giving a full account of the forcible entry into and occupation of this city by the troops of this State, on the 16th instant, together with the proceedings of the military commission therein referred to, and the papers connected with it.*

On my arrival in San Antonio, I found the city filled with armed men. The public property, including the funds in the hands of Captain Reynolds, assistant quartermaster-some ten thousand dollars-had been seized by an armed force under Col. Ben. McCulloch, who was acting under the authority of the commissioners on behalf of the. Convention of the People of Texas, and that General Twiggs had already entered into an agreement with said commissioners, in which he stipulated that all the posts should be evacuated, the public property surrendered to the State authorities, and that the troops should leave Texas by way of the coast. An order for the evacuation of the posts was immediately issued by General Twiggs. The moment the secession movement commenced, the people of Texas became, much excited on that subject, and immediately after the passage of the secession ordinance, several large bodies of Texans were collected and threatened an attack upon some of our posts. Their main object appeared to be the public property. No one at a distance can form a, correct idea of the state of public feeling. There is a strong feeling against the General Government, and the Army, being the representative of its power, shares that dislike.

The troops in this department are stationed at different camps or posts in small garrisons, and spread over a very large extent of country. To concentrate a sufficient number to make a successful resistance, after the Texans had taken the field, was not practicable. Besides, we bad no large depot of provisions to move upon, and the means of transportation at the posts were so limited that the troops could have taken with them a supply for only a few days. An attempt to bring them together under these circumstances would have, no doubt, resulted in their being cut up in detail before they could get out of the country. Under these circumstances, I felt it my duty to comply with the agreement entered into by General Twiggs, and remove the troops from the country as early as possible. With this view, arrangements are being made to bring the troops to the coast in time to meet the transports, if possible. Under this date I have made the necessary requisition for transports, and have indicated the points of embarkation and the number of the troops. The commissioners of this State will communicate with the government of Louisiana, and will endeavor to get such authority as will permit the troops, if necessary, to go up the Mississippi River. If such authority is granted, Colonel Chandler will be advised of it, and will give you the necessary information.

{p.522}

In connection with the matter of this communication, I inclose a copy of a letter I addressed to these headquarters, under date of 12th instant, whilst in command of Camp Verde, which contains the expression of my views previous to entering upon the duties of my present position. I will add that armed bodies of men are moving upon some of the posts within this command, Camp Cooper being one of them, as you will perceive by the copy of Captain Carpenter’s letter of the 14th instant, inclosed herewith. Other posts are also threatened.

I am, colonel, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

C. A. WAITE, Colonel, U. S. Army, Commanding Department.

Lieut. Col. L. THOMAS, Assistant Adjutant-General, Headquarters of the Army, &c.

*See Twiggs to Thomas, February 19, 1861, pp. 503-516.

[Inclosures.]

HEADQUARTERS CAMP VERDE, February 12, 1861.

MAJOR: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of a circular from the headquarters of the department, dated the 4th instant, conveying the information that “the secession act has passed the Convention of this State, to take effect on the 2d day of March next.”

By this act Texas has dissolved her connection with the other States, withdrawn her allegiance to the General Government, and declared herself an independent sovereignty, so far as it is in her power to do so. By placing herself outside the Union she has forfeited all claim for further protection by the United States troops, and unless the General Government intends to coerce the State into submission, which I cannot think possible, there does not occur to me any reason for keeping the troops in this department.

Being desirous of concentrating my regiment (the First Infantry) so as to bring the companies more under my control, I respectfully request permission to move out of the department with the five companies now serving here, and join the remainder of the regiment, which is in the Department of the West.

Many strong reasons present themselves to my mind in favor of as early a movement as practicable. It is well known that much hostile feeling exists towards the General Government, and the Army, being the representative of its power, is viewed by a certain class with much dislike. It would require but slight cause to produce a collision, the ultimate results of which no man can calculate.

There is another and, in my opinion, a stronger reason which may be urged for an early movement of the troops. I have it from a source I think reliable that the State authorities intend to require the surrender of the arms in the bands of the men before they leave the State. A demand of the kind would, of course, be resisted by the troops, and if force were used, it would lead to the most disastrous consequences. In the present highly-excited state of a large portion of the inhabitants of Texas, the first blood shed would, I fear, be the prelude to a general attack on the Army. A kind of guerrilla war would follow. The scattered condition of the troops, in small garrisons, at a considerable distance from each other, and dependent for supplies on remote depots, would render concert of action exceedingly difficult, if not impossible, and be very favorable for partisan operations against them.

If the commanding general should deem it proper to authorize the {p.523} movement, I have to request that the Quartermaster’s Department be directed to furnish on my requisition the necessary means of transportation.

I am, major, with much respect, your obedient servant,

C. A. WAITE, Colonel, First Infantry.

Maj. W. A. NICHOLS, Assistant Adjutant-General, Headquarters Department of Texas, San Antonio.

CAMP COOPER, TEXAS, February 14, 1861.

SIR: I have just received information from a source which cannot be doubted that a force is concentrating about this post for the purpose of attacking us, and of taking possession of the public property here. This force is concentrating about the camp-coming in by small parties. An express passed thirty near here yesterday, and the herdsman saw several about the herd yesterday. I shall use what force and vigilance we can to protect ourselves and property.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

S. D. CARPENTER, Captain, First Infantry, Commanding Post.

Major NICHOLS.

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HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF TEXAS. San Antonio, February 26, 1861.

COLONEL: I have the honor to inclose herewith a statement of the number of troops serving in the Department of Texas, and have to request that transportation may be furnished for them from Indianola and Brazos Santiago to such points as the Lieutenant-General commanding the Army shall direct. My arrangements are that the Third Infantry and two companies of the Second Cavalry shall embark at the Brazos, and that the remaining eight companies of the Second Cavalry, the five companies of the First Infantry, and the nine companies of the Eighth Infantry shall proceed to Indianola, and take shipping at that place. I have estimated for the full allowance of officers’ servants and laundresses, not knowing the exact number there are. I have no doubt there will be the full number of laundresses. Each transport should be supplied with a sufficient quantity of provisions, water, and fuel for the voyage, as it will not be safe to depend upon the resources of Texas for any of the articles required. It is very important that I should know as early as possible the time the transports will be on the coast, their tonnage, extent of supplies, and the number of troop’s that each one will be directed to receive oil board, in order that I may have the troops at the points of embarkation, and may be enabled to apportion them understandingly. The difficulty of subsisting them, after a movement is commenced, owing to the limited means of transportation, renders it necessary to retain the companies at their posts as long as possible.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

C. A. WAITE, Colonel, U. S. Army, Commanding Department.

Lieut. Col. L. THOMAS, Assistant Adjutant-General, Headquarters Army, New York.

{p.524}

[Inclosure.]

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT or, TEXAS, San Antonio, February 26, 1861.

Statement of the number of troops to be removed from the Department of Texas, in compliance with General Twiggs’ agreement with, the commissioners on the part of the State of Texas.

Number of companies. Medical officers. Field officers. Company officers. Ordnance sergeants, hospital stewards. Enlisted men. Laundresses. Officers’ servants. Aggregate.
To embark at the Brazos. 
Third Infantry10332547624034871
Two companies, E and G, Second Cavalry2612186141
Total123231488348401,012
To embark at Indianola. 
Second Cavalry (8 companies)8421735883225671
First, Infantry (5 companies)5221343832017443
Eighth Infantry (9 companies)9511944723621558
Total2211549111,44588631,672
Grand total3414880152,3281361032,684

Besides the officers and enlisted men included in the above list, there are one doctor and one paymaster stationed at Fort Brown, and one paymaster at Fort Bliss. One ordnance sergeant is stationed at Brazos Santiago and a hospital steward at Fort Brown.

C. A. WAITE, Colonel, U. S. Army, Commanding Department.

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HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF TEXAS, San Antonio, March 3, 1861.

COLONEL: Your letter of the 15th February, containing directions for the movement of the troops out of this Department in case Texas should secede, was handed to me by Lieutenant Putnam on the 1st instant. The several communications forwarded by Brevet Lieutenant-Colonel Chandler, Third Infantry, which I trust will reach you by the 8th instant, will inform you of the condition of affairs in this department up to the 25th ultimo. Previous to that date the commissioners of the State demanded of me certain statements in relation to the funds in the bands of disbursing officers, the known object of which was to enable them to seize all moneys belonging to the United States for the benefit of Texas. (See paper B.) To this demand I refused compliance. (Paper marked C.) On the morning of the 25th ultimo an armed force, acting under the commissioners of the State, took forcible possession of the offices occupied by Major Vinton, quartermaster; Major McClure, paymaster; Captain Whiteley, Ordnance officer; Captain Blair, commissary of subsistence, and Lieutenant Williams, depot commissary; ejected these officers and {p.525} their clerks from their offices, and placed a sentinel at the doors. (See papers marked C1, C2, C3, C4, C5.) About the time of their taking possession of the offices they notified me that the means of transportation would be withheld, and consequently the movement of the troops prevented, until these demands were complied with. After a delay of some days an arrangement was made with the commissioners, whereby the restrictions imposed on the Quartermaster’s and Commissary Departments were removed, and the means of transportation again placed at my disposal. Major Vinton and Captain Blair are now in the discharge of their proper duties. The conditions of the agreement whereby they were permitted to again take charge of their offices will be found in papers marked D1, D2.

Previous to making this agreement it was ascertained that after expending all of the available funds on hand there would be outstanding debts to the amount of some eight thousand dollars against the Commissary Department and nearly double that sum against the Quartermaster’s Department. The offices of Major McClure and Captain Whiteley are still held by a guard, and I understand that the commissioners have referred their cases to the Convention, now in session at Austin, for further instructions.

I inclose, also, copies of my letters alluded to in the communication by Colonel Chandler (marked E and F*), therein accidentally omitted. I likewise inclose copies of letters of Colonel Hoffman and Bvt. Maj. L. Smith, Eighth, and Captain King, First Infantry, relating particularly to the circumstances attending the forcible seizure of the public property in San Antonio on the 16th ultimo by the State troops, &c., marked, respectively, H, I, K.**

I am, colonel, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

C. A. WAITE, Colonel, U. S. Army, Commanding Department.

Lieut. Col. L. THOMAS, Assistant Adjutant-General, Headquarters of the Army, Washington, D. C.

* Transferred to Waite to Thomas, February 26, pp. 521-523.

** See reports Nos. 4, 5, and 6, pp. 517-520.

[Inclosure A.]

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF TEXAS, San Antonio, February 21, 1861.

GENTLEMEN: I have been informed by Captain Reynolds, assistant quartermaster, that the funds placed in his hands pertaining to the Quartermaster’s Department, and for which he is personally accountable to the Treasury, have been seized by an armed body of Texans, and are no longer in his possession.

The commissioners on the part of the State of Texas “formally and solemnly agreed with Bvt. Maj. Gen. David E. Twiggs, U. S. Army, commanding the Department of Texas,” that “the necessary means for regular and comfortable movement., provisions, tents, &c., and transportation” shall be allowed the troops, and that “the public property at the various posts, other than that above recited,” shall be turned over to agents, &c. The words “public property” do not include money, and certainly not money in the hands of disbursing officers, who are personally accountable for it to the Treasury of the United States. Their bondsmen, their private property, and their commissions are pledged to their Government for the faithful disbursement of the funds intrusted to them.

{p.526}

Believing that a proper construction of the agreement referred to will not authorize the retention of the funds lately in the possession of Captain Reynolds, and seized prior to the agreement between the commissioners and General Twiggs, I have to require that they may be, returned to him immediately.

I am, gentlemen, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

C. A. WAITE, Colonel, Commanding Department.

Messrs. T. J. DEVINE, P. N. LUCKETT, S. A. MAVERICK, Commissioners on behalf of Committee of Public Safety.

[Inclosure B.]

SAN ANTONIO, February 22, 1861.

SIR: We are in receipt of your communication of the 21st instant, in which you state that “the funds placed in the hands of Captain Reynolds assistant quartermaster, and pertaining to his department, have been seized by an armed body of Texans, and are no longer in his possession.” You likewise state that the commissioners “formally and solemnly agreed with Bvt. Maj. Gen. David E. Twiggs, commanding the Department of Texas,” that “the necessary means for regular and comfortable movement, provisions, tents, &c., and transportation,” shall be allowed the troops, and that “the public property at the various posts, other than that above recited,” shall be turned over to agents, &c. You further state: “The words ‘public property’ do not include money, and certainly not money in the hands of disbursing officers,” &c. You likewise state that “a proper construction of the agreement referred to will not authorize the retention of the funds lately in the possession of Captain Reynolds, and seized prior to the agreement between the commissioners and General Twiggs,” and “I (you) have to require that they may be returned to him immediately.”

In reply to that portion of your communication referring to our agreement with General Twiggs, for the comfortable movement of the troops, &c., we have to remark that our actions with reference to the movement of the troops will attest our willingness to perform our part of the agreement, and we are now, as we have been heretofore, ready and willing to carry it out according to the letter and the spirit of the engagement.

With reference to that portion of your communication relating to the words “public property, not including money,” &c., we have to say that if the word “money” was not used in our last communication to General Twiggs, it was simply owing to the fact that our communication of a previous date, as well as our original demand on General Twiggs, contained that word and its equivalents. That communication in which we agreed to the terms of the note of the 18th instant, in which General Twiggs claimed the retention of two batteries of Light Artillery, refers to our previous communications, in which we claimed all public property, and the reason is apparent. We claim no interest in or desire to meddle with private property; but we do now, as we have heretofore done, claim as public property all money belonging to or held for the benefit of the Federal Government.

Again, if it were necessary to show that nothing was withdrawn by the undersigned from their original and repeated demands, or understood to have been withdrawn on our part by General Twiggs, it will be found in the demands made by that officer and several others for trans- {p.527} portation, &c., and freely furnished by the undersigned, although no reference is made in express terms to this obligation in any of the notes between General Twiggs and the undersigned, and the reference is only found in our communication of the 14th instant to the military commission. We might still further add that the military commission, as well as General Twiggs, repeatedly disclaimed any right on the part of the officer in command to control disbursing officers in their disposition of the public funds. If then, General Twiggs has acted upon portions of our answer of the 14th instant, although such portions, were not set out in our reply of the 18th, it shows that he understood that the referring to that communication was a substantial embodiment of its terms in the communication in which we referred to it. A consideration of these facts will show the necessity for a complete understanding of all matters connected with or operating in any manner upon the question of our right to obtain possession of or control the funds of the Federal Government in Texas, such funds being subject, however, to the payment of all legitimate claims due either to soldiers or citizens. For this purpose the undersigned submit the following questions, to be answered by the various disbursing officers or heads of departments, and certified to, respectively, by them “on honor”:

Question 1. Please state what amount of funds, in specie, coin, drafts, or otherwise, were in your custody or under your control for purposes connected with your department in the performance of your official duties on the 8th day of February, 1861.

Question 2. Please state what portion of that amount has been disbursed or changed from its original condition between that day and the time of answering this question, and how and where was this disbursement or change made.

Question 3. Please state what amount of indebtedness exists against your department at the time of answering this question, and the persons claiming the same, as nearly as it is in your power to do.

Question 4. Please state what amount in specie or coin has come into your possession since the 8th of February, 1861, and what amount has been placed to your credit or at your disposal for purposes connected with your department in other cities of the Union since the 8th of February, 1861.

Question 5. Please state the amount of funds connected with your department on hand in specie, coin, drafts, or other evidences of money or credits, and please state the amounts of the respective credits in this city, and with whom , as likewise in other cities of the Union.

It is hoped that the preceding five questions will be submitted to the various disbursing officers residing in this city, and an answer is required within the next eighteen hours.

The commissioners do not desire-on the contrary, it is their determination that nothing shall be done by or through their agency that is likely to cause unpleasant consequences. Our instructions and a sense of duty, however, alike demand that all measures proper and necessary for securing the public funds for the benefit of the State of Texas shall be attempted, and, if possible, carried to a successful termination.

We remain, very respectfully, your obedient servants,

THOS. J. DEVINE, S. A. MAVERICK, P. N. LUCKETT, Commissioners on behalf of Committee of Public Safety.

Col. C. A. WAITE, U. S. Army, Commanding Department of Texas.

{p.528}

[Inclosure C.]

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF TEXAS, San Antonio, February 25, 1861.

GENTLEMEN: I have already acknowledged the receipt of your letter of the 22d instant, and the pressure of my public duties must be my apology for not answering it at an earlier date.

In regard to the five questions proposed in your communication, and your request that the “various disbursing officers or heads of departments be required to furnish you with answers, ‘certified to’ by them ‘on honor,’” I have to state that I have no power to compel a compliance with your wishes. An order of that kind would be illegal, and they would not be bound to obey it. As regards, myself, if I were to issue an order that would endanger the public funds, or cause a disposition of them not sanctioned by law, I should place my commission in jeopardy and render myself liable for the amounts involved.

In relation to the payment of the claims against the United States, I would remark that the disbursing officers by whom the debts were contracted are the proper persons to pay them, as they alone can know the amounts actually due.

I will here repeat, what I have more, fully stated in a former communication, that I cannot recognize the right of Texas to claim any portion of the funds in the hands of the disbursing officers. In this view of the case I am confirmed by the most positive assurance of General Twiggs that he had not at any time or in any way consented to the transfer of the public funds to the State of Texas.

I am, gentlemen, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

C. A. WAITE, Colonel, Commanding Department.

Messrs. T. J. DEVINE, S. A. MAVERICK, P. N. LUCKETT, Commissioners on behalf of the Committee of Public Safety.

[Inclosure C1.]

QUARTERMASTER’S OFFICE, HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF TEXAS, San Antonio, March 1, 1861.

