The Mexican-American War and the Media, 1845-1848

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Vol. 70, May-July 1846

July 1844-April 1846 May-July 1846 August-October 1846 November-December 1846 January-February 1847 March-April 1847
May-June 1847 July-August 1847 September-October 1847 November-December 1847 January-March & July December 1848


NNR 70.132 Mexican protest against Gen. Zachary Taylor's taking position on the Rio Grande

NNR 70.132 Gen. Pedro Ampudia enters Matamoros, correspondence with Gen. Zachary Taylor

NNR 70.132 deserters from the two armies

NNR 70.132 Gen. William Jenkins Worth resigns

NNR 70.132-70.133 Col. Trueman Cross disappears, believed captured by Mexicans

NNR 70.133 Naval Journal

NNR 70.133 Gen. William Jenkins Worth arrives at New Orleans

NNR 70.133 rumors of Mexicans crossing the Rio Grande

NNR 70.160 Gen. Nicolas Bravo departs Mexico City with 6,000 men to defend Veracruz

NNR 70.160, 70.161 the Mexican war steamers Montezuma and Guadaloupe sold at Havana

NNR 70.160 the business of Veracruz annihilated

NNR 70.160 letter about control by Great Britain of Mexican policy

NNR 70.160 improvements in the armaments of the fortress of San Juan de Ulloa

NNR 70.160 movements of Mexican troops at Mazatlan, the cessation of business there

NNR 70.160 Lt. Theodoric H. Porter and three men killed; deserters from the American Army
NNR70.160 Gen. Mariano Arista supersedes Gen. Pedro Ampudia in command, pacific professions from Gen. Mariano Arista
NNR70.160 Col. Trueman Cross' body found
NNR70.160 Gen. Zachary Taylor notified to quit his position by the Mexicans
NNR70.160 Mexicans cross the Rio Grande
NNR70.160 Mexican schooner Juniata captured by the Flirt, Mexicans capture wagons of settlers bearing provisions, American consul and merchants at Matamoros ordered to the interior
NNR70.160 Rio Grande blockaded
NNR70.160 Gen. William Jenkins Worth and John Slidell arrive at Washington

NNR 70.161-70.163 editorial notice of war preparations, prompt movements in Texas, Alabama, and Louisiana

NNR 70.163 position of the Army at Matamoros, description of Point Isabel, Brazos Santiago, &c.

NNR 70.164 Army journal; Capt. W. G. Catlett's letter on the requistion of troops from Texas

NNR 70.165 accounts by steamer Augusta

NNR 70.165 letter from Col. R. Fitzpatrick, letter to a member of Congress

NNR 70.165 letter to Senator Simon Cameron, Army in danger

NNR 70.176 meetings of volunteers

NNR 70.176 war clause on marine insurance

NNR 70.176 orders and movement of troops for the frontier

NNR 70.176 list of killed and wounded in Capt. Seth Barton Thornton's detachment

NNR 70.176 Louisiana orders for enrollment of all persons subject to military duty

NNR 70.176 USS Mississippi, steamer, ordered to start for Veracruz
NNR 70.176 Saint Mary's, sloop of war, sails to the aid of Point Isabel
NNR 70.176 resolution of the New York legislature authorizing the governor to call 50,000 volunteers for Mexico

NNR 70.177 proclamation of war against Mexico is copied from declaration of war with Great Britain in 1812

NNR 70.177 manifesto of Mexican President ad interim Mariano Paredes y Arillaga against the United States

NNR 70.177 Creek Indians volunteer for service in Mexico

NNR 70.177 US revenue cutters ordered to the Gulf

NNR 70.178 apprehensions about privateering on behalf of Mexico by Spanish subjects

NNR 70.178 requisition for 30,000 volunteers, exclusive of those called for by Gen. Zachary Taylor and Gen. Edmund Pendleton Gaines, difficulties suggested

NNR 70.178 discussion of command of the Army

NNR 70.178 comments on the abilities of the Mexican general Mariano Arista

NNR 70.178 description of Matamoros and its vicinity

NNR 70.178-70.179 incidents of the campaign
NNR 70.178-70.179 Capt. Samuel Hamilton Walker's mission between Point Isabel and the camp opposite Matamoros
NNR 70.179 Gen. Zachary Taylor's camp, danger in passing to or from his depot at Isabel, movement to bring up supplies, Mexican batteries at Matamoros bombard his battery
NNR 70.179 Gen. Zachary Taylor reaches Point Isabel, prepares to return with train of muntions and supplies, Capt. Samuel Hamilton Walker reaches him with accounts from fort, allowing him time for better preparation

NNR 70.179 no reinforcements yet arrived at Point Isabel, calculation of the expected arrival of forces

70.179 comment on rumors and exaggerations from the scene of the fighting as represented in newspapers, official intelligence reaches Washington

NNR 70.179 extract of a letter from Gen. Zachary Taylor

NNR 70.179 extract of a letter from an officer at the fort opposite Matamoros
NNR 70.179-70.180 extract from a letter about the defenses at Point Isabel
NNR 70.180 surprise and surrender of Capt. Seth Barton Thornton's command

70.180 Capt. Samuel Hamilton Walker's detachment and its engagement with the Mexicans

NNR 70.180 Surprise and surrender of Captain Thornton's command

NNR 70.180 tribute to Col. Trueman Cross, first victim of the war

NNR 70.180 Gilbert Dudley's capture of two Mexicans

70.181 official orders as to organizing the volunteers in US service

70.182 Gen. Edmund Pendleton Gaines' requisition on Louisiana for troops, the prompt response

NNR 70.182 Gen. Edmund Pendleton Gaines' requisitions for volunteers

NNR 70.182 list of officers of the Army in Texas

NNR 70.192 remarks and statements on US finances in light of the war with Mexico, possibility of a loan, of issuance of treasury notes, of postponement of revision of the tariff

NNR 70.192 accounts from New Orleans of extravagant expenditures for military supplies

NNR 70.193 map of the seat of war

NNR 70.194 geography of the seat of the war

NNR 70.194 course of the Rio Grande (Rio del Norte or Rio Bravo)

NNR 70.194 distances on the route from San Antonio to Mexico City

NNR 70.194 account of the city of Mexico

NNR 70.194 health of the Rio Grande

NNR 70.195 "true policy of the republic"

NNR 70.195 capture of Gen. Romulo Diaz de la Vega

NNR 70.196 executive power granted to the president for conducting the war, funds authorized, troops to be raised, officers to be appointed

NNR 70.196 requisition on the states for volunteers

NNR 70.196 report of the squadron under Com. John Drake Sloat at Mazatlan

NNR 70.196 government said to intend purchasing small vessels to run close in shore in the Gulf

NNR 70.196 Gen. Zachary Taylor's official letters from Point Isabel, his brief notes on the Battle of Palo Alto and the Battle of Resaca de la Palma

NNR 70.197 Gen. Romulo Diaz de la Vega and other captured officers forwarded to New Orleans

NNR 70.197,70.198 Com. David Conner's dispatches to Secretary of the Navy George Bancroft from Brazos of 8th, 9th, and 12th May

NNR 70.197 Gen. Zachary Taylor's letter from camp opposite Matamoros, enclosing Gen. Pedro Ampudia's letter of 12th April summoning Taylor to quit his position

NNR 70.198 account of events at Point Isabel during the battle of 9th May

NNR 70.198 Gen. Pedro Ampudia's proclamation to the people of the east, his address to the inhabitants of the frontier, "Eagle of the North's" notice of the manifesto

NNR 70.199 President Mariano Paredes y Arrillaga's manifesto to the Mexican nation

NNR 70.199 Texas general orders for volunteers for Mexico

NNR 70.199-70.200 prompt measures to sustain Gen. Zachary Taylor, proclamations and correspondence of Gov. William Owsley of Kentucky about raising volunteers

NNR 70.201 Death of Major Ringgold

NNR 70.200-70.202 Gov. Thomas G. Pratt's (Maryland) proclamation and general orders (similar official proceedings in other states), successors of the "old Maryland line" in the field

NNR 70.202 volunteer spirit in the states

NNR 70.202 Gen. Zachary Taylor's official account of the campaign to Gen. Edmund Pendleton Gaines

NNR 70.202 bombardment of the fort opposite Matamoros

NNR 70.202 rejoicing in New Orleans about the action of the president and cabinet on receipt of news of the war

NNR 70.202 comments on the plan of the campaign revealed in the correspondence of Gen. Mariano Arista

NNR 70.202 the firing on American troops bearing captured Mexican colors

NNR 70.202 total number of volunteers furnished by Louisiana

NNR 70.202 departure of Capt. D.J. Ricardo's Rangers for the war

NNR 70.202-70.203 expedition against Barita

NNR 70.203 Gen. Zachary Taylor returns to Fort Brownl
NNR 70.203 exchange of prisoners
NNR 70.203 Gen. Zachary Taylor's plans to cross the Rio Grande
NNR 70.203 volunteers reach Brazos

NNR 70.203 maneuvers of the US fleet on the scene, list of vessels at Brazos Santiago

NNR 70.203 departure of the steam schooner Augusta with wounded

NNR 70.203 letter from a correspondent at Point Isabel

NNR 70.203 Maj. Lloyd James Beall's letter about the death of Lt. Theodoric Henry Porter

NNR 70.203-204 account of a search through the chaparral for the remains of Lt. Theodoric Henry Porter

NNR 70.209 British steamer Terrible to Oregon

NNR 70.209 production of uniforms for the Army

NNR 70.210,70.304 French notions about the war, the intention of France to interfere to prevent annexation of Mexican territory by the United States

NNR 70.210 the Nashville "Union" announces the design of government to take and to hold California

NNR 70.211 express riding to carry news of the war

NNR 70.212 difficulties in organizing volunteers

NNR 70.212 various detachments to proceed to Texas

NNR 70.212 remarks as to plan of conducting campaign, &c .

NNR 70.212 Gen. John Ellis Wool on his way to muster troops in the northwest

NNR 70.213 letter about traders to Santa Fe departing Independence despite news of the war

NNR 70.214 incidents of the campaign
70.214 Barita taken without opposition
70.214 Matamoros taken by Gen. Zachary Taylor without opposition
70.214 arrival of regiments of regulars and volunteers
70.214 compliment to Mexican bravery
70.214 estimate of American killed and wounded
70.214 Col. James Simmons McIntosh's wounds
70.214 Capt. John Page's melancholy condition
70.214 Capt. Seth Barton Thornton's near escape, capture, and exchange

NNR 70.214 expedition against Santa Fe planned

NNR 70.214-70.215 speculation as to Gen. Winfield Scott taking command of the Army in Mexico

NNR 70.215 arrest of Capt. Seth Barton Thornton
NNR 70.214 incidents of the campaign
NNR 70.214 Barita taken without opposition
NNR 70.214 Matamoros taken by Gen. Zachary Taylor without opposition
NNR 70.214 arrival of regiments of regulars and volunteers
NNR 70.214 compliment to Mexican bravery
NNR 70.214 estimate of American killed and wounded
NNR 70.214 Col. James Simmons McIntosh's wounds
NNR 70.214 Capt. John Page's melancholy condition

NNR 70.215-70.217 further details of the battles on the Rio Grande

NNR 70.217 Mexican account of incidents on the Rio Grande

NNR 70.217-70.218 bombardment of Fort Brown

NNR 70.224 public journals on finances in light of war

NNR 70.224 movements of volunteers toward Point Isabel; Mexican schooners bought by US government

NNR 70.225 indignation of disbanded volunteers

NNR 70.225 Gen. Zachary Taylor's official report on the battles of May 8 and 9 received

NNR 70.226,70.256 escape of two Mexican steamers from Veracruz for Havana

NNR 70.226 steamers Guadaloupe and Montezuma, built at New York, purchased by the US government

NNR 70.227 difficulties developing over requisitions for volunteers

NNR 70.227 confusion about mustering of the Saint Louis Legion into US service, troops raised for service against Santa Fe

NNR 70.227 departure of the Louisville Legion for New Orleans before receipt of counter-orders from the War Department 

NNR 70.227 over 5,000 Tennessee volunteers for the Rio Grande

NNR 70.227,70.259 Gov. James Pinckney Henderson takes command of the Texas volunteers and proceeds to frontier

NNR 70.227 departure of Texas companies of volunteers for the Rio Grande

NNR 70.227 general orders specifying routes of western volunteers to the frontier

NNR 70.227 discouragement of Indiana volunteers

NNR 70.227 difficulty in supplying Ohio troops mustered into US service

NNR 70.228 American consul at Veracruz and all Americans ordered to leave

NNR 70.228 energetic volunteering of Maryland troops for service in Mexico

NNR 70.228 Veracruz blockaded

NNR 70.228 proclamation in favor of Gen. Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna

NNR 70.228  Gen. Mariano Paredes y Arrillaga intends to move north with troops

NNR 70.228 animosity against the United States

NNR 70.228 Mexican clergy refuse to loan funds for the war

NNR 70.228 Mexican account of casualties in the late battles

NNR 70.228 patriotic effusions of Mexican journals

NNR 70.228 further discussions with the clergy about the proposed loan to the Mexican government

NNR 70.228 preparations for an expedition against Santa Fe

NNR 70.228 number of troops under Gen. Zachary Taylor, expectation of an advance

NNR 70.228 operation of the Army on the Rio Grande, talk between Gen. Pedro Ampudia and Gen. Zachary Taylor

NNR 70.228-229 a party of Americans taken and barbarously treated between Point Isabel and Corpus Christi

NNR 70.229 items of information from Brazos

NNR 70.229 arrival of Texas Rangers and infantry at Point Isabel

NNR 70.229 Mexican account of incidents from 1st to 3rd May

NNR 70.229 Mexican statement of their own losses

NNR 70.230-231 capture of La Barita, description of its situation

NNR 70.235-239 Albert Gallatin's address to the people of the United States on the subject of war with Mexico

NNR 70.240 expenses of the war, need for action to raise funds, lack of funds for purchasing supplies at New Orleans

NNR 70.240 naval operations on the Mexican coast

NNR 70.240 attack on Capt. John Charles Fremont threatened by Don Jose Castro

NNR 70.240 demand on ships for freights at New Orleans

NNR 70.240 Catholic chaplains appointed for the Army

NNR 70.241 comment on national finances in light of the war with Mexico

NNR 70.241 offer of British ministers to mediate differences between the United States and Mexico

NNR 70.242 consuls of neutral powers protest American blockade of Veracruz, arrangements to withstand the blockade

NNR 70.243 Dr. William Maxwell Wood, bearer of dispatches from the Pacific squadron, passing through Mexico, meets and forwards to Com. John Drake Sloat intelligence of the war

NNR 70.255 report of taking of Matamoros

NNR 70.255 Com. David Conner's instructions to the squadron on principles of a blockade

NNR 70.256 exhibit of force of the Gulf Squadron, unlikelihood of successful attack on Veracruz

NNR 70.256 rumors of a British offer of mediation between the United States and Mexico

NNR 70.257 comments on the possibility of a British offer of mediation between the United States and Mexico

NNR 70.258-70.259 South American and Mexican Association's memorial to the British ministers asking mediation

NNR 70.261-70.262 article in the "Southern Quarterly Review" reviewing the campaign, noticed

NNR 70.262 formidable force organizing against Santa Fe

NNR 70.262 Lt. Col. Henry Wilson marches against Reynosa

NNR 70.262 Gen. Zachary Taylor's letter complaining of want of transport and the large body of volunteers beyond what he had asked for

NNR 70.262-70.263 letters from "The Corporal" at Matamoros

NNR 70.263-70.264 Gen. Zachary Taylor's letter of 22d April to Gen. Mariano Arista, relative to blockade of the Rio Grande

NNR 70.264 council of war after Palo Alto, incidents of the Battle of Resaca de la Palma

NNR 70.264-70.265 incidents of the battlefield

NNR 70.265 general orders directing rendezvous of the several corps of volunteers

NNR 70.265  Gen. Mariano Arista's official report of the battles of 8th and 9th May

NNR 70.265 topography of the route from Matamoros to Monterey and Saltillo

NNR 70.265-70.266 movement of the Mexicans

NNR 70.266-70.268 review of the campaign from the "Southern Quarterly Review"

NNR 70.272 Reynosa and Camargo taken

NNR 70.272 Gen. Zachary Taylor awaiting transport to join the advance corps

NNR 70.272 positions of regulars and volunteers

NNR 70.272 Gov. James Pinckney Henderson reaches Rio Grande accompanied by Tonkawa Indians

NNR 70.273 march on Barita

NNR 70.273 Capt. Ben McCulloch's expedition on a spying mission

NNR 70.273 deaths of Mexican wounded, deserters from Mexican forces

NNR 70.273 reported dispute between Gen. Mariano Arista and Gen. Pedro Ampudia over defeats

NNR 70.273 court of inquiry ordered on Gen. Edmund Pendleton Gaines for his requisition of troops and supplies

NNR 70.273 Yucatan declares independence

NNR 70.273 revolution in favor of Gen. Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna and federalism at Jalisco

NNR 70.274 a plea for peace

NNR 70.274 toast to the Heroine of Fort Brown

NNR 70.276 discussion of general officers chosen to conduct the war with Mexico

NNR 70.276-70.277 various incidents of the late battles, the field after battle, &c.

NNR 70.277-70.278 Mexican plan of campaign

NNR 70.278 compliment to the Marylanders in Mexico

NNR 70.278 accounts of wounded officers, suspicion that Mexicans use shot containing arsenic

NNR 70.278 Lt. Theodoric H. Porter's body found

NNR 70.278 account of the wounded in the hospitals

NNR 70.278 compliment by Gen. Romulo Diaz de la Vega to Gen. Zachary Taylor on the quality of Taylor's troops

NNR 70.278 hunting for "Rio Grande deer"

NNR 70.278-70.279 Gen. Zachary Taylor's letter accompanying Gen. Mariano Arista's invitation to American soldiers to desert

NNR 70.279 reception of deputation that delivered the thanks of Louisiana to Gen. Zachary Taylor

NNR 70.281 comments on the expedition against Santa Fe

NNR 70.288 notice of strong discontent expressed by volunteers whose services were declined by the government

NNR 70.288 seven companies of volunteers depart from Nashville

NNR 70.288 twenty-three Alabama companies ready for the Rio Grande

NNR 70.288 volunteers raised in Missouri for Santa Fe refused by US government

NNR 70.288 recruits engaged for a mounted regiment against Santa Fe

NNR 70.288 blundering in the calling out of volunteers

NNR 70.288 volunteers at Fort Leavenworth

NNR 70.288 a volunteer heroine among the Indiana troops

NNR 70.288 full complement of Ohio volunteers enrolled

NNR 70.288 requisition on Illinois for volunteers is filled

NNR 70.288 apathy among volunteers on the Rio Grande described by "The Corporal"

NNR 70.289 appointment of officers of volunteers

NNR 70.289 soldiers arrive at Baltimore and Saint Louis from the seat of war

NNR 70.289 Army depot established at Robinson's Ferry on the Trinity

NNR 70.289 Maj. Thomas Turner Fauntleroy ordered to proceed to San Antonio with dragoons

NNR 70.289 Bibles forwarded to Army in Texas

NNR 70.289 officers from the Rio Grande arrive in Philadelphia

NNR 70.289-70.290 specifications relating to Gen. Edmund Pendleton Gaines' call for volunteers to be examined by the court of inquiry

NNR 70.290 three ships of the line ordered ready for service

NNR 70.290 accounts of the attacks of the Saint Mary's on the fort and gunboats at Tampico

NNR 70.291 account of the Princeton in the blockade of Veracruz

NNR 70.291 California expedition fitting at New York

NNR 70.291 three schooners being constructed at New York for the Mexican government purchased by the American government

NNR 70.293 recruitment of regulars commended for a foreign invasion
70.293 notice of various troop movements

NNR 70.293 copy of act authorizing organization of volunteer forces

NNR 70.293 response of citizens of New Hampshire to the call for volunteers

NNR 70.293 formation of companies of volunteers in Connecticut

NNR 70.293-70.294 requisition on Massachusetts for troops, extract from the general orders of Gov. George Nixon Briggs

NNR 70.294 tendering of New York troops for service in Mexico

NNR 70.294 nineteen companies of North Carolina volunteers report for duty in Mexico

NNR 70.294 Alabama volunteers leave for the Rio Grande

NNR 70.294 recruiting of Mississippi volunteers for service in Mexico

NNR 70.294 mustering of Ohio volunteers for service in Mexico

NNR 70.294 complaints about Gov. Thomas Ford of Illinois in mustering volunteers for Mexico

NNR 70.294 comments on arrangements for payment for clothing for volunteers

NNR 70.294 departure of Kentucky units for Mexico

NNR 70.294 dissatisfaction of Missouri volunteers at Fort Leavenworth

NNR 70.294 financial support for volunteers in Tennessee

NNR 70.294 movement of companies of Texas volunteers toward the seat of the war

NNR 70.294 statement of Cassius Marcellus Clay on the war

NNR 70.295 Gen. Robert Desha's prompt response to news of the outbreak of hostilities with Mexico

NNR 70.295-70.296 ceremony of surrender of Matamoros

NNR 70.296 account of enterprise on the Rio Grande under American influence

NNR 70.296 Mexican ladies at Matamoros reconciled to the Americans

NNR 70.296 Mexican compliment to American behavior after their victories

NNR 70.296 death of Capt. Jose A. Baragan

NNR 70.296 reconnoiter after Gen. Mariano Arista

NNR 70.296 interview between Col. Matthew Mountjoy Payne and Gen. Romulo Diaz de la Vega
70.296 examination of the trophies of the war, including the flag of the Tampico guards

NNR 70.296 Mexican treatment of American prisoners

NNR 70.296 Gen. Mariano Arista's official account of killed and wounded in the battles of the 8th and 9th of May, &c., his account of evacuation of Matamoros

NNR 70.304 proposed expedition against Yucatan, denial that the American government intends to support it

NNR 70.304 British view of the Mexican war, sympathy with Mexico, British mediation suggested

NNR 70.304 Charles Bent, Saint Vrain, and Folger arrive at Saint Louis and report, Gen. Jose Urrea said to be advancing to relief of Santa Fe
NNR 70.304 Santa Fe traders pushing forward rapidly in advance of US troops

NNR 70.304 federal government accepts services of Missouri mounted regiment and artillery for operations against New Mexico

NNR 70.304 Santa Fe expedition

NNR 70.305 withdrawal of troops from our Indian frontiers, leaving them exposed to outbreaks

NNR 70.305 volunteers reach the Rio Grande
70.305-70.306 lack of authentic intelligence from the interior of Mexico

NNR 70.306 present of exploded shot by Capt. D.S. Miles to the Baltimore high school

NNR 70.306 account of the rank and file in the late battles

NNR 70.309-70.311 Gen. Zachary Taylor, for want of transports and supplies, unable to improve his victories, inundated by volunteers of whose services he cannot avail; items from the Rio Grande; letter from the seat of war; Gen. Urrea advancing on Santa Fe

70.311 California expedition preparing at New York

NNR 70.311 departure of the expedition against Santa Fe from Fort Leavenworth

NNR 70.311 Louisiana habeas corpus case

NNR 70.311-70.312 Gen. Zachary Taylor's interview with a gentleman's son among the volunteers

NNR 70.312 organizing of the regiments of Illinois volunteers

NNR 70.312 call on Iowa for an additional company of volunteers

NNR 70.312-70.313 indignation over appointment of Sterling Price as commander of a company of Missouri volunteers

NNR 70.313 Alabama election of officers, departure for Point Isabel

NNR 70.313 arrival of volunteers from Maryland and the District of Columbia at Brazos
70.313 use of a draft in North Carolina to determine troops chosen for service in Mexico
70.313 departure of Ohio volunteers for the Rio Grande
70.313 destination of Kentucky volunteers in Mexico

NNR 70.313-70.314 correspondence of Gen. William Jenkins Worth and Gen. Zachary Taylor on Worth's desire to retire from his command

NNR 70.320 intrigues to restore Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna to power in Mexico

NNR 70.323 war for a "piece" of Mexico

NNR 70.323-70.324 gathering of a board of naval officers, denial that it dealt with an attack on San Juan de Ulloa 

NNR 70.324 energetic measures by the administration to carry on the war, posture of affairs
70.324 Gen. Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna about to embark for Mexico
70.324 uncertainty about whereabouts of Gen. Mariano Paredes y Arillaga, prospect of a rebellion to supersede him

NNR 70.325 European powers indisposed to take part in the war
70.325 Mexican movements
70.325 rumors of the departure of Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna from Cuba for Mexico

NNR 70.325 items from the Rio Grande

NNR 70.325 report on supplying materials for transportation to the Army

NNR 70.325 gales off Brazos, numerous shipwrecks
70.325 letter from Henry Whiting on the delivery of supplies to the Army in Texas

NNR 70.325 route to the interior of Mexico

NNR 70.325-70.326 want of discipline among the volunteers

NNR 70.326 report on the tendering of Pennsylvania volunteers for service in Mexico

NNR 70.326 third regiment of Ohio volunteers reach New Orleans

NNR 70.326 deaths in the Baltimore battalion

NNR 70.326 complaint about the appointment of political partisans to militia positions

NNR 70.326 complaints about the rejection by Gov. Thomas Ford of Illinois of some volunteers

NNR 70.326-70.32 relief to families of volunteers

NNR 70.327 Mormons enlist in the expedition against California

NNR 70.327 arrival of the Georgia regiment of volunteers at Mobile

NNR 70.327 expedition to Santa Fe

NNR 70.327 objects of the expedition to California

NNR 70.327 progress of the expedition against Santa Fe

NNR 70.327 Gen. John Ellis Wool's movement on San Antonio

NNR 70.336 Britain proffers mediation between the United States and Mexico

NNR 70.336 movement of troops toward Texas

NNR 70.336 accounts from the Army of Occupation, awaiting boats

NNR 70.336 ammunition prepared at the Saint Louis arsenal

NNR 70.336 French papers urge necessity of French interference in the war

NNR 70.132 May 9, 1846 Mexican protest against Gen. Zachary Taylor's taking position on the Rio Grande

The army of occupation. Accounts already furnished, left gen. Taylor on the 29th alt. Taking post on the eastern bank of the Rio Grande, immediately opposite and commanding the town of Matamoros. – By the arrival of the steam Col. Harvey at New Orleans, we learned that general Taylor was met by a deputation of civilians from the town of Matamoros who protested against his “invasion of the Mexican department of Tamaulipas” [JEB]

NNR 70.132 May 9, 1846 Gen. Pedro Ampudia enters Matamoros, correspondence with Gen. Zachary Taylor

On the 11th April, general Ampudia marched into Matamoros with 1,000 cavalry and 1,500 infantry. Thius augmented the Mexican force there to 5,500 men.

