Why did they hold their convention, organizing the Provisional Government at "Casa Blanca?" and why is it dated "done at Casa Blanca, in the STATE OF TAMAULIPAS," where is Casa Blanca? east or west of the Río Grande? is it in the State of Tamaulipas, or in the Republic of Texas? Again, have they ever had possession, and exercised, or do they now exercise Civil and Military Jurisdiction in the Town of Laredo? and make the citizens of that town tributary of their authority, by compelling them to perform military services, and exacting from them contributions? Is Laredo east or west of the Río Grande?
"A word to the wise" should be sufficient.
At San Antonio, Mayor John W. Smith accurately summed up the situation when he reported, "my opinion is that the Centralists under Arista can only move against the Federalists with a view to break them up and give no time for them to form in a body. I am fully of the opinion that we stand in more danger from the Comanches at this time [after the Council House Fight, March 19, 1840], than from any other enemy." However, there was great uneasiness at San Antonio following the receipt of news of Canales' disastrous defeat and his flight east of the Río Grande with possible pursuit by General Arista. On Friday morning, April 3, Lieutenant Colonel William S. Fisher, commanding a detachment of the First Infantry at the Mission of San José near San Antonio dispatched a messenger in "hot haste" to the Secretary of War at Austin concerning the presence of the Federalists in Texas and the policy to be pursued towards them. The messenger reached Austin at midnight of the same day, bringing news of the defeat of the Federalists in the bloody engagement at Morelos. Fisher was told that if General Canales or anyone else, representing himself as a commander of Federal armed forces, should present himself at San Antonio, he was to inform him that he would not be permitted to organize or recruit a force within the limits of Texas for prosecuting war against the Mexican government, or "with any party within the border of his own country." Should Canales or any other Federal military officer seek asylum in Texas, it would be granted, but not for the purpose of
9. George Fisher to the Editor of the Morning Star, Houston, April 14, 1840, reprinted in the Telegraph and Texas Register, April 15, 1840; Texas Sentinel, April 1, 1840.
10. John W. Smith to [Secretary of War?], San Antonio, June 5, 1840, in Walter Prescott Webb Collection. "I presume," wrote Smith, "that Capt. Howard has forwarded a report or information received, as to the movements of Genl. Arista and that the same was received two days ere this will reach you."