MAJOR: On the 26th ultimo I had the honor to report, verbally, to the colonel commanding the department that I, with my clerks and messenger, had been summarily ejected, by order of the Texas commissioners, from the room occupied by me as the office of the chief quartermaster of the Department of Texas; that a sentinel from the Texas troops was placed over the room, and that all access thereto by myself and employés was thereby cut off and prohibited. I have now further to report that the commissioner who executed the order of ejectment gave no reason for his conduct; that when asked if I could have access to my papers, gave no satisfactory answer, and when the keys of my iron safe, containing a small amount of public funds, were offered to him, he declined to receive them. I have since applied to the commissioner to remove the restrictions thus imposed without success-no reply being vouchsafed. What good results they may have expected from the course they have thought proper to pursue is more than I can conjecture, but I have to complain that it has been productive of great inconvenience to the service in which I have the honor to serve. It has debarred me {p.529} from a free exercise of my functions as chief quartermaster, and has been the means of shutting up papers essential to the settlement of the accounts of officers at several of the posts requiring my action. It seems to be an arbitrary exercise of power, conceived in a spirit of retaliation for some act, of which the commander of the department may, perhaps; be more conversant than I am, or else to coerce me into acts as repugnant to my feelings of honor as they are contrary to my duty toward my Government and a proper integrity to my bondsmen-of which the commander of the department may have some conception.

I respectfully ask the mediation of the colonel commanding the department with the commissioners for the removal of the obstructions to the performance of my duties above pointed out.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

A H. VINTON, Major and Quartermaster.

Bvt. Maj. W. A. NICHOLS, Assistant Adjutant-General, Headquarters Department of Texas, San Antonio.

[Inclosure C2.]

SAN ANTONIO, TEX., March 2, 1861.

MAJOR: I have the honor to report, for the information of the colonel commanding, I that on the 26th ultimo, while in the regular discharge of my duties, I was ejected from my office, which was taken possession of in the name of the State of Texas, in the manner following:

About 10 o’clock a.m. an armed body of men were marched to the door of my office, where they were posted by the person in command, and instructed in an undertone. I continued discharging my duties afterward for probably thirty minutes, when one of the commissioners, Mr. P. N. Luckett, of the State of Texas, entered, and ordered me to close my safe and office, and cease to transact any further business, saying that he took possession in the name of the State of Texas. I closed the door of my safe and office, and have since been prohibited from entering the latter by the sentinel stationed there.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

DANIEL McCLURE, Paymaster, U. S. Army.

Bvt. Maj. W. A. NICHOLS, Assistant Adjutant-General, U. S. Army.

[Inclosure C3.]

TEXAS ARSENAL, San Antonio, March 3, 1861.

MAJOR: I have the honor to inform the colonel commanding the Department of Texas that on the 25th ultimo a guard was placed in my office, in the Ordnance Department, on the corner of Solidad and Rivers streets, San Antonio, by order of the commissioners of the Convention of the People of Texas, which being a direct and gross insult to me, a commissioned officer of the United States Army, and being powerless to prevent or redress such great wrong, I immediately withdrew from that office.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

R. H. K. WHITELEY, Captain of Ordnance.

Maj. W. A. NICHOLS, Assistant Adjutant-General, U. S. Army, Headquarters Department of Texas, San Antonio, Tex.

{p.530}

[Inclosure C4.]

SAN ANTONIO, TEX., February 26, 1861.

SIR: I have the honor to report that I was this morning forcibly dispossessed of my office, including my public funds and official records and papers, by an armed force represented to be under the personal command of one of the commissioners of the committee of safety of the State of Texas. On attempting to enter my office, after such possession had been taken, I was warned by a sentinel stationed over the door that admittance was not allowed.

Respectfully, your obedient servant,

W. B. BLAIR, Captain and C. S.

The ASSISTANT ADJUTANT-GENERAL, U. S. ARMY, Department of Texas, San Antonio.

[Inclosure C5.]

OFFICE OF A. A. C. S., San Antonio, Tex., February 27, 1861.

MAJOR: I have the honor to report that yesterday morning, about 11 o’clock, my clerk was ordered out of my office by Dr. P. N. Luckett, one of the commissioners of the Texan Convention, and a man with a musket in his hand posted as a sentinel over the office. About 12 m. yesterday, not knowing what was the matter, I attempted to enter my office, and was peremptorily ordered not to enter by the above-mentioned man with a musket. This morning I am informed by the man walking in front of my office door with a musket in his hand that myself and clerk have permission to go into my office. I have received no official information of the authority by which my office was closed, and by which my books, papers, and other articles of private property were, without explanation, forcibly taken from my charge and possession.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

T. G. WILLIAMS, First Lieutenant, First Infantry, A. A. C. S.

Maj. W. A. NICHOLS, Assistant Adjutant-General, Department of Texas, San Antonio, Tex.

[Inclosure D1.]

SAN ANTONIO, February 28, 1861.

This is to certify that Capt. W. B. Blair, commissary of subsistence, having produced to the undersigned a statement of the public funds, evidences of the same, and the amounts of credits in favor of his office, together with the amount due citizens of Texas for supplies furnished on account of his office, and it being understood and agreed to by Capt. W. B. Blair and the undersigned that he will, to the extent of the means on hand, or that may hereafter come into his control, liquidate, without delay the claims of the citizens aforesaid; that the undersigned will not interfere with, or permit any interference with, such funds or credits as are now or may hereafter come into his possession or into the State of Texas for his disbursement or control, so far as it may be in the power of the undersigned to prevent any interference or attempt to interfere with said funds or credits on hand or in transitu. It being understood and agreed to by both parties that should any surplus of existing means or credits remain after the payments of said debts, and the furnishing {p.531} necessary supplies for the troops, that the surplus so remaining shall be turned over to the undersigned or such other commissioners as may represent the State of Texas in the premises.

THOS. J. DEVINE, S. A. MAVERICK, P. N. LUCKETT, Commissioners on behalf of Committee of Public Safety. W. B. BLAIR, Captain, C. S., U. S. Army.

[Inclosure D2.]

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF TEXAS, San Antonio, March 2, 1861.

GENTLEMEN: I here repeat in writing the substance of the remarks made verbally to you yesterday with respect to the funds on hand, the existing debts of the United States Quartermaster’s Department, and those which may accrue during the stay of the United States troops within the limits of the State of Texas.

That I will exert the full extent of my authority to cause to be paid to the citizens of Texas all just demands they may hold against the United States pertaining to the Quartermasters Department, or that may hereafter be contracted by said Department, so far as the funds on hand will permit; and, further, that, it having been ascertained that the available funds on hand are not sufficient to liquidate the present outstanding demands, I will cause an estimate to be made for such further sums as may be deemed sufficient, it being understood and agreed to by said commissioners that such sums as may be necessary for the hire of teamsters, lighters, the purchase and delivery of forage, fuel, and other supplies, and to meet all the expenditures necessary for a “regular and comfortable movement” of the troops on their march from their present station to the coast, and to enable them to embark, shall be retained and held subject to such expenditure.

I am, gentlemen, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

C. A. WAITE, Colonel, U. S. Army, Commanding Department.

Messrs. THOS. J. DEVINE, P. N. LUCKETT, S. A. MAVERICK, Commissioners on behalf of Committee of Public Safety, San Antonio.

Approved by the undersigned commission on behalf of committee of public safety.

THOMAS J. DEVINE. S. A. MAVERICK. P. N. LUCKETT.

SAN ANTONIO, TEX., March 2, 1861.

We, the commissioners on behalf of the committee of public safety, will place at the disposal of the commanding officer of the troops in Texas such means of transportation as are at our command, to be used by said troops in transporting their baggage, provisions, forage, and other supplies to such points on the coast as have been selected for embarkation.

THOS. J. DEVINE, S. A. MAVERICK, P. N. LUCKETT, Commission on behalf of Committee of Public Safety.

{p.532}

[Inclosure. G.]

SPECIAL ORDERS, No. 34.

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF TEXAS, San Antonio, February 26, 1861.

Bvt. Lieut. Col. D. T. Chandler, U. S. Army, will proceed to the headquarters of the Army and deliver the dispatches with which he is charged. He will travel with all possible haste, as it is important that the information contained in the communications intrusted to his charge should reach Washington as early as possible.

On arriving in Louisiana, Colonel Chandler will communicate with the governor of that State, and ascertain if a safe transit for the troops evacuating Texas will be afforded through the State of Louisiana, with permission to purchase the necessary supplies and secure the required means of transportation. For this purpose he will deliver a communication addressed to the governor of that State by the commissioners on behalf of the committee of public safety of the State of Texas. After having complied with these instructions, Colonel Chandler will return to San Antonio.

By order of Col. C. A. Waite:

W. A. NICHOLS, Assistant Adjutant-General.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF TEXAS, San Antonio, March 6, 1861.

COLONEL: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your communications forwarded by Major Porter, assistant adjutant-general, which were delivered to me on the 4th instant by Lieutenant Major, Second Cavalry. Major Porter was to leave Indianola on the 2d instant for Brazos Santiago.

The difficulty of placing provisions at. Brazos Santiago for the use of the troops whilst awaiting the arrival of the transports, the collection of a large Texan force at Brownsville or in its vicinity, which would render a depot at that place insecure, and the small number of United States troops on the Rio Grande below Fort McIntosh, have induced me to change my arrangements so far as to have all the troops embark at Indianola. Should it, however, be deemed expedient hereafter to have a part of the troops embark at the Brazos, the transports can easily be ordered from Indianola to that point. I have, therefore, to request that all of the vessels sent out to take the troops may be directed to proceed to Indianola.

Two companies of the Third Infantry (Johns’ and Clitz’s) were, ordered to Fort Brown from Ringgold Barracks to relieve the artillery, and as it is probable that they reached that post before the arrival at Brazos of the steamer Daniel Webster, I presume they embarked with the artillery Major Porter wrote me that he would “make every effort to take with me [him] the garrison of Ringgold Barracks.”

I am, colonel, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

C. A. WAITE. Colonel, U. S. Army, Commanding Department.

Lieut. Col. L. THOMAS. Assistant Adjutant-General, Headquarters of the Army, Washington, D. C.

P. S.–I beg that it may be borne in mind that I am dependent entirely on the commissioners on the part of Texas for the use of the means of transportation which were heretofore under the control of the Quarter- {p.533} master’s Department. As difficulties are daily occurring to retard our operations, and frequently to delay the march of the troops, I cannot feel that certainty of having them at the points selected for concentration at any given time that I should do if entirely independent of the commissioners, and free to act agreeably to my own judgment.

Very respectfully,

C. A. WAITE, Colonel, U. S. Army, Commanding Department.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF TEXAS, San Antonio, March 12, 1861.

COLONEL: I have the honor to inform you that a communication, under date of 25th ultimo, was received on the 8th instant from Brevet Lieutenant-Colonel Reeve, captain,* Eighth Infantry, advising me of the arrival at that post [Fort Bliss] of the “four companies of the Eighth Infantry recently stationed in the Department of New Mexico-the last one, Company B (Brevet Lieutenant-Colonel Reeve’s), arriving on the 21st instant” (February).

Brevet Major Sprague’s company (E, Eighth Infantry) left Fort Bliss the 25th ult. for Fort Davis, under Lieutenant Frank, Eighth Infantry.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

C. A. WAITE, Colonel, U. S. Army, Commanding Department.

Lieut. Col. L. THOMAS, Headquarters of the Army, Washington, D. C.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF TEXAS, San Antonio, March 13, 1861.

COLONEL: The want of co-operation on the part of the commissioners, who have the entire control of the means of transportation; the great distance from this place to El Paso; the uncertainty in relation to the condition of things at the several posts on the Upper Rio Grande, especially in regard to their facilities for the transportation of baggage, supplies, &c.; and the difficulties which attend the march of troops and the movement of trains at this season of the year over a large portion of the route, have caused so many delays that I was not able until yesterday to entirely complete the arrangements necessary to bring the troops down from those distant posts.

The three companies at El Paso will probably leave that post about the 25th of this month, and, with the four companies now at Fort Quitman, Fort Davis, and Fort Stockton, may be expected to be at the coast and ready to embark in about forty days from that date. The last returns show the strength of the several companies to be fourteen officers and about four hundred and twenty-six enlisted men, laundresses, &c. As it is not possible for the companies above mentioned to embark before the first week in May, transports for that number of troops will not be required until that time.

To a certain extent, the same uncertainty as to the time the troops can be assembled and ready for embarkation, which prevented my stating in any of my former communications the exact time the transports would be wanted, still hangs over our future movements. This arises {p.534} from the confused condition of affairs in this department, the interference of the commissioners, and my having but a limited control over the means necessary to move the troops.

I am now concentrating the troops at a camp established at Green Lake, some twenty miles from Indianola, the nearest point to the coast where pure water, fuel, and good grazing can easily be obtained.

By my present arrangements I think I shall be able to assemble by the 10th of April and have ready for the transports some forty-five officers and thirteen hundred men, and by the 10th of May I hope to have the remainder of the troops in a position ready to embark. All the troops will embark at Indianola.

I am, colonel, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

C. A. WAITE, Colonel, Commanding Department.

Lieut. Col. L. THOMAS, Assistant Adjutant-General, Headquarters of the Army, Washington, D. C.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF TEXAS, San Antonio, March 16, 1861.

COLONEL: I have the honor to forward herewith a copy of a letter received from Maj. C. C. Sibley, Third Infantry, reporting the movements of the troops on the Rio Grande. The distance from Fort McIntosh to Fort Brown is about two hundred and thirty miles, and Major Sibley’s command may be expected to arrive at the latter place about the 24th instant.

I have not recently received any official information of the condition of affairs at Fort Brown, but, from the reports which have reached me, do not anticipate any difficulty with the State troops.

Colonel Bonneville being out of the department, and Colonel Backus having received a leave of absence on account of his health, the command of the Third Infantry will devolve on Major Sibley.

I am, colonel, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

C. A. WAITE, Colonel, Commanding Department.

Lieut. Col. L. THOMAS, Assistant Adjutant-General, Army Headquarters, Washington, D. C.

[Inclosure.]

HEADQUARTERS FORT MCINTOSH, TEX., March 11, 1861.

MAJOR: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the 11th instant, with other packages. I have to state in reply that, in compliance with instructions from the General-in-Chief, communicated by Maj. F. J. Porter, assistant adjutant-general, on the 4th instant, from Fort Brown, I shall commence the march on Fort Brown tomorrow morning. I have the transportation provided for the movement. Major Porter states that funds are provided at Fort Brown to defray expenses of transportation, and urges me to hasten my march. Doubtless he has communicated with the commander of the department in the matter.

Lieutenant Davis, A. A. Q. M., is turning over the property which does not move with the command to Mr. Charles Callaghan, who is the {p.535} agent of the State of Texas to receive the United States property at this post.

Major French, with his command, was on the 5th instant, near Edinburgh, about sixty miles from Fort Brown. In a note to me of the 6th instant, Colonel Backus states: “Bowman’s company moves tomorrow by land light, the baggage by water. Major Porter is very anxious to expedite your march. Don’t delay a moment. Two companies of infantry go out with the artillery.”

I trust my course in marching on Fort Brown will be approved by the commanding officer of the department, and that his plans will not be embarrassed thereby. They might be at the mouth of the river, as I have already reported to Major Porter that I should lose no time in commencing the march on Fort Brown. I have heard no news of the troops above. I would state that I shall march with about twenty-five days’ rations for the command, and all the forage on hand. I shall dispatch an express to you this evening, and request that he may be paid at San Antonio the sum of twenty-five dollars the round trip.

I am, sir, most respectfully, your obedient servant,

C. C. SIBLEY, Major, Third, Infantry, Commanding Post.

Maj. W. A. NICHOLS, Assistant Adjutant-General, Department of Texas, San Antonio, Tex.

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HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF TEXAS, San Antonio, March 16, 1861.

COLONEL: I have the honor to transmit herewith copies of a correspondence between Capt. B. H. Hill, First Artillery, commanding Fort Brown, and E. B. Nichols, representing himself to be a commissioner on the part of Texas, in relation to the surrender of Fort Brown and the public property at that post.

It will be seen by these communications that a very large force was collected at Brazos Santiago, acting under the authority of the State Convention, for the purpose, it is believed, of forcing the garrison of Fort Brown to surrender or evacuate the post. The firm course pursued by Captain Hill, and their dislike to attack a post so well provided with light artillery, no doubt prevented a serious collision.

Nearly all of the State troops came from Eastern Texas via Galveston, and were raised and prepared for a movement about the time negotiations were commenced with General Twiggs. By the last information from Fort Brown, our troops hold that post, and no further difficulty was anticipated.

I am, colonel, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

C. A. WAITE, Colonel, U. S. Army, Commanding Department.

Lieut. Col. L. THOMAS, Assistant Adjutant-General, Headquarters of the Army.

[Inclosures.]

HEADQUARTERS FORT BROWN, TEX., February 10, 1861.

SIR: I have the honor to report that I have detached an officer and twelve men of this command to Brazos Santiago, to protect the public property there.

{p.536}

There is at Brazos a quantity of ordnance and ordnance stores-how much I do not know. Those stores are under the charge of an Ordnance sergeant, who is accountable for them, and who communicates direct with the Colonel of Ordnance.

The only order I find on file in this office is the extract from Special Orders No. 51, from headquarters Department of Texas, of January 1, 1860, and what disposition the Colonel of Ordnance has directed in relation to those stores, or what quantity, if any, he has ordered to be removed to this post, I am not informed. I have understood within a few days, however, that there is a heavy brass battery there, and quite a number of heavy iron guns and carriages, and I have been led to apprehend, from some rumors that I have heard, that an attempt may be made to seize both the public buildings and stores there, and I conclude it to be prudent to send a small guard there for their protection, and a copy of the post orders to that effect is herewith inclosed.

The battery of brass guns I have ordered to be sent to this post.

Should the general commanding the department conclude to retain a command at Brazos, I suggest that it be drawn from Ringgold Barracks. One of the companies constituting the garrison of this post is a light battery, and as most of the men are required for the care of the battery horses, but few are applicable to the ordinary garrison duty, and as this post is an extensive one, the duty will fall heavily on that part of my own company that remains here.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

B. H. HILL, Captain, First Artillery, Commanding Post.

Maj. W. A. NICHOLS, Assistant Adjutant-General, Headquarters Department of Texas. San Antonio.

ORDERS, No. 4.

HEADQUARTERS FORT BROWN, TEX., February 8, 1861.