On the next day gen. Ampudia, notified gen. Taylor to retire to the eastern bank of the Nueces. This notification was of a threatening character, and was regaurded by Gen. T. As of a belligerent nature, and accordingly he instructed the military commander at Brazos to consider the Mexican army as in a hostile attitude. [JEB]

NNR 70.132 May 9, 1846 deserters from the two armies

We are informed says the New Orleans Bulletin that about thirty of the American troops had deserted, ten or twelve of whom were shot in endeavoring to make their escape. This had the effect of checking further desertions. It is said that about 1,000 of Ampudia’s men deserted him on his march. [JEB]

NNR 70.132 May 9, 1846 Gen. William Jenkins Worth resigns

Gen. Worth is on his way to this city in the U.S. steam propeller Hunter, which vessel left on the same day as the Colonel Harney. [JEB]

NNR 70.132-70.133 May 9, 1846 Col. Trueman Cross disappears, believed captured by Mexicans

Col. Truman Cross, quarter master general of the army, disappeared so singularly, that for several days the greatest anxiety was felt. A letter from an officer of the army, dated Point Isabel, April 14, says- “Col. Cross left the camp about noon on Friday, 10th inst. He was alone, and when last heard from, was at the house of a Mexican, about one mile from the camp. Since that time no certain information has been received as to his fate. [JEB]

NNR 70.133 May 2, 1846 NAVAL JOURNAL

The Potomac frigate arrived at Vera Cruz on the first April from Norfolk.

The American squadron at Sacrificios on the 5th April consisted of the Cumberland and Potomac frigates, the Falmouth, St. Marys' and John Adams, sloops of war.

The frigate Brandywine, now in ordinary as Gosport navy yard, is to be fitted out forth with.

Lieut. G. S. Blake, takes command of the U.S. brig Perry, now at Norfolk preparing for the Pacific. Lieut. B. has for some time been occupied in surveying the Delaware bay and river, in the course of which he discovered a safe ship channel in the bay, not heretofore laid down on the chart.

The Constitution - Old Ironsides. A letter from an officer on board the U.S. frigate Constitution, now in the Pacific, relates the following pleasing incident, which occurred when the Constitution was out about ten days from Macao, on her way to Manilla, and found herself near a fleet of six British vessels, becalmed:

"A few light cats-paws fanned us along until we were within two miles of them, and then the wind left us. We were all thus becalmed in sight of each other. We made them out to be a large line of battleship, two frigates, one brig and two steamers; their nation as yet unknown, as there was no wind to throw out their ensigns. Presently one of the steamers began firing up, and shortly afterwards bore down for us. We were just exercising our crew at general quarters, (always keeping up our discipline, you perceive), when she came within hail. From her we learnt that the vessels composed the East India squadron of H.B.M. under command of rear admiral sir Thomas Cochrane, K.C.B., that they had been seven months down among the islands, and the whole squadron were short of bread, 'grog', water, and other necessaries, and they desired to know if we could furnish them with the stores required, to last them one week. No sooner asked than done. No sailor ever stops to count the biscuit in his locker when he sees a hungry customer. Then a lively scene occurred, gratifying, I assure you, to both sides. Our guns had to be secured, and, indeed, we must have presented rather a hostile appearance to Mr. Bull; in fact, one of the officers good humoredly observed, he 'thought we were going to blow him out of water.' We turned to with light hearts, and broke out the provisions and sent them on board, while we entertained the officers in very gallant style, in fact doing the clean and genteel thing by them. I don't recollect ever spending a more pleasing time that I did the two short hours they were with us; and when they left, it was like parting with friends of long standing. One good fellow gave, as he was about leaving, ' The good Old Ironsides - always the first to prepare for her friends, or foes; and her gentlemanly officers the first to treat them accordingly.' A light breeze shortly afterwards sprung up - night closed in - the wind freshened - we cracked on studden-sails, both sides, alow and aloft, and the next day the high mountains of Luzon were plainly in view."

The Marion, U.S. ship, sailed from Lagos, Jan. 20 - all well. The purser died on board January 10, and was buried at Quitar.

The razee "Independence," is to be taken to the dock at the navy yard, at Charlestown, for repairs. We give this information for the benefit of our southern contemporaries, who for the past four months, have every two weeks announced that the "Independence" was fitting out, as the flag ship of com. Perry, for the Gulf squadron. That may be her destination for ought we can say. [GLP]

NNR 70.132 May 9, 1846 Mexican protest against Gen. Zachary Taylor's taking position on the Rio Grande

The army of occupation. Accounts already furnished, left gen. Taylor on the 29th alt. taking post on the eastern bank of the Rio Grande, immediately opposite and commanding the town of Matamoros. – By the arrival of the steam Col. Harvey at New Orleans, we learned that general Taylor was met by a deputation of civilians from the town of Matamoros who protested against his “invasion of the Mexican department of Tamaulipas” [JEB]

NNR 70.132 May 9, 1846 Gen. Pedro Ampudia enters Matamoros, correspondence with Gen. Zachary Taylor

On the 11th April, general Ampudia marched into Matamoros with 1,000 cavalry and 1,500 infantry. This augmented the Mexican force there to 5,500 men.

On the next day gen. Ampudia, notified gen. Taylor to retire to the eastern bank of the Nueces. This notification was of a threatening character, and was regaurded by Gen. T. as of a belligerent nature, and accordingly he instructed the military commander at Brazos to consider the Mexican army as in a hostile attitude. [JEB]

NNR 70.132 May 9, 1846 deserters from the two armies

We are informed says the New Orleans Bulletin that about thirty of the American troops had deserted, ten or twelve of whom were shot in endeavoring to make their escape. This had the effect of checking further desertions. It is said that about 1,000 of Ampudia’s Men deserted him on his march. [JEB]

NNR 70.132 May 9, 1846 Gen. William Jenkins Worth resigns

Gen. Worth is on his way to this city in the U.S. steam propeller Hunter, which vessel left on the same day as the Colonel Harney. [JEB]

NNR 70.132 May 9, 1846 Col. Trueman Cross disappears, believed captured by Mexicans

Col. Truman Cross, quarter master general of the army, disappeared so singularly, that for several days the greatest anxiety was felt. A letter from an officer of the army, dated Point Isabel, April 14, says- “Col. Cross left the camp about noon on Friday, 10th inst. He was alone, and when last heard from, was at the house of a Mexican, about one mile from the camp. Since that time no certain information has been received as to his fate. [JEB]

NNR 70.160 May 9, 1846

"THE ARMY OF OCCUPATION." - The steamer New York reached N. Orleans on the 29th with Galveston dates to the 27thApril. Gen. Worth, Cols. Coffin, Waite, Fisher, and Treadwell, Majors Van Ness and March, Capts. Duncan, Whitehead, and McLellan, and several other officers of the same army arrived in the New York.

The iron steamer Hunter was off Galveston bar on the 27th inst., having lost her smoke pipe and being short of provisions. She was then eleven days out from Brazos Santiago. Some of her passengers were transferred to New York.

Nothing further is known of Col. Cross. Lieut. Deas, who crossed the Rio Grande in search of his friend, has fallen into the hands of the Mexicans.

The N. Orleans Picayune says : There are various rumors in town in regard to skirmishes between the Mexican and American forces, but we have not been able to trace them to any authentic source.

The schooner L.M. Hitchcock , Capt. Wright, arrived at Galveston on the 23rd from Brazos Santiago, having sailed on Sunday, the 19th - three days after the Col. Harney, but she brings no news of much interest.

LATER - Lieut. Porter and three men killed. The steamer Telegraph, Capt. Auld, left Brazos St. Iago on the 27thand reached N. Orleans on the 29th . - By her we have the unpleasant intelligence that on the 19th instant, Lieut. Porter, of the 4th regiment, (son of the late Commodore Porter,) being out with a fatigue party of ten men, (some of them wearing uniform,) was fired upon when within a few miles of the camp. Lieut. P. and three of his men were killed in the attack, the rest of the party escaping, returning to the camp next day. It is stated that the guns of the Americans were wet and would not fire.*

The N. Orleans Tropic says - Lieut. Van Ness informs us that nothing further had been heard of Col. Cross up to the 19th, but that the general opinion is that he is still a prisoner, though not at Matamoros.

About fifty of the American army have deserted and swam the river for the Mexican camp, but a number of them were shot as deserters while in the water. The whole number of American troops is estimated at between two and three thousand, and they are said to be in excellent discipline, and eager for an engagement with the enemy. Ampudia's forces are reported at between three and four thousand. It is rumored that Arista is about to supercede Ampudia in the command.

Still later. - From the Galveston News, Extra. - We may here remark that it is understood as a fact that Ampudia is already superseded by Arista - from whom we may expect the next proclamation. This general is admitted to be an officer of character, good sense and prudence, and whatever proceeds from him will be entitled to some consideration.

In our summary of news by the steamship Telegraph we omitted to state what may be of some importance, viz: - that General Ampudia, in his answer to the inquiries of General Taylor concerning Colonel Cross, expressly disavowed any acts of hostility that might have been or might hereafter be committed by Mexicans on this side of the river, stating that all such acts were unauthorized by him or his government.

The Washington Union gives an extract of a letter from an officer of the army dated the 16 th which, says: "The news from the camp is very pacific at present. The report is that the Mexicans intend to postpone their operations until the 1 stof June, in order to allow the governments to arbitrate the matter, but no reliance is to be placed upon what they say."

A letter from the army, dated April 18th published at New Orleans, says: "The two opposing armies are within 500 yards of each other - both busily engaged in entrenching themselves and throwing up field works. The most perfect non-intercourse is established."

The same letter says that Lieut. Deas crossed the river to Matamoros without permission of General Taylor.

STILL LATER. - By the brig Appalachicola, which left Point Isabel on the 24th, - we learn from New Orleans the melancholy fate of Col. CROSS, U.S. quarter master general. His body has been found about four miles from Gen. Taylor's camp. From the wounds thereon it seemed evident that he had been killed by a lance. The body was entirely stripped. It was reported that a person in Matamoros had acknowledged that he had murdered him, that he had the watch and clothing of the colonel in his possession, and that Gen. Taylor had made a formal demand for the murderer.

The Mexican schooner Juanita , from N. Orleans, for Matamoros, was taken into Brazos Bay on the 22d ult. by the pilots - no doubt by permission of the blockading force.

LATER. - The schooner Cornelia arrived at New Orleans, left Brazos Santiago on the 24th. An express from General Taylor reached there just before she left, in which Gen. T. stated that the commander of the Mexican forces had made a formal declaration that if Gen. T. did not move his army from the position he then occupied, in thirty six hours, the Mexican batteries would be opened upon him. - There had previously been so many rumors to the same effect in the camp, that little reliance was placed upon this one, which was first communicated by a Mexican, who was prudently detained by order of Gen. Taylor.

The same express stated that a body of 2,000 Mexicans had crossed the Rio Grande near Boretta, a small town eight miles below Matamoros, on the west bank, between Point Isabel and Gen. Taylor's camp, cutting off communication and supplies to the latter. A private letter was also received last evening from an officer in General Taylor's camp, confirming in part the above reporting of the Mexicans having crossed the river, but stating the number at 1,000 only.

LATER STILL. - The steamer General Worth, with intelligence twelve hours later from Brazos and one day's later from General Taylor's camp, was in the river, says the Picayune of the 1st instant, eight or ten miles below the city. A bearer of dispatches from General Taylor was on board. Mr. Marks, attached to the American Consulate at Matamoros, is on board. Apprehending imprisonment from the Mexicans, he had left his post and repaired to Gen. Taylor's camp.

On the 24th the Mexican schooner Juanita, was taken by the United States schooner Flirt, and sent into Brazos as a prize.

The Mexican troops above spoken of as having crossed the Rio Grande, had captured several wagons belonging to settlers, loaded with provisions for the American camp.

The American consul and merchants, resident in Matamoros, had been ordered by General Ampudia to leave for Victoria, Tamaulipas, twenty-four hours having been allowed them to adjust their affairs.

Our army is in good health and spirits, only 135 being on the sick list.

Blockade of the Rio Grande. New Orleans papers of the 29th ult., announce the arrival of the schooners Equity and Floridian, both of which had left that port a day or two before, bound to Matamoros, with assorted cargoes. They were ordered off by the U.S. brig Lawrence and schooner Flirt , of the blockading squadron.

It is stated that protests were immediately filed at New Orleans against the United States, for illegal interruption.

LATER. - Last night's Union announces the arrival of Mr. SLIDELL and Gen. WORTH at the seat of government.

*Lieut. Porter, whose death is announced above, had been but a short time married. His wife is a daughter of Major Benjamin Lloyd Beall, who is now in command of the 1 st regiment of dragoons in Texas. Mrs. Beall and daughter are at Fort Washita, the late station of Major B., where they had been left by their husbands but a short time ago. [GLP]

NNR 70.164 May 16, 1846 ARMY JOURNAL

Army of Occupation - Lieut. Porter. - A letter from an Officer in Gen. Taylor's camp, dated 22 nd. April says: -

"Lieut. Dobbins, 3d infantry, and Lieut. Porter, of the 4th infantry, son of the late Commodore Porter, left this camp on the 17th inst., each with a detachment of 2 non-commissioned officers and 10 privates to reconnoiter the surrounding country, from ten to twenty miles, in search of a band of robbers known to have been in the vicinity, and who were supposed to have murdered Col. Cross, and also to learn, if possible, something of his fate. The two parties took different directions, it raining hard during the night. The second day after, Lt. Porter met a party of Mexicans, one of whom snapped his piece at him. In return he discharged both barrels of his gun at the Mexican, who disappeared in the thorney thicket. - Lieut. Porter took the marauders' camp, ten horses, saddles, &c.

"This was about noon of the 19 th. about eighteen miles above Gen. Taylor's camp, and about six miles from the Rio Del Norte. He continued his search, and about 4 p.m., of the same day, he fell in with another party of Mexicans which had been probably joined by those whom he had met before. The rain continued. Lt. Porter's party was fired on by these men, and one private of the party was killed. They made an attempt to return it; the heavy rains caused the guns to miss fire. The Mexicans continued their fire. Lieut, Porter, as is reported by his sergeant, made a sign with his hand for the men to extend to the right. The party was thus separated in the thickets. The sergeant and four privates returned to this camp on the 20th , and gave the above account.

"A detachment of 30 dragoons was dispatched early the next morning to reconnoiter the position and search for Lieut. Porter and those of his party who were missing. They returned the same night without having learned anything of them, the thickets being so dense that it was impossible for horses to move through them. They however fell in with Lt. Dobbins, who said he would continue to look for Lt. Porter a day or two longer. Yesterday, about noon, the corporal and three men of Lieut. Porter's party returned, saying they feared Lieut. Porter had been killed. One of the men stated that he saw Lieut. P. fall from his horse. Another said he dismounted and staggered afterwards; and that vollies were poured into the place where he was. Lieut. Porter and one man of his party are still missing, besides the man known to be killed.

"Two other companies of twenty-five men each, were despatched early this morning to make still further search."

COL. CROSS. - The body, as found, stripped of all clothing, was brought into Gen. Taylor's camp about noon, April 21 st. and was interred with military honors on the following day.

Letter of Capt. Catlett to the People of Galveston - On board Steamer Monmouth - Off St. Joseph's, Ap. 28, 1846.

Gentlemen: I am the bearer of a communication from Gen. Taylor to Gov. Henderson, requesting to be immediatelyreinforced by twenty companies of foot Riflemen. My destination is Victoria, and thence to Austin. I was instructed by the General to send an express from the former place by land to your city with communications to Lieut. Kingsbury, and at the same time to spread the information through the country. But it having been left discretionary with me, and the Monmouth being available, I have determined to send the communications by her, and also to write to you, in order to facilitate as much as possible the sending on of troops. Gen. Taylor is in a very precarious situation at his camp near Matamoros, and an attack is feared on the post at Point Isabel. I believe a reinforcement of two hundred menwould save that place. This is vastly important, as a larger amount of commissariat and ordnance stores are deposited there, and if that place should fall, General Taylor will be left without resources of any kind.

I was instructed by Gen. Taylor to send out from Victoria expresses in such directions as I might deem most advisable, so as to have all the men possible on their march to his relief without awaiting orders of the Governor. You will have it in your power to send to the Lower Brazos, Houston and Montgomery sooner than an express can go from Victoria. I therefore leave that to you, knowing that it will be promptly attended to. I shall send to Matagorda, Texana, Richmond and San Felipe. If you have an opportunity, please send to Washington. I shall send there from La Grange.

The place of rendezvous for the foot companies is suggested by the General at Galveston; that of the mounted men at Corpus Christi; at which place there will be provisions and forage. No party less than 400 should think of going through on the direct road to Matamoros, as there is a large force of Mexicans on the Aroyo Colorado, for the purpose of cutting off reinforcements in that direction. Small parties can cross from Corpus Christi on to Padre's Island. Arrangements are made for crossing from the lower point of the Island to Point Isabel.

If two hundred men could be raised even temporarily at Galveston, I am decidedly of the opinion it would be better to send them forthwith by the Monmouth - the security of Point Isabel is of the last importance.

From the best information we could obtain, the force of the Mexicans is set down at seven thousand certain and reports go as high as twelve thousand.

All communication is now cut off between the camp and Point Isabel, except by running the gauntlet. I came out in the night of the 26th with a guide, and was prowling all night through chaparral, swamps and lakes.

Capt. Baker will be able to give all the particulars of what has happened, the situation of Point Isabel, &c. &c.

In haste, your obedient servant.

Messrs. Williams and others.

N. B. - A propeller has left for New Orleans with a requisition upon the Governor of Louisiana for troops also. I have thought a steamer might be leaving Galveston immediately for New Orleans, and for fear the propeller should be detained, would it not be well to state the facts to the Governor, that the troops might be in readiness by the arrival of the propeller; there is no mistake as to the order; the captain will explain.


NNR 70.161-163 May 16, 1846 editorial notice of war preparations, prompt movements in Texas, Alabama, and Louisiana

For several months past a standing enquiry in the National Register has been “Is war brewing; are we ready? “The subject was pressed in no capatious spirit or manner. Careful regard was had to avoid as far as possible party political bearing, and full latitude was at all times claimed for the Executive, forbearing to embarrass by any improper suggestions, the full influence which that department of the government is always entitled to and ought always to have the exercise of, in its management of our foreign relations. Our anxiety however has been expressed over and over, in the enquiries which have been made in almost every number of the register, whether war was not very likely to result from the course which was in progress, and if so were we prepared, as a nation ought to be prepared, for the approach of a war? Were we preparing, were any adequate measures recommended even, towards a preparation.

We repeated these enquiries for months, pointing as far as it was prudent to do so to, “the nakedness of the land” as to military preparations, incurring as we did from time to time, the imputation of “croakers” “panic makers” and similar respectful epithets from the party press, for having ventured to admonish as we endeavoured respectfully to do, and for urging that war was evidently so far possible, if not probable, that prudence required such steps to be immediately taken as prudence required such steps to be immediately taken as would avert those mortifications, humiliations and losses. To which we must inevitably be subjected if it found the nation, in its then unprepared condition.

The fact is, that we were really perplexed beyond measure to conceive what the real views of the President and his Cabinet could be, in relation to the question of peace of war. So far as we were allowed to discern, for several months after Congress met, no recommendation, looking towards a preparation for war with a formidable power, had emanated from the Executive. On the contrary, the particular department to which we cast our eyes for the very first inment to which we cast our eyes for the very first ingredient towards a preparation for war, instead of having such an object in view; or making any demonstrations whatever towards raising ways and means to sustain the public credit and wherewith to meet war expences, were devotedly occupied in preparing and endeavoured to secure the passage of a bill for reducing the existing duties upon imports to one third less than those of the existing tariff. The unvarying tone of the official journal in the mean time was that we might trust to the President for a peacable as well as honorable termination of our foreign difficulties.

At length inquiry was directly made from the senate at the suggestion of J. M. Clayton, whether in the opinion of the President, our foreign relations were in such attitude as to make it advisable for Congress to direct preparations for war.

The President's reply to this inquiry was such as to induce us to qualify previous expressions. We now understood the President to say that he had, through the departments, some time back, recommended to Committees of Congress certain measures looking to a preparation for war. Without deeming this to have been the straight forward, responsible and influential course which it seemed to us the occasion called for, we were yet for receiving it for its full value, and gave President Polk credit accordingly. No sooner had we done so than we found ourselves brought up on the other hand by the unexpected disavowal on the part of heads of departments and others of the responsibilities and recommendations to which it was supposed the President in his message had allusion. A strange, not to say discreditable squabble ensued as to what had and what had not been officially recommended, as well as who it was that recommended the measure in question, looking towards adequate defence of the country, in case the war, now thought to be at least possible, should ensue.

Bewildered by all this, we deemed it due to the character of the country to let the subject drop for the time being, and it was dropped also in Congress.

The progress of circumstances quickly awakened both Congress and the country from this quiet. The question that we have so often repeated, is solved. It is now no longer “Is war brewing?”- War is here- Without authority of either the Congress of Mexico or the Congress of the U. States, on both of which the constitutions of the two countries confers the sole authority to “declare war” war as commenced, and whether it be in the Constitutional sense, a war or only hostilities provoked by executive mismanagement of either or both of the parties, all the incidents of war are brought upon the two countries, and actually exist. The people of both republics have learned, that the restrictions of the constitution to the contrary not withstanding, the Executives have it in their power to make war inevitable at pleasure. This is truly a startling development in the operation of republican system.

The act which passed both houses of Congress within a few hours after receiving the President’s message recommending them to ‘recognize’ the existing war between Mexico and the United States,” is in conformity with that recommendation. But instead of being a plain, direct unequivocal “Declaration of war,” such as the Constitution seems to have contemplated in any suck exigency, and which would as we think have been the most appropriate form for the consideration of congress, it is equivocal, and leaves the question as to whether we are now technically and “constitutionally” at war with Mexico, or not. This half way hobbling, this complication and involution of great national affairs, should be avoided. Distinct definite-and indisputable ground is generally the best foothold. We can distinguish no necessity for leaving our own citizens nor foreign governments are able to pronounce whether war, in its higher and legal signification, now exists between Mexico and the United States. We know that fighting, killing, taking prisoners, blockading ports, invading territory, and all the usual accompaniments of a war are now not only enacting, but on our port at least, are now legalized, and yet war is not “declared.” Nay, some of the incidents to war yet want legal formalities. Whether for instance, the commander of the American squadron in the Gulf would be authorized to take Vera Cruz, if he could? Whether the Pacific squadron might take possession of Monterey.

Letters of marque are as yet certainly not authorized on our part, although there is reason to apprehend that, they have been or speedily will be authorized by the Mexicans.

Accounts from Cuba intimate that one of the objects which the Mexican Minister to England had inview in stopping at that Island, was to make disposition of letters of marque for the annoyance of our commerce. That thousands of the buccaneers and slavers that infest those seas would spring to such a harvest as our wide spread commerce would afford them, is too probable.

