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Mexican Threats and Texan Military

Kentucky who had emigrated to Mississippi. From there he had started to Texas in May 1836, having allegedly incurred a personal debt of some $40,000 in raising and equipping about five hundred volunteers.[35]  Huston possessed neither military education nor experience, but had more than once witnessed civilians employ a brief military career as a steppingstone to political preferment and was determined to let no golden opportunity pass to achieve distinction on the fair field of Texas.

Lamar now left the army, and Rusk, reconsidering his request to be relieved of his post, actually continued to command the army, with Sam Houston addressing communications to it as commander in chief. Rusk advanced his headquarters on August 1 from Victoria to the Coleto, about fifteen miles east of Goliad, but when the Mexican troops did not advance from the Río Grande, discipline in the Texan army began to decline very rapidly. Soon most of the resident Texans in the army left for home, where there were many important things to do, and the army came to be made up largely of newcomers from the United States, who were alternately encouraged to come on or advised to hold up as rumors flowed in of a Mexican army assembling or not assembling below the Río Grande. Thus, during the summer of 1836 the army changed from a force composed largely of men who had defended their homes and their rights to one, almost three times as large, consisting of men who as yet had neither homes nor rights in Texas to defend.

Such muster rolls as can be found for the months of July and August 1836, show fifty-three companies with a total of 2,503 officers and men, not counting regimental and staff officers or members of the ranger force. Fourteen of the companies, containing a total of 672 men, were largely Texan, and the remaining thirty-nine, with a total of 1,813 men, were composed chiefly of individuals who had arrived in Texas since the battle of San Jacinto. Of the captains of the Texan companies one had been a staff officer at San Jacinto, three had been lieutenants, three had been privates, and the remaining seven had not participated in the battle.

bracing His Services in the Armies of the United States, the Republic of Texas, and the Confederate States, p. 75.

35. Walter Prescott Webb and H. Bailey Carroll (eds.), The Handbook of Texas, I, 869 (hereafter cited as Handbook of Texas); A. K. Christian, "Mirabeau Buonaparte Lamar," Southwestern Historical Quarterly, XXIII (1919-1920), 164-165. Charles DeMorse in a letter to W. P. Johnston, dated January 25, 1875, reports that Huston did not bring more than 100 to 125 men to Texas. DeMorse was serving as Adjutant General of the Army at the time. Johnston, Life of Gen. Albert Sidney Johnston, p. 74.

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