Go to Page | Index | Contents 53     | Biblio. | Page- | Page+

Cattle Raids and Frontier Marauders

have exclusive navigation of the Río Grande. This of course, could not be obtained except by conquest, which, in view of the French blockade and the numerous pronunciamientos in the north against Centralism, was believed to be no great difficulty at this time.[26]  On the other hand, Thomas J. Green, who found Houston, Heaven, and Hell working against Lamar's candidacy for the presidency, believed that the frontier situation could be made to redound to Lamar's benefit in the forthcoming election. "I think it would be a national blessing at present," he wrote, "to have 20,000 Mexican soldiers east of the Río Grande, they could be easily whipped, and their presence would teach us the danger of placing at our head a respectable old maid, fit alone for the decencies of 'amiable Mediocrity'."[27] 

In the meantime, on Tuesday, July 17, 1838, a trader by the name of Buckhanan discovered a schooner, presumed at the time to be the Commanche but later determined to be the Lodi, lying at anchor in the harbor at Corpus Christi. Suspecting that the Mexicans had taken possession of the bay of Corpus Christi, he landed seven men and drove off thirty Mexican cavalry, took possession of the schooner, and destroyed fifty barrels of flour.[28]  Buckhanan then returned to Texana and reported the Mexican aggression within the claimed boundary of Texas. Shortly before his arrival at Texana, Colonel Pinckney Caldwell reached there to report that on Saturday, July 21, he met a party of Mexican cavalry proceeding towards Corpus Christi and that he had captured at some forty-five miles southwest of San Patricio the captain of the Mexican schooner which had been lying in the bay for two months. The Mexican ship captain, who was attempting to reach Matamoros by land, informed Caldwell

. . . that on account of the French blockade, Corpus Christi had been declared by the Mexican authorities a port of entry, that a customs house officer (from Matamoros) was then on board of his vessel, guarded by a considerable force and that re-inforcements were hourly expected, sufficient to enable them to hold the place against any force which might be sent against them.[29] 

26. Matagorda Bulletin, July 5, 1838.

27. Thomas J. Green to Genl. M. B. Lamar, Velasco, July 11, 1838, in Lamar Papers, II, 181-182.

28. Telegraph and Texas Register, July 28, 1838; William S. Fisher, Edwin Morehouse, and P. Caldwell to the People of Matagorda County, Texana, July 22, 1838, in Matagorda Bulletin, July 26, 1838.

29. Ibid.

Go to Page | Index | Contents 53     | Biblio. | Page- | Page+

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