But dropping discussion as to the NATURE of the possession now occupied, or as to whether technically we are at war or not, we certainly, de facto are sufficiently at war to induce as to recur once more to the oft and anxiously repeated enquiry “ARE WE READY?”

The question “Is war brewing” is solved, the second enquiry “are we ready,” is now at test, so far as Mexico is concerned. How long it may be before the test may be applied to a case of war with Great Britain, who will undertake to say? Their “Union” of Thursday of last week, certainly apprehend the time to be not very remote. The National Intelligencer treated the article in the Union to which we have allusion, very lightly and intimated that the editor of the Official Journal must have allowed himself to be hoaxed on that occasion; yet as we see that the Foreign Quarterly, just republished in this country, says in a postscript to an article on the Oregon question, “Every public man that we have seen or heard of, seems to think, and the whole public press concur in announcing, that the dissolution of Sir Robert Peel’s ministry is inevitable. No definite reason seems to be assigned for this expected event. It is intimated that Sir Robert will remain in office until his tariff measures are carried. Why he should then resign, with a majority in his favor, no explanation is given. Upon the occasion of the retirement of the Peel cabinet not long since- a retirement which lasted but two days- there were some who held the belief that the real cause of that step was not the one publicly announced; but that PEEL withdrew in order to leave Lord John Russell and a Whig Cabinet to meet the responsibility of the Oregon question, which seemed then approaching crisis. Inasmuch as that the question is now certainly approaching a crisis, the same design, if it existed before, may be the moving cause of the predicted resignation.”

A firm persuasion that the government was not preparing with due promptitude for a contingency which to our vision seemed to be too probable, has induced us to continue unceasingly so urge the questions so important to the country. If mistaken, it were at least to mistake upon the safe side. Neglect preparation, let war overtake us, and disgrace, as well as disaster inevitably awaited us, to retrieve which how many lives and what a struggle would it not cost the country?

The measure of those disasters is not duly appreciated. That in case of a war, disasters at first were to be expected, seemed to be admitted on all hands, as a matter of course; we mean in a war with England. People had as if by common consent made up their minds to that. Alas, how few, expect those who have tasted of the bitter draft, know how to appreciate a series of national disasters, or what it costs to recover from them.

But as to being “ready” for war with Mexico, who would have dared to express a doubt.

That a very mistaken estimate prevailed of what a war with Mexico might become, and of what was required to make such a war brief, and terminate it advantageously, we have unpreservedly and repeatedly urged.

The first announcement of hostilities, comes to us with the postscript, that “the Mexicans have been sadly underrated.” Ten days ago the prediction was confidently pronounced from the American camp, that “Of this you may be certain, we shall have no fighting, unless we ourselves lead off the dance.”

The very next arrival brings us not only disastrous affairs of out-posts, but the startling intelligence that our army is invested by the enemy and its supplies and munitions cut off, and with only fifteen days provisions in store. It is true, assurances are given of their being able to maintain their position, provided they receive timely supplies and succor, but great apprehensions are felt for the safety of the detachment at Point Isabel, which have in charge the stores and munitions designed for the army.

“The Army of occupation” will do, we have no doubt, whatever the same number of men, with the means they have at command, could do, and whilst we regard it as quite possible that the “fortune of war” may have further reverses for them to experience, yet we have far more of faith that of despondency on the occasion. We believe that if the precaution has been taken there, as we presume it must have been to apprise. Commodore Conner of the posture of affairs, the Squadron, or a part of it, will have repaired with timely succour to the vicinity to insure the safety of the post and the stores. Although the depth of water will not allow them to approach the port, their men and arms will be efficient. It will take some time, even with the characteristic alacrity of our South western volunteers, for forces sufficient to re-open safe communication with Gen. Taylor’s camp from Point Isabel, to reach the latter, and to be prepared to encounter with success the forces which the Mexicans are Supposed to have now posted to intercept them.

The dispatches asking for additional forces left Gen. Taylors camp on the 26th. ult. He then had fifteen days provision. Half allowance might of course make them last longer, but would have an unfavorable effect upon the physical powers of the men.

We have Galveston dates to the 3d inst. The steamer Monmouth left Galveston on the 1st inst. with volunteers to join the army. They were no doubt the first to reach Point Isabel, under the requisition of General Taylor. From the old states the credit of making the first actual movement of volunteers for the rescue, we believe, is due to the spirited company which left mobile on the 4th inst. Under command of Gen DESHA, for New Orleans. Without waiting to receive a requisition from any direction they heard the bugle call and the response was instant, “We are here-READY.” On the 5th inst., they reached New Orleans, one hundred strong and on the 6th inst., embarked from thence for Texas.

Louisianians were, some of them, equally prompt but the requisition upon that state was for a considerable force, and necessarily required more time to muster. The legislature instantly placed $100,000 at the disposal of the governor for the exigency.

Benjamin Story, Esq., placed $500,000 at the disposition of the state of Louisiana, immediately on learning the situation of the army on the Rio Grande.

The papers teem with evidences of public spirit on every hand. Without waiting to determine whether fault as been committed or to question, if so where the fault is chargeable, all agree that the army now exposed, must be sustained, and war, continued, must be waged with decisive-energy.

A general meeting of the citizens of New Orleans was called, and the following resolutions were adopted with the greatest unanimity. Whereas hostilities have actually commenced between the United States and Mexico; and where our army of occupation upon the frontier of Texas, pressed by embarrassments and surrounded by a superior force, calls for immediate assistance; and whereas Louisiana has ever been prompt in her action on emergencies like the present:

Resolved, That as Louisianians we will immediately respond to the call of Brigadier General Taylor, and without a moment’s delay place at his command for regiments of infantry, as required.

Resolved, That as Americans it behooves us to forget all differences of opinion, and only to remember that our country’s honor is in danger.

Resolved, That we point with pride to the action of our legislature in the present crisis, and that we will do everything in our power to sustain its appropriations and carry out its patriotic views. [JEB]

NNR 70.163 May 16, 1846 position of the Army at Matamoros, description of Point Isabel, Brazos Santiago, &c.

The camp of Gen. Taylor extends about four miles along the river bank, two miles above and two below Matamoros. It occupied his twenty-three hundred men for thirty days to construct the defences. It is made of sand, covered over with twigs, woven together like basket work, surrounded by a wide and very deep ditch.

The walls of the magazine in the interior of the fortification are formed of pork barrels, filled with sand, seven tier thick, four tier high, covered over with timber, on which sand is piled ten or twelve feet.

Twelve heavy pieces of ordnance are so placed as to command the town of Matamoros.

This camp is about 30 miles above the mouth of the Rio Del Norte. In its rear stretches the wide desert region between that river and the Nueces, 150 miles in breadth, affording no sustenance. Along nearly the whole coast between the mouths of those rivers stretches Padre island, (a barren sand ridge,) and Madre Laguna, which latter is penetrated near the southern end by a high bluff called,

Point Isabel, which is Gen. Taylor’s depot of provisions, and the point from which his supplies are to be derived. It is 27 miles from his camp, through a country difficult to penetrate. A narrow channel, the outlet of Madre Laguna, opens into the Gulf opposite Point Isabel, and forms its means of communicating with the sea. But it is only of depth to admit small vessels. Some few miles outside of the Laguna, the Brassos Santiago, a small port, off of which, and between it and the mouth of the Rio Grande, our ships occasionally anchor. The U.S. schr. Flirt was endeavoring at the last accounts to get over the bar into the Brassos Santiago, in order to co-operate more effectually in the defence of the depot and position at the mouth of the river. [JEB]

NNR 70.165 May 16, 1846 report of the steamer Augusta

REPORT of the steam schooner Augusta, Gillett, ordered to proceed to New Orleans by the U.S.Quarter Master at Point Isabel, with importanr despatches.

Crossed the bar at Brazos Santiago on Tuesday the 28th ult., at 6 o'clock, A.M. On Friday, 1st instant, when 60 miles west of the S.W. Pass, at 12 o'clock, M., was hailed by steamer Galveston , laid to and put Col. C. Doane, bearer of despatches, on board the Galveston. Left in port steamer Cincinnati, Smith, just arrived with baggage and arms for the U.S. Army, from Arkansas; U.S. steamers, Col. Long and Neva, lightening vessels in the harbor; schr. Ellen & Clara, Griffin, for N.O.; steam schr. Florida, Clift do; steam schnr. Jas. Cage, Sherman, do.; Mexican schr. Juanita lately arrived from New Orleans with stores for the Mexican army, was taken possession of by order of Gen. Taylor, and ordered to return to New Orleans without discharging her cargo; U.S. brig of war Lawrence, Commander Mercer, and U.S. schr. Flirt, Lieut. Sinclair, commanding, were blockading the mouth of the Rio Grande; schr. Bella del Mar, stranded on the bar of Brazos Santiago, was condemned and sold on the 25th ult.; U.S. steamer Monmouth was despatched, on the evening of the 27th ult., for Port Lavacca and Galveston, with a requisition from Gen. Taylor on the Governor of Texas for two regiments of cavalry and two regiments of foot - militia. [GLP] [JEB]

NNR 70.165 May 16, 1846 letter from Col. Fitzpatrick

Extract from a letter from Col. FITZPATRICK, of Florida serving as a volunteer under Col. TWIGGS, to a member of congress.

[Col. F. is a gentleman of high character, well known as an officer who served in the Florida war.]

Camp before Matamoros, April 27, 1846.

DEAR SIR: The war has commenced on the part of Mexico. On the night of the 25th instant, Capt. Thornton, of the dragoons, with a squadron consisting of his own and Capt. Hardee's company, were ordered to reconnoiter the Mexican army, which Gen. Taylor had been informed were crossing the Rio Grande twenty-seven miles above here. The squad was ambuscaded and fired on, and a number (unknown) killed, and all besides taken by the Mexicans. They sent in two wounded, with a note to Gen. Taylor. Capt. Hardee is prisoner, but no news of Capt. Thornton and Lieuts. Mason and Kane. You will believe me when I tell you the war is commenced in Mexico, and that Gen. Taylor is about to be surrounded and cut off from his supplies at Pont Isabel, which is twenty-seven miles distant. - The Mexicans have a force of from two to three thousand on this side of the river, and their destination is doubtless Point Isabel, where there is not more than four hundred men of all descriptions. You will believe me when I tell you that this army will have the d-dest hardest fighting that ever any army had in this world, and, unless reinforcements are largely and speedily sent to its assistance, it must be cut off, as the enemy are in great force, and I fear have been very much underrated. I tell you, sir, the enemy have been entirely underrated, and this army has put itself in a trap, and is cut off (or about to be so) from its supplies.

I am here with Col. Twiggs as an amateur, and I shall stick to it till I am killed or made prizoner.

Yours, truly,


New Orleans, May 2, 1846

DEAR SIR: The intelligence that has reached us this morning from Gen. Taylor's army has fully realized the fears of every intelligent person here of the imminent danger of our whole army in Texas. At last accounts he had but about twenty-one hundred and fifty efficient men with him opposite Matamoros, with only ten days' provisions; cut off from all communication with Point Isabel, where he has his supplies and a large portion of his artillery, munitions, &c. At Point Isabel there are noy over three hundred men. Gen. T. is literally surrounded, and from all accounts there cannot be less than sixty-five hundred Mexicans in his vicinity, under arms.

There is little or no enthusiasm in Texas, and there will be difficulty and delay in getting the twenty-four hundred men in the field called for from Texas. Here there will be also yet greater difficulty, I fear. The extreme dilatoriness of government in paying off the Texas volunteers has produced a most unfortunate effect.

There seems to be little or no confidence in the administration. There is no money here. Both the quartermasters and commisary are without a cent, and large sums are now due to citizens; and yet it appears we have eleven or twelve millions in the treasury.

You need not be surprised to learn that Gen. Taylor's army is destroyed or made prisoners within ten days from this time.

Arista is in command, and he is an excellent officer, and looks forward no doubt to the presidency as his reward.

The stupidity of our government in sending General Taylor to the Rio Grande, and opposite to Matamoros, where he assumed a threatening attitude, is quite without parallel. With only twenty-one hundred and fifty men, too! What the object was I cannot imagine. An army of ten thousand men will now be necessaryto maintain our position on the Rio Grande,and a probable expense of twenty millions of dollars will be incurred before this awful blunder can be remedied.

Gen. Smith (Persifer L.) has agreed to take command of the four regiments of Louisiana militia required by Gen. Taylor. Our governor could not have made a better selection.

Extract of a letter received by senator Cameron, and communicated to the Union.

Brasos Santiago, (Texas), April 27.

I embrace the opportunity of the departure of a vessel for New Orleans to announce to you that hostilities have commenced between the Mexican forces and the American army of occupation under the command of Gen. Taylor. The Mexican army is believed to be ten or twelve thousand strong. A considerable force is now crossing, or has crossed, to the left bank of the Rio Grande, with the view, it is thought, of either attacking Gen. Taylor's camp, or his depot. If they could take this place, and thereby cut off Gen. Taylor's supplies, he would be compelled to make a retrograde movement. There are only two companies of troops at this post for its defence; but there are some two hundred and fifty persons here besides the soldiers - sutlers, clerks, and persons in the employment of the quartermaster's department- all of whom are willing to defend the place; so that we can probably muster three hundred and fifty men under arms. If they do not bring too large a force against us, we will be able to hold out until succor arrives from New Orleans or elsewhere. We have entrenched ourselves. Gen. Taylor's situation meantime is rather a critical one. All his supplies are received from this post which is twenty-seven miles distant from his position, and requires a considerable force to guard each wagon train, and by that means weakening his forces, which are in the immediate vicinity of a hostile force about four times as numerous. He has to-day made requisitions upon the authorities of Texas and Louisiana, and perhaps other states, for troops; until the arrival of which he must defend himself, as well as he can. He is strongly entrenched and has several pieces of artillery, of which he expects an additional supply from Baton Rouge in two or three days. [GLP]

NNR 70.176 May 16, 1846 Volunteers and regulars arrive at Brazos Santiago on steamers, troops march for Barita.

Gents., The volunteer companies under command of Col. J.B. Walton of the Washington Regiment, on board the steamer Jas. L. Day, arrived here on Thursday morning the 14th inst., after a very pleasant passage of three days, and those by the Telegraph arrived on the 15th and went immediately into camp. Gen. Taylor left here on the morning of the 14 thfor his camp, with a large train of wagons, and quite a formidable train of artillery, dragoons, and infantry, amounting to some six or eight hundred. There was an arrival from the upper camp this morning, which passed him yesterday on his march; he has in all probability ere this reached his camp.

On the morning of the 15th , regulars enough to swell the amount to about one thousand embarked on board the steamers Neva, Leo, and Cincinnati, and at 1 o'clock were landed at the Brazos Santiago, and took up their line of march for the Rio Grande, all under the command of Col. Wilson; their march is for Barita, situated some fifteen miles up the river, where it is stated the Mexicans are collecting considerable forces.

The United States fleet consisting of the Mississippi, Cumberland , Raritan, Lawrence, &c which have been here for some days, have run down to the mouth of the river and come to, and with their boats will cross the troops under the command of Col. Wilson to the south bank of the river. The steamers will be on readiness at Barita to assist in the transportation of arms and ammunition.

Colonel Wilson's command have with them two days' rations, and scarce a blanket, with no tents nor my baggage train. At dark they had crossed [P]occachita, and were on their march for the river,--This morning, the 16th , the sea is very high, and the weather squally, so that the steamer Neva cannot get to the sea, and if it continues so, must create some distress in Colonel Wilson's camp for provisions and blankets.

List of Vessels at Brazos Santiago, May 16--

schr. Enterprize, Trainer, arrived 15 instant, brig [million], arrived 14th inst., beat hard on the bar, but without much damage: schr. Gertrude, Flander, arrived 16th : brig Apalachicola, arrived 16th; schr. Mary Emer, of Mobile, arrived 16th; brig Virginia, J.M. Hood master, arr. 14 th inst., 7 days from Pensacola, with two companies of artillery under the command of Capts. Webster and Taylor, and sailed for New Orleans on Saturday the 16th inst.

On the 15th, the steam schooner Augusta, sailed for St. Joseph will all the wounded that were able to be transported, taken from the battle of the 8th and 9th instant. [AEK]

NNR 70.176 May 23, 1846 war clause on marine insurance

INSURANCE.- The war clause, is now a serious item with the marine insurance offices. The New York Courier states that the officers there generally, insert the following:

“War clause.-Warranted by the assured free of all loss, damage or charge arising from, during or in consequence of capture, seizure, restraint, blockade or detention resulting from war or hostilities between the United States and Mexico or pretext there of.” [JEB]

NNR 70.176 May 23, 1846 orders and movement of troops for the frontier

ARMY.- Two companies of U.S. artillery stationed at Pensacola, another company at Fort Pike, and one company at Fort Wood, near New Orleans, have been ordered forthwith to the Rio Del Norte, by Gen. Gaines. They embarked from New Orleans, on the 5th inst. the New Orleans Tropic of the 6th inst. Says- “A detachment of regular troops numbering about 80 arrived yesterday from Fort Pike, and marched to their quarters at the barracks. [JEB]

NNR 70.176 May 16, 1846 Killed and wounded

2d. Reg. Dragoons, U.S.A. Near Matamoros, April 28, 1846.

Dear Sir: - I send you below a copy of the official list of the killed and wounded, of the detachment under the command of Captains Thornton and Hardee, who were cut off by a party of 2,000 of the enemy (2,000 against 75!). Some of the killed resided in Philadelphia.

Killed - Capt. Thornton, Lieut. Kane. Privates - Benjamin Russell, Henry Ruwer, Ezra Sands, William Ryan, formerly kept a tavern in Water street, Philadelphia; John Sidford, Philadelphia; Wm. Stewart, Jas. Curtis, Richard Pryor - has a father at No. 132 Buttonwood street, Philadelphia; George T. Styles, New Orleans; Peter K. Stevenson, Theopilus Whiteman, David Whiteman - father is a grocer, at corner of George and Eleventh streets, Philadelphia; Geo. Shippen. Total 13.

Wounded.- Privates - St. Clair Shipley, slightly; John Perkins, do.; William S. Muff; mortally; Geo. Jenkins, since dead: Patrick Mclaughlin, slightly; Henry Wilk, slightly, by a lance in the leg. Total 6.

Prisoners- Capt. Hardee. Privates - John Ogborn and James Ogburn, brothers; Wilkum Van Horn, Solomon Brewer, George K. Curtis, William McGinn, Geo. D. Barker, Patrick Linn, Henry V. Vansitteri, Shepherd Black, Dennis O'Neil, Geo. Slack, James West, Barker O'Ryan, Samuel G. Smith, Peter O'Rafferty, John Peters, James Cass, Jonathan Smith, John Offerman, P. James, Niles Ryan, James Peters, musician; Lemuel Pierce, George Bassome, William Early, Ephraim Baggs, James Leeds, Frank Bowers, William Cunningham, John Seyfton, James Wright, Thomas Richardson, William Thomas, Jas. Gibbons, Joseph Russell, Charles Burke, Frederick Myers, Thomas Jenks, Patrick Ward, John Frazer, James Heilgent, Edward Shaw, Charles Wood, Thomas Hickman, Charles J. Smith. Total 47.

I will write again the first opportunity. You may make any use of this you think proper.

I remain, yours, &c.
JAMES CARTLETE, 2d Reg. U.S. Dragoons.

NNR 70.176 May 23, 1846 Louisiana orders for enrollment of all persons subject to military duty

The latest intelligence we have from New Orleans states, that the governor of Louisiana, in consequence of the want of a sufficient number of volunteers, had issued orders for the enrollment forthwith, of all persons liable to military duty, as preliminary to a draft. Altogether twelve companies, including one from Attakapas, and another from East Feliciana, had been mustered into service, comprising a force of about one thousand men. [JEB]

May 16, 1846 NNR 70.176 Steamer Mississippi ordered to Vera Cruz, St. Mary's ordered to Brazos, New York legislature authorized governor to call 50,000 volunteers

NAVY. The U.S. steamer Princeton, having been repaired at the Charlestown navy yard, Capt. FRENCH FORREST reached Boston on Monday, with others for her to proceed immediately for Pensacola. By 10 o'clock on Tuesday morning she was under way and went to sea in fine style, all sails filled with a fair breeze. Capt. Forrest went as passenger, under orders to relieve capt. DULANEY, in command of the frigate Cumberland,now in the gulf. The Princeton is commanded by F. ENGLE, Esq.

The Mississippi, U.S. steam frigate, Capt. Fitzhugh, was ordered to start for Vera Cruz, at 4 P.M. on the 4th inst from Pensacola.

The St. Mary's, U.S. sloop of war, Commander Saunders, on the reception of intelligence at Pensacola, via N. Orleans, of the news from Rio Grande, was ordered to get under way immediately for Brazos St. Iago to the aid of Point Isabel.

African squadron. - The Dolphin,U.S. brig, Com. Pope, and the Marion, sloop of war, Com. Simonds, were at Monrovia April 1, the latter just from a cruise down the coast, about to sail to windward in a few days. J.C. Spencer, Jr., purser of the Marion, is deceased. On the 30 thMarch, the Marion's boat was capsized, while crossing the bar of the Messurado river, and Mr. Joseph T. Bartlett, of Maine, midshipman, and Mr. John Johnson, seaman, were drowned.

Lieut. W.D. Hurst, of Philadelphia, who was some months ago struck off the list of the navy, for fighting a duel with an inferior officer, has been reappointed by the president, by and with the advice and consent of the senate.

THE NEW YORK LEGISLATURE closed their session on the 13thinstant. They enacted 337 laws during the 128 days it continued. The anti-rent bills were all passed except the one regulating the stautes in relation to devise and decent.

On the lasy day of the session a resolution passed the lower house, authorising the governor to call out 50,000 volunteers for the use of the nation in the war with Mexico. The senate however adjourned without taking any notice of the resolution. [GLP]

NNR 70.177 May 23, 1846 proclamation of war against Mexico is copied from declaration of war with Great Britain in 1812

The president’s proclamation announcing war with Mexico, is copied nearly word for word from Mr. Madison’s proclamation of June 19, 1812, announcing the declaration of war with Great Britain, according to act of congress the day previously. The document may be found in Niles’ Register for 1812 – N.Y Jour. Of Com. [JEB]

NNR 70.177 May 23, 1846 manifesto of Mexican President ad interim Mariano Paredes y Arillaga against the United States

THE MEXICAN MANIFESTO. A manifesto of “the president ad interim” Paredes, issued on the 23d April, 1846, in relation to hostilities with the United States, has been received, and with the official documents communicated to congress by president Polk, accompanying his message of the 11th instant, comprising the correspondence of Mr Slidell with the Mexican ministers, &c. will occupy a portion of our next number.

The Washington “Union” considers the manifesto of Paredes as an official declaration of war on the part of Mexico, not withstanding one of its sentences italicized reads thus “I solemnly announce that I do NOT declare war against the United States of America because it pertains to the august congress of that nation and not to the executive to settle definitely the reparations which so many aggressions demand.” [JEB]

NNR 70.177 May 23, 1846 Creek Indians volunteer for service in Mexico

Amongst the thousand and one rumors that now fill the journals, we find the Pennsylvanian saying, as from good authority, “that one of the chiefs of the Creek nation, now in Washington, has offered to the President the services of two thousand picked warriors, should they be required in the conflict with Mexico:” and the editor (that paper is published in the city of brotherly love) coolly adds:=”This is a most praiseworthy movement, and we have no doubt will be made use of effectively, if occasion requires.” [JEB]

May 23, 1846 NNR 70.177 NAVAL JOURNAL, revenue cutters ordered to Gulf

Navy post office. Under the instructions given by the house of representatives to one of its committees, a bill has been reported providing for the transfer of the revenue and post office branches of the navy to the navy department. We have now three descriptions of navies: one, the navy proper, under the orders of the navy department; one, the revenue marine navy, under the treasury department; the other, the post office navy, under the orders of the post office department. The house has wisely determined to place the whole under the direction of the navy department.

The Congress frigate captain Stockton, spoken 30 thJanuary in latitude 48 34', lon. 166 52' W. all well; from Rio Janeiro for the Pacific.

The Dale, U.S. sloop of war, was taken into dry dock last week, and will be immediately repaired and equipped for service.

The Revenue cutters, that can be spared from their respective stations have been ordered to the Gulf of Mexico.

The Spanish squadron now in the Gulf of Mexico, is said to consist of one ship of the line, one frigate, one sloop of war, three steam ships, five brigs of war, and several schooners and transports.

