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Federalist Wars: Final Phase

. . . not taken up arms to sell, or to cede, or to deliver up our territory to strange persons. Our object, [he allegedly wrote] was nothing less than to establish a frank, enlightened and phylanthropic Government, which would make for the happiness of our country. Such noble objects moved us to abandon our family and our interests, exposing our existence to establish these principles. And after so many s[a]crifices, so much hard labor, suffering and miseries of all kinds to which our destiny had reduced us, do you wish, sir, to propose us in recompence that we should commit treason to our country? Could you sir, have believed us to be capable of committing such villany? No doubt you have made a mistake, measuring all Mexicans with one and the same strockle [sic][*].

I shall never suffer that the flag of Texas should be displayed without the ancient limits of the old province of Texas. To effect it, it will be necessary to pass over our corpses and those of all other Mexicans; for upon this subject there exists no division among us. If you advance upon Laredo, you will have to fight with the detachment I have ordered thither to occupy it, with the express order not to permit you to enter it. I wish you, sir, to understand that if you do not desist from the object which carries you to Laredo, as you say, I shall have to call to my assistance the central troops. This is the only case in which I can yield of being a Federalist, because the national honor and the integrity of her territory is above all.[21]

Canales declared he had no horses or cattle for Karnes' men, "if it be for the object you solicit them." "Should any of your forces be willing to come subject to my orders, and for the pay when it can be had, they shall be well received, and shall be furnished with horses and provisions; on the contrary, they will be the first enemy with whom I shall be compelled to fight."

Nowhere in his letter does Canales mention the Republic of the Río

Canales ever sent such a letter, and it is even more certain that had its contents been known among the Americans in his command, they would have withdrawn, if they did not force him beyond the Río Grande. The Catholic priest at San Antonio refused to permit the tolling of the bells of San Fernando church at the funeral of Colonel Henry W. Karnes. "Resolutions adopted at a Public Meeting, San Antonio, August 17, 1840, in Memory of Henry W. Karnes," in Texas Sentinel, Aug. 29, 1840. We are not asking for benefit of scriptures, say the resolutions, but for the tolling of the bell, "which in a frontier village, has ever been used indiscriminately for evil and spiritual purposes" and should be tolled on an occasion of a "national grief."

21. Lic. [Antonio] Canales to Col. H. W. Karnes, Lipantitlán, Aug. 4, 1840, in Telegraph and Texas Register, Aug. 31, 1842.

[Ed: * - strockle, an alternate spelling of strokle, "an instrument used by glassmakers to empty the metal from one pot to another". Webster's New Twentieth Century Dictionary of the English Language, second edition, William Collins + World Publishing Co., 1975.]

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