First Lieut. James Thompson, Second Artillery, is hereby detailed to take command of a detachment composed of one sergeant and twelve privates, to be selected from Company M, First Artillery, and proceed to Brazos Santiago. Upon his arrival, he will take charge of the public buildings and property at that place, and protect the same until further orders.

Rations for ten days will be issued to the men.

The acting assistant quartermaster will furnish the necessary transportation.

By order of Captain Hill:

G. D. BAILEY, Second Lieutenant, Second Artillery, Post Adjutant.

HEADQUARTERS FORT BROWN, TEX., February 25, 1861.

SIR: I have the honor to report that, as stated in my letter to the department headquarters dated February 10, 1861, I caused Lieut. James Thompson, Second Artillery, in command of a detachment of twelve men, to proceed to Brazos Santiago for the protection of the public property at that place.

During the night of the 20th instant information reached this post that the steamer General Rusk bad sailed from Galveston with several hundred men for the purpose of seizing the United States property at Brazos and at this place. After consultation with Captain Stoneman {p.537} and officers of my own command, I determined to destroy all the ordnance at Brazos, in order to prevent the erection of batteries on the island, and, as far as lay in my power, to deprive any hostile force of the means of making war upon the United States. Orders were accordingly issued (copy herewith inclosed) to insure a speedy execution thereof. Lieutenant Graham and a detachment of forty men from Captain Stoneman’s command were ordered to Brazos to report to Lieutenant Thompson. Before the arrival of this detachment the steamer Rusk entered the harbor, landed her men on the island, and took possession of the public buildings and property. Lieutenant Thompson’s report is herewith inclosed.

I have, also, to inclose three communications from General E. B. Nichols (the latter written after a full conference between him and myself in presence of Mr. Walter and Lieutenant Bailey, post adjutant, and embracing in substance the subject-matter of said conference). Copies of my replies thereto are also inclosed.

Department Orders No. 25, dated February 14, 1861, came to hand yesterday. I will remain here until the arrival of the troops from Fort Duncan and then proceed to Brazos Santiago.

I do not think there will be any collision between my command and the State troops. With all the force that will be here, and with the cooperation of Captain Stoneman, I do not think we will be interfered with.

I take great pleasure in saying that, although Captain Stoneman has an independent command, he expresses himself prepared to render me a cordial and prompt co-operation.

I am, sir, respectfully, your obedient servant,

B. H. HILL, Captain, First Artillery, Commanding Post.

Maj. W. A. NICHOLS, Assistant Adjutant-General, Department of Texas, San Antonio.

ORDERS, No. 5.

HEADQUARTERS FORT BROWN, TEX., February 21, 1861.

Information having been received at this post that a large body of armed men is en route for this vicinity with the avowed object of seizing upon the United States depot and public property at Brazos Santiago, and it being impracticable to remove the guns, munitions, &c., to this place, it is therefore ordered, with the view of anticipating the seizure of Brazos Island and of preventing the communication between this post and the War Department being obstructed, that the arms, ammunition, and gun carriages at that place be destroyed, the trunnions of the guns broken, if possible, and the guns spiked or otherwise disabled.

Lieutenant Thompson, Second Artillery, will execute this order and immediately return with his detachment to this post.

By order of Captain Hill:

G. D. BAILEY, Second Lieutenant, Second Artillery, Post Adjutant.

FORT BROWN, TEX., February 22, 1861.

SIR: I have the honor to make the following report:

Pursuant to post orders issued February 8, 1861, I repaired on the 9th with a detachment of twelve men to Brazos Santiago, and took charge of the United States stores and property at that place.

An additional force of twenty men arrived at the island on the 18th. On the same day I received instructions from the commanding officer {p.538} to retain those men until the arrival of the Arizona, and then to return them to camp, unless in my judgment it should be necessary to retain them. Accordingly, on the evening of the 20th, the Arizona having arrived, I ordered the cavalry detachment back to camp. Having heard a rumor to the effect that the steamer General Rusk was en, route for Brazos with several hundred men, I communicated the same by express to the commanding officer. This express left Brazos about sunset of that day (the 20th); at what hour it arrived at Fort Brown I know not. Next morning, the 21st, the steamer General Rusk appeared, and anchored outside the bar. Mr. E. B. Nichols was landed in a small boat, and presented himself as commissioner delegated by the Convention of the State of Texas to receive and receipt for all the property under my charge. The conference that ensued began and ended between the hours of 12 and 2 o’clock of that day. The demand of Mr. Nichols was backed by a force of between five hundred and six hundred men. I accordingly delivered up possession of the property, and marched my detachment away from the island. Returning to Fort Brown, I met a detachment for my re-enforcement; also, an officer with instructions for me to destroy the property at Brazos. Both came too late for the execution of said order.

Respectfully submitted.

JAMES THOMPSON, First Lieutenant, Second Artillery.

Lieut. G. D. BAILEY, Second Lieutenant, Second Artillery, Post Adjutant.

BROWNSVILLE, February 22, 1861.

DEAR SIR: As commissioner of the State of Texas I am delegated to have an interview with you in relation to matters of business between the Government of the United States and Texas. I would be pleased to have such interview at the earliest possible time, when I will make known to you the object of my mission.

Hoping to hear from you soon, and that, you will appoint the time and place of meeting, I remain your obedient servant,

E. B. NICHOLS, Commissioner, By H. B. WALLER, Secretary.

Capt. B. H. HILL, Commanding Fort Brown.

BROWNSVILLE, February 22, 1861.

SIR: I had the honor to transmit to you by my secretary, Mr. Waller, a written communication requesting a conference in reference to the resumption by the State of Texas of her sovereignty, to which I received an indefinite verbal reply. While awaiting your formal answer. I beg to say that a rumor has reached me that an attack is contemplated by your authority upon the Texas troops now encamped upon Brazos Island. I need not allude to the consequences of such an act against the sovereignty of my State, because the fate of individuals on either side is a matter of little consequence compared with the national results. Civil war, with all its horrors, which we may not see the end of, would inevitably ensue. As my immediate course of action depends upon the nature, of your reply, I respectfully ask for it at once, and in writing.

E. B. NICHOLS, Commissioner, By H. B. WALLER, Secretary.

Capt. B. H. HILL, U. S. Army, Commanding Fort Brown.

{p.539}

HEADQUARTERS FORT BROWN, February 23, 1861.

SIR: I have received your two letters, dated the 22d instant, the former announcing yourself “as commissioner of the State of Texas,” delegated to “have an interview with you [me] in relation to matters of business between the Government of the United States and Texas,” the latter stating “that a rumor has reached me [you] that an attack is contemplated by your [my] authority upon the Texas troops encamped upon Brazos Island”; that “civil war, with all its horrors, which we may not see the end of, would inevitably ensue,” and that your “immediate course of action depends upon the nature of your [my] reply.”

I know of no “matters of business” between the Federal Government and Texas which you on the one hand and myself on the other have power to transact. However, as no detriment to the public service can result from a conference, you are hereby informed that I shall be found at my quarters in, the garrison at any hour to-day which it may suit your pleasure to appear, for the transaction of all business appertaining to my official duties.

I am, sir, respectfully, your obedient servant,

B. H. HILL, Captain, U. S. Army, Commanding.

E. B. NICHOLS, Commissioner.

BROWNSVILLE, February 23, 1861.

SIR: As understood by us at the termination of our interview this morning, I take pleasure in addressing you upon the subject of my mission. I am delegated by the people of Texas, in Convention assembled, at the city of Austin, on the 28th instant, to provide supplies for the protection of this frontier, and to receive all public property placed here and elsewhere on this frontier for such protection.

In pursuance of such commission, I have come with a portion of the troops for such protection, believing that the Federal troops stationed on this frontier would be immediately withdrawn, upon the secession of Texas, and knowing that protection is required here at all times, and that the citizens living here, and their property being thus exposed, would not be safe for even a single day without such protection. I am therefore prepared to receive all such property as you may have in your charge, placed here for the protection of this frontier by the Federal Government, and am authorized to receipt for the same.

The Texas troops who came with me, under Col. John S. Ford, who has been appointed commander of the Military Department of the Rio Grande, came on a mission of peace, and no act of theirs or their officers shall justify a hostile collision with the Federal troops. It becomes necessary that our troops should be as soon as possible assigned to their respective stations on this frontier, in order to be efficient; therefore I will be pleased to have possession of all government property placed here for the protection of this frontier, at as early a period as may be practicable, consulting your convenience.

Texas is virtually out of the Union already, it being now about 4 o’clock in the evening, and the destiny of this State has been fixed by the people in their sovereign capacity at the ballot-box, and no one who knows anything of the sentiment of this people can doubt for a moment that this is now a sovereign and independent republic. As such the United States troops placed here for our protection are not needed by us-are upon foreign soil. They, therefore, have no further duty to per- {p.540} form here; therefore I presume they will soon be removed (though we do not object to their presence among us, for we regard them as friends), and that the property now under their charge at this place, placed here for the use of the State of Texas, becomes the property of the republic of Texas upon the separation from the Federal Government, and ought to be delivered to the properly constituted authorities of Texas.

As my business calls me back to Galveston at an early period, in order to receive and forward the balance of the troops destined for the protection of this frontier, I will be pleased to receive an early answer from you, that I may carry back with me to my people the gratifying intelligence that there will be no acts of hostility between the United. States authorities here and the Texas troops.

Respectfully, your obedient servant,

E. B. NICHOLS, Commissioner.

Capt. B. H. HILL, U. S. Army, Commanding Fort Brown.

HEADQUARTERS FORT BROWN, February 23, 1861.

SIR: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your communication of this date. It would be impossible, without instructions from my Government, to accede to your request to deliver into your possession the public property, or any portion thereof, at this post. In assuming that this property, “placed here,” as you say, “for the use of the State of Texas, becomes the property of the republic of Texas upon the separation from the Federal Government,” you have raised a question upon which my Government will doubtless take action in due season, but which meanwhile cannot affect my military duties or responsibilities.

I take pleasure in reciprocating personally the courtesy and good will implied in your assurance that “no act of the Texas troops in this vicinity shall justify a hostile collision with the Federal troops.” Further than this, that assurance has no official weight or application, inasmuch as the said Texas troops, numbering several hundred, have already committed an act of hostility against the United States in seizing the public property at Brazos Santiago, dispossessing therefrom a guard of twelve United States soldiers, placed there for its protection.

I am, sir, respectfully, your obedient servant,

B. H. HILL, Captain, First Artillery, Commanding.

General E. B. NICHOLS, Commissioner.

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF TEXAS, San Antonio, March 21, 1861.

COLONEL: Under cover herewith I have the honor to transmit copies of a correspondence between Capt. S. D. Carpenter, First Infantry, commanding Camp Cooper; Capt. E. K. Smith, Second Cavalry, commanding Camp Colorado; Lieut. Col. G. Morris, in command of Fort Chadbourne; and certain persons who represented themselves to be commissioners on the part of the State of Texas, and authorized to demand the surrender of those posts.

It appears that at first the demands of these commissioners were resisted; but finding that a large force was gathering around them, and no prospect of being re-enforced, the officers above named finally {p.541} entered into an agreement to evacuate their posts and surrender the public property, on the conditions and in accordance with the stipulations of the agreement entered into by General Twiggs and the commissioners on behalf of the committee of public safety.

It is now known that some time previous to the commencement of the negotiations with General Twiggs a large force was collecting in the northern counties of the State, for the purpose of capturing some of the remote posts and seizing the public property. This force consisted of several hundred residents of the northern part of Texas, and several companies of troops which had previously been mustered into the service of the State. This gathering of so large a force appears to have been the spontaneous movement of the border population, with no other incentive than a desire of plunder. There is no doubt that these movements were known to and sanctioned by the convention, immediately after it assembled at Austin, on the 28th January, and it is now known that the persons calling themselves commissioners acted under instructions from that body. I would here remark that there is not a post in Texas which has the slightest defensive arrangement. They are generally camps or open cantonments, and not tenable against a large force. Such, I understand, was the condition of the posts above mentioned.

I also inclose copies of letters written by or addressed to Captain Johnson, Second Cavalry, which will show the course pursued by the State officers, and the difficulty of communicating with the different posts.*

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

C. A. WAITE. Colonel, U. S. Army, Commanding Department.

Lieut. Col. L. THOMAS, Assistant Adjutant-General, Headquarters of the Army, Washington, D. C.

* See Morris’ report, p. 558; Smith’s, p. 559; and Johnson’s, p. 594.

[Inclosures.]

FORT CHADBOURNE, TEX., February 28, 1861.

SIR: I have the honor to transmit herewith a post order and certain communications which passed between Col. W. C. Dalrymple, aide-de-camp to the governor, and colonel commanding Texas troops, and myself, which resulted in my yielding the post of Camp Cooper to the authorities of the State of Texas.

As in some particulars the terms agreed upon have been modified by a subsequent agreement entered into between Col. H. E. McCulloch, as commissioner of the State of Texas, and myself, in order to make these terms fully conform to that agreed upon between the commissioners of the State of Texas and General Twiggs, commanding the department, I transmit the final terms of agreement only.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

S. D. CARPENTER, Captain; First Infantry.

Maj. W. A. NICHOLS, Assistant Adjutant-General, Department of Texas, San Antonio.

ORDERS, No. 12.

HEADQUARTERS CAMP COOPER, TEX., February 16, 1861.

The commanding officer has no disposition, were such a thing practicable, of keeping his command in ignorance of the common report that we are to be attacked, for the purpose of the pillage and plunder {p.542} of the Federal property intrusted to our protection. This attempt, if made, will be by the identical persons whose lives and property the Government have sent us hereto defend. Every incentive to patriotism, and the fulfillment of our individual sworn obligations, prompt us, in such an event, to sell our lives at the dearest possible cost. The defense of our own honor, and that of our country we are sworn to protect, demand this of us.

The spirit that would commit this outrage is not engendered by any love of State or country, but springs from the despicable promptings of individual ambition of distinction in what they hope soon to be a dismembered limb of our glorious country.

Should their number be a thousand to one, their cause, when compared to ours, will be more than that odds against them. In a strife like this we have but one course to pursue, for each would rather lay his corpse to molder upon the plain he defends than to drag it hence to be the laugh and scorn of every honest lover of his country’s glory.

The commanding officer has every confidence in the patriotism of the men of his command, and is satisfied that his promptings will be sufficient to induce, upon the part of all, a loyal discharge of duty. But, if other motives are wanting, they are found in the fact that our individual security and subsistence depend upon our defense, as the only property we have are commissary stores, means of transportation, and our arms. Deprive us of these, we are powerless in an enemy’s country.

S. D. CARPENTER, Captain, First Infantry, Commanding Post.

CAMP COOPER, TEX., February 18, 1861.

From various rumors which have reached me, I am led to infer that the object of your command is a hostile movement against this camp. Having waited several days in the expectation of receiving from you a notification of your intentions, I deem it my duty to call upon you to be informed as to the object of this assemblage.

Yours, respectfully,

S. D. CARPENTER, Captain, First Infantry, Commanding.

To the COMMANDING OFFICER of the State Troops of Texas, and other armed bodies of citizens, encamped in the vicinity of this Post.

OLD COMANCHE AGENCY, Near Camp Cooper, February 18, 1861.

SIR: In reply to your communication of this day I have to say that the assemblage of soldiery here has for its object the reduction of Camp Cooper. The State of Texas having, by the action of a convention of the people, virtually renounced her allegiance to the Government of the United States, and being here in command of the State troops, and also in command of the citizen soldiery encamped in this vicinity, I shall, in the name of the sovereign State of Texas, demand within twenty-four hours a surrender of the garrison under your command, with all arms munitions, and property of every description heretofore belonging to the United States.

I have the honor to be your obedient servant,

W. C. DALRYMPLE, Aide-de-Camp to the Governor, and Colonel Commanding.

Capt. S. D. CARPENTER, U. S. Army, Commanding Camp Cooper.

{p.543}

CAMP COOPER, TEX., February 19, 1861.

SIR: Your letter of the 18th instant, informing me that the armed body of men encamped in this vicinity were State troops and armed citizens under your command, has been received. I have also received your letter of this date, demanding, in the name of the State of Texas, a surrender of this camp. Until the reception of your first note I was satisfied, from all the information I could obtain, that I was threatened with an attack by an unauthorized force, and accordingly took such measures as were necessary for my defense. My reply to your demand, not withstanding it is made in the name of Texas, and by an officer holding a commission from its governor, as commanding officer of the Federal troops stationed at this camp, could be no other than an unqualified refusal; but in the present agitated political condition of our country I feel compelled to regard, in connection with this demand and its refusal, the perilous consequences that must result to the whole nation. The policy of the administration and the wisest statesman of the land is to avert, if possible, the shedding of blood, and while I have before me this fact exemplified at Forts Sumter and Pickens, and especially in the case of the Star of the West, and also the fact that the arsenals throughout the South have been yielded to State authorities without a struggle, I do not feel justified to act from the promptings of a soldier.

It matters not that this camp from its position is incapable of a prolonged defense; it matters not that your force is now far superior in numbers to my own and is daily increasing; it matters not that by reliable information I am positively assured that this whole community is arming for the purpose of retaining in the State all the property of the Federal Government now in Texas, I would be actuated by the same motives which now control me in every-day events, provided the consequences of my refusal to your demand were to be the inauguration of a civil war that must eventually involve all the States in fraternal strife.

Guided, then, by a spirit of patriotism and loyalty to the Union, and by what I conceive to be the counsels of the most enlightened of statesmen of the nation, and also by what I understand to be the policy of the general commanding the department, after due consultation with the officers of my command, I have determined to surrender this camp to the State of Texas, and if you will submit to me the terms upon which you desire to receive for the State the camp and Federal property in my charge, I will then give them an early consideration.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

S. D. CARPENTER, Captain, First Infantry, Commanding Post.

Col. W. C. DALRYMPLE, Commanding State troops, and Aide to the Governor.

FORT CHADBOURNE, TEX., February 28, 1861.