The Gulf squadron. The frigate Raritan reached the squadron of Vera Cruz on the 18th ult. And commodore Conner transferred his flag to her. He sailed from Vera Cruz on the 23d, on a cruize off the coast, accompanied by the Cumberland, Potomac, and Falmouth . The fleet had previously gone out to sea for a day or two, to give the men the benefit of fresh air, &c. The sloop of war John Adams was the only vessel of war lying at Sacrificios.

The Portsmouth and Shark, left Mazathan, for sea on the 1 st April.

It is stated that not a case of yellow fever has yet occurred in the squadron - general health good.

The U.S. brig Perry, commander Blake sailed from Norfolk on the 16 th for Chagres.

Midshipman McRae, goes out in the Perry, has bearer of despatches, to the Pacicfic squadron. He is to await the return mail at Chagres, and there report to commodore Conner.

The Independence, at Charleston navy yard, has as many men as can conveniently work upon her, now busily employed in repairing her.

The Decatur, sloop of war is now fitting for service at Norfolk.

The Brandywine frigate has also a few additional hands employed in fitting her for service at the navy yard.

The Truxton, U.S. brig, is also ordered to be fitted forthwith. Commander Carpenter takes charge of her.

Recruits for the service are sought for at the rendezvous. [GLP]

NNR 70.178 May 23, 1846 apprehensions about privateering on behalf of Mexico by Spanish subjects

PRIVATEERING. The Washington Union says – Apprehensions have been expressed that Mexico may issue letters of Marque to Spanish subjects in Cuba, to cruise against the commerce of the United States, and that privateers may be fitted out in the ports of that island for this nefarious purpose. Indeed, it has been suggested that the two Mexican steamers which have been recently transferred to the Havanna have been sent there with this object. We know that the government of Spain would not sanction such a proceeding; but it is not generally known that a Spanish subject could not accept a commission for this purpose from the Mexican government without being guilty of piracy. For public information we copy the 14 th article of our treaty with Spain of the 20th October, 1795, which article is now in force: “ARTICLE 14. No subject of his Catholic majesty shall apply for, or take, any commission or letters of marque, for arming any ship or ships to act as privateers against the said United States, or against the citizens, people, or inhabitants of the said United States, or against the property of any of the inhabitants of any of them, from any prince or state with which the said United States shall be at war. Nor shall any citizen, subject, or inhabitant of the said U. States apply for or take, any commission or letters of marque for arming any ship or ships to act as privateers against the subjects of his Catholic majesty, or the property of any of them, from any prince or state with which the shall be at war. And if any person of either nation shall take such commissions or letters of marque he shall be punished as a pirate” That is he shall be “hung by the neck until he is dead.” [JEB]

NNR 70.178 May 23, 1846 requisition for 30,000 volunteers, exclusive of those called for by Gen. Zachary Taylor and Gen. Edmund Pendleton Gaines, difficulties suggested

THE CAMPAIGN.- The President and his Cabinet without doubt, have determined immediately to concentrate such a force upon the Mexican frontier, as they deem adequate for an effectual invasion of the enemies territory, provided the war is not terminated before the forces shall reach their destination. In addition to the regular forces comprising the “Army of Occupation,” under General Taylor, at least thirty thousand of the volunteers authorized by the recent act of congress will be forthwith ordered to the Rio Grande. It is understood that these will be detailed from the States nearest to the scene of action.

The President has called upon the Governor of Maryland to furnish two thousand men, as the contribution of this State. Governor Pratt received the requisition on the 20th Inst.

The thirty thousand volunteers alluded to, we presume, will be exclusive of the troops now concentrating from Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Texas, &c. under requisitions from Generals TAYLOR and GAINES, and which were authorized by laws in existence prior to the volunteer act, alluded to.

It is to be feared that government will find difficulty in adjusting the several descriptions of forces thus organizing or contemplated. The volunteers that are now embarking under the call from Gen. Taylor, certainly calculate on a tour not extended beyond the emergency. It was for the immediate safety of Point Isabel and to secure the supplies and succor to General Taylor, opposite to Matamoros- and not with a view of being detained to invade Mexico, that the Louisiana Legion for instance have so suddenly left their families and occupations.

Next we shall have nearly ten thousand men under the requisition made upon the southwestern states by General Gaines. The term for which these can be held in service under the law which authorized his call, is limited if we mistake not, to three months- a term too short to accomplish much beyond the limits of the Union.

And next comes the requisition for “volunteers,” under the provisions of the act passed by congress last week. These will be required to serve for not less than six months, and may therefore be available for a foreign campaign, if it be brief.

One difficulty in these ramifications will be, that in consequence of these requisitions from Gens. Taylor and Gaines upon the southwestern states, the VOLUNTEERS required for the last mentioned corps may not so easily be found there.

To muster, officer, organize, arm, and discipline twenty-five thousand volunteers and move them, accompanied with sufficient supplies and munitions to the borders ready to commence an effective invasion of Mexico, will occupy at least three months. Precipitance would be disastrous. Let whatever is done, be well done. [JEB]

NNR 70.178 May 23, 1846 discussion of command of the Army

THE COMMAND OF THE ARMY.- Thus concentrating is to be entrusted to Major General Scott, who next to the President, is Commander in Chief of the United States army, and whose services are now required in the field. His experience as a Commander will be of value. His cool judgment may be equally important. It is probable that he will not assume the immediate command until the “Army of Invasion” shall have concentrated on the frontier. A paragraph is circulating in the papers of the day which asserts that General Scott denies having been consulted or advising the movement of the army beyond the Nueses.

A war having commenced, the country will of course look with scrutinizing interest into the manner in which it is conducted. The general project of the campaign, will no doubt be a matter of consultation with the Cabinet, the Commander in Chief, and the superior officers that are at the Seat of Government. Amongst the latter it happens fortunately for the occasion, that government may avail the practical advice of,

Brigadier General Wool, who, on his way from the North, for Texas, is now at the city of Washington; and likewise of

Gen. Worth, who had forwarded on his resignation in consequence of the orders of the department disparaging, as he thought, his brevet rank. He reached the seat of government from Rio Grande before the arrival of his resignation, and immediately tendered his services to government in whatever capacity they might be deemed most useful. The President decided not to accept his resignation, and he left Washington on the 9th instant to join the army again. Not only the Army,-his countrymen will approve of both his patriotism and spirit. Of General Worth, an officer under General Taylor writes-“The high reputation of this officer, and his unquestionable military genius, had secured the confidence of every officer; while his personal gallantry, equally well known, won for him the love and admiration of every soldier in the command. At the passage of the Colorado he was second in command, and at the word “forward” he and his staff, Leeds, Magruder, Deas, and Blake, plunged into the flood and led the advance,(then considered “a forlorn hope”) amidst the cheers of the troops drawn up on the banks of the river, and landed within twenty yards of the Mexicans who skirted the opposite side. The enemy become panic struck and fled precipitately”

General Taylor, in command of the “Army of occupation,” “was born in Virginia and raised in the neighborhood of Louisville, Ky. He entered the army as a lieutenant, in 1808; was a captain, and greatly distinguished himself in the defence of Fort Harrison in the war of 1812, which post he commanded when it was attacked by a greatly superior force of British and Indians. For his gallant conduct on the occasion he was made a brevet major, being the first brevet that was conferred in that war. General Taylor was in Florida during a part of the late Seminole war, and commanded in person at the battle of Occochubbe, on the 25th December 1837. His gallantry and skill on that occasion won for him the rank of brevet brigadier general. [JEB]

NNR 70.178 May 23, 1846 comments on the abilities of the Mexican general Mariano Arista

THE MEXICAN COMMANDER ARISTA, beyond a doubt, is an able officer. He has exhibited both gallantry and tact. His not making a dash upon Point Isabel, before Gen. Taylor arrived there, convinces us that he is not in as much force on this side of the Rio Grande as was apprehended, else he would have attempted to make so important a prize. If he had an adequate force, his failure to do so showed want of generalship.

General Taylor’s movement to that point, confirmed the estimate in which he is held as an able officer. [JEB]

NNR 70.178 May 23, 1846 description of Matamoros and its vicinity

Matamoros, is an old Spanish city, beautifully situated on the southern bank of the Rio Grande, within its folds, so that its front and rear are both on the river.-Seen from the American side, it has every appearance of being an American town. The streets intersect each other at right angles, and appear to be lined with many varieties of shade trees, which give the town an air of coolness and render its appearance very inviting. Many of the buildings are built of brick, and in the modern style of architecture. The cathedral, market and buildings occupied by the military, are among the finest.-The dwellings of the poorer classes are constructed with canes, brush, mud, and the like materials, and are essentially Mexican. The town has about 7,000 inhabitants, but formerly contained double its present number, and was a place of some importance. The rapid decline is owing to their internal commotions and the growing indolence of the people. The citizens are all under the rule of the military, and are obliged to provide for them. The military is supreme, and the orders of their general are law.

The vicinity of Matamoros is peopled on both sides of the Rio del Norte by Mexicans, who, so far from ever having admitted themselves to be Texans, have been actively contributing to carry on the war between Mexico and the Texans ever since its commencement. They are strewed over the region about as thickly as in many of the interior countries of our states, and a levy en masse, would produce several thousand men in arms, fully equivalent to our militia. Even if a love of Mexico, or apprehensions for their own families or property, failed to inspire them, there is no doubt that a prospect of plunder and of éclat, if once inspired with the idea of taking an American army or their munitions and provisions, would rally some thousands of them in an instant. [JEB]

May 23, 1846 NNR 70.178 INCIDENTS OF THE CAMPAIGN.; Capt. Walker's mission, Gen. Taylor's camp bombarded, reinforcements yet to arrive

April 28th. Capt. WALKER, commander of a partizan corps of Texan Rangers, this evening reached Point Isabel, having suffered severely, and as he supposed having lost nearly all of his detachment in an affair with a large body of Mexicans, which he encountered whilst reconnoitering between Point Isabel and Gen. Taylor's camp, opposite to Matamoros. The captain, however, whom we are proud to learn, is, as well as the lamented Col. CROSS, a native of Prince George's county, Maryland, - true sons of "The old Maryland Line," distinguished in the annals of the revolution, by a fame that never faultered from the first encounter in the memorable battle of Long Island, to the close of the eventful struggle for independence; - Capt. Walker, we were about to say, so far from being deterred by the disaster he had met with, instantly volunteered, if any four men would join him, to proceed to Gen. Taylor;s camp at the risk of his life, acquaint him with the situation of affairs at Point Isabel, and bring back any orders he might entrust him with.

As the impression was, that some thousand Mexican troops lay in the route, the proposition was considered almost fool-hardy. Six brave fellows however accepted his challenge, and the party started accordingly.

The papers received furnish no reliable account of his excursion. One statement says that two of the party were killed by the Mexicans. The captain's horse was killed, without doubt, as we see by the New Orleans papers of the 12th, that the spirited citizens of that city had determined to send the captain a splendid charger to replace his own. He, however, reached the camp, and was the first to acquaint Gen. Taylor with the situation of affairs at Point Isabel.

Gen. Taylor had now nearly completed the defences constructed opposite Matamoros. The citadel of the position, an irregular hexagon, with bastioned fronts, and a capacity to receive 1,200 men, though it may be defended by 500, he considered sufficient to sustain a regular assault for at least ten days, from disciplined troops and scientific approach from trenches. The present Mexican forces would scarcely attempt to carry it by storm.

The general's next object, of course, was to secure a supply of provisions and ammunition, then growing very short in his camp, in consequence of the interruption of communication with Point Isabel, where they had been landed and remained in store. On learning from Capt. Walker the state of affairs upon the route, he promptly decided to secure the depot, and re-open communications.

Entrusting the works opposite to Matamoros to the command of Major BROWN, and leaving with him the 7th regiment of infantry and two companies of artillery, under command of Capt. LOWD and Lieut. BRAGGS, with about 500 men, Gen. Taylor with the rest of the army under his command, on May 1st, took up his line of march for Point Isabel, expecting in all probability to meet with about an equal number of the Mexicans in some of the innumerable defiles upon the route. Not a Mexican was to be seen however.

May 2d. Gen. Taylor encamped at Point Isabel.

May 3d. The Mexican commander having ascertained the absence of most of the American forces from before Matamoros, at 5 o'clock this morning opened a cannonade from their fort with seven guns. The fire was promptly responded to from the American battery. In thirty minutes the Mexican fort was silenced, two of their guns supposed to have been dismounted.

A fire then commenced from the Mexican lower fort, and a mortar battery, which was kept up without intermission until half past seven o'clock.

The fire from these was deliberately returned by the Americans, and as a part of Matamoros was within the range, some of the houses necessarily suffered. The inhabitants had no doubt withdrawn from that direction before they commenced the fire from their forts.

This cannonade from these positions was continued occasionally until 10 o'clock, when it was suspended for a time but was resumed occasionally until midnight. The Mexicans exhausted some twelve or fifteen hundred shot, but with very little effect. One sergeant, - we think he was of company B, 3d regiment, and not of company A, 7 th regiment, as in the following extract, from the statements before us, was the only American killed, no one wounded, - and though the enemy's fire was for a long time concentrated upon our 18 pounder battery, and the shot frequently struck the embrasures, no gun was injured.

No information as to the extent of casualties sustained by the enemy, had been received.

A letter from an officer says: "The Mexicans fired the first shot at reveille, and the way 4, 6, 9, and 12 (I think) pound shot flew about these parts was a sin, and their mortars throwing shells kept the atmosphere in continued confusion with their "whiz! whiz! bang!" all the to."

It would have warmed the wax in your ears to have heard our 18-pounders "giving out the cry." One shot struck in the embrasure of the enemy's works, and knocked cannon, carriage, embrasure, and men "into fits." We have no mortars. * * *

"Up to the present speaking, the enemy have thrown between 1,200 and 1,300 shot, solid and hollow, while we have fired 357. On our side, one sergeant - of company A, 7th regiment - has been killed, and one man slightly wounded in the arm. This is all the damage to us; the extent of the damage to the enemy is not known, but must be considerable. It is almost incredible to suppose we should receive so little injury from so many shot."

General Taylor was, of course, anxious to learn the results of all this cannonading, which was distinctly heard at Point Isabel.

May 4th, 4 o'clock, P.M.- Capt. May, with a squadron of dragoons returned to Point Isabel, from a scout. He reports a heavy force encamped on the road 12 miles below Matamoros, whose camp he passed around. Capt. Walker left May with seven of his Texas Rangers, and entered to communicate with the fort last night. May waited till day break for him, but Walker, not returning, he came back to camp. May and his command were taken for Mexicans, and an alarm given. In twenty minutes the general with his whole force was in full march to the battle.

May 5th.- Walker not returned. Two Mexican scouts came in and said they found the chaparel lined with sentinels everywhere. Firing still heard at the fort this morning.

Dispositions were made by General Taylor to commence his return march on the 6th inst., with an ample train of baggage wagons, loaded with wares for the army. Whether the Mexican commander had concentrated his forces so as to assail the camp opposite Matamoros in rear as well as in front, during the absence of the army - whether the works were found capable of sustaining the assault that had been made - or whether the great body of the Mexicans would take advantage of the defiles and chaparels upon the route he was about himself to enter with so cumbrous a train of baggage, was matter of total uncertainty.

May 6th.- Walker arrives with despatches from Maj. Brown's camp, and reports the particulars we have detailed above. The Major was reserving his ammunition. All safe there. Walker thought that an assault was about to be made about an hour after daylight.

The assurances so received, determined Gen. Taylor to postpone his departure in hopes that additional forces would arrive within a short time at Point Isabel, for the better security of that important station, as well as to augment the effective force with which he would soon be ready to encounter the enemy. He had, it is true, as yet no intelligence of the result of the requisitions which he called for on the 26th ult., but reasonable time had nearly elapsed for him now to expect to hear from his countrymen.

According to a statement which we find published in the N. Orleans Bulletin of the 13th, over the signature of "Wm. H. Chase, major of engineers," that officer calculates that the two companies of regulars and the company of volunteers from Mobile, (which left N. Orleans on the 6th,) will reach Point Isabel, per Augusta, on the 10th. The detachment of regulars from Pensacola on the 11th - the 1st battalion of Louisiana volunteers, per the Galveston, and some Texan riflemen from San Antonio, Austin, Houston, &c., per the Telegraph, on the 13th . The Major goes on to calculate that by the 20th inst., Gen. Taylor will have 10,000 men under his command, and that by one or two redoubts thrown up on the line between Matamoros and Point Isabel, communication may be maintained. [GLP]

NNR 70.179 May 23, 1846 no reinforcements yet arrived at Point Isabel, calculation of the expected arrival of forces

The assurances so received, determined Gen. Taylor to postpone his departure in hopes that additional forces would arrive within a short time at Point Isabel, for the better security of that important station, as well as to augment the effective force with which he would soon be ready to encounter the enemy. He had, if it is true, as yet no intelligence of the result of the requisitions, which he called for on the 26 th ult., but reasonable time had nearly elapsed for him now to expect to hear from his countrymen.

According to a statement which we find published in the N. Orleans Bulletin of the 13th, over the signature of “Wm. H. Chase, major of engineers,” that officer calculates that the two companies of regulars and the company of volunteers from Mobile, (which left N. Orleans on the 6th,) will reach Point Isabel, per Augusta, on the 10th. The detachment of regulars from Pensacola on the 11th- the 1st battalion of Louisiana volunteers, per the Galveston, and some Texan riflemen from San Antonio, Austin, Houston, &c., per the Telegraph, on the 13th. The Major goes on to calculate that by the 20th inst., Gen. Taylor will have 10,000 men under his command, and that by one or two redoubts thrown up on the line between Matamoros and Point Isabel, communications may be maintained. [JEB]

NNR 70.179 May 23, 1846 comment on rumors and exaggerations from the scene of the fighting as represented in newspapers, official intelligence reaches Washington


We have found it no trifle of a task to sift the above facts from such a hetrogenous mass of exaggerations and preposterous stories as filled the daily papers and “EXTRAS,” issued in all directions, many of them made up for speculation and utterly regardless of anything but to make a market of public credulity. As for instance, we have had Matamoros reduced to ashes, and 700 Mexicans killed. Major Ringgold gloriously distinguished himself in command of the American camp opposite to Matamoros when in fact he was with Gen. Taylor at Point Isabel- and hundreds of similar tales. Such wholesale and indeed often unfeeling impositions should be visited upon their authors by public indignation. Every hour is now replete with incidents that require truths to be steadily assorted. Let no sudden impulses from false premises influence our communities.

An article in the Washington Union, of the 19th compiled they say from official intelligence received at the department, dated 3d and 5th instant, received after we had placed the above in type, confirms their accuracy in every particular. The Union says: “The affair with Capt. Walker’s Texan Rangers, as was presented by rumor, was much exaggerated. In the temporary absence of that gallant and enterprising officer his company lost, by surprise, but a handful of men-8 or 10.”

“In the cannonade Major Brown, Captain Mansfield of the engineers, Captain Lowd, and the garrison were all much distinguished. Gen. Taylor always writes coolly. His march, when he expected to meet 3,000 Mexican horse, was a gallant enterprise. The Mexicans have not probably had a good and bad, 4,000 troops on the Rio Grande.” [JEB]

NNR 70.179 May 23, 1846 extract of a letter from Gen. Zachary Taylor

LETTER FROM GEN. TAYLOR.- The New Orleans Tropic of the 4th gives the following extract of a letter from Gen. Taylor. “Strong guards of foot and mounted men are established on the margin of the river, and thus efficient means have been adopted on our part to prevent all intercourse. While the opposite to us their pickets extend above and below for several miles, we are equally active in keeping up a strong and vigilant guard to prevent surprise, or attacks under disadvantageous circumstances. This is the more necessary, whilst we have to act on the defensive, and they are at liberty to take the opposite course whenever they think proper to do so. Nor have we been idle in other respects; we have a field work underway, besides having erected a strong battery and a number of buildings for the security of our supplies, in addition to some respectable works for their protection. We have mounted a respectable battery, four pieces of which are long eighteen pounders, with which we could batter or burn down the city of Matamoros, should it become necessary to do so. When our field work is completed (which will soon be the case) and mounted with its proper armament, five hundred men could hold it against as many thousand Mexicans. During the twenty-seven days since our arrival here, a most singular state of things has prevailed all through the outlines of the two armies, which to a certain extent, have all the feelings as if there were actual War. “Fronting each other for an extent of more that two miles and within musket range, are batteries shotted, and the officers and men in many instances waiting impatiently for orders to apply the matches; yet nothing has been done to provoke the firing of a gun or any act of violence.”

“Matamoros, at the distance we are now from it, appears to cover a large extent of ground, with some handsome buildings, but I would imagine the greater portion of them to be indifferent one story houses, with roofs of straw and walls of mud, or unburnt brick. During peace the population is said to be five of six thousand, but it is now filled to overflowing with troops. Report says from give to ten thousand of all sorts, regular and militia. The number I presume is very much overrated.

“P.S.-Since writing the above, an engagement has taken place between a detachment of our cavalry and the Mexicans, in which we were worsted. So the war has actually commenced and the hardest must fend off.” [JEB]


Fort opposite Matamoros, May 4 th, 1846.

I have only time to write a few lines by the express which goes out to Point Isabel this evening. - Whether he succeeds in getting there or not is doubtful as the Mexican army, about 4 or 5,000, are encamped about seven or eight miles from here. I suppose you have seen by the papers that the war has commenced and we are expecting re-enforcements of troops from New Orleans, &c. On the 1st May Gen. Taylor left here for Point Isabel with the greater part of his army, and my regiment (the 7th infantry) with two companies of artillery, &c.; about 600 men were left to garrison the fort, then nearly finished. Yesterday morning the Mexicans opened their batteries from the town, which was returned from our 18 pounders and a brisk fire was kept up for an hour or more, during which time one of their batteries was silenced by our guns and a number of shots fired on the town. My station being in one of the batteries opposite the fort I could sometimes hear the shot crashing through the houses. Our guns stopped firing about 10 or 11 o'clock, as we were only wasting our ammunition and did but little injury except to the town. They kept on firing through the day and part of the night to-day; they however do us but little injury as they have killed but one man of our garrison. They have a mortar, and annoy us considerabely with their shells - no one can tell where the confounded things are going to fall - several have fallen in the fort and exploded, but did no serious injury. We are hourly expecting an attack from their forces, and are prepared to make a vigorous defence. I will write you again by the first opportunity. * * * * *

Yours, &c.

P.S. - The Mexicans will probably attack Gen. Taylor on his return from Point Isabel with supplies, and if they do, I have no doubt the general will give theYellow Skins a sound drubbing. [GLP]


In our last number amongst the list of killed and wounded in the affair of Captain Thornton's detachment with the Mexicans, two distinguished names were included as killed, that we are delighted to find still amongst the living. Captains THORNTON and HARDEE and Lieut. KANE, all of the 2d dragoons, have reported themselves to Gen. Taylor, by letter, as prisoners to the Mexicans, by whom they are kindly treated. They are in good health. We subjoin an account of the affray in which they were overpowered.

On the evening of the 23d ult., General Taylor's spies brought in intelligence to the effect that about two thousand five hundred Mexicans had crossed the Rio Grande to the Texas side above the American Fort and that about fifteen hundred of the same had crossed below. Gen. T. immediately despatched a squadron of dragoons to each place of crossing for the purpose of reconnoitering them and ascertaining their position. The squadron ordered below was in command of Captain Ker; the one above was commanded by Captain Thornton and composed of Captain Hardee, Lieut's. Kane and Mason, with sixty-one privates and non-commissioned officers.

The former commander, Capt. Ker, on arriving at the point where it was supposed they had crossed found that the report was false, that they had not crossed there but had all crossed above, which was afterwards proved by Capt. T.'s command being surprised, in which Lieut. Geo. Mason with nine men were killed and two wounded. The wounded were sent to Gen. Taylor's camp; the army having no hospital in the field. Capt.'s Thornton, Hardee, and Lieut. Kane miraculously escaped together with the balance of the non-commissioned officers and men, but were captured and are now prisoners of war in Mexico.

The circumstances which led to the surprise are these: After Capt. T.'s command had proceeded up the Rio Grande about twenty-four miles, and as was supposed, to within about three miles of the Mexican camp, the guide refused to go any further, and stated for his reason that the whole country was infested with Mexicans. Capt. T. however, proceeded on with his command about two miles when he came to a farm house, which was enclosed entirely by a chapparal fence, with the exception of that portion of it which bordered on the river, and this was so boggy as to be impassable.

Capt. T. entered this enclosure through a pair of bars and approached the house for the purpose of making some inquiry, his command following him. So soon as his command had all entered the enclosure, the enemy having been concealed in the chapparal, about two thousand five hundred in number, completely surrounded him and commenced firing upon his command. He then wheeled his command thinking that he could charge through the enemy and pass out where he had enetered, not however without a considerable loss. This he attempted but did not succeed, the enemy being too strong.

