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Mexican Threats and Texan Military

By an act approved June 12, 1837, after the furloughing of the greater portion of the army and near the expiration of the term of enlistment of the battalion of mounted riflemen, a corps of six hundred mounted men, rank and file, was ordered raised by voluntary enlistment for a term of six months for the protection of the northern frontier. The corps was to be made up of ten companies divided into three divisions, to each of which was to be attached a company of spies. Each officer and private was required to provide himself with "a substantial horse, well shod all round, and extra shoeing nails, a good gun, two hundred rounds of ammunition," and all other necessary equipment and provisions, except beef, which was to be supplied by the government.[122]  The officers were to receive the same pay as those of like rank in the ranging service, and the privates were to be paid $25 per month. A bounty of 640 acres each of land was to be given to both officers and privates.

With the outbreak of Federalist revolutionary activities in northern Mexico, the establishment of the French blockade of Mexican ports in April 1838 [Ed: See "The Pastry War", below], the increased lawlessness of the southwestern frontier (where an unofficial trade was springing up with northern Mexico), and the constant threat of hostile, pilfering Indians, Congress determined in May 1838 to create a "Corps of Regular Cavalry" of not more than 280 men enlisted for a term of not less than one, nor more than three years, as the President might deem suitable, for the protection of the southwestern frontier."[123] 

Recruiting officers were appointed and recruiting stations were opened at Houston, Galveston, and Matagorda.[124]  Enlistments in this

in State Department Letterbook, no. 2, ms., p. 81. For the County of Gonzales -- First Company: William H. Eastland, Captain; Joel Robinson, First Lieutenant; Nathan Mitchell, Second Lieutenant; for the County of Mina -- Second Company: Micah Andrews, Captain; J. H. Wade, First Lieutenant; Nicholas Wren, Second Lieutenant; for the County of Shelby -- Third Company: Robert O. Lusk, Captain; John P. Applegate, First Lieutenant; David Strickland, Second Lieutenant; Fourth Company: Thomas H. Barron, Captain; Charles Curtis, First Lieutenant; David W. Campbell, Second Lieutenant; Fifth Company: David Monroe, Captain; William H. Moore, First Lieutenant; _______ McLaughlin, Second Lieutenant. For Major of Battalion, William H. Smith; Surgeon of Battalion, A. Ramsay; Assistant Surgeon of Battalion, R. Montgomery.

122. Gammel (ed.), Laws of Texas, I, 1334-1335.

123. Ibid., I, 1480-1481.

124. Report of the Secretary of War to Sam Houston, Department of War, City of Houston, Oct. 31, 1838, in Sam Houston, Documents from the Heads of De-

[Ed: The so-called "Pastry War" occurred when Mexico defaulted on loans from France and refused to pay compensation for damages to French properties in Mexico, including a destroyed French bakery and shop. The King sent the fleet to collect. Encyclopedia of Mexico: History, Society & Culture, vol. II M-Z, Chicago: Fitzroy Dearborn Publishers, 1997.]

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