Having met here with Capt. S. D. Carpenter, First Infantry, commanding Company H and a detachment of the Second Cavalry, consisting of the Companies D and H, which companies had surrendered to Colonel Dalrymple, of the Texas State troops, and feeling fully empowered by my commission and instructions to negotiate with them in order to facilitate their movements out of the country or their comfort in it, have offered them a position in the service of Texas upon the terms of my instructions, which they decline; yet, not being willing to see distinctions made between the different portions of the same command when it is in my power to avoid it, I agree, as commissioner, on my part, {p.544} that the troops under Captain Carpenter, viz, Company H, First Infantry, proceed to San Antonio and report to the colonel I or senior officer of his regiment, and that he (Captain Carpenter) shall be governed in all respects by the terms agreed upon by the commissioners of the convention, Hon. S. A. Maverick, T. J. Devine, and P. N. Luckett, and General D. E. Twiggs, of the United States Army, at San Antonio; and Capt. S. D. Carpenter, commanding his company, agrees upon his part to proceed with his company to San Antonio and report to the commanding officer of his regiment or senior officer of the same there present, pledging himself that his officers and men will observe strictly the terms agreed upon by said commissioners on the part of the State of Texas, and General Twiggs on the part of the Army.

H. E. McCULLOCH, Commissioner, and Colonel Commanding

S. D. CARPENTER, Northwestern Frontier of Texas. Captain, First Infantry, Commanding Company H.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF TEXAS, San Antonio, March 23, 1861.

COLONEL: I have the honor to transmit herewith sundry letters, &c., Nos. from 1 to 7, in relation to the seizure and retention of the sum of $30,000, which Thomas M. Jones, late lieutenant, Eighth Infantry, brought from New Orleans for the payment of the troops.

The inclosed papers give a full account of the transaction, and show the demands I made for the recovery of the money. The letter marked 7 is the only written communication I have received from the commissioners on this subject. I understand that in several instances where the sutlers at the posts have paid the troops, the commissioners have refunded the amount so advanced. These are the payments, I presume, to which they allude. Their retaining the money, and making the payments themselves, is for the purpose of securing any balance of the $30,000 which may remain. It is not probable that they will pay out more than three of four thousand dollars.

Major Maclin now holds an appointment under the State of Texas, and has, I believe, taken the oath of allegiance to that State. I am informed that he entered on duty as Chief of Ordnance on the 4th instant.

I also inclose a copy of a letter from Capt. A. W. Reynolds, assistant quartermaster, by which it will be seen that the commissioners have returned a portion of the money they seized when they took possession of his office. The amount retained by them is $2,943, as shown by the receipt, [No. 8.]

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

C. A. WAITE, Colonel, U. S. Army, Commanding Department.

Lieut. Col. L. THOMAS, Assistant Adjutant-General, Headquarters Army.

[Inclosure No. 1.]

SPECIAL ORDERS, No. 21.

HDQRS. DEPARTMENT OF TEXAS, San Antonio, February 9, 1861.

I. First Lieut. Thomas 31. Jones, Eighth Infantry, aide-de-camp, will proceed to New Orleans, La., to receive from the Treasury Depart- {p.545} ment, on a draft of Paymaster S. Maclin, such amounts of moneys as the draft may demand. The pressing duties of Paymaster Maclin will not permit him to leave the station at this time. When he has received the money, Lieutenant Jones will return without delay.

...

By order of Brevet Major-General Twiggs:

W. A. NICHOLS, Assistant Adjutant-General.

[Inclosure No. 2.]

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF TEXAS, San Antonio, March 4, 1861.

GENTLEMEN: I have been informed that Lieutenant Jones, Eighth Infantry, who was sent to New Orleans for funds to pay the troops, arrived here yesterday with $30,000, and that it has been seized by an armed force acting under your direction, and is now in your possession.

My views in relation to the seizure and retention of moneys belonging to the United States are fully expressed in my communication of the 21st ultimo, to which you are respectfully referred. This case, however presents some different features. The funds alluded to did not arrive within the limits of the State of Texas until the 24th ultimo, several days after the agreement entered into by General Twiggs to deliver up the public property, &c., was signed and went into effect. That agreement is limited strictly to the property then within the borders of Texas; consequently it cannot by any possible construction include money or property subsequently brought into the State.

I have, therefore, to require that the $30,000 above mentioned may be immediately returned to the United States authorities.

I am, gentlemen, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

C. A. WAITE, Colonel, Commanding Department.

Messrs. T. J. DEVINE, P. N. LUCKETT, S. A. MAVERICK, Commissioners, &c., San Antonio, Tex.

[Inclosure No. 3.]

SAN ANTONIO, TEX., March 7, 1861.

SIR: I have the honor to report that in compliance with Orders No. 21, from the headquarters of this department, dated February 9, 1861, I received from Maj. Sackfield Maclin a draft on the assistant treasurer in New Orleans for $30,000, and proceeded to that city and drew the specie upon it (viz, $10,000 in gold and $20,000 in silver). With much difficulty, there being many State troops on the roads leading into. San Antonio, Tex., with orders to seize the money that I had, I arrived here with the money on the 3d instant, and turned it, the $30,000, over, to Maj. Sackfield Maclin.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

THOS. M. JONES First Lieutenant, Eighth Infantry, U. S. Army.

Maj. W. A. NICHOLS, Assistant Adjutant-General, Headquarters Department of Texas, San Antonio, Tex.

{p.546}

[Inclosure No. 4.]

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF TEXAS, San Antonio, March 9, 1861.

MAJOR: On yesterday I received a communication from Lieut. T. M. Jones, Eighth Infantry, reporting his return from New Orleans with $30,000, funds pertaining to the United States Pay Department, which he reports as having turned over to you on the 3d instant. It is well known at these headquarters that this money was seized and is now held by the authorities of the State of Texas. I am directed by the colonel commanding the department to call upon you for a statement in writing of the circumstances connected with the act of seizure of the funds in question by the authorities above cited.

I am, major, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

W. A. NICHOLS, Assistant Adjutant General.

Maj. S. MACLIN, Paymaster, U. S. Army, San Antonio, Tex.

[Inclosure No. 5.]

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF TEXAS, San Antonio, March 12, 1861.

GENTLEMEN: On the 4th instant I addressed a communication to you in relation to the seizure and detention of $30,000, lately brought from New Orleans by Lieutenant Jones, Eighth Infantry, for the payment of the troops in this department, but have received no answer.

Companies will arrive here almost daily, which, I understand, will have large sums due them, and the detention of the funds will be great injustice to the soldiers-a class of creditors that has as strong claims for payment as any other. My views in relation to your right to seize and retain money belonging to the United States have been fully expressed in former communications, and I will here only renew the demand made in my letter of the 4th instant, and express the hope that you will immediately place the funds above referred to in the hands of a disbursing officer of the Pay Department, who will become accountable to the United States Treasury for the same.

Major Maclin having resigned, Major McClure is the proper person to receive the money and make the proper disbursements.

I am, gentlemen, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

C. A. WAITE, Colonel, U. S. Army, Commanding Department.

Messrs. THOS. J. DEVINE, P. N. LUCKETT, S. A. MAVERICK, Commissioners, &c.

[Inclosure No. 6.]

SAN ANTONIO, TEX., March 18, 1861.

SIR: On the 16th instant I had the honor of receiving Maj. W. A. Nichols’ (assistant adjutant-general) note of the 9th instant, and which is as follows:

[Copy of inclosure No. 4 inserted.]

{p.547}

In answer, I replied::

SAN ANTONIO, TEX., March 16, 1861.

Col. C. A. WAITE, U. S. Army, Commanding Department of Texas:

COLONEL: On my return home after an absence of several days I received yours (Major Nichols’) of the 9th instant. I am pleased to have an opportunity of making the statement desired in relation to the seizure of the funds in question by the authorities of the State of Texas. I shall not be able to do this, however, before Monday next.

I have the honor to be, sir, respectfully, your obedient servant,

SACKFIELD MACLIN, Paymaster, U. S. Army.

Immediately after receiving Major Nichols’ note, written under your direction, I addressed Captain Edgar, who commanded the detachment that seized the funds, and which is as follows, viz:

SAN ANTONIO, TEX., March 16, 1861.

Captain EDGAR, Commanding City Guards, Texas Service:

SIR: I believe you commanded the company of soldiers that took from my possession by force of arms the public money brought to this place by Lieut. Thomas M. Jones, U. S. Army. If so, you will confer a favor upon me by giving me a copy of your report (if you made any) to your commander. I hope it will not be too much to ask that you and such other officers as you may have had under your command attach your affidavits to the report as to the facts stated. This will be important, as I desire to use your report as evidence in the settlement of my accounts. Your compliance with the above request will greatly oblige me.

I have the honor to be, sir, respectfully, your obedient servant,

SACKFIELD MACLIN, Paymaster, U. S. Army.

To this I received the following reply:

SAN ANTONIO, TEX., March 18, 1861.

S. MACLIN, Esq., Late Paymaster, U. S. Army:

SIR: Your communication of the 16th instant is at hand, requesting a copy of my report to Col. Ben. McCulloch of the proceedings of a detail made from my company to watch the entrance of Lieut. T. M. Jones, U. S. Army, into this city with public funds. In answer thereto you will please find inclosed a copy of said report, verified by affidavit, embracing my instructions and proceedings in this matter, with all the particulars relative to the seizure of the money.

I have the honor to be, respectfully, your obedient servant,

W. M. EDGAR, Captain A. C. Guards, Texas Service.

The report above alluded to is as follows, viz:

SAN ANTONIO, TEX., March 3, 1861.

Col. BEN. MCCULLOCH, Commanding Middle. Division Texas, San Antonio, Tex.

SIR: I have the honor respectfully to report that last night, about 10 o’clock, I was directed by Dr. P. N. Luckett, commissioner on behalf of the State, of Texas, to make a detail from my company to watch the various entrances into the city. I immediately detailed Lieutenants Gord, Grace, and Ransom, and Sergeant Sheriden, and with myself we proceeded to watch the various roads leading into the city, with instructions to intercept Lieut. T. M. Jones, U. S. Army, who was approaching the city with a large amount of public funds, and to report the same to Dr. Luckett as soon as the fact could be ascertained. A strict and close watch was kept up during the entire night over all the entrances, but nothing of interest transpired until about 8 1/2 o’clock on the morning of the 3d, when two ambulances were discovered approaching the city, and were seen to enter the yard of Major Maclin’s (U. S. Army) residence, which were soon ascertained to contain the money alluded to. The same was immediately reported, when I was ordered to make a detail of twenty-five men from my company (armed), and to proceed to the residence of Major Maclin, when Dr. Luckett stepped forward and demanded the funds in the name of the State of Texas, and after a few minutes’ consultation they were delivered up and conveyed to the office of the commissioners on behalf of the State of Texas, and were said to be over $30,000. Having performed the duty assigned me, my men were dismissed, and returned to their quarters.

I have the honor to be, your obedient servant,

W. M. EDGAR, Captain A. C. Guards, Texas Troops.

{p.548}

To this report the following affidavit is attached, viz:

STATE OF TEXAS, County of Bexar:

Personally appeared before me the undersigned subscribers, and after being duly sworn say that the foregoing report is correct, and that the amount was said to be over $30,000, in gold and silver coin, contained in seven large boxes and two bags, and money acquired by requisition by Major Maclin, paymaster, U. S. Army, and for which he was accountable.

W. M. EDGAR, Captain A. C. Guards, Texas Service. M. SPALDING GORD, First Lieutenant, A. C. Guards, Texas Service.

Sworn to and subscribed before me this 18th day of March, 1861.

Witness my hand and official seal, at San Antonio, the day and year last above written.

JULIUS HOFNER, Notary Public, Bexar County.

In addition to the above, I remark that the seven boxes mentioned in the affidavit contained three thousand dollars each.

Immediately after the money arrived at my house the boxes were thrown out of the ambulances in the back yard. Before they were, moved the commissioner of the State of Texas demanded them. In reply to the demand, I declared that if I had the force he should not have a dollar of the money. The soldiers then took possession of the boxes. The commissioner then made a further demand for the gold, which was also taken possession of. As far as I am informed, the money is still remaining in the hands of the authorities of the State of Texas.

I have neglected to say that Lieut. Thomas M. Jones proceeded to New Orleans, under the orders of Maj. Gen. D. E. Twiggs, and procured the money from the assistant United States treasurer, on a check drawn by me on the 9th of February, 1861. I believe this statement contains all the facts in relation to the seizure of the public money alluded to in the assistant adjutant-general’s note of the 9th instant, and which is respectfully submitted.

I have the honor to be, sir, respectfully, your obedient servant,

SACKFIELD MACLIN, Late Paymaster, U. S. Army.

Col. C. A. WAITE, U. S. Army, San Antonio, Tex.

[Inclosure No. 7.]

OFFICE OF THE COMMISSIONERS OF TIM STATE OF TEXAS, San Antonio, March 22, 1861.

SIR: In reply to your communication of the 12th instant, in relation to the seizure and retention of the money brought here by Capt. Thomas M. Jones, late of the U. S. Army, I can state that we have not retained the money, but have been paying out, and are still willing to pay it out, strictly according to the principles expressed to you in previous communications.

The Convention has indorsed the seizure. It is, therefore, not in my power to turn over the funds to any of your agents.

I am, with much respect, your obedient servant,

P. N. LUCKETT, Commissioner of the State of Texas.

Col. C. A. WAITE, U. S. Army, San Antonio, Tex.

{p.549}

[Inclosure No. 8.]

ASSISTANT QUARTERMASTER’S OFFICE, San Antonio Tex., March 8, 1861.

MAJOR: I have the honor to report that the public chest containing the Government funds, for which I was responsible, and which had been forcibly seized by the Texas State troops on the morning of the 16th of February, 1861, was returned to me yesterday.

On an examination of the contents of the chest I found a deficiency of $2,943, in lien of which amount the commissioners on the part of the Convention of the people of the State of Texas presented me with a receipt, a copy of which is herewith inclosed.

...

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

A. W. REYNOLDS, Captain and Assistant Quartermaster.

Bvt. Maj. W. A. NICHOLS, Assistant Adjutant-General, Dep’t of Texas, San Antonio.

SAN ANTONIO, TEX., March 6, 1861.

This is to certify that on the morning of the 16th of February, 1861, the Quartermaster’s Department of this place, together with the iron chest used by Capt. A. W. Reynolds, assistant quartermaster, U. S. Army, for keeping the United States funds in his charge, were forcibly taken possession of by the forces of the State of Texas, the chest aforesaid with its contents being taken by order of us, the commissioners, acting for the State under the authority of the State Convention; and we moreover certify that the chest aforesaid has this day been turned back to the possession of Captain Reynolds with the same contents, except $2,943, which amount had been taken by us for the use of the State, and the receipt thereof is hereby acknowledged.

P. N. LUCKETT, S. A. MAVERICK, Commissioners on the part of Committee of Public Safety.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF TEXAS, San Antonio, March 27, 1861.

SIR: In case the difficulty between the General Government and the seceding States should result in hostilities, there is reason to apprehend that an attempt may be made to prevent the embarkation of the troops and to detain them as prisoners of war. This can only be effected by their seizing and removing all lighters, preventing transports of light draught entering the bay at Indianola, and by cutting off our supplies of provisions, &c. To avoid an attempt of that kind, and to be prepared to meet it if made, I am concentrating the troops at the camp near Green Lake as rapidly as possible. This camp is full twenty miles from Indianola and is the nearest place to the coast where fresh water can be obtained. The difficulty, amounting almost to impossibility, of supplying the troops with water at Indianola, prevents my moving them down to that place. Not a line has been received at these headquarters from the headquarters of the Army, or from the War Department, since I entered upon duty as the department commander, except unimportant matters, and I am inclined to believe from inspection of the envelopes that they {p.550} have been opened, and that all important communications have been withheld.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

C. A. WAITE, Colonel, U. S. Army, Commanding Department.

To the ASSISTANT ADJUTANT-GENERAL, Headquarters of the Army, Washington, D. C.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF TEXAS, San Antonio, March 27, 1861.

COLONEL: I have the honor to report that three companies of the First Infantry, four companies of the Third Infantry, two companies of the Eighth Infantry, and six companies of the Second Cavalry have already passed through this place on their way to the camp near Green Lake, and that probably before the end of the present month four additional companies will arrive here on their way to their camp. These nineteen companies amount to some thirty officers, and about twelve hundred and seventy five enlisted men, which with the laundresses, officers’ servants, &c., will swell the number to near thirteen hundred and fifty persons.

The remainder of the companies in this department will reach Green Lake by the 15th or 20th of April, except the seven companies of the Eighth Infantry, stationed at Forts Bliss, Quitman, Davis, and Stockton, which cannot be at the coast and ready to embark before the first week in May.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

C. A. WAITE, Colonel, U. S. Army, Commanding Department.

To the ASSISTANT ADJUTANT-GENERAL, Headquarters of the Army, Washington, D. C.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF TEXAS, San Antonio, April 1, 1861.

SIR: This morning I had the honor to receive, by Lieut. C. R. Collins, Topographical Engineers, a communication from the General-in-Chief, dated Washington, March 19, 1861, and a few hours after, by the hand of Lieut. W. Jones, First Infantry, a duplicate of the same, with the addition of a postscript in relation to the concentration of the troops at Indianola, &c., for the purpose of giving aid to the Union party in Texas.*

Yesterday I received from Governor Houston, through the agency of an influential Union man, a note dated at Austin, the 29th ultimo, and one of the same date from F. W. Lander, a Government agent who recently visited this State, which are herewith inclosed. By these communications it will be seen that Governor Houston not only declines all military assistance from the United States, but strongly protests against a concentration of troops, or the construction of fortifications, within the borders of Texas. He also earnestly requests that the troops may be moved from the State at the “earliest day practicable.”

So far from there being any body of men collected for the purpose of sustaining the governor in the exercise of his official functions, nothing of the kind, so far as I can learn, has ever been contemplated. The {p.551} policy of the Union party is to effect a peaceable change in the views of the inhabitants of the State, and that object they intend to accomplish, to a great extent, through the agency of the press and ballot-box. I think I am authorized in saying that, in the opinion of the leading men of the Union party, a few thousand dollars employed in the support of newspapers, in different parts of the State, would in a short time effect a complete revolution in public sentiment. It is in this way and in this way only, they intend to carry out their views.