At this instant, Capt. Hardee approached him for the purpose of advising him how to extricate themselves. The firing of the enemy still continuing, Capt. Thornton's horse having doubtless received a shot, ran away with him and leaped the chapparal fence and plunged into a precipice, where he fell, with Capt. T. under him, where the latter remained insensible for five or six hours. This casualty placed Capt. Hardee in command, who attempted with the residue to make his escape by the river, intending on arriving at its margin to swim it. In this he failed, finding it so boggy that he could not get to it. He then returned, taking the precaution to get out of distance of musketry, dismounted and examined the arms of his men, determining to sell their lives as dearly as possible.

Before he had succeeded, however in the inspection of his arms, a Mexican officer rode up and asked him to surrender. Capt. H. replied that he would surrender on one condition, which was, that if the Mexican general would receive them as prisoners of war, and treat them as the most civilized nations do, he would surrender, but on no other conditions. - The Mexican officer bore this message to the general commanding, and returned with the assurance that he would. Captain H. then surrendered. Captains Thornton and Hardee, with Lieut. Kane and the residue of the non-commissioned officers and privates of Capt. T.'s command are now prisoners of war in Mexico. The enemy treat them remarkably well.

Lieut. Geo. Mason was a fine young officer, and his death is much regretted. His sabre belt was recognized among some articles that were subsequently captured from the enemy. [GLP]

NNR 70.180 May 23, 1846 Capt. Samuel Hamilton Walker's detachment and its engagement with the Mexicans

CAPT. WALKER’S DETATCHMENT.- The N. Orleans Picayune, of the 9th May, furnishes the following account brought by the Ellen and Clara, Capt. Griffin, which sailed from Point Isabel on the 29th ult.-“We learn from Capt. Griffin, and Dr. N. Briggs, a passenger , who has been several months with the army, that Capt. Walker, formerly of the Texan revenue service, who has been stationed between Point Isabel and Gen. Taylor’s camp, with a body of twenty four volunteer Texan Rangers, found several of the teams which had started from the point for the camp were returning, and reported that the Mexicans were on the road. He started from his camp on the 28th with his whole force to reconnoiter, and, if possible, open a communication with Gen. Taylor. He had proceeded as far as about midway between Point Isabel and the camp, when an overwhelming Mexican force appeared very suddenly. A portion of his troops were raw; the he instructed to keep on his right, and gave orders to the whole to retire under cover of a chaparelle in view.”

But his raw troops, panic stricken, scattered in confusion, and the Mexicans advancing in overwhelming numbers, he was compelled to retreat.-He was followed by the Mexicans within a mile of Point Isabel, where he arrived with only two of his men. Six others subsequently came in.

Captain Walker estimated the number of Mexicans he encountered at 1500, and he supposes that at least 30 of them fell, during the fifteen minutes he engaged them. This force is supposed to be a portion of that which had the last accounts crossed the Rio Grande some 20 or 25 miles above Matamoros, and which is estimated at 3000 men. It is believed that they had arrived at the position they occupied by taking a circuitous rout on the eastern side of Gen. Taylor’s camp.

No communications had been had with General Taylor at Point Isabel, for three days previous to the departure of the Ellen and Clara. At the last accounts it was reported that he had but ten days’ provisions. Captain Walker, immediately after his arrival, gallantly tendered his services to Major Monroe, the commander at Point Isabel, if four men would accompany him, to make his way to General Taylor with despatches, or die in the attempt. His offer was accepted, and accordingly he started at daylight on the morning of the 29th. During the nights of the 27th and 28th the troops at Point Isabel were in constant expectation of being attacked, and dispositions were made accordingly.-The masters and crews of vessels in the harbor were called on, on the 28th, and spent the night under arms. On that night, 500 men were furnished with arms, of which about 50 were seamen.

The works were as perfect as it was possible to make them under the circumstances, and it was generally believed that should but fifteen hundred Mexicans attack the place, they could be at least, held at bay until reinforcements arrived. Messrs. Monroe and Saunders, it is started, deserve great praise for the manner in which they have fortified Point Isabel.

Capt. Griffin and Dr. Briggs informs us that the officers of the army speak of the Mexicans as being in a very high state of discipline- the cavalry particularly. Besides the three thousand who have crossed the Rio Grande, it is intimated that there are about five thousand at Matamoros, and it is supposed that the Mexicans general has not yet displayed his full strength, but has kept a large reserve back of Matamoros.

It is believed that the Mexicans have possession of an island at the mouth of the Brazos, which commands the entrance. If so, it is apprehended that the troops by the New York will not be able to get in. The island is laid down on some of the maps as “Brassos Village” It is a natural fortification.

A small schooner, the Aurora, sailed from Point Isabel on the 28 th for this port, with dispatches=The weather has been very severe on the coast, and it is to be feared that she has been driven ashore.

The extras from the offices of the Times, Tropie, and Picayune all concur in stating the number of men with Capt. Walker, when he encountered the Mexican force, at 75. The Picayune says:”The Mexicans pursued Capt. Walker in his retreat till they came within range of the guns of the post, when they in turn immediately retreated. There are now about 3000 Mexican on the American side of the Rio Grande-one half above and one half below Gen. Taylor’s camp. [JEB]


The following general orders were issued by the commander of the "army of occupation" on the occasion of the death and burial of our late lamented and universally beloved fellow citizen, Col. Truman Cross, assistant quartermaster general in the army of the United States:

Headquarters, Army of Occupation,
Camp near Matamoros, April 25, 1846.

The commanding general has the painful duty of announcing to the army that the doubt which has so long prevailed in regard to the fate of the late Col. CROSS, has at length, been resolved into the melancholy certainty of his death, and, there is too much reason to fear, by violent hands.

The high rank of the deceased, and the ability and energy which he carried into the discharge of the important duties of his office, will cause his loss to be seriously felt in the service, while the untoward circumstances of his demise will render it particularly afflicting to his family and personal friends.

The remains of the late colonel will be interred, with military honors, at 4 o'clock P.M. to-morrow. The funeral escort will be composed of a squadron of dragoons and eight companies of infantry; the latter to be taken from the 2d brigade, and the whole to be organized and commanded by Colonel Twiggs.

The necessary arrangements for the funeral ceremony will be made by Lieut. Col. Payne, inspector general.

All officers off duty are respectfully invited to attend the funeral. By order of



GILBERT DUDLEY, a youth of 19, attached to the army under Gen. Taylor according to a letter from an officer, published in the Newark Adviser, must be a brave fellow. The letter says:

"Returning two days ago from one of our most advanced pickets, whither he had sent to convey orders, he came unexpectedly upon two Mexican soldiers, who had, apparently, just rowed across the river, and were refreshing themselves in a cool shade, having placed their muskets in thoughtless security against a neighboring tree. Gilbert was equal to the emergency; he sprang to the muskets, threw one upon the ground, and stepped upon it, while with the other he menaced the lives of his opponents. And thus marched them into camp. [ GLP]

NNR 70.181 May 23, 1846 official orders as to organizing the volunteers in US service


Sir:-In reply to the inquiries contained in the letter of Major General Steuart, and in other communications, submitted by you to this Department, I have the honor to inform you that the rule adopted, is to call for the volunteers that are required from any particular State, through the Governor. This is an act of respect to the Executive of the State, due as well to his position, as to his generally superior knowledge of the character and efficiency of the volunteers throughout the State, the sections from which it is most advisable to take them, and which of them can, with the greatest facility and least expense be embodied for the service for which they may be required. Circumstances, may, however, occur to render it expedient to accept offers of service direct without the intervention of the Governor, when an application to him might cause delay. Applications of companies, regiments, &c. To enter the service may therefore be made direct to this Department.

The law, a copy of which is enclosed, provides that the officers of the volunteers shall be appointed by the proper State authority, in the manner prescribed by the State laws; and the accompanying memorandum shows the number of officers, non-commissioned officers and privates, and the organization of companies and regiments.

The law also requires that the volunteers furnish their own clothing, and if cavalry, their own horses and horse equipage. Suck as are already uniformed need not change such as are not, and contemplate uniforming, are at liberty to adopt such as they think proper but it is advisable that all who may be called into the service adopt their dress as nearly as circumstances will permit, to the nature of the service that may be required of them, and to the character of the country and climate where they may have to serve. Those that shall be accepted will be armed and equipped at the expense of the United States, and will be inspected and mustered into the service by an officer of the army, or by one appointed by the Governor, at such times and places, as will be specified when their services are called for. Very respectfully, your ob’t serv’t

Hon. Wm. F. Giles W.L. Marcy
House of Rep. Secretary of War


NNR 70.182 May 23, 1846 Gen. Edmund Pendleton Gaines' requisition on Louisiana for troops, the prompt response

Head Quarters, Western Division,
New Orleans, May 2, 1846.

Sir:-By a letter which I have this morning received from Brig. Gen. Taylor, announcing the commencement of hostilities on the part of the Mexican forces near Matamoros, I learn that in addition to the several corps of mounted and other Riflemen which he expects soon to join him from Texas, he has requested of your Excellency four Regiments of Infantry, to embark as soon as practicable for Point Isabel.

I avail myself of the earliest occasion to say that Col. Hunt, Dep Quarter Master General and other officers of the General Staff, on duty at this city, are instructed to furnish promptly every supply that may be required for health and comfort of the four regiments desired from the State of Louisiana. They shall receive their arms and fixed ammunition within the next twenty-four hours, when the requisite steam transportation will be ready.

Gen Taylor and his army will be much gratified to find amongst the corps now requested, officers and men such as they had the satisfaction to find in the excellent battalion lately commanded by Major Gally. I am with perfect respect

Your ob’t serv’t
Major General U.S. Army

To his excellency Governor Johnson.

P.S. I look for a battalion of regular troops from Jefferson Barracks, in a day or two:I wish to send to Point Isabel, the Regulars with the Volunteers

BY THE GOVERNOR:-Head Quarters, Louisiana Militia- General Orders No. One.

Gen. Taylor, commanding the U.S. Army of Occupation on the frontier of Mexico, has announced to the Commander-in-Chief that hostilities have commenced between his forces and those of the Mexicans; and under the authority of the General Government has called upon the State of Louisiana to furnish four Regiments of Infantry, to join his army.

The General, in concluding his requisition, says: “I cannot doubt that the gallant State of Louisiana will respond with alacrity to this call upon the patriotism of her sons.”

The State of Louisiana has never hesitated at any call on her patriotism or spirit, and is now as she ever has been, ready to devote her energies and her blood for our common country, and the honor of its arms.

Assured that the call now made will be responded to by the citizen soldiers of the State without resorting to a draft, four regiments of Volunteers will be received and mustered into the service of the United States for the term of six months, unless sooner discharged, and as fast as any regiment or company is organized for the purpose, its commanding officers will report to the Adjutant General at the State House in Canal Street.

Each Regiment will consist of-(as in Gen. Taylor’s requisition given above.)

It is desireable that the Companies should each be 100 strong.

The Legislature animated by the universal feeling of patriotism and zeal, have already passed a bill, which has been signed by the Governor and become a law, making appropriations to aid the equipping the force, and the Staff Department of the U.S. Army are prepared to furnish the corps with the arms, equipments and camp equipage necessary? The Major Generals and Generals of Brigade are charged with the execution of this order. By order of the Commander-In-Chief of the Militia of the State.

Charles N. Bowley
Adjt. and Insp Gen.


NNR 70.182 May 23, 1846 Gen. Edmund Pendleton Gaines' requisitions for volunteers

Gen. Gaines Authority to Col. Lewis.
Head quarters, Western division
New Orleans, May 12, 1846

Col. Wm. B. Lewis is hereby authorized and requested to raise a regiment, or a battalion, of mounted gunmen, to consist of not less than five, nor to exceed ten companies-each company to number seventy to one hundred men, to rendezvous at the Opelousas, where they will be mustered into the service of the United-States for duty upon the Rio Grande, for six months, unless sooner discharged. The United States quarter master and commissary of subsistence will be instructed to issue the regular supplies of camp equipage, forage, and subsistence upon the requisition of Col. Lewis.

Edmund P. Gaines
Maj. Gen. U.S. army commanding the western division


NNR 70.182 May 23, 1846 list of officers of the Army in Texas

List of Officers in the United States, Army in Texas.

General Staff- Brigadier Gen. Z. Taylor, commanding; Capt. W.S.S. Bliss, assistant adjutant general; 1st Lieut, J.M. Eaton, 3d infantry, aid-de-camp;Lieut. Col. M.E. Payne, 4th artillery, inspector-general “army of occupation;” Colonel T. Cross, Ass’t. Q.M. Gen., (killed;) Major C. Thomas. Qr. Master, (Point Isabel;) Major S. McKee, do. do. do.; Assistant Quarter Master, Capt. G.H. Crossman, Capt. E.S. Sibley, Capt E.A. Ogden Capt. W.S. Ketchum; Commissary of Subsistance, Capt G.C. Waggaman; Surgeon P.H. Craig, medical director; Surgeon N.S. Jarvis; Assistant do., B.M. Byrne, (St. Josephs;) Assistant do., J.R. Conrad; Paymasters, St. Clair Denny, Lloyd J. Beall, Roger S. Dix.

Engineers- Capt. J.K. Mansfield, Capt John Sanders, 1st Lieut, J.M. Scarritt.

Topographical Engineers- Capt. T.J. Cram, 1st Lieut. J.E. Blake, 2nd Lieut. George Meade.

Light Artillery-Maj. John Irving, 2nd artillery; Ass’t Surgeon J.B. Wells, general staff; 2nd Lieut. S.S. Fahnestock, 4 th artillery, act’g adjutant.

Brevet Majors- John Monroe, 4th artillery; S. Ringgold, 3d artillery.

First Lieutenant- James Duncan, 2d artillery; Branton Bragg, 3d do; J.F. Roland, 2n do; R. Ridgely, 3d do; W.H. Shover, 3d do; E. Bradford, 4th do; J.C. Pemberton, 4th do; J.H. Thomas, 3d do.

Second Lieutenants- Wm. Hays, 2d artillery; J.F. Reynolds, 3d do; J.J. Peck, 2d do; S.L. Fremont, 3d do; M. Lovell, 4th Do; J.P. Johnstone, 4th do; S.G. French, 3d do.

Second Regiment of Dragoons- Col. D.E. Twiggs, commanding; Assistant Surgeon L.C. McPhall, general staff; 1st Lieut. H.H. Sibley, Adjutant.

Captains- Croghan Her; C.A. May, S.B. Thornton, W.J. Hardee, prisoners.

First Lieutenants- W.H. Saunders; F. Hamilton; A. Lowry; O.F. Windship. A.C.S. and A.Q.M.

Second Lieutenants-R.P. Campbell; George Stephens; R.H. Anderson; W. Steele, Lewis Neill, G. T. Mason – Kane; D.B. Sackett

First Brigade- Brigadier General W.J. Worth, commanding, (resigned) First Lieutenant Larkin Smith, 8th infantry, A.D.C.; Surgeon H.S. Hawkins, general staff; Surgeon J.J.B. Wright, do do., Assistant Surgeon D.C. Leon, do. do.

Battalion of Artillery- Brevet Lieutenant Colonel Thomas Childs, Commanding;Second Lieutenant R.S. Garnett, 4th artillery, acting adjutant.

Brevet Majors-J. Dimick, 1st artillery; W.W. Morris, 4 th artillery.

Captains- Giles Porter, 1st artillery; S. Mackenzie, 2d do; Martin Burk, 3d do; A. Lowd, 2d do. C.C. Smith, 2d do; J.B. Scott, 4th do; R.C. Snead, 4th do.

First Lieutenants-M Knowlton, 1st artillery; E. Deas, 4 th do (prisoner) R.A. Luther, 2d do. G. Taylor, Brevet Captain 3d artillery; A. Ebsey 2d do; W.H. Churchill, 3d do; J.B. Magruder, 1 st do; J.S. Hatheway, do.; C.B. Daniels, 2d do.; W.H. Fowler, 1st do.; W. Gilham, 3d do.; J.P. M’Cown, 4th do.

Second Lieutenants- L. Chase, 2nd artillery, A.B. Lansing, do. A.A. Gibson, do., W.S. Smith, do; S.K. Dawson, 1st do; J.F. Irons, 1st do; H.M. Whiting, 4th do.; S. Williams, 1st do., H.F. Clarke, 2d do., S. Gill, 4th do., J.F. Farry, 4th do., G.W. Ayres, 3d do., C Benjamin, 4 th do.; C.L. Kilburn, 3d do., A. Doubleday, 3d do., J.J. Reynolds, 4th do. T.J. Curd, 1st do., L.B. Weld, 1 st do.

Eighth Regiment of Infantry- Brevet Lieut. Col. W.G. Belknap, commanding, 2d Lieut. John D. Clark, acting adjutant.

Captains- W.R. Montgomery, W.O. Kelly, R.B. Screven, H. McCavett, J.V. Bomford.

First Lieutenants- J.V.D. Reeve, G. Lincoln, J. Selden, C.R. Gates, A. L. Sheppard, A.T. Lee.

Second Lieutenants- R.P. Maclay, J. Beardsley, C.D. Jordan, T.L. Chadbourne, E.B. Halloway, C.D. Merchant, T.J. Montgomery, J.G. Burbank, C.F. Morris, J.J. Booker, J. Longstreet, H.M. Judah, Geo. Wainwright, J.S.S. Shelling.

Second Brigade- Lieut. Col. J.S. McIntosh, 5th infantry commanding, 1st Lieut. C.L. Stevenson, 5th Infantry commanding, 1st Lieut. C.L. Stevenson, 5th infantry, Brigade-Major-Surgeon, R.C. Wood; general staff, Assistant Surgeons, J.W. Russell, and H.C. Cruttenden, do. do.

Fifth Regiment of Infantry- Major T. Stanford, commanding; 1st Lieut. G. Deas adjutant.

Captains- Martin Scott, M.E Merril, A. Drane, E.K. Smith, A.S Hool, C.C. Sibley, J.L. Thompson, W. Chapman.

First Lieutenants- B.B. Marcy, A.C.S. and A.Q.M.H. Whipple, N.B. Russell, D. Ruggles, A.C.S 5th infantry, W. Root, J.A. Whitall.

Second Lieutenants- S.H. Fowler, S. Norvell, H. Whiting, M. Rosecrants, T.G. Pitcher, R.L. Brooke, J.C. Robinson, P. Lugenbeel, J.P. Smith, W.L. Crittenden.

Seventh Regiment of Infantry- Major J. Brown, commanding, Second Lieutenant, F.N. Page, adjutant.

Captains-E.S. Hawkins, D.S. Miles, J.G. Rains, brevet major, T.H. Holmes, D.P. Whiting, F. Lee, W. Seawell, brevet major, S.W. Moore, R.H. Ross, R.C. Gattin.

First Lieutenants-F. Britton, N. Hopson, J.R. Scott; A. Montgomery, A,C,S,C, Hanson, C.H. Humber.

Second Lieutenants-L. Gantt, E. Von Dorn, J.H. Potter, A. Cruzot, J.H. Henry, S.B. Hayman, F. Gardner, W.K. Van Bokkelen, E.B. Strong, H.B. Clitz, W.H. Wood.

Third Brigade- Col. W. Whistler, Fourth Infantry, com’ding, Second Lieutenant, G.O. Haller, Fourth Infantry, Brigade Major, Assistant Surgeons, J.B. Porter, M. Mills, J. Simons, A.W. Kennedy, general staff.

Third Regiment of Infantry-Lieutenant Col. E.A. Hitchcock, commanding. Brevet 1st Lieutenant D.S. Irwin, adjutant.

Captains-N.L. Morris, J. Van Horne, G.P. Field, H. Bainbridge, J.L. Coburn.

First Lieutenants-P.N. Barbour, Brevet Captain, L.S. Craig, W.H. Gordon, W.H. Henry, brigade A.C.S.; J.M. Smith, D.T. Chandler, A.Q.M.; O. L. Sheppard.

Second Lieutenants-W.B. Johns, D.C. Buell, W.T.H Brooks, A.J. Williamson, J.C. McFeran, J.J.C. Bibb, Thomas Jordon, J.B. Richardson, A.W. Bowman, R. Hazlitt, G.C. McClelland, J.P. Hatch, B.E. Bee.

Fourth Regiment of Infantry-Lieutenant Colonel J Garland, commanding, First Lieutenant B. Hoskins, adjutant. Brevet major, G.W. Allen, acting major.

Captains-John Paget, P. Morrison, G. Morris, W.M. Graham, Brevet Major; G.A. McCall, R.C. Buchanan, C.H. Larnard.

First Lieutenants-B. Alvord, R.C. Cochrane, A.A.Q.M.; R.H. Graham, E.G. Elliot, A.C.S; St Joseph’s.

Second Lieutenants-T.H. Porter, killed; H.D. Walen, C.C. Auger; J.S. Woods, Sid Smith, J. Beanman, U.S. Grant, J.A. Richley, P.A. Farelly.


NNR 70.192 May 30, 1846 remarks and statements on US finances in light of the war with Mexico, possibility of a loan, of issuance of treasury notes, of postponement of revision of the tariff

National Finances. War has commenced. – Ten millions of dollars have been promptly voted towards commencing operations. One and a half millions have been voted to pay expenses already incurred, and which the annual appropriations of last year fell short of defraying. Two millions in addition to the treasurer’s estimates, to feed and clothe the 7 or 8000 men, voted last week as additional to the regular army. Their bounty and pay have been provided for in the annual appropriation bill passed last week. Munitions and transportation will accumulate military expenditures rapidly. The naval expenses will also be largely increased. Additional ships are to be put in commission. Crews are to be enlisted, stores to be provided. Transports are to be in service.

The National Intelligencer, noticing an article in a New York paper which intimates that “it may be necessary for congress to authorize a loan to meet these extras,” says-“Doubtless congress will find itself under the necessity, before adjourning, of providing money, in addition to the current revenue, to defray the expenditure which will attend the now inevitable operations of the government. The reduction of the tariff of duties on imports, had it been carried into effect, would equally have induced the necessity, now or not long hereafter, of supplying revenue from some other source. But. The late act of congress-and, indeed, independently of the movement of congress, the preceding action of the executive-requiring an expenditure probably far to exceed the surplus in the treasury, may be considered as an indefinite postponement of the treasury scheme for a general reduction of the tariff. We take it for granted, however, that for any immediate purpose, the administration will first resort to the expedient of an issue of treasury notes; the necessity for resorting to which will in connexion with the existence of a foreign war requiring the transportation to great distances of large sums of money, render the sub-treasury scheme wholly impracticable, and probably cause that as well as the anti-tariff project to be deferred. Should the war unhappily be prolonged, however, loans must be necessarily recurred to, and will constitute the chief source of revenue for defraying the expenses of the war. Whenever loans are to be authorized, in any considerable amount, congress will find itself obliged to lay direct taxes and excises, and pledge the proceeds of them to pay the interest and provide a sinking fund for their redemption. We do not suppose therefore, that any loan, in the shape of an issue of government stock, will be resorted to at the present session of congress.” [JEB]

NNR 70.192 May 30, 1846 accounts from New Orleans of extravagant expenditures for military supplies

The New York Journal of Commerce says-“The accounts from N. Orleans and Mobile are very bad. The produce of the west and south is coming down in one great arid endless avalanche, but the circulation of business is stopped. This rates of freight have advanced materially; merchants are unwilling to take the hazards of making shipments; the northern merchants, unwilling to advance on property which must encounter the risks of the gulf, have withdrawn their credits; and so the produce is piling up beyond the capacities of all the warehouses- How can merchants meet their engagements, when all their property is suddenly rendered unavailable? Great inconvenience and damage must be the consequence.”

Another New Orleans letter, published in the Philadelphia U.S. Gazette , says-“The government have not a dollar of funds here-are buying everything on credit, and paying enormously through the nose-the certificates of the quarter master, for amounts due for supplies, payable on demand so soon as funds arrive, are hawking out at every shaving shop at eight to ten per cent. Discount on the face.- I saw one today for $1,700 which was offered for $1,550, and no doubt $1,500 would have been accepted. Last week a heavy purchase of pork was made (1,000 barrels) at 13½ when the same quality could have been bought for cash at $10¾-other things in proportion-and this state of things with $12,000,000 of surplus funds in the treasury. Steamboats and transports are chartered in the same way-6 and $8,000 paid to a steamboat to the “Brassos St. Iago,” a run of 60 or 80 hours, and $500 per day demurrage.”

Another letter from New Orleans, dated the 10th inst. Says-“It will hardly be credited that with the large force in Texas, requiring constant and heavy supplies, and with the emergency now existing, the quarter master’s department is entirely destitute of funds, and it has to buy supplies, charter steamboats, and make all its arrangements on credit, of course paying an exorbitant addition in the price of every thing; and the quarter master’s certificates for money due, are hawking about in the streets and at every shaving shop in the city, at a heavy discounts, disgraceful to the credit of the government, who boast of having some 10 or 15 millions of surplus funds in the treasury!! These certificates, though payable on demand so soon as funds are received, are selling at 8 and 10 percent discount, and if they accumulate much longer will be at a still heavier rate. [JEB]

NNR 70.193 May 30, 1846 map of the seat of war

Seat of War

References to the chart.

