Go to Page | Index | Contents 314     | Biblio. | Page- | Page+

Republic of the Río Grande and Texas

manded the First Regiment of Infantry, resigned from his command. "It will require great prudence as well as energy to make the 'movement' result creditably to the Administration," wrote Lamar's private secretary. He suggested to Lamar, who was then in Galveston, that he give "specific directions, with a plan of operation," in case he did not return to Austin in season to direct measures in person. The heavy expense of maintaining the militia in the field made it imperative that the troops do "something more than marching out, and then marching home again."[147]  "The 'corn campaign' of 1840, under Major General Felix Huston," declared President Houston a year and a half later after the collapse of the Mier expedition, "cost the government upward of a hundred thousand dollars, and resulted in nothing but the purchase and waste of property."[148]

While there were a number of ambitious young men who might relish a campaign against Mexico and see in the call of the militia a step toward getting the ball rolling while the Federalists were preparing to renew their campaign from the soil of Texas, more sensible persons, including the President, considered the call quite unnecessary and encompassing many dangers. "The fool orders calling out the militia came out yesterday," June 6, recorded Anson Jones in his Diary. "A crazy administration have nearly ruined the country. One year more the wretched work will be complete."[149]

After some delay Lamar made up his mind as to what to do about frontier defense. He issued orders on June 23 to raise a frontier regiment of volunteers, and a few days later took steps to halt the calling out of the militia. "On the most mature consideration," he wrote the Secretary of War on June 29, "I feel constrained to differ with you on the necessity or policy of calling out the Militia." Believing the late rumors of an impending invasion to be much like those thrown into

highly culpable to the nation, had no steps been taken to guard against an invasion, which is most certainly contemplated and which every circumstance seemed to indicate was then about to be made." Texas Sentinel, quoted in Colorado Gazette and Advertiser, Aug. 8, 1840.

147. Henry J. Jewett to M. B. Lamar, Austin, June 21, 1840, in Lamar Papers, III, 412-414.

148. Sam Houston to the House of Representatives, Executive Department, Washington, Jan. 14, 1843, in Writings of Sam Houston, III, 292-297.

149. Anson Jones, Memorandum Book, No. 3, Sunday, June 7, 1840, ms. Jones vigorously opposed the confirmation of Archer's appointment as Secretary of War. Anson Jones to B. T. Archer, City of Austin, Dec. 9, 1840, in Anson Jones, Memoranda and Official Correspondence Relating to the Republic of Texas, Its History

Go to Page | Index | Contents 314     | Biblio. | Page- | Page+

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