Under present circumstances, my only course appears to be to embark the troops as directed in instructions from the headquarters of the Army, under date of the 12th ultimo.* One transport, carrying nearly six hundred officers and men, has already left for New York, and another, with about an equal number of persons, will soon sail. The officer in command of the first transport has been directed to leave two companies of the First Infantry at Key West.

The funds and artillery referred to in the letter from the General-in-Chief will not, under present circumstances, be wanted. I deem it proper to state that the communication from the General-in-Chief of the 19th ultimo, and also the duplicate of the same, were opened at Indianola by Captain King, First Infantry, and at Green Lake by Bvt. Maj. L. Smith, Eighth Infantry, and I fear that other persons were made acquainted with their contents. I immediately wrote to Major Smith to take measures to prevent a knowledge of these instructions being made public. Captain King sailed in the first transport for New York.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

C. A. WAITE, Colonel, U. S. Army, Commanding the Department.

To the ASSISTANT ADJUTANT-GENERAL, Headquarters of the Army, Washington, D. C.

P. S.–My headquarters will remain at San Antonio until the arrival of all the troops from the interior.

C. A. W.

* See “Correspondence and Orders., etc.,” p. 598.

[Inclosure 1.]

AUSTIN, March 29, 1861.

DEAR SIR: I have received intelligence that you have, or will soon receive, orders to concentrate United States troops under your command at Indianola, in this State, to sustain me in the exercise of my official functions. Allow me most respectfully to decline any such assistance of the United States Government, and to most earnestly protest against the concentration of troops or fortifications in Texas, and request that you remove all such troops out of this State at the earliest day practicable, or, at any rate, by all means take no action towards hostile movements till further ordered by the Government at Washington City, or particularly of Texas.

Thine,

SAM HOUSTON.

Colonel WAITE, U. S. Army, San Antonio, Texas.

[Inclosure 2.]

AUSTIN, March 29, 1861.

SIR: I have reached Texas as confidential messenger of the administration to the governor of the State. Lieutenant-General Scott, by {p.552} request of the Secretary of State, and indorsed by the President, allowed me to peruse your late instructions brought on by Lieutenant Collins. The object of these instructions was directly connected with my mission. They necessarily fail, from the determination of Governor Houston to protest against such military aid being rendered him. If, consistently with your own views, you can await further instructions from Washington prior to making the intrenched camp at Indianola, or, in fact, taking any step which will lead the secession party of Texas to imagine that the Government proposes to coerce them, I should regard it a high act of patriotism, and, under the present information, of duty. General Scott’s letter clearly states, “until the people of Texas have seceded,” &c. It also states, “if five hundred men can be concentrated.” Any practicable reason which may prevent your action toward making an intrenched camp until I reach, and you can hear from, Washington, I know will be regarded sufficient. I could only take this peculiar liberty under the absolute change of circumstances, which renders nugatory the action at Washington, and requires my immediate return there.

I am, most respectfully, your obedient servant,

F. W. LANDER. Colonel WAITE, U. S. Army.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF TEXAS, San Antonio, April 17, 1861.

SIR: I have the honor to inform you that a force of Texas State troops is now assembled in this city, and I have this evening learned that the officers, &c., here stationed will be arrested tomorrow, and held as prisoners of war. Two transports have sailed with troops, and it is hoped and expected that the third, the. Star of the West, will sail in a day or two with the whole force now in camp at Green Lake. There will then remain seven companies of the Eighth Infantry, numbering, say, 370, the headquarters of that regiment, and the headquarters of the department. The Eighth Infantry will not reach Indianola before the 10th of May, if permitted to proceed to the coast. This, of course, requires that a fourth transport should be sent out for the embarkation of these troops.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

C. A. WAITE, Colonel, U. S. Army, Commanding Department.

To the ADJUTANT-GENERAL U. S. ARMY, Washington, D. C.

–––

WASHINGTON, D. C., May 25, 1861.

SIR: It is my unpleasant duty to report, for the information of the General-in-Chief, that on the 23d of April last the following officers, then on duty at San Antonio, the headquarters of the Department of Texas, were seized by an armed force, acting under what they term the Confederate States of America, and made prisoners of war, viz:

Col. C. A. Waite, First Infantry, commanding department.

Maj. W. A. Nichols, assistant adjutant-general.

Military Storekeeper R. M. Potter, Ordnance Department.

Surg. E. H. Abadie, Medical Department.

Asst. Surg. J. R. Smith, Medical Department.

{p.553}

Asst. Surg. E. P. Langworthy, Medical Department.

Paymaster D. McClure.

Capt. K. Garrard, Second Cavalry.

Bvt. Lieut. Col. D. T. Chandler, Third Infantry.

Lieut. Col. W. Hoffman, Eighth Infantry.

Bvt. Maj. J. T. Sprague, Captain, Eighth Infantry.

Lieut. E. L. Hartz, Eighth Infantry.

Lieut. E. W. H. Read, Eighth Infantry.

Maj. D. H. Vinton, Quartermaster’s Department, was subsequently arrested, and is now on parole.

On being arrested, the officers were told that they must remain in confinement under a guard, or give their parole not to take up arms or serve in the field against the Confederate States, during the existence of the present hostilities, unless exchanged.

After mature reflection, and a careful examination of the peculiar circumstances under which they were placed, the latter alternative was accepted.

The main reasons which induced the officers to come to this conclusion were, that in their then condition they could perform no duty, nor be of the least service to the Government. By rejoining the Army they could be assigned to many important duties, the performance of which would not be incompatible with their parole, and thus still render some service to their country.

Injustice to the officers, I must here state that great exertions were made and the most flattering inducements were held out by agents of the Confederate States for them to resign and enter that service. These officers having resisted these temptations, to which so many others yielded, is strong proof of their devotion to their country, and merits the favorable consideration of the Government.

I have reliable information (not official) that seven companies, under Major Sibley, Third Infantry, viz, two companies of the First, three companies of the Third, and two companies of the Eighth Infantry, were captured on the 23d ultimo off Indianola, and were immediately paroled and permitted to sail for New York. There are six companies of the Eighth Infantry, under Brevet Lieutenant-Colonel Reeve, which it is believed have also been captured. The last information (official) received from them was dated the 16th of April. At that time they were near Fort Lancaster. The impossibility of sending an express through the country for several weeks previous to my leaving San Antonio prevented my having more definite information in relation to this command.

Letter marked A will indicate the course adopted towards the captured troops, and documents marked B and C will explain the circumstances under which we were made prisoners.

In conclusion, permit me to express the hope and anxious desire of the officers on parole that they may be exchanged as early as practicable, and may be permitted to take an active part in the military operations.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

C. A. WAITE, Colonel First Infantry.

Lieut. Col. E. D. TOWNSEND, Assistant Adjutant-General, Headquarters of the Army.

{p.554}

[Inclosure A.]

HEADQUARTERS C. S. ARMY, San Antonio, Tex., April 28, 1861.

COLONEL: I understand that Lieut. E. L. Hartz, Eighth Infantry, visited Captain Lee’s company on yesterday and exhorted them to be true to their allegiance to the United States, &c. When I granted leave to visit the company I did not expect such a course would be pursued. I am compelled, therefore, to forbid any visiting, only in company with an officer of the Confederate States Army.

When the men are to be visited Capt. James Duff will accompany the officer, or some other officer will be detailed by him.

Your obedient servant,

S. MACLIN, Major, C. S. A., Commanding.

Col. C. A. WAITE, U. S. Army, Present.

[Inclosure B.]

Memorandum relating to the arrest of Colonel Waite, U. S. Army, and the officers of the Army on duty at San Antonio, Tex.

SAN ANTONIO, TEX., April 23, 1861.

Captain WILCOX (with his sword, commanding Texas troops). Good morning, colonel. (At Colonel Waite’s quarters, Colonel Waite and Major Sprague only present.)

Colonel WAITE. Good morning, sir.

Captain WILCOX. I have come to request you to go over to Major Maclin’s office.

Colonel WAITE. For what purpose, sir?

Captain WILCOX. As a prisoner of war.

Colonel WAITE. What authority have you?

Captain WILCOX. I have authority from Major Maclin.

Colonel WAITE. Who is Major Maclin?

Captain WILCOX. An officer of the Confederate States.

Colonel WAITE. I do not, sir, recognize any such authority. Have you the authority? I should like to see it.

Captain Wilcox then took from his pocket an order from Major Maclin, which Colonel Waite read, directing him to proceed with his company and arrest the officers of the United States Government in San Antonio.

Colonel WAITE. I protest against any such act, and will not obey the order, except by force. Have I committed any offense?

To which Captain Wilcox replied, “None that I know of.” “It is, then,” said Colonel Waite, “a most unwarranted act of usurpation, and in violation of the modes and customs of civilized warfare, and a gross outrage upon my individual rights. I protest against it in the name of my country. Your authority I do not recognize, nor will I obey any order from you. Nothing but the presence of a force greater than I can overcome will cause me to relinquish my personal freedom. There is nothing in history to equal this usurpation.” Thereupon Captain Wilcox said, “I have the force,” and started for the public storehouse, and immediately returned with thirty-six footmen, Texas troops, armed with rifles and saber bayonets. The command was halted in front of Colonel Waite’s quarters, when Captain Wilcox entered the house. Colonel Waite then walked to the door, and upon looking out, remarked, “Is that your guard, sir?” “Yes, sir,” replied Captain Wilcox. “These {p.555} are more men” remarked Colonel Waite, “than I can resist, and I again protest, in the name of my country, against this gross and unwarranted act of usurpation, and the violation of personal rights. Where do you wish me to go, sir?” “To the ordnance office, sir,” said Captain Wilcox.

Colonel Waite then took his hat and passed to the front of the guard, when arms were shouldered, and the crowd proceeded through the public street. As Colonel Waite was passing into the custody of the guard, Major Sprague said to Captain Wilcox, “Do you consider me as one?” “Yes,” he replied; “come along.” “Then,” said Major Sprague, “I concur fully in every word uttered by Colonel Waite in regard to this outrage.”

Major Sprague then joined Colonel Waite, and proceeded amid a crowd of boys. Arriving at the building where the public offices are, the command halted, and Captain Wilcox ordered the other officers, viz, Maj. W. A. Nichols, assistant adjutant-general of department; Maj. Daniel McClure, Pay Department; Brevet Lieutenant-Colonel Chandler, Third Infantry; Capt. K. Garrard, Second Cavalry; Dr. E. H. Abadie, Medical Department; Dr. Joseph R. Smith, Medical Department; Dr. E. P. Langworthy, Medical Department; Capt. A. T. Lee, Eighth Infantry; Lieut. E. L. Hartz, Eighth Infantry; Lieut. E. W. H. Read, Eighth Infantry; and Capt. R. M. Potter, military storekeeper, who had been previously arrested, and were within the building in charge of a sentinel, to proceed. The officers in a body, under the guard, proceeded to the office of Major Maclin. After a few moments’ silence Major Maclin said:

“Colonel Waite, it becomes my duty to arrest you and the other officers as prisoners of war.”

“By what authority, sir?”

“That is my business, sir, not yours,” responded Major Maclin.

“But,” said Colonel Waite, “I should like to know by what power I am deprived of my personal rights.”

“I have the power from the President of the Confederate States,” answered Major Maclin.

“Such authority I do not know, nor shall I obey it,” said Colonel Waite. “Have I or my officers committed any offense? Did we not come here as friends, and have we not been such to all the interests of Texas? More than that, is there not an agreement with the Texas commissioners, guaranteeing to the men and officers-my entire command-to go out of Texas unmolested? That, sir, has been carried out faithfully on our part, in every respect. By what right am I to be restricted of my liberty? And by what authority am I and my officers made prisoners of war? I protest against it.”

“There is no use of protesting,” said Major Maclin. “I do not wish to hear any protest; it is unnecessary. I have my orders.”

“But I will protest,” replied Colonel Waite. “In the name of my Government I protest. I denounce it as an act of unwarranted usurpation, and against the custom of war, and in violation of my personal rights. I suppose you intend to regard the rights and customs of civilization. I know no war. We have been acting as friends. We are not here in a hostile attitude. We came into the country as friends, and axe going out as such.”

“Yes,” responded Major Maclin; “I have my duty to perform, and shall do it.”

“I repeat,” said Colonel Waite, “it is gross, unheard-of, unwarranted, and treacherous. Nothing but the presence of a force requires me to {p.556} listen to such measures, much more obey them. Had I the means it would be quite different. I would resist until death.”

“I am aware, of that,” answered Major Maclin. “I have as much confidence in the courage of your officers as you have.”

“What do you propose?” inquired Colonel Waite. “I am obliged to consider myself a prisoner, and should like to know the future.”

“I have here, sir,” replied Major Maclin, “paroles [handing a manuscript to Colonel Waite], which the officers are at liberty to avail themselves of.”

One of these was then read by Colonel Waite.

“Such a, paper I shall not sign,” said Colonel Waite, indignantly; “it is highly objectionable, and I shall remain a prisoner.”

“Very well,” answered Major Maclin; “these paroles will not be presented to you again, without you request it.”

“What rank do you hold, sir?” inquired Colonel Waite.

“I am a major.”

In the Provisional or Regular Army, sir?” inquired Colonel Waite.

“In the Regular Army, sir.”

A general conversation ensued among all parties, in which there was much angry excitement. Major Maclin improved the first opportunity to speak, and remarked that he should send the officers to Victoria, one hundred miles distant, to Colonel Van Dorn’s headquarters, and desired to know how soon Colonel Waite could be ready, and suggested to-morrow, even intimated to-day, whereupon Colonel Waite and the officers present said it was impossible to arrange their family affairs in so short a time.

“How long a time, then,” asked he, “do you desire? One, two, or three days?”

“I presume we can have transportation,” suggested Colonel Waite.

“There will be transportation for you, sir,” responded Major Maclin, with emphasis and anger.

Again a general conversation took place; still much excitement evinced among all parties. The inquiry was made of Major Maclin if he bad any discretion in the matter. He replied that he had none. The character of paroles and the rights of prisoners then became a general subject of conversation. Each officer present said he desired at least twenty-four hours to consider the subject, as it was of great importance. Colonel Waite asked for one of the manuscript paroles, when Major Maclin, in a very offensive manner, declined, saying he had use for them. This again caused much evident excited and indignant feeling.

“It is my desire,” said Colonel Waite, “to put some officer in charge of our soldiers to be left here as prisoners, should, I accept a parole, to attend to their personal rights, police, and comfort.”

“You need, have no concern about that, sir,” responded Major Maclin; “we will save you that trouble. We will attend to that. No officer will be permitted to have anything to do with them. You will not be allowed to give any orders here.”

Colonel Waite, in answer: “It is your wish and object to corrupt them, and to force them into your service; but they won’t stay with you; they will desert.”

“Your language, sir,” said Major Maclin, “is offensive. I cannot permit it.”

Colonel Waite replied: “The facts, sir, are doubtless offensive. My language is not intended to be offensive. I will talk and state the facts. {p.557} I also claim the right to send an officer to my Government with sealed dispatches on parole.”

“That, sir,” replied Major Maclin, “will not be allowed.”

“But,” said Colonel Waite, “can I not make my official report? To send an officer to headquarters after important events is the custom of all armies and troops among civilized people.”

“Perhaps it is, sir,” replied Major Maclin.

After a long conversation, and the excitement somewhat abated, Major Maclin was asked if he would grant to each officer twenty-four hours to consider upon the subject, when they would report to him in person their determination. To this he agreed, and permitted each officer to take one of the manuscript paroles for consideration. The guard at the door was then dismissed, and the officers retired.

WEDNESDAY, April 24, 1861.

The officers assembled at, 12 m. to-day at the office of the commanding officer, Major Maclin, as agreed upon yesterday. No further modification could be had other than the terms offered yesterday, excepting a provision for exchange as prisoners of war, and the privilege to Colonel Waite to report the facts and past transactions to his government. They now were offered the acceptance of the paroles, or to be considered close prisoners of war. There was no alternative but to be subjected to the rabble; to crowds of undisciplined troops, regardless of authority or control; to the vindictive and active prejudices of men in temporary authority, swayed by spleen and disappointment, as well as infidelity to the General Government in former commissions who had already stipulated terms, or take the paroles red and ask safe-conduct out of the State. The latter was determined upon as the only method which could secure safe egress or escape, and place us within the authority of the United States Government. Each officer took his parole under the protest made by Colonel Waite the day previous.

[Inclosure C.]

SAN ANTONIO, TEX., April 24, 1861.

On the morning of the 23d of April, 1861, about 12 o’clock m., Captain Wilcox, commanding a company called the Alamo Rifles, entered the office of Colonel Waite, U. S. Army, and inquired for Colonel Waite. He was informed that he was at his quarters. Captain Wilcox then said to the officers present, viz, Lieutenant-Colonel Chandler, Captain Garrard, and Assistant Surgeon Smith, “Gentlemen, I am directed to arrest you, and take you over to Major Maclin’s quarters.” Colonel Chandler inquired, “By what authority, sir?” Captain Wilcox replied, “By authority of the Confederate States” and offered to show his order, directing him to make the arrest. Colonel Chandler then said, “How do you arrest us; as prisoners of war?” Captain Wilcox replied, “Yes, sir, as prisoners of war.” Colonel Chandler then replied, “I do not recognize your authority, sir, and refuse to obey your orders. I decline going to Major Maclin’s office unless you have an armed force with you.” Captain Wilcox answered, “I have a force sir,” and pointed out of the window to a detachment of about thirty-six armed infantry. Colonel Chandler then said, “I surrender myself to you as a prisoner of war, reserving to myself the right of protesting against these proceedings.” The other officers present, when called on by Captain Wilcox, replied, “Sir , we surrender on the same terms.” Captain Wilcox then said, {p.558} “Gentlemen, will you go over to Colonel Waite’s quarters with me?” Colonel Chandler replied, “We are your prisoners, and will go if you order us.” Captain Wilcox then said, “You remain here.” He then left the room, and the officers remained in it, under charge of a guard, until Captain Wilcox returned after arresting Colonel Waite, when they were marched, under charge of the guard, to Major Maclin’s office, in company with other officers who had been taken prisoners.