Figure 1. (in black square)- Palo Alto, where was fought the battle of 8th May, 13 miles from Point Isabel.

2. do. Resaca de la Palma-battle ground 9th May, three miles N. of Matamoros.

a. Matagorda Island and Aransas Inlet.

b. St. Joseph’s Island, south of which Espirtu Santo and Mustang Island. Corpus Christi Inlet, south of Mustang Island, draws four feet water.

c. McGowan’s bluff

d. Kenney’s Rancho

e. Shoals

f. Mud Island, surrounded by shoals.-At its south east extremity is an inlet, which liets south of the Brassos Island and between Brassos Island and the main delta of the Rio Grande called Bocca Chica, ‘(small mouth.)’

g. Low flat grounds

Into the shoal at the south west extremity of Laguna Madre, another channel of the Rio Grande enters, which is not delineated on the chart. It starts from the main channel at a point (Pondo), between Barita and Matamoros, and when the river is very high this channel has some eighteen inches of water. In common it is converted into expanded marsh. When the river is very low, it is entirely dry.

The Laguna Madre, or Logo del Santander-is about 90 miles in length, and has generally about two feet depth of water. It is bounded on the east by the Island Padre Vayin, or Padre Bayin, or as generally called, Padre Island. Besides the Olmos and Rio or Sal Colorado, other streams flow into it, the San Fernando, the St. Gertrude, &c. &c.

Brassos Santiago, is about 5 miles from Point Isabel, and in lat 25 degrees 16 mites long. 97 degrees 12 minutes west from Greenwich, or 20 degrees 12 minutes west of Washington city, as represented in the chart. There are from three to six feet water within, and 7 ½ to 8 feet without its bar. There is from three to six feet water from thence to.

Point Isabel, from which two routes are sketched upon the chart, to Matamoros. By the southern road distance is 27 miles, by the other 35 miles. The former pursued by general Taylor’s army, is intersected by one or two small streamlets flowing into the Rio Grande.

Bocca Chica, (the narrow mouth), at the south end of Brassos Island, has approaching it, successively 3,2 and 8 feet water. From this point three roads diverge, viz. One southwardly to Las Taraesas,-one southwestwardly 6 miles to Barita and whence it passes 30 miles more, to Matamoros, and one due west, a wagon route, which after crossing the 2d pass to the Rio Grande is a direct line to Matamoros, follows the northern shore of that river to the point where now stands the American entrenchments.

The Rio Grande, at its first pass, or main outlet, has five feet water. We have stated above, that even at high water the second pass has but 18 inches. The territory or Delta between the two passes, is separated from the Island of Brassos, by the Bocca Chica.

Matamoros is situated in the latitude 25 degrees 53 minutes and long. 21 degrees west of Washington.

Letters from officers of the army represent their march from Corpus Christi to Matamoros to have been one of 120, and in some cases as high as 150 miles. Whether gen. Taylor pursued what is called the old direct road,-which is sketched upon the map,-or whether, as we apprehend, he took another route which led him to Isabel and thence to Matamoros thus by sinuosities increasing the distance, we are not confident. The Nueces is stated to be generally about 90 miles from the Rio Grande. West of Reynoso is Monterey. [JEB]

NNR 70.194 May 30, 1846 geography of the seat of the war

Geography Of the Seat of War- Distance, from Point Isabel to Matamoros by land, 27 miles, do. by water 90 miles.
From Matamoros to Corpus Christi, by land 100 miles, by the old road. An officer in General Taylor;s army mentions that the distance was 150 miles by the route the army marched.
From Matamoros to the mouth of the Rio Grande by the river is variously stated, from 60 to 90 miles; in direct line, about 30 miles.
From Point Isabel to New Orleans by sea 802 miles.
From Point Isabel to Galveston, by water, 320 miles.
From New Orleans to Vera Cruz, 1,500 miles.
From Vera Cruz W.N.W. to the city of Mexico is 180 miles.
From Yucatan to the city of Mexico 900 miles.
From Brassos St. Jago to Point Isabel at its W.N.W. 5 miles.
From Matamoros eastward to the village of La Barita, 30 miles by land.
From La Barita, N. Eastward to Brassos 8 or 10 miles.
Santa Fe is N.N.W. of the city of Mexico, on the Rio Grande, above Matamoros, and its distance from Mexico is about 1131 miles, N.N.W.-and from St. Louis is about 830 miles, and from New Orleans 1020 miles N.W. population about 4 or 5000. [JEB]

NNR 70.194 May 30, 1846 course of the Rio Grande (Rio del Norte or Rio Bravo)

The Rio Grande, Rio Del Norte or Rio Bravo, different names by which the same river is known, rises in the Southern Slope of the Rocky Mountains, near the head waters of the Arkansas river, pursues a course nearly due South for a distance of 2000 miles, to the Gulf Of Mexico. Its course is in good part through a thinly peopled desert, in some places mountainous, in others composed of wide sterile plains. Valuable mines of gold and silver exist in the province of Santa Fe, some 1,5000 miles from its mouth. The River is generally rapid and rocky, rendering the navigation dangerous if not impossible.

Twenty years ago attempts were made, and several times since, with steam boats to navigate it, but Matamoros, some 60 miles from its mouth, by the winding of the river, or 30 or 40 miles in direct line from the coast, is usual head of navigation0 and even that distance, boats of very light draft only can be used. [JEB]

NNR 70.194 May 30, 1846 distances on the route from San Antonio to Mexico City

Rio Grande at the Presidio 150   Hacienda San Juan De Venegas 25
San Juan De Nava 22   Village of Cadral 10
San Fernando 15   Town of Mataguala 20
San Juan de Mata 15   Hac. Represadara 25
Rosita 23   “ Laguna Seca 20
River Sabinas 35   Village of Benado 30
Hacienda of Alamas 20   Hacienda Bocas 33
“ Encines 20   “ Penasco 20
“ Herm’nes 15   City San Luis Potosi 10
Town of Monclava 17  

Total 355  
Castano 10   Hacienda Pila 15
Ranche of Bajan 30   Town of Jeral 30
Tank of San Felipe 33   Hacienda Cubo 20
Hacienda Aneio 20   Town of Dolores 35
“ Mesia 22   “ S. Miguel Gr’de 30
Village Capellanillo 25   Hacienda Santa Rosa 34
Saltillo 10   City of Queretero 13
Total 505  
Hacienda Agua Nueva 15   Hacienda Colorado 15
“ Incarnacion 35   Town of San Juan Del Rio 28
“ San Salvad’r 30   Hac. Arroya Saco 30
“ Salado 22   Village of Tula 30

  City of Mexico 50
Total 607  


NNR 70.194 May 30, 1846 account of the city of Mexico

The City of Mexico, has a population of 180,000.- Temptations similar to those with which Cortes inspired his Spanish followers three hundred years ago to follow him to the “Halls of Montezuma” are now loudly trumpeted for the purpose of inciting volunteers to undertake another subjugation of the devoted people that populate that lovely region.

Says a New York paper “High mountains rise in the distance on all sides of the city, but the location although under the Tropic of Cancer, is remarkable for its salubrity, and in summer the extreme heat is less severe than in New York of Philadelphia. The city is approached by excellent roads which branch out in every direction, and on which are transported the ores and bullion from some hundred of the richest mines in the world. The magnificence of the principal edifices-some being furnished with gold and silver ornaments valued at many millions, and containing rich treasures hid away by the avaricious-has excited the admiration of all travelers. Yet with all her riches, Mexico is poor. Her people are kept in ignorance by the tyranny of a few, and their wealth is carried off to other lands, to swell the gains of trade and commerce, which they are not permitted to enjoy. The poor Mexican crawls listlessly over neglected silver mines, lost in the contemplation of his own abject condition. The iron hand of despotism is upon him” [JEB]

NNR 70.194 May 30, 1846 Health on the Rio Grande - The best defence of Mexico.

The Washington correspondence of the Journal of Commerce says, that when Almonte was here as Minister from Mexico it was remarked to him that in case of a war between the United States abd Mexico, the Mexicans would have nothing to oppose to the overwhelming power and force of the United States. General Almonte replied - "It is a mistake, we have the "vomito" alias, Yellow Fever.

This potent arm will, no doubt, be relied on by Mexico, in the movements now going on. If our troops shall be kept on the Rio Grande through the summer, they may fall into the snare which Almonte designated for them."

The Washington Union, on the contrary, says:- "We are informed by an intelligent physician, who was a native of this city, but who resided for several years to the west of the Rio Grande, who married a Mexican lady, who was an United States consul, practised physic several years in the vicinity of Matamoros, and is intimately acquainted with the climate, as well as the habits of the Mexicans, that although at a certain season of the year it is unhealthy at Matamoros and on the immediate borders of the river, yet that several miles from it, the ague and fever is unknown. The climate for several miles beyond, away off to the west, is remarkably healthy, and that no such humbug ought to prevent the troops of the United States from visiting this interesting region of the earth." [GLP]

NNR 70.195 May 30, 1846 "true policy of the republic"


The “Courier des Etats Unis,” the French Journal published at New York, thus discourses, in relation to our war with Mexico and as the true policy and destiny of our republic:-

“The American people is the foremost among all people by the progress it has made in clearing the wilderness-in the arts of industry, and in navigation. No other has performed so great miracles in so short a time. It is emphatically the people which improvises civilization. With its steamboats and its axe it has already conquered one half of a world and is destined soon to conquer the other half. Industry is its genius, the fruits of the earth its arms, the liberty which it bears along with it, its power.-This liberty is the key which will open the universe to it.

But one is not perfect in all things, and it is not given to be, at the same time; a commercial and free people, and a warlike and domineering people. In nations as in individuals, particular faculties can only acquire extreme development at the expense of other faculties. Hence the Americans could not push so far their creations of industry and their political liberty, except upon the condition of having no military budget, no regular army. They could only become the strongest of people in time of peace, by exposing themselves to be the weakest in time of war. Of this, the high intelligence which distinguishes them, should have convinced them, if self love did not with them speak louder even than intellect. Accustomed to see everything yield to their spirit of enterprise-rivers, ports, mountains, they have fancied that whatever they chose, they could extemporize an army as they extemporize a city or a railroad. But this is an error which they will discover and deplore hereafter. Citizens are not soldiers-conscripts are not heroes. In every vocation an apprenticeship is needed- and that vocation, of all others, most needs this apprenticeship, which puts at hazard ones life.

“The political and social organization of the United States has, moreover, this inconvenience-the shade to its brightness-that the military career being the most neglected of all, the least honored because it is the least productive, the least in harmony with the instinctively pacific sentiments of the masses, it is a sort of last refuge for the worst portion of the population. Strangers to the soil, emigrants without home or hearth, constitute the greater portion of the enlisted men; these men are mercenaries who fight from necessity, or from the love of adventure, but who have none of that love of country adhering to their entrails sicul ossa cuti- Such men in fleeing from the enemy, have no consciousness of carrying off on the soles of their feet the honor of their country. It is not with such defenders that either great things, or even good things are done.”

Since then such is the system of the country, its rulers should at least comprehend at once both its feebleness, and its force and act in conformity.-Having raised on the soil temples to all the gods except the god of war, there should be the rarest possible recourse to his intercession-the combats should be not with the sword, but with the plough, which is your weapon-conquer the world not by armies, but by emigration, industry and the hardy pioneers of the wilderness. In all the expansive force of your arms and your ideas lies all your power and if that power, is less rapid than that of the cannon, it is more sure and irresistible. Texas furnishes a proof in point. While you were content to let the west pour itself out into Texas, nothing could check their progress, and they conquered it for you. And now when government action is substituted in the same country for individuals, and against the same enemy, you are conquered! It is because in the United States the government is nothing, the individual everything.

Since his accession to power, Mr. Polk has misapprehended this great organic principle of American society. He was for hurrying its march, and cutting the two knots of Texas and Oregon, which time of itself would have untied. What is the result of this unnatural policy? That the United States are at this moment placed in a position which may become excessively critical for them, for it may expose them at the same time for the two most dangerous wars they could be called upon to meet. In seeing what the mere commencement of a struggle with such an enemy as Mexico has already occasioned of embarrassment and expense-in perceiving the difficulties of meeting the demands of a single contest-one is tempted to ask with dread, what would happen if we had to repel at the same time a Mexican invasion in the south, a Canadian invasion at the north, and the attacks of the British fleets on the seaboard? Fortune which has so long shown herself propitious to the United States-fortune which loves youth-among people as among kings-as Louis XIV, when a sexagenarian, mournfully remarked, will spare the Americans this trial-but no thanks therefore to the policy of Mr. Polk; his policy is grossly blundering. That which Mr. Calhoun, from the beginning of the Oregon question has proclaimed under the title of “masterly inactivity,” is the only true policy-the only logical one-the only one in harmony with American institutions, and their actual military organization. The missions of Americans is that of the pacific conquerors-the institutions are to spread, as spread the waves by simple law of the level-their dominion is destined to grow by affinity, by alluvion-the whole of North America is their certain patrimony; land none but a madman buys with blood what is in fact a portion of his own inheritance. [JEB]

NNR 70.195 May 30, 1846 CAPTURE OF GEN. VEGA BY CAPT. MAY.

The battle commenced by heavy cannonading on both sides. Gen. Taylor, in passing his lines, accosted Capt. May of the 2d dragoons, and told him - "Your regiment has never done anything yet - you must take that battery." He said nothing, but turned to his command and said -"We must take that battery - follow!" He made a charge with three companies - at least the remainder of three companies - supported by the 5th and 8 th regiments of Infantry. They cleared the breastwork, wheeled and came through the enemy's lines, whilst the fire of the Infantry was so deadly in its effect as to carry all before it. Capt. May made a cut at an officer as he charged through. On his return he found him standing between cannon wheels - fighting like a hero. He ordered him to surrender. He was asked if he was an officer? - Capt. May answered him in the affirmative, when he presented his sword, remarking, "You receive Gen. Vega a prisoner of war." [GLP]

NNR 70.196 May 30, 1846 executive power granted to the president for conducting the war, funds authorized, troops to be raised, officers to be appointed

The President of the United States.

Large powers have already been conferred upon the president, toward meeting the way with Mexico.

Funds. Ten millions of dollars have been appropriated, and placed at the disposal of the president, for conducting the war.

The army of the United States, of which the president according to the constitution is commander in chief-according to the bill just passed by congress will be augmented to about 15,000 men. The volunteers placed at his disposal 50,000. The navy, as now established, 7,800. The increase being ordered, steamers included will augment it at least 10,000. = 82,000

The appointing power, called into requisition for officering these new levies, is amongst the highest of executive prerogatives. Seldom if ever has so vast a scope of power been in the hands of a president of these United States. [JEB]

NNR 70.196 May 30, 1846 requisition on the states for volunteers


The Circular from the department of War to the Governors of the several States, dated May 19th, 1846 was accompanied with the following tables:-

Volunteers to be enrolled but not called into service until further orders.

States Number of
Maine 1 777
New Hampshire 1-2 390
Massachusetts 1 777
Rhode Island 1-2 390
Connecticut 1-2 390
Vermont 1-2 390
New York 7 5,439
New Jersey 1 777
Delaware 1-2 390
Pennsylvania 6 4,662
Maryland 2 1,554
Virginia 3 2,331
North Carolina 1 777
South Carolina 1 777
Louisiana 2 1,554
Michigan 1 777
Florida 1-2 390
Iowa 1 777
Wisconsin 1 777
Alabama 1-2 390
Totals 39 24,486

Volunteers called for from different states for immediate service

States Number of
Horse Foot
Arkansas 1-2 789 388
Mississippi 1 - 777
Alabama 1 - 777
Georgia 1 - 777
Tennessee 3 789 1554
Kentucky 3 789 1554
Missouri 1 789 -
Illinois 3 - 2331
Indiana 3 - 2331
Ohio 3 - 2331
Texas 1 789 388
Totals 22 3954 13,208


NNR 70.196 May 30, 1846 report of the squadron under Com. John Drake Sloat at Mazatlan

Naval Journal

Pacific squadron. The New York Commercial Advertiser has advices from the squadron under commodore Sloat to the 8th April-all well. A letter from an officer dated Matzatlan, says-“We have still lying here most of the squadron, viz. Savannah 54, Constitution 54, Warren 24, Levant 22, Portsmouth 22, Erie 4, and the Congress 54, capt. Stockton, and the Cyane, daily expected. The Shark, 12, has gone to the Sandwich Islands to repair, after which she will return to the coast again.” [JEB]

NNR 70.196 May 30, 1846 government said to intend purchasing small vessels to run close in shore in the Gulf

The Norfolk Beacon of the 25th says-

Commander Garret J. Pendergrast has been ordered to the Memphis navy yard, and Commander Wm. H. Gardner to the rendezvous here; Commander McKean to the sloop of war Dale; and Lieut. Chatard to the Water Witch to be fitted out here. It is said that the government intend purchasing a number of small vessels to run close in shore in the Gulf after privateersmen. [JEB]

NNR 70.196-197 May 30, 1846 Gen. Zachary Taylor's official letters from Point Isabel, his brief notes on the Battle of Palo Alto and the Battle of Resaca de la Palma


[Official] From the Union of May 26

Headquarters Army of Occupation
Point Isabel, Texas, May 7, 1846

Sir: I respectfully report that I shall march this day with the main body of the army, to open a communication with Major Brown, and throw forward supplies of ordnance and provisions. If the enemy opposes my march, in whatever force, I shall fight him. Occasional guns are heard in the direction of Matamoros, showing that everything is right in that quarter.

Yesterday the recruits under Lieut. McPhail arrived here. After filling up the companies of the permanent garrison, (A 1st arty. and G 4th art.,) the remainder of the detachment with its officers, was placed under Major Munroe’s orders to assist in the defence of the depot. The men are yet to raw to take the field, though efficient for garrison defence. They will be permanently assigned as soon as practicable.

The four companies of the first infantry are hourly expected, and will be a seasonable reinforcement. The first shipment of volunteers from New Orleans may also soon be looked for. Their arrival will enable me to open the river and free our communications.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obed’t serv’t

Brevet brig’r gen. U.S.A. com’g

The adjutant general of the army, Washington, D.C.

Headquarters Army of Occupation
Camp at Palo Alto, Texas, May 9, 1846

Sir: I have the honor to report that I was met near this place yesterday, on my march from Point Isabel, by the Mexican forces, and after an action of about five hours dislodged them from their position, and encamped upon the field. Our artillery, consisting of two 18 pounders and two light batteries, was the arm chiefly engaged, and to the excellent manner in which it was maneuvered and served is our success mainly due.

The strength of the enemy is believed to have been about six thousand men, with seven pieces of artillery, and eight hundred cavalry. His loss is probably at least one hundred killed. Our strength did not exceed all told twenty three hundred, while our loss was comparatively trifling-four men killed, three officers and thirty seven men wounded, several of the latter mortally. I regret to say that Major Ringgold, 3d artillery, and Capt. Page, 4th infantry, are severely wounded. Lieut. Luther, 2d artillery, slightly so.

The enemy has fallen back, and it is believed has repassed the river. I have advanced parties now thrown forward in his direction, and shall move the main body immediately.

In haste of this first report, I can only say that the officers and men behaved in the most admirable manner throughout the action. I shall have the pleasure of making a more detailed report when those of the different commanders shall be received. I am sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

Z. Taylor
Brevet brigadier general U.S.A. commanding

The adjutant general, U.S. army, Washington, D.C.

Headquarters Army of Occupation.
Camp at Resaca de la Palma, 3 miles from Matamoros, 10 o’clock, p.m., May 9, 1846

Sir: I have the honor to report that I marched with the main body of the army at 2 o’clock today, having previously thrown forward a body of light infantry, into the forest, which covers the Matamoros road. When near the spot where I am encamped, my advance discovered that a ravine crossing the road had been occupied by the enemy with artillery. I immediately ordered a batter of field artillery to sweet the position, flanking and sustaining it by the 3d, 4tf, and 5th regiments, deployed as skirmishers to the right and the left. A heavy fire of artillery and musketry was kept up for some time, until finally the enemy’s batteries were carried in succession by a squadron of dragoons and the regiments of infantry that were on the ground. He was soon driven from his position, and pursued by a squadron of dragoons, battalion of artillery, 3d infantry, and a light battery, to a river. Our victory had been complete.-Eight pieces of artillery, with a great quantity of ammunition, three standards, and some one hundred prisoners have been taken; among the latter, General La Vega, and several other officers. One general is understood to have been killed. The enemy has recrossed the river, and I am sure will not again molest us on this bank.

The loss of the enemy in killed has been most severe. Our own has been very heavy, and I deeply regret to report that Lieut. Inge, 2d dragoons, Lieut. Cochran, 4th infantry, and Lieut. Chadbourne, 8 th infantry, were killed on the field. Lieut. Col. Payne, 4 th artillery, Lieut. Col. McIntosh, Lieut. Dobbins, 3d infantry, Capt. Hooe, and Lieut. Fowler, 5th infantry, and Capt. Montgomery, Liets. Gates, Seldon, McClay, Burbank, and Jordan, 8th infantry, were wounded. The extent of our loss in killed and wounded is not yet ascertained, and is reserved for a more detailed report.

The affair today may be regarded as a proper supplement to the cannonade of yesterday; and the two taken together, exhibit the coolness and gallantry of our officers and men in the most favorable light. All have done their duty, and done it nobly. It will be my pride, in a more circumstantial report of both actions, to dwell upon particular instances of individual distinction.

It affords me peculiar pleasure to report that the field work opposite Matamoros has sustained itself handsomely during a cannonade and a bombardment of 160 hours. But the pleasure is alloyed with profound regret at the loss of its heroic and indomitable commander, Major Brown, who died to-day from the effect of a shall. His loss would be a severe one to the service at anytime, but to the army under my orders, it is indeed irreparable. One officer and non-commissioned officer killed and ten men wounded, comprise all the casualties incident to this severe bombardment.

I inadvertently omitted to mention the capture of a large number of pack mules left in the Mexican camp.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obd’t. serv’t.,

Bt. Brig’r. general U.S.A. com’h

The Adjutant General of the Army, Washington, D.C.

NNR 70.197 May 30, 1846 Gen. Romulo Diaz de la Vega and other captured officers forwarded to New Orleans

Headquarters Army of Occupation
Point Isabel, Texas, May 12, 1846

[Special Orders No. 62]

1. General la Vega and the other Mexican officers, prisoners of war, will be conducted to New Orleans under charge of Lieut. J.J. Reynolds, 4th artillery, who will report on his arrival to Major General Gaines, for further instructions. The quartermaster’s department will furnish a steamer for the transportation of the party.

2. As many of the sick and wounded now at this place as may be indicated by Surgeon Wood, will be moved in suitable transports to St. Joseph’s Island. Assistant Surgeon Byrne will accompany the detachment, and will return with the convalescents that may not be in condition to leave the general hospital. The quartermaster’s department will furnish the proper transportation.

By order of Brigadier General Taylor,

Acting adjutant general.

NNR 70.197 May 30, 1846 Gen. Zachary Taylor's letter from camp opposite Matamoros, enclosing Gen. Pedro Ampudia's letter of 12th April summoning Taylor to quit his position

Headquarter, Army of occupation
Camp near Matamoros, Texas, April 15, 1846

Sir: I have to report that on the 11th inst.-General Ampudia arrived at Matamoros with two hundred cavalry, the remainder of his force, variously estimated from 2,000 to 3,000 men, being some distance in the rear on the route from Monterey. Immediately after assuming the chief command, Gen. Ampudia ordered all Americans to leave Matamoros within twenty four hours, and repair to Victoria, a town in the interior of Tamaulipas. He had taken the same severe measure at Reinosa, on his way hither. On the 12th I received from Gen. Ampudia a dispatch, summoning me to withdraw my forces within twenty four hours, and to fall back beyond the river Neuces. To this communication I replied on the 12th, saying that I should not retrograde from my position. Copies of this correspondence are enclosed herewith. I considered the letter of Gen. Ampudia sufficient to warrant me in blockading up the Rio Grande, and stopping all supplies for Matamoros, orders for which have been given to the naval commander at Brazos Santiago.

Notwithstanding the alternative of war presented by Gen. Ampudia, no hostile movement has yet been made by his force. Whether he will feel strong enough to attempt anything when all of his force shall arrive, is very doubtful. Our brigades occupy strong positions, beyond reach of fire from the town, and can hold themselves against many times their number of Mexican troops. In the meantime our defences here and at Point Isabel, are daily gaining strength. The Latter point is well supplied with artillery, and in good condition to resist attack.

