Go to Page | Index | Contents 121     | Biblio. | Page- | Page+

The Córdova-Flores Incident

mand of Major H. W. Augustine was detailed to follow their trail, while General Rusk, Major General of the Texas Militia, moved directly toward Chief Bowles' village, believing that Córdova had gone there to visit his Cherokee friends. Upon reaching the Sabine, Rusk learned that Córdova had gone hurriedly in the direction of the upper Trinity, while most of his followers had dispersed.[23]  From here Córdova sent dispatches to General Filisola, dated August 29 and September 16.[24]

As the depredations on the frontier increased General Rusk called for volunteers and moved against the Mexican-Indian combination. On October 14, 1838, he arrived at Fort Houston, and learning that the enemy were in force at the Kickapoo Village (now in Anderson County), be moved in that direction. At daylight on the 16th the Indians attacked the Texan camp. After a short, but hot engagement, the Texans charged them, upon which the Indians fled precipitously and were pursued for some distance. The Indian losses were eleven killed and many wounded; whereas, Rusk had eleven men wounded and none killed.[25]  During the next few months Córdova and his marauders fought several engagements with the Texas volunteer forces and militiamen sent to establish peace on the frontier. In one of these encounters General Rusk pursued a number of Caddo Indians across the United States-Texas border, without prior authority from his

23. John Henry Brown, Indian Wars and Pioneers of Texas, p. 63. In a message to Congress, November 19, 1838, President Houston declared that the rebellion of the Mexicans around Nacogdoches and the calamities in East Texas were due to the Militia Law, passed over his veto in December 1837, which gave Congress, instead of the President, the right to appoint the major general in charge of the militia. It will be remembered that Congress had chosen Thomas J. Rusk for this command. Sam Houston, A Message from the President, Relative to Indian Affairs, with Accompanying Documents; Writings of Sam Houston, II, 299-304.

24. Valentín Canalizo to Vicente Córdova, Commander of the Mexican forces in Texas, [dated:] Headquarters, Matamoras, March 1, 1839, in "Report of the Secretary of State . . . relative to the Encroachments of the Indians of the United States upon the Territories of Mexico, Washington, Jan. 11, 1853," United States Congress, Senate Executive Documents, 32nd Cong., 2d sess., vol. III, no. 14, p. 33.

25. Colonel Hugh McLeod's detailed report of the battle will be found in Col. Hugh McLeod to Gen. M. B. Lamar, Oct. 22, 1838, in Lamar Papers, II, 265-267; Telegraph and Texas Register, Nov. 3, 1838. It is interesting to note that in reporting on the Indian-Mexican differences in East and Northeast Texas in August, September, October, November, and early December, 1838, General Rusk and Colonel McLeod, Adjutant General of the Texas Militia, by-passed President Houston and kept the Vice President and President-elect Lamar fully informed.

Go to Page | Index | Contents 121     | Biblio. | Page- | Page+

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