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No. 8.

Report of Lieut. Col. Gouv. Morris, First U. S. Infantry, of the surrender of Fort Chadbourne.

HEADQUARTERS FORT CHADBOURNE, TEX., February 28, 1861.

COLONEL: I have the honor to report to you, that in compliance with General Orders No. 5, dated Headquarters Department of Texas, February 18, 1861, I have this day entered into a written agreement with Col. H. E. McCulloch (commissioner on the part of Texas for this district), to deliver to him the public property at this post, when and as soon as transportation can be sent here to move this command to the coast. I therefore earnestly request that you will cause to be dispatched for this purpose twelve wagons, if the supplies have to be transported the whole way; but if drawn at San Antonio, or other points on the route, ten wagons in addition to the three now at the post will answer. Even this may be considered an unusual allowance of transportation; but if it is considered that there are to be moved one lieutenant-colonel one captain, one assistant surgeon with the rank of captain, one second lieutenant, one chaplain, and their servants, consisting of one man, four women, and three children (slaves), Company G, First Infantry, laundresses and children belonging to it, together with a detachment of Company I, First Infantry, with laundresses of same company, and the hospital matron and stores, as also the records of the post, the requisition cannot be deemed extravagant, or more than is required to move the command as stipulated by treaty. The treaty in question does not state which party shall furnish the necessary transportation to enable the troops to vacate Texas, and I therefore make this requisition on the commander of the department, and the commissioner has agreed with me to make the same requisition to the commissioners on the part of Texas at San Antonio.

I am, colonel, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

GOUV. MORRIS, Lieutenant-Colonel First Infantry, Commanding.

Col. C. A. WAITE, First Infantry, Commanding Department of Texas, San Antonio, Tex.

{p.559}

No. 9.

Report of Capt. E. Kirby Smith, Second U. S. Cavalry, of the evacuation of Camp Colorado, Tex.

CAMP NEAR FORT MASON, TEX., March 11, 1861.

I have the honor to report the arrival this day of my company (B, Second Cavalry) at Fort Mason, Tex., where it awaits the orders of the colonel commanding the department.

Camp Colorado, Tex., was evacuated by my command on the 26th February, 1861, under Department Orders No. 51 of February 18, 1861, under the following circumstances:

Col. H. E. McCulloch arrived at Camp Colorado, Tex., on the 22d of February, and presented his papers, deriving from the convention and legislature of Texas authority as commissioner on the part of Texas to treat for the surrender of the public property at Colorado, Chadbourne, and Cooper. Under instructions from the same authority, Colonel McCulloch demanded the surrender of the arms, equipments, horses, &c., in the possession of the troops under my command, together with all the public property at the post. Colonel McCulloch presented his commission as colonel of cavalry in the service of the State of Texas, and enforced his demand by the presence of several companies of State troops encamped in the vicinity.

These demands met with an unqualified refusal, and in my interview with Colonel McCulloch on the 22d, my reply was that I could never under any circumstances, give up my arms and horses, or negotiate upon terms that would dishonor the troops under my command, and that, were such a demand persisted in, I would mount my command, and endeavor to cut my way through any force opposed to me.

Terms were agreed upon between Colonel McCulloch and myself for the surrender of the public property at the post, but before their signature, on the 23d, the circular of the commissioners at San Antonio, with General Twiggs’ order thereon, was received.

The inclosed is a copy of the document, signed by Colonel McCulloch and myself, in which we stipulate to be governed by the agreement entered into at San Antonio by General Twiggs and the commissioners on the part of the State of Texas.

Duplicate invoices and receipts were made and taken of all the public property turned over to Colonel McCulloch, the commissioner.

The post was evacuated on the 26th, and the troops marched out with their arms, equipments, horses, ten days’ rations, and all the transportation in the possession of the A. A. Q. M. Owing to the want of transportation, private property and clothing belonging to officers and men were abandoned and sacrificed.

The evacuation of the post was hastened, as the presence of the undisciplined troops of the Convention, with the irritable feelings of our men under their unceremonious removal, might soon have occasioned a collision.

I am, sir, respectfully, your obedient servant,

E. KIRBY SMITH, Captain, Second Cavalry.

ASSISTANT ADJUTANT-GENERAL, Department of Texas.

{p.560}

[Inclosure.]

CAMP COLORADO, TEX., February 25, 1861.

On the 22d day of this month, Henry E. McCulloch, as the commissioner appointed by the Convention of Texas to negotiate with the officers of the U. S. Army for the delivery of their arms, public property, &c., of the Government in their hands to the State of Texas, and the transportation of the troops out of Texas, called on Capt. E. Kirby Smith, Second Cavalry, commanding this post, and demanded the surrender of the same, with its arms, munitions of war, and every kind of public property belonging to the Government of the United States, and the said McCulloch, as commissioner, and Smith, as commander, entered into a negotiation different from that agreed upon by the commissioners at San Antonio and General Twiggs, but having received official information of the said agreement entered into at San Antonio, have agreed to conform to it, and now stipulate fully in accordance with it, neither asking nor yielding, anything more or less, and both agreeing that, as far as it is in their power, it shall be fully and fairly carried into effect on their part.

E. KIRBY SMITH, Captain, Second Cavalry, Commanding Post.

H. E. McCULLOCH, Commissioner, and Colonel Commanding Northwestern Frontier, Texas.

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No. 10.

Report of Maj. C. C. Sibley, Third U. S. Infantry, of the evacuation of Fort McIntosh, Tex.

CAMP WITHERELL, MOUTH OF THE RIO GRANDE, TEXAS, April 9, 1861.

SIR: I have the honor to transmit herewith, inclosed, a post return of the troops at Fort McIntosh, Tex., on the 12th of March, on which day the post was evacuated and the command marched on Fort Brown, Tex., in obedience to letter of Maj. F. J. Porter, assistant adjutant-genera], of the 4th of March, 1861. The public property left behind was turned over to Mr. C. Callaghan, the agent of the commissioners of the State of Texas.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

C. C. SIBLEY, Major Third Infantry, Commanding.

Lieut. Col. L. THOMAS, Assistant Adjutant-General, U. S. Army.

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No. 11.

Report of Lieut. Col. Electus Backus, Third U. S. Infantry, of the evacuation of Fort Brown, Tex.

BROWNSVILLE, TEX., March, 30, 1861.

COLONEL: On the 20th instant I abandoned the post of Fort Brown, Tex., and gave it in possession to Mr. H. B. Waller, agent and attorney for E. B. Nichols, commissioner for the State of Texas. Our national {p.561} flag was saluted by Captain Bowman’s company, Third Infantry, as it was hauled down, and a police force from Brownsville took possession of the fort and held it until the arrival of the State troops. I think six companies marched in during the day. All but three have left for different stations.

I am, most respectfully, your obedient servant,

E. BACKUS, Lieutenant-Colonel Third, Infantry, Commanding.

Col. S. COOPER, Adjutant-General U. S. Army, Washington, D. C.

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No. 12.

Report of Bvt. Maj. O. E. Shepherd, Third U. S. Infantry, of the evacuation of Fort Duncan, Tex.

HEADQUARTERS FORT DUNCAN, TEX., March 20, 1861.

SIR: I respectfully report that this post was evacuated by the troops of the United States to-day, about midday. The public property has been turned over to Mr. John C. Crawford, agent for the State of Texas, in pursuance of Department Orders No. 44, dated March 8, 1861.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

O. L. SHEPHERD, Captain, Third Infantry, Brevet Major, Commanding Post.

Col. S. COOPER, Adjutant-General U. S. Army, Washington, D. C.

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No. 13.

Reports of Maj. C. C. Sibley, Third U. S. Infantry, of the surrender of his command at Saluria, Tex.

HDQRS. BAT. FIRST, THIRD, AND EIGHTH INFANTRY, Saluria, Tex., April 25, 1861.

SIR: I have the honor to report that I have this morning surrendered this battalion, consisting of two companies of the First Infantry, with the adjutant and non-commissioned staff and band of the same regiment, three companies of the Third and two companies of the Eighth Infantry, including nine officers, to the forces of the Confederate States under the command of Col. Earl Van Dorn.

Two unsuccessful attempts have been made by me to escape with this command, the Star of the West (transport) having been captured before we were able to reach her anchorage, off Matagorda Bay, and on the night of the 24th of April three steamers, having some eight hundred men and some pieces of artillery on board, coming down the bay, and taking up such a posit-ion as to prevent our retreat in the two small schooners in which we were endeavoring to make our escape, and a fourth steamer, with some four hundred men, one 24 and two 6 pounder pieces of artillery, having early in the morning of the 25th taken up a position to prevent our escape by running out of the bay, I was obliged to capitulate under the most favorable terms which I could obtain.

{p.562}

The shores of this bay are extremely low and partially inundated, and the channel seems to be nearly one mile from the ]and. The pilots have constantly refused us both information and material assistance.

It is extremely unfortunate that the steamer Mohawk had left the coast at this time, as its presence might have saved us from this humiliating disaster.

It affords me pleasure, great pleasure, to state the officers and men of my command have shown the most unwavering loyalty to the Government, the men, with two exceptions, having taken the oath necessary for their return to the United States.

I inclose herewith a copy of the terms of the capitulation; also copy of the parole given by the officers and the oath administered to the men. On my arrival with the command in New York I shall have the honor to make a more full and complete report.

I have the honor to be, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

C. C. SIBLEY, Major Third Infantry, Commanding.

ADJUTANT-GENERAL U. S. ARMY, Washington, D. C.

[Inclosure No. 1.]

SALURIA, TEX., April 25, 1861.

Articles of agreement this day entered into between Maj. C. C. Sibley, of the U. S. Army, on the one part, and Col. Earl Van Dorn, of the C. S. Army, on the other part, viz:

It is stipulated and agreed to that the United States troops, officers, and men, shall become prisoners of war, with the privilege of giving their paroles of honor if officers, and their oaths if soldiers, not to bear arms or exercise any of the functions of their office, under their commissions or enlistments, against the Confederate States of America, unless an exchange of prisoners shall be made, or until released by the authority of the President of the Confederate States. The arms and equipments of the men, and all the public property in the possession of the company commanders, to be given up to an agent, appointed for the purpose, on board the transport which shall be employed to convey those who may desire it to the United States; private property to be unmolested.

It is further stipulated and agreed to, that all the officers and men who shall give their paroles and oaths, as above stated, shall be allowed to pass unmolested through the Confederate States of America, by the way of Galveston and up the Mississippi River to any point they see fit to go within the limits of the United States of America, or by any other route they may see fit to take.

C. C. SIBLEY, Major Third Infantry, Commanding Troops.

EARL VAN DORN, Colonel, C. S. Army, Commanding Troops.

[Inclosure No. 2.]

SALURIA, TEX., April 25, 1861.

To the authorities of the Confederate States of America:

I give my word of honor as an officer and a gentleman that I will hot bear arms nor exercise any of the functions of my office under my commission from the President of the United States, against the Confederate States of America, during the existence of the war between the said Confederate and United States, unless I shall be exchanged for another {p.563} prisoner or prisoners of war, or unless I shall be released by the President of the Confederate States. In consideration of the above parole it is understood that I am free to go and come wherever I may see fit, except that I shall not attempt to enter or depart from any fort, camp, or garrison of the Confederate States without the sanction of its commanding officer.

C. C. SIBLEY, Major Third Infantry, U. S. Army.

EARL VAN DORN, Colonel, Commanding Confederate Troops.

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HDQRS. BAT. FIRST, THIRD, AND EIGHTH INFANTRY, Camp near Fort Hamilton, N. Y., June 3, 1861.

SIR: Having already made a brief report of the capture of this command, I have now the honor to submit the following additional particulars connected with the embarkation of the troops and the capitulation in Matagorda Bay on the 25th of April.

Of the seven companies comprised in this command, the three companies of the Third Infantry arrived at Indianola on the 13th of April, at which date I relieved Lieutenant-Colonel Backus in the command, and encamped in rear of the town to await the arrival of the troops designated as a part of the complement number for embarkation on the steamer Star of the West, then lying off the coast near the mouth of Matagorda Bay. On the 17th these troops, consisting of the adjutant and non-commissioned staff and band, and two companies of the First Infantry and two companies of the Eighth Infantry, arrived at my camp, when I immediately marched with the whole command to the wharf at Indianola, where the baggage, camp and garrison equipage, and stores, were stowed on two small steamers, which had been engaged as lighters to convey the troops to the Star of the West. The troops slept on the wharf on the night of the 17th, and, embarking early in the morning of the 18th, the steamers got under way, and proceeded down the harbor. On arriving at the designated point, it was found that the Star of the West had disappeared from her anchorage, and I was reluctantly compelled to return to the camp previously occupied near Indianola. During the 19th and 20th I made unsuccessful efforts to obtain some other means of transportation, and on the 21st I succeeded in chartering two small schooners-the Horace, of one hundred and sixty-eight, and the Urbana, of one hundred and thirty-eight tons burden. The latter not having discharged her cargo we were obliged to unload it, the parties working during the day and most of the night of the 22d, and on the 23d we, again proceeded down the bay, towed by the small steamer Fashion. The weather was extremely unfavorable, the wind blowing from the northeast across the bar, and on the 24th the master of one of the schooners reported that it would, under the circumstances, be absolutely impossible to manage his vessel at sea, there being at this time more than two hundred persons on board, including some thirty-five women and children, together with the subsistence stores and property. I was therefore, compelled to seek for an additional transport, and Captain Bowman, of the Third, and Lieutenant Greene, of the First Infantry, with a detail of thirty-four men, taken from all the companies, were dispatched on the Fashion to endeavor to obtain another vessel, which was understood to be lying at the port of Lavaca. During the afternoon of the 24th we obtained with the small boats an additional supply of {p.564} brackish water from the marshy lands at Decklas Point., and by night, nothing having been heard of the detachment, some suspicion of the seizure of this party and of a movement to cut us off was entertained on the schooners, but we could not get out across the bar. The easterly winds which prevailed, and the refusal of the pilots along the coast to come to our aid, had completed our disaster. The night was cloudy and dark, but about 11 o’clock three steamers were visible within a short distance of our anchorage to the windward. Lieutenant Hopkins, of the Third, was sent off in a small boat, to obtain some information in regard to these steamers. He could get no answer from them, and returned to the schooners. At daylight, on the morning of the 25th, it was observed that these steamers had on board some eight hundred or one thousand troops, effectually protected with tiers of cotton bales on both decks. It is supposed these steamers had several pieces of artillery.

Colonel Van Dorn sent a messenger, requesting an interview, which, after consultation with the officers, was granted, and at this time a large steamer from New Orleans came over the bar and took up a position below us. She had on board two 24-pounders and two field pieces, and probably five hundred troops. There being no further hope of our escape, I was obliged to accede to the requirements of Colonel Van Dorn, and surrender my command as prisoners of war.

On the 28th the brig Mystic arrived off the port of Saluria, bringing Lieutenant Greene and the detachment sent up on the 24th. They had been captured at Indianola. The command was then divided; the battalion of the First Infantry being assigned to the schooner Horace, that of the Eighth to the schooner Urbana, and that of the Third Infantry to the brig Mystic. The two first named were towed over the bar on the 30th, and proceeded to sea. The brig was unable to pass the bar until the 3d of May, owing to the low water. The two schooners arrived in the harbor of New York on the 31st of May, and the brig on the 1st of June after a rough passage of a month from the coast of Texas.

It is not necessary to speak of the accumulated hardships to which the troops have been necessarily subjected, crowded as they were upon these inconvenient, open transports, and I again take occasion to remark upon the high-toned, unwavering spirit of the officers, and the fidelity and good conduct of the enlisted men of this command. I inclose herewith a copy of the articles of capitulation;* also, copy of a letter from Maj. Larkin Smith relative to the embarkation of the troops [A]; the official report of Lieut. J. B. Greene, First Infantry [C]; a field return of the command on the 25th of April; ** a copy of the parole of the officers,* and a copy of the oath taken by the enlisted men [B].

I have the honor to be, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

C. C. SIBLEY, Major Third Infantry, Commanding Troops.

Bvt. Brig. Gen. L. THOMAS, Adjutant-General U. S. Army, Washington, D. C.

* See inclosures to report of April 25, p. 562.

** Not found.

[Inclosure A.]

HEADQUARTERS CAMP ON GREEN LAKE I TEXAS, April 13, 1861.

SIR: Orders from Army headquarters direct the troops embarking at Indianola to proceed to New York Harbor. I am here by direction of Colonel Waite, to arrange the troops for embarkation. So soon as {p.565} all the troops arrive which are to sail in the Star of the West, and as I am fully instructed from department headquarters, neither of which can be before Monday, I will order the force from here to report to you.

I made arrangements for your command to take the Empire City, but as a complement for her arrived while waiting for you, and in uncertainty about your coming, I was obliged to dispatch her.

Yours, very respectfully,

LARKIN SMITH, Brevet Major, and Capt., Eighth Infantry.

Maj. C. C. SIBLEY, Commanding Detachment, Third Infantry.

[Inclosure B.]

SALURIA, TEX., April 26, 1861.

To the authorities of the Confederate States of America:

We do solemnly swear that we will not bear arms against the Confederate States of America, nor in any way give aid and comfort to the United States against the Confederate States during the existence of the war between the said United States and Confederate States, unless we shall be duly exchanged for other prisoners of war, or until we shall be released by the President of the Confederate States. In consideration of this oath, it is understood that we are free to go wherever we may see fit.

EARL VAN DORN, Colonel, Commanding Confederate Troops.

[Inclosure C.]

ABOARD SCHOONER URBANA, At Sea, May 1, 1861.

SIR: In compliance with verbal directions from you, I left the command on the 24th of April, then on two schooners anchored just within the bar of Passo Caballo, and with a party of two non-commissioned officers and twenty-three privates, under the command of Capt. A. W. Bowman, of the Third U. S. Infantry, proceeded to the wharf at Powderhorn. We left the command in the morning in the steamer Fashion, and arrived in the afternoon at the wharf at Powderhorn. Captain Bowman told me nothing as to what his orders were, but shortly after arriving at Powderhorn he directed me to proceed, in company with Lieutenant Whipple, to Lavaca, and endeavor to secure the brig Mystic, which brig had already been hired for the transportation of the command by Lieutenant Whipple, but for some cause had been kept back.