I regret to report that Colonel Cross has been missing since the 10 th instant, on which day he rode out alone in the vicinity of our camp. All attempts to trace him have hitherto proved fruitless, and I much fear that he has been waylaid and murdered by banditti known to be in our neighborhood. Today I address a letter on the subject to General Ampudia, desiring him to assist in our efforts to ascertain the colonel’s fate.

I shall authorize the raising of two companies of Texan mounted men, for service in this quarter, particularly for the purpose of keeping open our communication with Point Isabel, and relieving the regular cavalry of a portion of their duties, which are now oppressive.

Several resignations of officers have been tendered since our arrival here. While I regret that such has been the case, I have still deemed my duty to throw no obstacle in the way of their stance.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

Brevet Brig. Gen. U.S.A. commanding

The Adjutant General of the Army

NNR 70.198 May 30, 1846 account of events at Point Isabel during the battle of 9th May

In looking over the New Orleans paper and extras of the 17th inst. A second time we observe a few items of sufficient general interest to claim a place in our columns:

The following from the Picayune was written before news of the engagement of the 9th-the last we have any account of-reached New Orleans. It is of some importance, however , as it reveals the reasons which determined Gen. Taylor to leave Point Isabel on the 7 th inst. for his encampment opposite Matamoros before the arrival of reinforcements.

Some time after the battle was begun two Negro men ran off from the army, and reported at Point Isabel that the day was going against the United States army. The excitement at the receipt of the intelligence may be more easily imagined than described. It was not till Gen. Taylor sent in his wounded to the Point, on the afternoon of the ensuing day that the issue of the day’s bloody business was known. The smoke of the battle was seen distinctly from Isabel, and every report of the cannon counted. It was thought that at least five guns a minute were discharged.

The general left Point Isabel for the entrenchments opposite Matamoros before the arrival of reinforcements, because he was apprehensive lest the enemy might so surround and harass it as to render its safety doubtful. The enemy has concentrated an immense force upon Matamoros and the neighboring country. The Mexican soldiers are in greater strength than has been hitherto supposed.

No further news was heard from Gen. Taylor, after the evening of the 9th, nor was any more firing heard. We are informed that when the two companies of Mexican artillery were seen-as they could be from Point Isabel-whilst yet the battle was raging, coming down to cross Coccha Chica, and boats and stores, the belief was that Gen. Taylor had been cut off. Such a spectacle, taken in conjunction with the story of the Negroes, who deserted; must have been a sad one indeed, to the few brave men who remained in the fort. Fortunately, the U.S. ship Cumberland was at hand to drive off this detachment. The Mexicans must have felt confident of obtaining a victory, to have sent these men down to take charge of the American stores before the close of the battle.

The impression was that Gen. Taylor would throw up a redoubt upon the field of battle, and remain there till the volunteers arrived. This was a conjecture only, as the general is one of those men who keep their own counsel. We have seen a letter from one of the officers at Isabel, who thought such would be his course.

Whilst congratulating the country upon the successes already achieved something is due to the brave men who have fallen in battle and the gallant officers who have been so severely wounded in the field. Major Ringgold is an honor to the service, and a victory is dear that is purchased with the loss of such an officer. Capt. Page we know well. He is as true a soldier as ever faced his country’s foe.-They will be remembered by their countrymen. Honor to the living and peace be with the dead.

A correspondent of the New Orleans Bulletin, writing from Point Isabel on the evening of the 12th inst., remarks-Many instances occurred of our men handing their canteens to the wounded Mexicans, and turning from them to fire upon others. There was not a single occurrence of cruelty towards the enemy.-The morale of the army is at its highest-it can now accomplish anything, and they would die for a commander who does not ask them to go where he is not willing to lead, and in whose judgment they fully confide.

NNR 70.198 May 30, 1846 Gen. Pedro Ampudia's proclamation to the people of the east, his address to the inhabitants of the frontier, "Eagle of the North's"notice of the manifesto

From the “Eagle of the North,” April 8th, 1846

We have seen with the greatest satisfaction the manifesto given to the nation by his excellency the president ad interim, in regard to the correspondence relative to the subject of Texas, hold between the supreme government and the envoy extraordinary of the United States. This document is as satisfactory as could be hoped for after the sincere offers made at San Louis Porosi by the chief of our destinies; in it we explicitly treated the difficult question, which for ten successive years has been the pretext for civil discord, and in it we have a safe guarantee that the existing energetic government will fulfill without delay the obligations which it contracted with the nation in giving the programme, which unites all divisions, which makes opinion unanimous upon independence, the culminating point of our social experiences.

It is true war is not precisely declared in the manifesto referred to, and this will not readily satisfy the anxiety of those who are menaced by the ironically called colossus of the north; but in addition to their being in the expressions of his excellency, the president, marked indications of a desire for the campaign so long a time talked of, a matter which has no little force in the mouth of the chief magistrate of a people, it is also therein expressed, as a fundamental basis, that the forced occupation of our territory by the United States, and the appearance of their squadrons upon the coasts of Mexico, are regarded as a real aggression; such is the language proper for governments which desire to uphold dignity and decorum; nevertheless, there will not be wanting some malevolent spirits to charge us with not having finally declared was, as if such an act were not the proper duty of congress, for which they are legally assembled, and who will find no difficulty in giving their irremediable sentence. [JEB]

NNR 70.199 May 30, 1846 President Mariano Paredes y Arillaga's manifesto to the Mexican nation

From the “Diario Official,” (city of Mexico,) April 24th , 1846 [Translated for the Union]


On assuming in the beginning of this year the heavy responsibility of guiding the destinies of the nation during a short period, I determined resolutely to change its policy from the weak and pernicious system of temporizing, which has been observed with regard to the United States of America, not withstanding the perfidy with which that government prepared for the occupation of Texas, its treacherous violation of the existing treaties, which guarantee the limits of the republic, and the insidious act by which it incorporated one of our departments with its own confederacy. The Mexican nation did not conquer its independence by the most bloody and heroic sacrifices, nor place itself among the civilized powers of the world in order to become the sport of a neighboring nation, which, taking advantage of our quarrels and unfortunate disturbances and the exaggerated idea of our weakness, founded upon them, appeared with all the appliances for conquest, and entered upon the invasion of our territory, indulging in the dream that it could extinguish the manly race to which we belong, placing upon our foreheads the brand borne by the slaves in its southern states, destroying our nationality, and abandoning us to the humiliating misery of oblivion. The magnanimous people which, in a struggle of eleven years of blood and extermination, proved its boldness no less than its constancy, was waiting with impatience to rush forward into another war which it was called by the scandalous aggressions of a government declaring itself our friend, but at the same time aiming to prostrate us, relying on its power, and not caring to support itself on the titles of equity and justice which all nations respect, which strengthen the hopes of peace, and maintain the harmony of the universe. It was for this reason that the nation sanctioned the movement which I began at San Luis Potosi, not in order to place myself in the painful possession of power, but that my country may shine by the triumph of a cause which is the cause of the conservative principles of human society.

The old grievances, the offences against the Mexican nation, which have been incessantly repeated since 1836, had been consummated by the insult of sending us a minister, to be accredited near our government in the character of a residing minister, as if the relations between the two republics had not suffered any disturbance by the definitive act of the annexation of Texas. At the very time when Mr. Slidell appeared, the troops of the United States were occupying our territory, their squadrons were threatening our ports, and preparations were made to occupy the peninsula of the Californias, to which the Oregon question with England is only a preliminary; and I did not receive Mr. Slidell, because the dignity of the nation repelled this new insult.

In the meantime, the army of the United States fixed its encampment at Corpus Christi, and occupied the island of Padre Vayin; it then marched to Point Isabel, and the flag of stars floated on the right bank of the Rio Bravo del Norte, in front of the city of Matamoros, the American Vessels of war having previously seized upon the navigation of the river.- The town of Laredo was surprised by a party of these troops and one of our pickets there stationed was disarmed. Hostilities, therefore, have been began by the United States undertaking new conquests in the territories included in the departments of Tamaulipas and New Leon, whilst the troops of the same states threaten Monterey in Upper California. There can be no doubt to which of the two republics belong the responsibility of a war, which might have been prevented by a feeling of equity and justice, and of that respect which civilization was introduced, for the rights and property of all nations. If Mexico should indolently suffer these reiterated advances of a power, which already considers itself mistress and sovereign of the American Continent, not only would she lose the importance which her population, resources, and peculiar position have given her, ever since she raised herself to be an independent nation, but she would fall into shame and contempt should she, when challenged to fight for them, allows herself to be stripped of the integrant parts of her territory one by one. Outrages so many and so heavy, can no longer be borne; and I have sent orders to the general-in-chief of the division of our northern frontier, to act in hostility against the army which is in hostility against us, to oppose war to the enemy, which wars upon us; and invoking the God of battles to preserve, by the valor of our troops the unquestionable right to our territory, and the honor of our arms, which are no longer, to be employed only in defence of Justice. Our general, acting according to established usages, and the decided instructions given by my government, summoned the general-in-chief of the American forces to retire beyond the river Nueces, the ancient boundary of Texas, and the summons has been disregarded.

The nations interested in preventing the disturbance of the peace which has lasted so many years, and whose commercial relations with the Mexican republic, may suffer injury, see the hard alternative to which we are reduced by the invasive policy of the United States, and that we must succumb unless we defend with energy our national existence thus threatened. I solemnly announce, that I do not declare was against the government of the United States of America, because it belongs to the august congress of the nation, and not the executive, to resolve definitively what reparation should be exacted for such offences. But the defence of the Mexican territory, which the forces of the United States have invaded, is an urgent necessity, and my responsibility to the nation would be immense should I fail to order the troops, which thus act as enemies, to be repelled; and I have therefore given that order.-From this day begins our defensive war; and every point of our territory invaded or attacked, shall be valiantly defended.

The time has therefore come which the government of the Mexican nation have endeavored fruitlessly to put off, by debating the clearest and most just titles; and these having been contemned we enter into a necessary contest which will secure to us the sympathies of all nations and governments, which condemn the usurpations of the powerful. We shall ourselves become strong from the holiness of our cause; and when everything is endangered, our strength will correspond with the exigencies of our condition. Meanwhile the Mexican nation will resolve to hazard all in order to save all; and it will give a sublime example of sacred determination to exhibit that glorious devotion which has so often been displayed at all times by nations, maintaining their independence and their liberties.

I rejoice with pride that Providence should have destined me to be the organ for announcing the energetic will of the Mexican republic. Let us prove in battle that the sons of the heroes and martyrs of independence are animated by the recollections of their pure glory; that valor has not degenerated in their breasts, and that they are disposed to sacrifice themselves on the altars of their country.

Mexicans! I raise on the memorable day the standard of independence on which you see inscribed the illustrious names of Hidalgo and Iturbide.-Rally under this sacred ensign, leaving all internal questions and differences for a period of less peril.-I have assured you that the glory which I seek as the reward of my painful career, is not that of the ambitious man who regards power as the spoils of rapine. I have sworn to maintain the republic, in all its just rights, during the short period of my government; and now, while I urge you to the struggle and warn you that you must make great sacrifices, I also promise you that I shall not spare my own blood when it shall be necessary.

Mexicans! Your valiant soldiers are about to fight, and they will fight, with the valor of heroes; keep your blessings for them, and prepare yourselves to crown their noble foreheads, or their tombs, if they should fall, when destiny calls you to take their places in the ranks. Mexico will conquer or will no longer exist!

National Palace of Mexico, April 23, 1846
Mariano Paredes y Arrillaga

NNR 70.199 May 30, 1846 Texas general orders for volunteers for Mexico

General Order No. 1
Adjutant general’s office, Austin, May 2, 1846.

The executive has been officially advised by a date of 26th ult., from Gen. Z. Taylor, that actual hostilities have commenced between the Mexicans and the Army of Occupation, provoked by the Mexican foe. Under the authority of the United States, a requisition has been made upon him as the chief magistrate of the state, to call into the service four regiments of volunteer riflemen, two regiments of which to be mounted and two on foot, for six months, unless sooner discharged.

Relying upon the uniform chivalry of his fellow citizens, the executive addresses himself to their patriotism and in the absence of a due military organization makes the following requisition of the respective counties of the state. [JEB]

NNR 70.199-200 May 30, 1846 prompt measures to sustain Gen. Zachary Taylor, proclamations and correspondence of Gov. William Owsley of Kentucky about raising volunteers

Kentucky.-Prompt measures. On the 15th of May, Gov. Owsley received from Gen. Gaines U.S. army, a letter dated headquarters western division, New Orleans, May 4th, announcing that he had “solicited from the President authority to concentrate upon the borders” of the Rio Grande, “fifty battalions, each battalion to consist of 500 men,” (of western volunteers,) “to be accepted into service of the United States for six months, unless sooner discharged. To obviate loss of time in the accomplishment of this important service, I take this occasion to say that your excellency would contribute much to facilitate the desired movement by anticipating a formal requisition from the department of war, by authorizing, two, three, or four battalions of infantry and riflemen, to be taken from the young men constituting the chivalry of the state of Kentucky. To organize and repair to this city as soon as practicable, where they shall receive arms, with every requisite supply necessary to their health and comfort and to render them ready for action. From this city they will go by good vessels, (steamers if possible) to the Rio Grande, near Matamoros.

Gob. Owsley on the 16th wrote in reply to General Gaines: “I must beg leave sir, to assure you, that I admire and appreciate the patriotic zeal and professional ardor that so eminently characterizes your communication to this department. I am sure sir, that the people of Kentucky will feel gratified at the compliment paid to their chivalry, by being thus early called upon by the commanding general of the western division, to bear their part in the defence of the country. Yet, sir, occupying myself a post of great responsibility to the citizens of this state, my duty to them requires that I should await the authority of the president, which you have solicited, and which, if your anticipations are realized, must necessarily reach here in a few days. And this consideration reconciles me to the brief delay occasioned by deterring action till the receipt of orders from the general government. It would be impossible at all events to raise the battalions suggested in your letter, in time for them to form a part of the force to be concentrated at New Orleans “in present month.”- The month is now more than half gone, and as there has been no anticipation in the public mind of such an early call for volunteers, the month would have expired before the battalions would be in readiness to be placed under your immediate command. I need not assure you, sir, that when war has been declared by the United States, Kentucky will be found in the line of her duty-true to her ancient renown and true to the American Union. Hoping that the citizen soldiers whore fortune it was to be nearer the scene of action that we are, arrived in time to give all necessary aid to the gallant officers now in command on the Rio Grande. I tender you my grateful acknowledgements for the confidence you have reposed in the volunteers from this state. [JEB]

NNR 70.201 May 30, 1846 Death of Major Ringgold

MAJOR RINGGOLD. The following particulars relative to his death, are from a distinguished officer of the U.S. navy.
Camp Isabel, near the mouth of the Rio Bravo del Norte, 11th May, 1846. The numerous friends of Major Ringgold will doubtless be anxious to know the particulars attending his melancholy end, and I hasten to give them to you. The engagement of the 8th was entirely in the hands of the artillery, and Major R. took a most active and important part with it. About 6 o'clock he was struck by a six pound shot. He was mounted, and the shot struck him at right angles, hitting him in the right thigh, passing through the holsters and upper part of the shoulders of his horse, and then striking the left thigh, in the same line in which it first struck him. On the evening of the 9th he reached this camp under charge of Dr. Byrne of the army. He was immediately placed in comfortable quarters, and hiw wound dressed. An immense mass of muscles and integuments were carried away from both thighs. - The arteries were not divided, neither were the bones broken. I remained with him all the night. He had but little pain, and at intervals had some sleep. On dressing his wounds in the morning, they presented a most unfavorable aspect, and there was but little reaction. During the night he gave many incidents of the battle, and spoke with much pride of the execution of his shot. He directed his shot not only to groups and masses of the enemy, but to particular men in their line; he saw them fall, their places occupied by others, who in their turn were shot down, pointing his guns to the same place, and he felt as confident of hitting his mark as though he had been using a rifle. He had but one thing to regret, and that was the small number of men in his company. He said that he had made use of all his exertions to have his company increased to 100 men, but without success. From the small number of his men, as they were disabled at their guns, he was without others to take their places. During the day he continued to lose strength, but was free from pain and cheerful. He spoke constantly of the efficiency of his guns, and the brave conduct of his officers and men.

He continued to grow worse, and a medical officer remained constantly by his side. Dr. Byrne remained with him during the night, using every means which could be devised to save his valuable life, but without effect. He continued to grow worse until one o'clock last night, when he expired. He survived his wounds 60 hours; during all this time he had but little pain - conversed cheerfully, and made all his arrangements for his approaching end with the greatest composure and resignation. He will be buried to-day at 3 o'clock, P.M., lamented by the whole camp. The wounded are generally doing very well. I am your obedient servant.

Surgeon United States Navy.

NNR 70.200-202 May 30, 1846 Gov. Thomas G. Pratt's (Maryland) proclamation and general orders (similar official proceedings in other states), successors of the "old Maryland line" in the field


WHEREAS, the Congress of the United States has declared “that a state of war exists between the United States and the Republic of Mexico,” and has authorized the President of the United States, “to employ the Militia, Naval, and Military forces of the United States, and to call for and accept the service of any number of volunteers not exceeding 50,000, to serve twelve months after they shall have arrived at the place of rendezvous, or to the end of the war, unless sooner discharged, according to the time for which they shall have been mustered into service.” And, whereas, the President, with the view of securing to the citizens of each state and territory the privilege of participating in the defence of their Country, has appointed the said volunteer Force among the Several States and Territories; and has made his requisition upon me for two Regiments of Infantry, as the quote of this force to be supplied by the State of Maryland:

Now, therefore, I THOMAS G PRATT, Governor of the State of Maryland, do issue this proclamation, announcing to the Citizens of Maryland. That they are now privileged to enroll themselves under the Flag of their country, and to participate with their fellow citizens of other States in restoring to the United States the blessings of Peace.

I call upon the Citizens of the State of Maryland between the ages of 18 and 45 to enroll themselves forthwith, that the two Regiments required for this state may be immediately filled and mustered into the service of the United States.

The Sons of Maryland have always obeyed the call of patriotism and duty, and will now sustain the honor of the State by enabling her to be the first, or amongst the first, to offer the Federal Executive, for muster into the service of the country, her quote of the Volunteer force which has been called for.


Have already been duly represented in the Mexican war.

This emulation amongst the clans, is a valuable ingredient. No apoloigy is necessary for the introduction here. Let other states compete for the palm.

Col. Truman Cross, the first victim of the war was a native of Maryland, a descendant of the revolutionary officer. [JEB]

NNR 70.202 May 30, 1846 volunteer spirit in the states

Volunteers for the Army of Invasion

The general movement throughout the country may be judged of from the following brief summary which we take partly at random from innumerable articles of similar import which now crowd the daily journals from every direction.

Maryland-About 260 gallant volunteers, under the command of Captains Stewart, Piper, and Steiner, broke up their camp in Howard’s Park on the 27th instant, and after marching through the city of Baltimore, took passage in the cars for the city of Washington, where they designed to report to the commandant of the “District Volunteers,” with a view of expediting their arrival at the frontier.

Alabama-The “Relief Volunteers,” of Montgomery, Alabama, commanded by Captain Elmore, when they arrived at Mobile, received information that the Louisiana requisition was filled, and that they could not be received into service, They immediately sent an agent to New Orleans to solicit the privileges of being received without pay and Gen. Gaines accepted them as part of the regiment which he has authorized Colonel Bayley Payton to raise in the anticipation of a new call. They accordingly went over on the 16th instant to take their places in the ranks of the Louisiana volunteers. Another company from Alabama went over with them to request the same privilege. It is composed of citizens of Mobile and Tuscaloosa, commanded by Col. W.H. Platt

Louisiana-Volunteers pour into New Orleans enroute for the army, from all directions so rapidly that the governor finds it difficult to dispose of them. A proclamation has been issued stating, that the state’s quote of four regiments is full, and that no more can be received. The organization of Col. Peyton’s regiment under the authority of Gen. Gaines, will still continue.

The legislature of the state on the 18th inst. passed a bill appropriating $200,000 for the equipment and transportation of the volunteers to Texas.

The Central Bank of New Orleans, on the 19th, placed whatever funds might be required by the governor for the dispatch of the troops at his disposal free of charge.

Kentucky- The promptitude of the Kentuckians shows that they are as ready as ever to anticipate a call. We notice on another page, Governor Owsley’s proceeding. The Louisville Legion composed of eight companies, was to embark on the New Orleans on the 24th instant. Some of the companies have an excess of men. Distinguished military men of Kentucky have tendered their services to Governor Owsley.

The Northern Bank of Kentucky on the 18th instant, placed $250,000 at the disposition of the governor, to enable him promptly to fulfill any requisition upon Kentucky for the southern army.

The Louisville Journal of the 21st instant, says that some of the manufacturing establishments in that city have been compelled to suspend operations for want of hands, so great is the number of operatives who have joined the army.

Missouri-The St. Louis Volunteers, numbering about 600, were to march to Jefferson barracks on the 16th instant, from which point they would embark for the south. Volunteers from the interior of the state were constantly arriving in St. Louis.

Judge Mullanphy, of St. Louis has raised $4,500 by private subscription to defray the expenses of the volunteers.

At St. Louis committees have been appointed at a town meeting to solicit subscriptions in aid of the families of volunteers from that city.

Ohio.-The Cincinnati papers announce that one thousand men in that city are only waiting for orders. In various other sections of Ohio, volunteer corps are forming.

Indiana.-Two volunteer companies have been organized in New Albany, and they report themselves ready to march at a day’s notice. Two corps have also been raised at Evansville.

Hoosier pluck!-A western editor says a strapping customer who looked as if he could “chaw up” a half dozen Mexicans at any one meal, without being satisfied, reached our city yesterday morning, from an interior county (Putnam) in Indiana, for the purpose of joining one of the volunteer companies. So anxious was he to enter into service that he walked the entire distance from home, which was more than a hundred miles, barefooted. He is one of the right kind of “boys”

Illinois.-The St. Louis papers say three volunteer companies at Quincy, Illinois, were ready to march to the assistance of the army in the south, whenever their services should be required.

Tennessee Volunteers.-The Nashville Whig of the 19th instant, says that volunteers from every part of Tennessee are daily tendering their services to Governor Brown, the Whig adds-“A draught will certainly take place, but it will be to ascertain who shall be compelled to stay at home. Tennessee will be ready to furnish more than her quote of any number that may be needed.”

The Nashville Banner says, five thousand Tennesseeans will be ready for whenever their services are required.

The Union Bank of Tennessee has offered a loan of $100,000 to the governor of Tennessee, to equip the volunteers for the war. [JEB]

NNR 70.202 May 30, 1846 Gen. Zachary Taylor's official account of the campaign to Gen. Edmund Pendleton Gaines

INCIDENTS OF THE CAMPAIGN. From the New Orleans Bee, May 18

Official dispatch to Gen. Gaines. We have been politely favored with a perusal of the official dispatch addressed by Gen. Taylor, to Gen. Gaines, dated from his camp on the field of battles, three miles from Matamoros, May 9th, 1846. It does not differ materially from the accounts of the two engagements already laid before the public. On the 8th Gen. T. drove the enemy from their position, and occupied it during the night.

The loss in the conflict was 12 killed and 39 wounded. On the 9 th, the army resumed its march, until it encountered the enemy protected, as stated in our extra, by a ravine, with artillery on its right. This battery was stormed by Capt. May’s company of dragoons.-The number of killed and wounded on our side could not be ascertained. Private accounts make the number something over one hundred.

In this second engagement Lieut. Inge of the 2d dragoons, Lieut. Cochran of the 4th Infantry, and Lieut. Chadbourne of the 8th infantry were killed. Officers wounded: Lieut. Cols McIntosh and Payne, Capts. Montgomery and Hooe, Lieuts. Gates, Maclay, Selden, Burbank, Jordon, and Fowler of the infantry.

