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Mexican Threats and Texan Military

force at Victoria numbered only 350 men[5]  on June 17 when Rusk wrote Thomas Jefferson Green urging the immediate concentration of the Texan troops to meet the Mexican advance. When Green reached Rusk's army, however, he refused to be commanded by General Rusk and held aloof, claiming that his commission was older than Rusk's.[6]  "God help the work when the army of Texas is commanded by such a man [as Green]," commented David Macomb.[7] 

On the following day Rusk wrote General Edmund P. Gaines, commander of the United States troops on the southwestern frontier at Fort Jesup, telling of the Mexican advance, and imploring his help against the butchers whose motto was, "Extermination to the Sabine, or death ."[8]  In the face of this report and of others concerning recent Indian depredations and hostilities along the frontier, General Gaines again called upon the governors of Kentucky, Mississippi, and Louisiana for troops as he had done on April 8 under similar circumstances. In a letter to General Alexander B. Bradford of the Tennessee volunteers, Gaines declared, "I am resolved, in case the Mexicans or Texians employ the Indians against the people of either side of the imaginery line to inflict on the offenders serious and severe punishment."[9] 

General Rusk followed up the President's proclamation with a call upon his fellow-citizens to shoulder their rifles and repair to the field to sustain their rights.[10]  Rusk let it be known that, "He that claims a home and a habitation in Texas -- must now fight for it, or abandon it, to some one who will."

"It is my opinion," wrote David Ayres from Brazoria, "That the hardest battle is yet to be fought and unless the whole of Texas turn out and meet the enemy, on the Guadeloupe or the West side of the Colorado, we shall all have to remove again with our families. . . . I am

Téjas, á las tropas de su mando. Matamoros, Junio 5 de 1836, broadside; José Urrea, Proclama. José Urrea, general en gefe del egército de operaciones sobre Téjas, á los valientes que lo forman. Matamoros, Junio 8 de 1836, broadside.

5. Niles' Weekly Register (Aug. 6, 1836), L, 383-384.

6. Thomas J. Rusk to Thomas J. Green, Victoria, June 17, 1836, in ibid., L, 383-384.

7. D. B. Macomb to James Morgan, Steam Saw Mill, San Jacinto, July 28, 1836, in Binkley (ed.), Official Correspondence of the Texan Revolution, II, 897-899.

8. James W. Silver, Edmund Pendleton Gaines: Frontier General, p. 204.

9. E. P. Gaines to Gen. A. B. Bradford, Camp Sabine, June 28, 1836, in Niles' Weekly Register (Aug. 6, 1836), L, 384.

10. Thomas J. Rusk, [Proclamation to the People of Texas], Guadaloupe-Victoria, June 27, 1836, broadside.

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AFTER SAN JACINTO: The Texas-Mexican Frontier, 1836-1841
Joseph Milton Nance, 1963