Lavaca is distant from Powderhorn sixteen miles. We left at about 6 in the evening, and returned at about 12 the same night, without being able to effect anything definite, and I learned afterwards that the brig had been seized by a band of armed men, although at that time I knew it not.

On my return to the Fashion, at about 12 at night, I was informed of the existence of a rumor that our command was to be taken prisoners. I could not find the origin of the rumor satisfactorily, and on consideration of the compact between the State of Texas and General Twiggs concerning the exit of the United States troops from the State, I thought the rumor an idle one. Nevertheless, willing to err on the safe side, if at all, I determined to get up steam on the Fashion and return down the {p.566} bay to the schooners. On examination I discovered that the fireman and all the hands of the steamer, as well as the engineer, had left the boat. Early the next morning I discovered a steam propeller coming down the bay, and when it came nearer I discovered that it was filled with men, surrounded by a barricade of cotton bales. I immediately informed Captain Bowman of this fact. The steam propeller came down to the pier-head below where we were fastened, and made fast. Shortly after, a party of men, consisting of one hundred or more, came to the shore end of the pier. Captain Bowman left the steamer and went on shore. After remaining on shore about two hours or more, he returned with a paper containing a written agreement, by which the troops on the steamer were to deliver up their arms and surrender themselves “prisoners of war,” to be at liberty to go where they chose, after swearing not to bear arms against the “Confederate States of America,” during the now existing war between the Confederate States and the United States, unless exchanged or released. I immediately had the arms stacked, and read the agreement to the men of the command; told them they were at liberty to leave the vessel and go where they chose, as far as I was concerned, and left the ship myself.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JAMES B. GREENE, First Lieutenant, First U. S. Infantry.

Maj. C. C. SIBLEY, Third Infantry, Commanding Detachment.

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No. 14.

Report of Corporal John C. Hesse, Company A, Eighth U. S. Infantry, of the rescue of the colors of his regiment, at San Antonio, Tex.

WASHINGTON, D. C., September 6, 1864.

SIR: Believing that I am entitled to receive a “medal of honor,” as provided by the resolution of Congress under date of July 12, 1862, to provide for the presentation of medals of honor to enlisted men of the Army and volunteer forces who have distinguished or may distinguish themselves in battle during the present war, I have the honor to make the following statement:

At the outbreak of the rebellion the headquarters of the Eighth U. S. Infantry were stationed at San Antonio, Tex. I was a corporal of Company A of that regiment, and detailed as clerk at its headquarters. On the 23d of April, 1861, the officers and a few enlisted men at that time present at San Antonio were taken prisoners by the rebel troops under the command of Colonel Van Dorn. All the officers, with the exception of Lieut. Edward L. Hartz, adjutant Eighth Infantry, left a few days afterwards for the States. A few days subsequent, upon going to the former office of the regimental headquarters, the building being then in possession and under control of the rebels, I met there Lieutenant Hartz and Serg. Maj. Joseph K. Wilson, Eighth Infantry (now second lieutenant, Eighth Infantry). Our regimental colors being in the office, Lieutenant Hartz proposed to us to take the colors from the staffs, conceal them beneath our clothing, and try to carry them off. We did so. I took the torn color which the regiment had carried through the Mexican war, put it around my body under my shirt and blouse, and passed out of the building, which was strongly {p.567} guarded by the rebels. Fortunately the rebels did not suspect what a precious load we carried concealed with us, for if they had our lives would not have been worth much. We put the colors in one of Lieutenant Hartz’s trunks, and next day left San Antonio for the North. On the route we guarded the colors with our lives, always fearing that the rebels might find out what we had taken away and come after us; but they did not, and we arrived safe with our colors on the 26th of May, 1861, in Washington City, and turned them over to the regiment.

Under these circumstances I think that I am entitled to the honor of receiving a medal, as I believe that Congress intended to award them to enlisted men who have done acts similar to mine. I therefore very respectfully request that I may receive one, believing that I have performed one of the highest duties of a soldier, having saved the colors of my regiment, and it will always be a happy day for me if I can see my regiment marching with their colors flying, and can say, “That color I have carried on my body, and have rescued it from the hands of the rebels.”

I am, colonel, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN C. HESSE, Formerly Corporal, Company A, Eighth U. S. Infantry, Now Clerk, Adjutant-General’s Office.

Col. E. D. TOWNSEND, Assistant Adjutant-General, Washington, D. C.

[Indorsement.]

WASHINGTON, D. C., September 6, 1864.

I indorse the within statement as true.

EDWARD L. HARTZ, Late Captain, U. S. Army.

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WAR DEPARTMENT, ADJUTANT-GENERAL’S OFFICE, Washington, September 10, 1864.

SIR: The Secretary of War directs that you cause a medal of honor to be engraved for Corporal John C. Hesse, Company A, Eighth United States Infantry, for good conduct in saving the colors of his regiment from capture by the rebels in Texas in 1861.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

E. D. TOWNSEND, Assistant Adjutant-General.

Mr. JOHN POTTS, Chief Clerk, War Department.

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No. 15.

Reports of Bvt. Lieut. Col. I. V. D. Reeve, Eighth U. S. Infantry, of the surrender of his command at San Lucas Spring, Tex.

CAMP NEAR SAN ANTONIO, TEX., May 12, 1861.

SIR: I take the earliest opportunity possible to inform you that the six companies of the Eighth Infantry under my command, while marching for the coast under the agreement made between General Twiggs (late of the U. S. Army) and the State of Texas, to the effect that the {p.568} troops should leave the State, were met by a force under command of Col. Earl Van Dorn, of the Southern Confederacy, and made prisoners of war. This occurred on the 9th instant, at San Lucas Spring, fifteen miles west of San Antonio. The force under my command, comprising the garrisons of Forts Bliss, Quitman, and Davis, amounted to an aggregate, when leaving the latter post, of 320. This embraces ten officers, two hospital stewards, and twelve musicians. Colonel Bomford, Sixth Infantry, was also with the command. On the day of surrender my command numbered 270 bayonets, being thus reduced by sickness, desertions, and stragglers (some of whom have since joined) who remained at Castroville from drunkenness or other causes. The force opposed to me numbered, as (then variously estimated at from 1,500 to 1,700 men) since ascertained to be, was 1,370 aggregate, the total being 848 cavalry, 361 infantry, and 95 artillery, with six field pieces.

When the demand for a surrender was made, I was told that the force opposed tome was “overwhelming.” I had halted in a good position for defense, and could have been overpowered only by a greatly superior force; and as none such was before me, I declined to surrender without the presentation of such force. It was on the march, and soon came in sight, but I was not satisfied of its strength until an officer of my command was permitted to examine and report to me the character and probable number of the forces. Upon his report I deemed resistance utterly hopeless, and therefore surrendered. My command is now encamped near the head of the San Antonio River, awaiting the orders of President Davis, to whom a messenger has been dispatched by Colonel Van Dorn. The officers on duty with the command were Captain Blake, Lieutenants Bliss, Lazelle, Peck, Frank, Van Horn, and W. G. Jones, Eighth Infantry; Lieutenant Freedley, Third Infantry, and Assistant Surgeon Peters, Medical Department. A more detailed report will be made as soon as practicable.

I am, sir, yours, respectfully,

I. V. D. REEVE, Brevet Lieutenant-Colonel, U. S. Army, Commanding.

Col. L. THOMAS, Adjutant-General U. S. Army, Washington, D. C.

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CAMP NEAR SAN ANTONIO, TEX., May 12, 1861.

SIR: In connection with the report which I have this day forwarded, relating to the surrender of the battalion of the Eighth Infantry under my command to the forces of the Confederate States of America, near this place, I also present the following details of the latter part of the March, and the circumstances which determined that surrender.

This report was not transmitted with the other, as it is extremely uncertain whether any reports of an official character are permitted to pass, through the post-office here or those elsewhere in the South.

On leaving Fort Bliss sufficient transportation could be procured to carry subsistence for only forty days, in which time it was expected the command would reach San Antonio, making some little allowance for detentions by the way.

At Forts Quitman and Davis stores were taken to last the commands from those posts to San Antonio, not being able to carry more with the transportation at hand. From Camp Hudson to Fort Clark persons were occasionally seen on the road who appeared to be watching our movements, but they said they belonged to rangers who had been on a scout.

{p.569}

At Fort Clark, where I arrived on the 2d of May, I learned that the mails had been detained for several days to prevent me from receiving information. It was reported by a stage passenger that the officers at San Antonio had been made prisoners of war. On all these subjects there were contradictory reports, and Do information could be obtained which would warrant any hostile act on my part. Such supplies as were called for were readily furnished, and offers of services were proffered by the commanding officer. This did not look much like hostility, nor did I really suspect any. The garrison had been re-enforced (being about 200 men), the post fortified to some extent, guns loaded and matches lighted on our approach; yet there did not appear any hostile intent towards us, as the explanation for all this was, that they “had beard that I had orders to attack and take Fort Clark.”

From this point rumors daily reached me, but so indefinite and contradictory as to afford no sure ground for hostile action on my part; and by taking such I could not know but I should be the first to break the treaty under which we were marching.

On reaching Uvalde on the 5th (near Fort Inge), I felt more, apprehension of hostility, though rumors were still very contradictory. To attempt, from this point, to return to New Mexico for the purpose of saving the command, would have been impracticable, for I had but five days’ rations, and our transportation was too much broken down to make the march without corn (which could not be had), even if everything but subsistence and ammunition had been abandoned. Behind us was the mounted force at Fort Clark, and a large mounted force said to be at San Antonio, reported to be from 700 to 2,000. At this time the only other method of escape left was to cross the Rio Grande, this being easy of accomplishment, but, of very doubtful propriety, particularly as it was yet uncertain whether we should not only break the treaty with Texas, but also compromise the United States with Mexico by crossing troops into her soil.

On the 6th, while continuing our march, we, heard that those companies at the coast had been disarmed, and that in all probability we would be also on our arrival there; that there would be a force of from 2,000 to 6,000 men against us. We then had no course open to us but to proceed, and, unless overpowered by numbers, to endeavor to fight our way to the coast, with the hope that some way of escape would be opened to us. On the 7th we heard that there were not more than 700 men in San Antonio, and such a force I knew would not be able to overpower us; and still with strong hope that we might be able to advance successfully, I purchased (on the 8th) at Castroville a small additional supply of subsistence stores (all I could), enough for two days, which included the 12th instant, but could have been made to last several days, had I a reasonable prospect of seizing more in San Antonio. Before reaching Castroville I learned that there were troops encamped on the west side of the Leon, seven miles from San Antonio; that there were cavalry, infantry, and artillery, with four guns. I encamped on the 8th on the east side of the Medina, opposite to Castroville. Late, that evening I heard that the enemy would march to Surround us in our camp, and I had before heard that a section of artillery was on the way down from Fort Clark, following on our rear; and there was further report that it would pass us that night on the way to San Antonio. To avoid surprise and be in possession of plenty of water, I marched that night at 12 o’clock to reach the Lioncito, six miles east of the Medina, and on my arrival there, finding Do signs of the advance of the enemy, I marched on three miles farther to a point suggested {p.570} and brought to my memory by Lieut. Z. R. Bliss, Eighth Infantry, called San Lucas Spring. There is quite a high hill a few hundred yards from the spring, having some houses, corrals, &c., which, together with the commanding position and a well of water in the yard, rendered this point a very strong one for a small command. This place is known as Allen’s Hill. It is eight miles from where the enemy was encamped, and there I made a halt to await his advance, and parked the wagon train for defense; all of which preparations were made a little after sunrise on the 9th.

About 9 o’clock two officers approached, bearing a white flag and a message from Colonel Van Dorn, demanding an unconditional surrender of the United States troops under my command, stating that he had an “overwhelming force.” I declined to surrender without the presentation of such a force or a report of an officer, whom I would select from my command, of its character and capacity of compelling a surrender. The advance of the enemy came in sight over a rise of ground about a mile distant, and as the whole force soon came in sight and continued in march down the long slope, Colonel Van Dorn’s messenger returned to me with directions to say that “if that display of force was not sufficient I could send an officer to examine it.” I replied that it was “not sufficient.” I directed Lieutenant Bliss to proceed, conducted by the same messenger, to make a careful examination of the enemy. He was taken to a point so distant that nothing satisfactory could be ascertained, and he informed his conductors that he would “make no report upon such an examination.” This being reported to Colonel Van Dorn, he permitted as close an examination as Lieutenant Bliss desired. The enemy had formed line on the low ground some half-mile in front of my position, perpendicular to and crossing the road, and neither force could be plainly seen by the other in consequence of the high bushes which intervened. Lieutenant Bliss rode the whole length of the enemy’s line within thirty yards, estimating the numbers and examining the character of his armament. He reported to me that the cavalry were armed with rifles and revolvers; the infantry with muskets (some rifle) and revolvers; that there were four pieces of artillery, with from ten to twelve men each; that he estimated the force at 1,200 at least, and there might be 1,500 (since ascertained to be 1,400). With this force before me, an odds of about five to one, being short of provisions, having no hope of re-enforcements, no means of leaving the coast, even should any portion of the command succeed in reaching it, and with every probability of utter annihilation in making the attempt, without any prospect of good to be attained, I deemed that stubborn resistance and consequent bloodshed and sacrifice of life would be inexcusable and criminal, and I therefore surrendered.

Colonel Van Dorn immediately withdrew his force, and permitted us to march to San Antonio with our arms and at our leisure. We arrived there on the 10th, and on the 11th an officer was sent to our camp to receive our arms and other public property, all of which was surrendered.

I will state here that we have been treated, in the circumstances of our capture, with generosity and delicacy, and harrowed and wounded as our feelings are, we have not had to bear personal contumely and insult.

I am, sir, yours, respectfully,

I. V. D. REEVE, Brevet Lieutenant-Colonel, U. S. Army, Commanding.

Col. L. THOMAS, Adjutant-General U. S. Army, Washington, D. C.

{p.571}

–––

KANKAKEE CITY, ILL., June 18, 1861.

SIR: I have the honor to report my arrival at this place, yesterday, the 17th instant, having come from San Antonio, Tex., with as much dispatch as the means of travel and communication would permit, leaving that place on the 4th.

I inclose herewith a copy of my report made under date of May 12,* fearing that that report did not reach your office in consequence of the disturbed state of the country and the uncertainty of the mails. I also inclose a detailed report of the latter portion of the march and surrender, to which reference was made in my former report. This latter report could have been long ago made had there been any reasonable prospect of its reaching you. This is the first point, where I have been able to stop, from which letters could be forwarded with safety.

I hereby report further how I happen to be here. After surrender the troops were paroled-the officers to the limits of the Confederate States of America, and the men placed under oath not to leave the county of Bexar, Texas. Up to the 4th of June Colonel Van Dorn was expecting orders to grant unlimited paroles to the officers, and told me that he had no doubt such would be granted on return of his messenger from Montgomery. The 1st instant I received the sad, crushing intelligence of the death of my oldest daughter, and Colonel Van Dorn at once offered me the privilege of coming home. I availed myself of his generosity, both with the view to make arrangements for the care of my remaining children and to communicate with the War Department, in the hope of being of some service to the prisoners of war in Texas by representing their true state and condition, Not knowing whether my reporting in person would be either desirable or proper, I send the following brief statement:

Up to the time I left San Antonio the troops were in quarters, and under the care and control of their own officers. They were allowed the usual subsistence and all the clothing necessary; had no restrictions as to limits, except attendance on retreat roll-call, and could be permitted to go anywhere within the county upon a written pass signed by their own officers. With the exception of some five or six they remained faithful to their Government, and refused all offers and inducements to join the Confederate service. The day before I left Colonel Van Dorn informed me that they would be moved into camp some five miles from town, and placed under charge of Confederate officers, who would attend to their wants, thus separating them from the care of their own officers. In all this they have been as well if not much better treated than is the usual fate of prisoners of war. Their peril consists in the fact that they are retained as hostages against the rigorous treatment of any prisoners who may fall into the power of the United States. Colonel Van Dorn does not regard the parole which is given to the officers as revocable by his Government, and their peril is not, therefore, the same as that of the men in his view of the case; therefore it is not easy to see, in the same view of the case, any good reasons for restrictions as to limits being made in the parole. The officers are furnished with quarters and board at the expense of the Confederacy, at least while they remain in San Antonio.

I shall be in Dansville, in New York, in a few days, where communications will reach me. Hoping that I may be justified in the course I have pursued, as represented in my reports,

I remain, sir, yours, very respectfully,

I. V. D. REEVE, Brevet Lieutenant-Colonel, U. S. Army.

Col. L. THOMAS, Adjutant-General U. S. Army, Washington, D. C.

* See page 568.

{p.572}

No. 16.

Reports of Col. Earl Van Dorn, C. S. Army, of the surrender of the U. S. troops in Texas, and of his subsequent operations.

HEADQUARTERS TROOPS IN TEXAS, San Antonio, Tex., May 10, 1861.

GENERAL: I have the honor to report that I met the last column of the United States troops in Texas yesterday at noon, on the El Paso road, about thirteen miles from this city, and that Colonel Reeve, the commanding officer, being satisfied of my greatly superior force, surrendered unconditionally. There were ten officers and three hundred and thirty-seven men, including thirty men who were captured some time since in San Antonio, by Capt. James Duff, which I have heretofore neglected to report.

My command consisted of Colonel McCulloch’s cavalry, viz: six companies, Captains Pitts, Tobin, Ashby, Bogges, Fry, and Nelson; a squadron of Colonel Ford’s State troops, under Lieutenant-Colonel Baylor’s command, viz, Captains Walker and Pyron; a battery of light artillery, Captain Edgar; a section of artillery, Captain Teel; two small detachments of horse, under Lieutenants Paul and Dwyer, and an independent detachment of cavalry, Captain Goode. All these troops I placed under the command of Col. H. E. McCulloch. In addition to these there was a battalion of infantry raised for the occasion in San Antonio, under command of Lieut. Col. James Duff, Captains Maverick, Wilcox, Kampman, Navarro, and Prescott, Maj. John Carolan, in all about thirteen hundred men. I have Men actuated in this instance by the same motive which induced me to bring an overwhelming force against the United States troops at Indianola, viz, a desire to arrest and disarm them without bloodshed.

All the arms and other public property are now being turned over to officers appointed to receive them, and the officers and men are in camp at the San Pedro Springs near this city.

Having in consideration the proclamation of the President of the United States declaring certain persons “pirates " under the laws of the United States for seizures of vessels or goods by persons acting by authority of the Confederate States, I have determined to hold these prisoners of war until I receive further instructions from you. If the officers prefer it I shall allow them to proceed to Montgomery on parole, to report to you for your decision.

I would not do justice to the troops, under my command if I failed to report to you the admirable manner in which they conducted themselves throughout the expedition; the cheerful obedience to the orders of the officers elected over them; the discipline that was maintained in their camp, where judges, lawyers, mechanics, and laborers could be seen walking post as sentinels on the same rounds, all willing to do duty in a good cause, and at the close there was the delicacy of brave men, of soldiers, which checked everything like exultation over an unfortunate enemy whom a stern necessity bad caused us to disarm. It was gratifying to me, as it is a pleasure to me to report to you, that the whole expedition passed off without one unpleasant incident.

The gentlemen who were at headquarters with me, to whom I am indebted for services cheerfully and promptly rendered, for which I owe them my thanks, were, Col. P. N. Luckett, quartermaster-general of Texas, Maj. G. J. Howard, Mr. J. T. Ward, General James Willie, Dr. H. P. Howard, Mr. R. A. Howard, Mr. D. E. Tessier, Judges Fred. Tate {p.573} and T. J. Devine, Capts. D. D. Shea and W. T. Mechling, and J. F. Minter and Lieut. J. P. Major, C. S. Army.

Very respectfully, sir, I am your obedient servant,

EARL VAN DORN, Colonel, Commanding.

Brig. Gen. S. COOPER, Adjutant and Inspector General, Montgomery, Ala.

–––

HEADQUARTERS TROOPS IN TEXAS, San Antonio, June 3, 1861.

GENERAL: I have the honor herewith to report my operations as commander of the troops in Texas for the last part of April and the month of May; also to inclose you copies of all orders issued by me, and of all letters of instruct-ions given to officers under my command.

I respectfully refer you to my reports of the 17th and 26th of April* and the 10th of May** in regard to the seizure of the Star of the West, the capture of the United States troops at Saluria, under Major Sibley, and of those under Colonel Reeve, near this city, the latter now held as prisoners of war, and subject to your orders.

Col. H. E. McCulloch, in command of his regiment and a battery of light artillery, marched from this city on the 29th, under Orders No. 8, from these headquarters, and letters of instructions herewith inclosed. Five companies of Colonel Ford’s regiment, recently mustered into service, marched this morning for the forts on the Upper Rio Grande. Two more will march to-morrow for Forts Clark and Camp Wood. The dispositions of this regiment will be seen in General Orders No. 8 and letters of instructions to Colonel Ford, herewith inclosed.

I have caused to be mustered into service a company of light artillery, composed of old soldiers. The battery (four guns) is in good working condition, with an excellent, energetic, and intelligent officer in command. It is under Colonel McCulloch’s command, on Red River, to be in readiness for an emergency in that direction. There should be one also at Fort Inge, near the Rio Grande, and I shall put one in the field as soon as I can.

In view of the large number of United States troops in New Mexico and Mesilla, I have also mustered into service a company of foot artillery, composed of old soldiers, under a good officer, and put them at Fort Bliss, with instructions to throw up a small field-work, and to defend it with the six pieces of artillery now there. A company of infantry is also ordered there, besides two companies of cavalry. Colonel Ford is authorized to concentrate the troops on his line of defense. I have ordered Captain Moore, at Galveston, to muster into service a company of troops, to man and to guard the batteries at that place. One disaffected citizen, as they now stand, might spike the guns. They should be ready at all times. For the same reasons a company will be mustered into service at Pass Cavallo, near Indianola. Six pieces of heavy artillery are now on the way there from Fort Clark. It will be necessary to have quite a large infantry force on the Lower Rio Grande, especially at Fort Brown, where there are many heavy guns and a large quantity of public property, as well also as the military necessity of a force in that section of the State. I shall muster into service one regiment of infantry, including the infantry companies already mentioned and one stationed at Camp Verde.

{p.574}

The staff officers are doing all that can be done without money to keep their respective departments in working condition, but very soon everything must stop, unless money is received. Small sums have been borrowed from individuals from time to time, but it is now becoming absolutely necessary that the staff officers should be provided with funds.

Colonel Reeve’s command (prisoners of war) are, now quartered in this city, but I shall move them into camp in a few days. They are, quite, an expense to us. Will you please give me some general rules in regard to the allowances, &c., of prisoners of war?

I do not know whether or not it was the intention of the War Department that I should be continued in command in Texas. I have executed my orders in regard to the capture of the United States troops, and, at the same time that I do not wish to be considered as shrinking from any duty that may be imposed upon me in times like these, I must say that I would prefer being where I might have active service, suitable to my age and inclinations. My duties here now are entirely in the office, where an older man would be infinitely more efficient than myself.

Very respectfully, general, I am your obedient servant,

EARL VAN DORN, Colonel, Commanding.

Brigadier-General COOPER, Adjutant and Inspector General, Montgomery, Ala.

* Not found.

** See page 572.

[Inclosure No. 1.]

GENERAL ORDERS, No. 8.

HEADQUARTERS TROOPS IN TEXAS, San Antonio, Tex., May 24, 1861.

I. Two lines of defense for the western frontiers of Texas are hereby established: the first line to extend from Red River to the junction of the North and Main Conchas; the second line from Fort Inge to Fort Bliss. The first line will embrace the following military stations, viz: A camp on or near Red River, opposite Forts Cobb and Arbuckle, Ind. T.; Camp Cooper, Fort Chadbourne, Camp Colorado, and camp at the junction of the North and Main Conchas. The second line will embrace the following military stations, viz: Fort Bliss, Fort Quitman, Fort Davis, Camp Stockton, Fort Lancaster, Fort Clark, Fort Inge, and Camp Wood. The first line will be garrisoned by the First Regiment of Texas Mounted Riflemen and Edgar’s battery of artillery, and will be commanded by Colonel McCulloch. The second line will be garrisoned by the Second Regiment of Texas Mounted Riflemen, Teel’s company of artillery, McCallister’s company of infantry, and a battery of artillery, and will be commanded by Colonel Ford.

II. For the present the following assignment of troops is ordered, viz: First line, four companies of cavalry and Edgar’s battery of artillery at the camp at or near Red River; two companies of cavalry at Camp Cooper; two companies of cavalry at Fort Chadbourne; and two companies of cavalry at the junction of the North and the Main Conchas. A detachment of cavalry from Fort Chadbourne, to consist of one lieutenant and twenty men, will be stationed at Camp Colorado, and the same number from the camp on the Concha will be stationed at Fort Mason. [NOTE.-The above dispositions for the first line will be made by Colonel McCulloch upon his return from the expedition upon which he has been ordered.] Second line, two companies of cavalry, Teel’s company of artillery, and McCallister’s company of infantry at Fort Bliss; one company of cavalry at Fort Davis; one company of cavalry at Camp Stock- {p.575} ton; one company of cavalry at Fort Lancaster; two companies of cavalry at Fort Clark; one company of cavalry and a battery of light artillery at Fort Inge; one company of cavalry at Camp Wood; and one company of cavalry will be stationed at Fort McIntosh, and will, until further orders, be included in the second line.

III. The commanders of these lines will be held responsible for their defense against the enemies of the Confederate States, as far as it is in their power. They will therefore select the point on their lines for their headquarters, make tours of inspection whenever they may deem it necessary and advisable, assign the companies of their regiments to posts, the field officers to their duties; and they will be allowed to concentrate their commands whenever an emergency may seem to demand it, and make such suggestions from time to time in regard to a change of posts as they may see fit.

IV. The officers of the Quartermaster, Subsistence, and Ordnance Departments will take measures to arm, subsist, and give the needful transportation to give efficiency to the troops in these lines. Officers in command of troops will make the necessary requisitions for arms, ammunition, accouterments, and for supplies of every kind necessary to put their commands in readiness for the field. The troops for the first line will be supplied with forty days’ rations; those of the second line with a sufficient quantity to allow them to reach their posts.

V. The movements necessary to carry out these orders will be made without delay. Lieutenant-Colonel Baylor will give the necessary orders for the assignment of the companies now in this vicinity to the second line, and will exercise command until the arrival of Colonel Ford. Colonel Ford will assume at once, upon receipt of these orders, the command of the second line, placing the next senior officer in command at Fort Brown. He will, after mustering them into the C. S. Army, assign the three companies of his regiment now on the Rio Grande to the following posts, viz: One to Fort McIntosh, one to Fort Clark, and one to Fort Inge, until otherwise directed. Colonel Ford will also continue in command of the troops on the Lower Rio Grande.

By order of Col. Earl Van Dorn:

W. T. MECHLING, Acting Assistant Adjutant-General.

[Inclosure No. 2.]

HEADQUARTERS TROOPS IN TEXAS, San Antonio, Tex., May 25, 1861.

COLONEL: You will please march with the troops of your regiment and Edgar’s battery of artillery as soon as you can make the necessary preparations to put them in the field for active service for forty days, and taking the San Antonio and Camp Cooper road, passing through Fort Mason, Camp Colorado, and Camp Cooper, proceed to some point on Red River convenient to cross en route to Forts Cobb or Arbuckle. In passing through Camp Colorado you will order the company stationed there to join you, leaving in charge of that post a lieutenant and twenty men until you return. You will also direct the troops of your regiment at Fort Chadbourne and Camp Cooper to join you, leaving a commissioned officer and twenty men at each of those stations to guard the property.

Upon your arrival on Red River you will assume command of all the Texas State troops now in that vicinity under command of Colonel Young. With your own force and that you find already assembled {p.576} there it is hoped that you will be strong enough to make prisoners of war, or at least to defeat and drive off, all the United States troops you may find in the vicinity of Forts Cobb or Arbuckle. You are ordered there for that purpose. It is desirable, of course, to make them prisoners of war without bloodshed, if possible; but it is not essential, if to do so would cause too much delay. If you should be so fortunate as to take them prisoners of war, you will put them on parole, ration them, and give them the necessary transportation to Fort Smith, Ark., sending an escort of one company with them through the Indian Territory to Fort Smith, with letters to the commanding officer of the troops there, requesting him to see them on their way out of the country.

After accomplishing these instructions please dismiss Colonel Young’s command, return to your line of defense, and make the dispositions of your command ordered in General Orders, No. 8, from these headquarters, except that, in case of your success, you will remove all the public property in the three forts-Washita, Arbuckle, and Cobb-to the most convenient and defensible one, and establish there the command intended for the camp on Red River, to guard and defend it until further ordered. Please take occasion whilst in the vicinity of Fort Cobb to hold communication, if practicable, with the leading men of the friendly tribes of Indians, and give them every assurance of our friendship and good-will.

Having the highest opinion of your ability and energy, I do not deem it at all necessary to enter further into detail in this letter of instructions. The greatest latitude is given you, and if you find it advisable in your judgment to depart in any way from those already given, do so. You know the object for which you are sent.

Very respectfully, colonel, I am, your obedient servant,

EARL VAN DORN, Colonel, Commanding.

Col. H. E. MCCULLOCH, Commanding First Regiment of Texas Mounted Riflemen, San Antonio, Tex.

[Inclosure No. 3.]

HEADQUARTERS Troops IN TEXAS, San Antonio, Tex., May 28, 1861.

COLONEL: Having received reliable information (report of Colonel Young to the governor of the State) that the United States troops in the vicinity of our northern frontier bad fallen back towards Fort Leavenworth, the movement of your command in that direction is no longer necessary. Your letter of instructions in regard to the capture of those troops is recalled and countermanded. Please, therefore, proceed to make the dispositions of your troops directed in General Orders, No. 8, from these headquarters.

Very respectfully, colonel, I am, your obedient servant,

EARL VAN DORN, Colonel, Commanding.

Col. H. E. MCCULLOCH. Commanding First Regiment Texas Mounted Riflemen, San Antonio, Tex.

{p.577}

[Inclosure No. 4.]

HEADQUARTERS TROOPS IN TEXAS, San Antonio, Tex., May 27, 1861.

COLONEL: Copies Of your communications to the governor and your letter to me were duly received.* I am very much pleased with all you have done on your line. I herewith inclose you a copy of General Orders, No. 8, from these headquarters, wherein you will see the disposition of your regiment and your assignment to command. You will perceive that your command extends from Fort Bliss to Fort Inge, “and, until the regiment of infantry is completely organized,” as far as Brazos Santiago. The battery of artillery will be sent to Fort Inge as soon as it can be got in readiness. You had better send the artillery horses now with you to Inge, as they are better adapted to that service than any of those I could have selected here from the cavalry horses. Please order all the cavalry horses and equipments turned over by the United States troops on the Rio Grande to San Antonio. Please also designate some officer of experience and discretion to receipt for all the property turned over by the State to the Confederate States at Fort Brown and Brazos Santiago, and direct him to make a complete return of the same to the chief of the staff, Major Maclin, C. S. Army. Please do the same at each one of the posts of your command.

Within a short distance of El Paso or Fort Bliss there are several hundred United States troops. I have, therefore, ordered four companies there. There are five or six pieces of artillery at Forts Davis, Quitman, and Bliss, which I have ordered to Fort Bliss. It may be found practicable to capture the United States troops. You will perceive that you axe authorized to concentrate the troops on your line of defense. If the United States troops could be surprised, they could be easily taken. If they heard of your designs, they could get out of your reach by falling back into New Mexico too far to be pursued. It is possible for them to retake Fort Bliss and all the public property before our troops can reach there.

I was very much pleased to know that you were cultivating friendly feelings with our neighbors over the river. I think it is our policy to do so, especially at this time. In regard to Cortinas, you will have a force soon that will enable you to crush him and his followers without trouble. I do not feel much apprehension from such a source when we have so many young men now in arms and eager for a fight.

I hardly anticipate any trouble at Brazos Santiago now. It is too near the yellow-fever season for our enemies of the North to venture any move in that quarter. They will not do so until fall. You will not discourage your command, of course, by giving expression to the opinion. You will select your point for headquarters. I suggest Fort Clark as the most central point on your line and most convenient to these headquarters.

You will perceive that I have ordered no company to Fort Quitman, although it is mentioned as one of the posts on your line. When everything is settled at Fort Bliss you can direct one of the companies there to garrison it. Forts Clark, Inge, and McIntosh, and Camp Wood are so near Fort Duncan that it is hardly necessary to garrison that post. It is completely enveloped. I would be pleased if you will inspect your line of defense at once, and make such suggestions as may be necessary. Before leaving Fort Brown please muster into the service {p.578} of the Confederate States the infantry companies at Fort Brown, and put the senior officer in command, with letter of instructions for his guidance.

Having the highest opinion of your ability and discretion, I turn over the command of the Rio Grande line to you with perfect confidence that that section of our frontier will be well guarded.

With the best wishes for your health and good fortune, I am, colonel, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

EARL VAN DORN, Colonel, Commanding.

Col. J. S. FORD, Commanding Troops on the Rio Grande, Fort Brown, Texas.

* Not found.

No. 17.

Report of Capt. James Duff, Texas troops, of the capture of a company Eighth U. S. Infantry near San Antonio, Tex.

SAN ANTONIO, TEX., April 23, 1861.

MAJOR: I have the honor to report that agreeably to special orders from your headquarters I intercepted, with my company of citizen volunteers, this morning, at 6 o’clock, Capt. A. T. Lee’s company of the Eighth U. S. Infantry, under the command of Lieut. E. W. H. Read, of that regiment, and in the name of the Confederate States of America demanded the unconditional surrender of the company as prisoners of war. Mr. Read asked to be allowed to consult with his commanding officer (Colonel Waite) before making answer to my demand. To this-knowing that the colonel had no troops with which to re-enforce the lieutenant’s command-I agreed, and ordered Lieutenant French, of my company, to accompany him to Colonel Waite’s quarters.

On his (Lieutenant Read’s) return he complied with my demand to surrender, at the same time protesting against my action as being in violation of the treaty stipulations entered into by the authorities of the State of Texas and General Twiggs. The enlisted men of the company are now under my charge. Lieutenant Read will report in person at your office this morning at 10 o’clock.

In making this report, permit me to draw your attention to the great desire evinced by the citizens composing the company which I have the honor to command to show to the world that if we have been hitherto divided in sentiment, we are now, when danger and war threaten us, united. In proof of this I would state that within forty hours from the receipt of the proclamation of war by the Northern Government, and in obedience to a call made by Colonel Van Dorn, they had enrolled their names, organized the company by the election of officers, received one hundred stand of arms and accouterments, sworn allegiance to the State of Texas and the Confederate States of America, and cheerfully obeyed and carried out the first order issued to them as a company-the disarming a company of United States troops.

I am, major, respectfully, your obedient servant,

JAMES DUFF, Captain, Commanding Company Citizen Volunteers.

Maj. S. MACLIN, Commanding Confederate Troops, San Antonio, Tex.

Library Reference Information

Type of Material: Book (Book, Microform, Electronic, etc.)
Corporate Name: United States. War Dept.
Main Title: The War of the Rebellion:
a compilation of the official records of the
Union and Confederate armies.
Prepared under the direction of the Secretary of War
by Robert N. Scott.
Washington, Govt. Print. Off., 1880-1900.
Published/Created: Washington : Government Pub. Off., 1880-1901 (70 v. in 128).
Description: 70 v. in 128. 24 cm.
Subjects: United States. Army--History--Civil War, 1861-1865--Sources.
Confederate States of America. Army--History--Sources.
United States--History--Civil War, 1861-1865--Regimental histories.
LC Classification: E464 .U6