They dispatch states that the forces under Gen. Taylor were two thousand three hundred men, and that they had to contend about 3,800 Mexicans of the regular army and about 2,000 irregular cavalry. [JEB]

NNR 70.202 May 30, 1846 bombardment of the fort opposite Matamoros

The fort opposite Matamoros has been incessantly bombarded during one hundred and sixty hours, during which an immense number of shot and shells were thrown in it. No material damage has been sustained.[JEB]

NNR 70.202 May 30, 1846 rejoicing in New Orleans about the action of the president and cabinet on receipt of news of the war

An express from Washington arrived at New Orleans on the 17th inst. with accounts of the action of President Polk, and the cabinet at Washington, on receipt of the news of the status belli existing on the Texan frontier. The news caused great rejoicing. [JEB]

NNR 70.202 May 30, 1846 comments on the plan of the campaign revealed in the correspondence of Gen. Mariano Arista

The Galveston Civilian speaking of Gen. Arista’s correspondence, which fell into the hands of General Taylor, says:

The plan of the campaign, and the instructions from Gen. Arista’s government, ordered him to take possession of Point Isabel; this was to be the brief act of hostility; he was to fortify it as strongly as possible. He was likewise ordered to take possession on the mouth of the river and fortify it at once. [JEB]

NNR 70.202 May 30, 1846 the firing on American troops bearing captured Mexican colors

After the rout, Gen. Taylor dispatched Capt. Carr, of the dragoons, with a guard, to convey the intelligence. They bore so many of the enemy’s colors with them that they presumed in the fort that it was the Mexicans coming up to make an assault, it being dark, and the fort fired upon them, but fortunately injured no one. [JEB]

NNR 70.202 May 30, 1846 total number of volunteers furnished by Louisiana

The total number of volunteers furnished by the state of Louisiana up to the 18th inst., was 4,753, and companies were still pouring in from every direction. [JEB]

NNR 70.202 May 30, 1846 departure of Capt. D.J. Ricardo's Rangers for the war

Capt. D.J. Ricardo’s corps of Ranger, seventy-one men in all, had left for Point Isabel, without waiting for their bounty and caps. [JEB]

NNR 70.202-203 May 30, 1846 expedition against Barita

EXPEDITION AGAINST BARITA, &c.- Captain G. informs us that General Taylor left Point Isabel on the morning of the 13th, with about two hundred men and a supply of provisions for the army at the camp. After proceeding for a short distance, however, he deemed it expedient to return and increase his escort, and take with him a large quantity of supplies. He did so, and took up his march again for the camp, on the morning of the 14th, with from six to eight hundred men, a park of artillery, and about two hundred and fifty wagons. He was met about midway between Point Isabel and the camp, late on the evening of the 15th. Up to that time he had not met the enemy nor was it anticipated that he would encounter opposition, as the general impression was that the enemy had retreated from our soil immediately after their disastrous defeat on the 8th and 9th. And sought safety on the west bank of the Rio Grande.

While General Taylor was at Point Isabel but received intelligence that the Mexicans were gathering in large numbers at Barita, a Mexican town, immediately on the bank of the Rio Grande. On being that informed, he ordered the town companies of Louisiana Volunteers under Captains Desha and Stockton, and a detachment of United States infantry, [From Jefferson Barracks,] numbering in all regulars and volunteers, about one thousand men, composed entirely of infantry, to proceed to the attack of that town. [JEB]

NNR 70.-203 May 30, 1846 Gen. Taylor returns to Fort Brown, exchange of prisoners, Taylor plans to cross the Rio Grande, volunteers reach the Brazos

Camp opposite Matamoros, May 14 th - at night.

General Taylor returned to-night from Point Isabel. A party of Dragoons since his arrival have swam over and brought a boat from the opposite side. The sentinel over this boat left in haste.

All the prisoners whom we had in Matamoros were exchanged day before yesterday, besides which, we gave our enemy ninety-seven wounded men.

P.S. The camp is hurraying for the patriotism of the citizens of New Orleans, having just heard of their reception of the news of our situation and the promptness with which they acted.

From the Picayune Extra, May 19- On Saturday, the 16th , intelligence was received from the General Taylor that the intended crossing the Rio Grande, just below his camp, by making a bridge with his wagons. So far every thing looked favorable to his design. The fleet had sailed from off the Brazos to the mouth of the river, and were to send up detachments to co-operate in the attack upon the Barita.

Arrival of the Volunteers- Expedition against Barita- Camp at Point Isabel, Brazos Santiago. [AEK]

NNR 70.203 May 30, 1846 maneuvers of the US fleet on the scene

These troops embarked on the morning of the 15th, on the steamers Neva, Leo and Cincinnati, and were landed at the Brasos at 1 P.M. and immediately marched for the Rio Grande; the steamers being ordered to ascend the river and transport the troops and their ammunition across. Commodore Conner with his whole squadron, consisting of the steam frigate Mississippi, the frigates Cumberland, Raritan, and Potomac, sloop Mary, the brig Lawrence, and the schr. Santa Anna, at the same time weighed anchor and sailed for the mouth of the river intending to assist the troops in crossing with his boats, and to add in the attack with his men. The expedition was under the command of Colonel Wilson. [JEB]

NNR 70.203 May 30, 1846 departure of the steam schooner Augusta with wounded

On the 15th, the steam schooner Augusta, sailed for St. Joseph, with all the wounded that were able to be transported, taken from the battle of the 89th and 9th instant. [JEB]

NNR 70.203 May 30, 1846 letter from a correspondent at Point Isabel

A letter from Major L.J. Beall, to his brother Major B.L. Beall dated Point Isabel, Texas, April 27th, 1846.

My Dear Brother,- I wrote you a long letter yesterday, giving you the melancholy tidings of the death of your son-in-law poor Porter which I dispatched by way of New Orleans. This morning about half an hour since, Mr Catlett arrived, and will depart immediately for Austin. Gen Taylor announces through him that hostilities have commenced. I have no but a moment left to give you an account of Porter’s death, which from all I can learn, was of a most cruel nature. He was sent out with a party of ten men, to gain some intelligence concerning the late lamented Col. Cross (now ascertained to be murdered.) He was sent out on this duty somedays, when he met with a Mexican sentinel who snapped his piece at him and retreated to the woods, being prused by the men, they came on a camp, where they found nine horses belonging to the Mexicans, which they mounted. On their way back to Gen Taylor’s camp they were surrounded by forty Mexicans, and fired upon. Pat Flood was killed, Porter wounded, but not before he had discharged both barrels of his guns with effect. This occurred during the heavy rain, and the men with Porter were unable to discharge their guns, and retreated to the chapparel, only one man remaining near enough to see what took place afterwards. Flood was surrounded immediately and stabbed with knives, and the man things they served Porter in the same manner after he had fallen from his horse. I have only time to express the deep and heartfelt regret that has followed this sad occurrence throughout the army; and the feelings of sorrow which I sympathise with you in this loss to your family.

A note from the camp just received, informs me that a squadron of dragoons under the command of Capt. Thornton, has been surrounded by about one thousand mounted Mexicans, and among other disasters Kane was killed, and Hardee taken prisoner. Mr. Catlett is about leaving, and I cant add another hasty word.

Your affectionate brother



NNR 70.-203 May 30, 1846 A Letter from Major L. J. Beall, death of Lt. Porter

A Letter from Major L. J. Beall, to his brother Major B. L. Beall dated Point Isabel, Texas, April 27th , 1846.

My Dear Brother,--

I wrote you a long letter yesterday, giving you the melancholy tidings of the death of your son-in-law poor Porter which I despatched by way of New Orleans.

This morning, about half an hour since, Mr. Catlett arrived, and will depart immediately for Austin. Gen. Taylor announces through him that hostilities have commenced. I have now but a moment left to give you an account of Porter's death, which from all I can learn, was of a most cruel nature. He was sent out with a party of ten men, to gain some intelligence concerning the late lamented Col. Cross, (now ascertained to be murdered.) he was sent out on this duty some days, when he met with a Mexican sentinel who snapped his piece at him and retreated to the woods; being pursued by the men, they came on a camp, where they found nine horses belonging to the Mexicans, which they mounted. On their way back to Gen. Taylor's camp they were surrounded by forty Mexicans and fired upon. Pat Flood was killed, Porter wounded, but not before he had discharged both barrels of his gun with effect. This occurred during the heavy rain, and the men with Porter were unable to discharge their guns, and retreated to the chapparel, only one man remaining near enough to see what took place afterwards. Flood was surrounded immediately and stabbed with knives, and the man thinks they served Porter in the same manner after he had fallen from his horse. I have only time to express the deep and heartfelt regret that has followed this sad occurrence throughout the army; and the feeling of sorrow with which I sympathize with you in this loss to your family.

A note from the camp just received, informs me that a squadron of dragoons under the command of Capt. Thornton, has been surrounded by about one thousand mounted Mexicans, and among other disasters Kane was killed, and Hardee taken prisoner. Mr. Catlett is about leaving; and I can't add another hasty word.

Your affectionate brother,
L. J. Beall.

NNR 70.-203-204 May 30,1846 account of the search for Lt. Porter

Lieutenant Porter. The Providence Journal publishes a letter from an officer under Genl. Taylor giving an account of the search for the body Lieut., Porter from which some idea of the nature of the campaign may be derived. The letter says,

"As soon as the news of Porter's being shot was made certain, I was ordered, with a party of fifty men and two officers, to go and find his remains, if possible also get hold of some of the rascals by whom he was killed. I started at daybreak on the 22d, with two day's rations, having as guides the same men who had been with Porter. We marched, the first day, twenty-five miles, and encamped, as my guides assured me, within two miles of the place where they were fired on.

I cut a place in the 'chapparel' and stowed my men away so snugly that you might have passed a hundred times without suspecting a soul was near. I hoped, by keeping thus unseen, and making a very early start, to come down upon a nest of the scoundrels before they scattered for their daily scouts, and help myself to the whole of them. After marching about four miles, however, the nest morning, my guide gave up, admitted that he was mistaken in the trail, and could give me no farther assistance. All the other men who had been with Porter said the same. They could tell me nothing, save their belief that it was in a certain direction toward which they pointed.

My guides having all thus failed me, I had nothing to do but try my own resources, so terracing our footsteps about eight miles, I struck off right through the 'chapparel,' steering by compass in the course which would 1 thought, intersect Porter's trail. Of the difficulty of this march I can give you but a faint idea. Most of my men were old Florida soldiers, and they all declared that their worst marches in its swamps and hammocks were play to this.

The 'chapparel, is made up of a variety of strong gnarled shrubs, or rather bushes, from six to twenty feet high, all bearing thorns, and all so crooked and twisted that you cannot look at them without squinting, between these it is filled up with prickly pear, Spanish bayonet, and an endless variety of other plants, vines &c., all having the one common property of being full of thorns, spikes and prickles. We had often to cruel, and almost constantly to walk bent nearly double.

After penetrating about four miles in this manner, we came at last to a thicket of an entirely different character, composed almost solely of a dry, white, thorny bush, without leaves, and so closely matted together that it looked as if you could hardly run your arm into it. My advanced guard halted and said they could not get through it. I told them they must try, and by beating the bushes aside with butts of their muskets, they made a place large enough for one an to crawl in.

The labor of the men in front was so severe that I had to change them every few minutes, and by the time I had gone a mile in this slow and painful manner, I saw from the general exhaustion of the men, that it was useless to attempt getting farther. I then sent two of them up the highest bush I could see, for trees there were none, to discover the nearest outlet, but in every direction hey could not see any thing but' chapparel.' There was nothing for it, therefore but to order and about-face and take the back track, until we emerged from this horrible wilderness of thorns.

My two officers were almost exhausted, and two of the men taken sick, from the terrible heat in this dense thicket, where not a breast of wind could relieve the close, sultry, unhealthy atmosphere, and where not a drop of water was to be had. When we got to water again every man would, I believe, had it been deep enough, have plunge in head foremost; fortunately it was nearly milk warm, so that unrestrained indulgence was not very likely to injure them.

My scout was entirely unsuccessful. My guide had misled me so far wrong that I could not get right, and was compelled to return on the third day, having marched at least fifty five miles, and bringing back nothing save the thorns, prickly pear needles, and the ticks, with which we were most abundantly garnished.

My knees and arms, from the wrist to the elbow, bore a striking resemblance to pin-cushions.

Poor Porter still lies, no doubt, a prey to the brigands, and the only way to obtain his remains will be by bribing some Mexican to bring them in. he has left young wife and child utterly destitute, save the pensions which , for five years, they receive from the noble generosity of our country--twelve dollars and a half per month. [AEK]

NNR 70.209 June 6, 1846 British steamer Terrible rumored ordered to Oregon

The British Steamer Terrible.--An article in Wilmer and Smith's Times, states as a rumor, that "twenty gunners, two sergeants, two corporals, and two bombardiers, under the command of Captain Blackwood are to be despatched by the British Government in their war steamer, the terrible, to Oregon early next month; the vessel is to take an adequate supply of guns and stores; and 3,000 excavators are to be sent to the same destination with all possible speed.  This force and these men are professedly sent to the Hudson Bay Company's territory, but it would be useless to shut our eyes to the fact that the bar announcement of such an expedition, while the territory in question forms the subject of negotiation between the two Governments, is calculated to produce no small excitement in American amongst the parties who have been striving so zealously to fan the smoldering embers into a blaze." [AEK]

NRR 70.209 June 6, 1846 commissions for production of uniforms

Army Clothing.--Three of our large manufacturers, Messrs. McCallment, Dupont and Whippeny, have received commission from the United States, for the manufacture of 60,000 yards kerseys, and 20,000 yards blue cloth for the use of the United States Army--Phila. North American [AEK]

NNR 70.210,70.304 June 6, 1846 French notions about the war, the intention of France to interfere to prevent annexation of Mexican territory by the United States

[June 6, 1846]  In relation to Mexico and the United States, the Paris correspondent of Wilmer and Smith’s Times, writes, that the subject “excites considerable interest here; but little is said thereon, either in conversation or by newspapers.  The latter, however, carefully translate all intelligence they can find in the American or English papers bearing upon the subject. Of course, there is but one opinion, that if the poor devils of the Mexicans go to war with the United States, they will get a most terrible licking. From what I can collect, I am of the opinion that the United States, at present, were to attempt to conquer Mexico, or even to annex any considerable portion of its territory, they would cause great satisfaction in France; and in all probability, would have to encounter the decided hostility of the French government. A reference to M. Guizot’s very remarkable seeeches  on the Texan question will show France attaches very great importance to the preservation of Mexico as a separate union, and that, apart from that consideration, it would regard unfavorably any further aggrandizement of the United States. Mr. Polk, it is true, has declared that neither France nor England shall interfere in the affairs of the American continent; but, then, M. Guizot has also declared in the most formal manner, in the name of France that it will, in spite of Mr. Polk, interfere as often and in such a manner as it pleases in American affairs. I say again, then, that my opinion is that any seizure of Mexican territory by the United States government would be stoutly objected to by France; and, no doubt, also by England. It would be ludicrous in me to presume to advise American statesmen as to the course to adopt in the present posture of affairs; but I say to American journalists – wait! wait! wait! wait! and in a few years Mexico will be yours; but if you attempt to seize it now, or any portion of it, you will most likely have to count with England and France, and in that case you may depend upon it that England and France united will be too strong for you. [JCB]

[July 11, 1846]  Paris, June 15.  The Journal des Debats lately published a remarkable article on the state of affairs between Mexico and the United States. Our contemporary, says and English paper, asserts that Mr. Polk has only gone against Mexico to compensate for his defeat in Oregon, and to regain popularity. It thinks Mexico is totally unable to resist the United States, and that existing hostilities will result in dismemberment. It thinks that the states will endeavor to seize the Californias to make up for their being obliged to lose Oregon, and that the Californias are infinitely more valuable. It views all this with regret, but beyond a few sneers at Mr. Polk, for whom it appears to have cherished the most profound contempt, it says nothing offensive to the United States. It points out the necessity of France and England interfering in the matter, in order to bring about a reconciliation, and to protect Mexico. It alleges that France has interests at stake in Mexico which call promptly for such interference. [JCB]

NNR 70.210 June 6, 1846 the Nashville "Union" announces the design of government to take and to hold California

 “We understand, from a reliable source, that it is the intention of the Government to send a force to California sufficient to take possession of that country and hold on to it.” – Nashville Union. [JCB]

NNR 70.211 June 6, 1846 express riding to carry the news

Express Riding--Probably the most extraordinary equestrian feat of modern times, was accomplished the other day by Fred. Tyler, a youth of fifteen years of age who rode the express between Blakeley (opposite Mobile) and Montgomery, bringing the late new from the seat of war.  The distance one hundred and ninety miles, was accomplished in thirteen hours--and during the entire night; he caught and saddled his horses--none of which were in readiness, as he was not looked for by those having the horses in charge.--He was rewarded with a contribution purse of seventy dollars. [AEK]

NNR 70.212 June 6, 1846 difficulties in organizing volunteers

  THE ARMY OF VOLUNTEERS. The apprehension was expressed in a preceding number, that the government would find no little difficulty in arranging the several corps of volunteers – especially in relation to the requisition under which they were called out.

Our requisition came from General Taylor, in virtue of existing laws.  The most of the volunteers that have yet started for the seat of war, have gone under this requisition.

  Next we have a requisition made by Major General Gaines, for some eight or nine thousand men. Under this requisition the Kentucky volunteers paraded, and the Louisville Legion, nearly a thousand men have proceeded to New Orleans. We have it now stated from Washington, that General Gaines’ requisition will not be recognized by the government. What is to be done in this case?*

  And next we have the requisition made by the president upon the several states, for volunteers under the act passed by congress on the 11th ult.

  The term of service authorized by the last mentioned law, is six months. Under the other requisition, three months is the hunt.

  In a general order issued on the 18th of may, 1846, to Gen. Gaines, the secretary of war directs him to countermand his call for “the several regiments of mounted gun-men,” which were to rendezvous at Fort Jesup, as it would interfere with other arrangements. The order adds, “The volunteer force called into service from Louisiana, Alabama, &c., on your authority, and which you have previously reported, I am instructed to say, meets the approval of the department.” [JCB]

NNR 70.212 June 6, 1846 various detachments to proceed to Texas, Flying Artillery

Flying artillery.--Company H. Captain Swartwout, of the 2d. Reg. Of Artillery, stationed  at Fort Adams, New York R.I. received orders on the 28 thult. To proceed to N. York, from whence no doubt they will embark for the Rio Grande.  Newport papers speak highly of the company.

Company E. Capt. Merchants, has orders to proceed from Fort Trumbull, New London, to garrison Fort Adams. [AEK]

NNR 70.212 June 6, 1846 General Plan for Conducting the War with Mexico.

That the President of the United States has calculated upon the probability of a war occurring with Mexico, no one who read his annual message to Congress of December last, could doubt for a moment.--the tenor of that message sufficiently indicated his view to Congress on the subject, to prepare them fully for such a contingency. The President's political opponents indeed insist that he not only considered such an event to be probable, but that he took such measures and gave such orders as to inevitably produce that result, whether designedly or not.  The truth or falsity of this insinuation will in due time no doubt be ascertained; until then the executive is entitled to such a fair share of public confidence as is necessary to a successful conduct of the war, with a view to its speedy and successful termination.

So far as we can judge by the present spirit of the public journals, the question of the origin of the war, seems to be, by general consent, postponed,--as a family dispute which can be settled hereafter. We are at war, --and all hands--and all hearts, are required to use efforts to aid the government in making that war as brief as possible.  On this point all political parties speak and think alike.  To carry out this the representatives of every party in congress vote alike.  The government meets with no opposition to their call for either men or money to prosecute the war, any more than to their recommendation to "recognize the existence of the war," which we believe not one member in congress opposed, though some few votes dissented from the expression of opinion as to the provocation for war with which the declaration set out.  The war my be assumed as having been virtually, unanimously authorized by congress, and as now being as unanimously sustained by the people, so far at least as to enable the government to prosecute it with every energy, to a successful termination.

Thus armed and thus countenanced, the country cannot but look with deep solicitude to the government for an able conduct of the war. How much there is dependent upon this.

It was said above that the president must have at least contemplated the strong probability of a war with Mexico, and this implies of course, that he must have prepared some general, comprehensive plan, for carrying on the war and for achieving the object of which the war was commenced.

That no general plan has been arranged, should not be concluded from the fact that no publications of such plan has been made.  The government might not deem it good policy to announce their designs as to conducting the campaign. 

This may be true as to details, and as to some general views on foreign relations. The Executive is fairly entitled to have some state secrets, as well as secret service money.

But, allowing full latitude to these, there must be, or certainly should be, well arranged by the government, some general plan for conducting the war, some distinct outlines as to both means and ends, sufficient to satisfy people, jealous of both their honor and their interests, that their confidence is deserved, and that the sacrifices which they are called upon to make in the cause of their country, are entrusted to the management of competent authorities, and will be well improved.  The country is looking to the government with profound anxiety for the announcement of so much of their views as fairly come within the scope of these remarks. [AEK]

NNR 70.212 June 6, 1846 Brig. Gen. Wool to muster troops bordering Ohio and Mississippi rivers

Brigadier Gen. Wool, U.S.A., is said to be now on his way to the northwestern states bordering on Ohio and Mississippi rivers, having been commissioned by the president to muster the quota of troops required of those states into the service of the United States, and to expedite them to the scene of action on the Mexican frontier. [AEK]

NNR 70.213 June 6, 1846 letter about traders to Santa Fe departing Independence despite news of the war

 SANTA FE TRADE - Independence, Mo, May 16, 1846.  Since last May, the scene has entirely changed in our town.  Instead of great bustle of emigrants for Oregon or California, with their wagons crowding our streets, laying in their outfits for their journey across the plains, we have a great crowd of Mexicans and traders to Santa Fe and Chihuahua.  It is supposed that we have at least two hundred Mexicans in the town and vicinity, at this time. Messrs. Aguira and Skillman arrived here a few days since in advance of the main company, making the trip from Chihuahua in forty-six days.  The present week several companies have arrived, among them Peo Semirane, Jose Gonzales, and Louis Yaulwager Mexicans, who are on their way to purchase goods.  They came in the early part of the week: also, James Magoffin, with others from Chihuahua, have also reached here.  These various companies have brought in an immense quanitity of specie, amounting to about three hundred and fifty thousand dollars.  These Mexicans had to make forced marches between Chihuahua and Santa Fe, owing to the hostilities of the Indians, who pursued them for the purpose of robbing them, and were much pressed.

  About forty wagons have left for Santa Fe and Chihuahua this week; and others are preparing to leave shortly. The late war news from Mexico does not seem to intimidate the traders. They are determined to push ahead, let what will turn up. They feel very sanguine of success in their enterprise, and say they believe they will not be molested, as the northern States of Mexico are in favor of the trade being kept open at all hazard. What will be the result, time only can determine. It is believed by many, that the trade will greatly increase in consequesnce of the ports of the gulf and Pacific being closed by our vessles, and thus having this only point through which they can safely receive goods. We trust that such may be the result of a war which cannot be sanguinary. St: Louis Republican [JCB]

NNR 70.214 June 6, 1846 Incidents of the Campaign.

Latest from the Army.  No official accounts have reached the public from the army on the Rio Grande, since our last.  The arrival at New Orleans on the 28th ult., of the statesmanship Telegraph, in twenty-six hours, from Point Isabel, via Galveston, furnishes the latest intelligence.

Barita, was taken without opposition, on the 17th, by Col. Wilson, with a detachment or 300 regulars and 350 volunteers, this was the first post occupied by the Americans on the south side of the Rio Grande.

Matamoros, Taken.  An express arrived on the night of the 19th, from General Taylor, announcing that he had crossed the Rio Grande and taken the city of Matamoros, without opposition.  The Mexicans had fled the city.  Their army were deserting in battalions.  They were in a state of starvation, having been suddenly  collected, without sufficiency of provisions.

Part of two U.S. regiments having arrived, were stationed at Brassos Point, waiting Gen. Taylor's orders to march for Matamoros.

The steamer Sea reached Isabel on the 10th, filled with volunteers.  The Alabama left same day for New Orleans.

The Mexican army certainly behaved bravely, ad were ably commanded during the battles of the 8th and 9th of May. Disciplined bererans have seldom acquitted themselves better, under similar circumstances, even including Napoleon's forces at Waterloo.

Capt. Auld thinks the whole number of our killed and wounded must amount to more than 300; besides the wounded taken to St. Joseph's, there are now forty at Point Isabel too badly wounded to be removed.  All but three, it is tough, will recover.

There are three Mexican prisoners having but one leg between them all.

The wounded at Point Isabel, were doing well.

After being shot in the arm, Col. McIntosh received a bayonet wound in the mouth which passed through one side of his head. There are hopes of his recovery.

The condition of the brave and esteemed Captain Page is melancholy indeed.  The whole of hi lower jaw, with part of his tongue and palate, was shot away by a grape shot.  He, however, survives through entirely incapable of speech.  He communicates this thoughts by writing on a slate, and receives the necessary nutriment for the support of life, with much difficulty.  He does not desire to live, but converses with cheerfulness and exultation upon the success of our army.

Captain Thornton's escape, at the time his company was so badly cut up, is almost incredible.  After carrying him safely over a high hedge enclosure, into which he had been decoyed, his horse bore him safely over several other fences and deep ravines, swimming the Rio Grande, above Matamoros; then passing down below the town on the opposite side.--in attempting to leap a broad ditch he missed hi footing, when both horse and rider were thrown.--By the fall, Capt. T. was so stunned that he was soon after taken up by the Mexicans, perfectly unconscious of what had happened.  After the battle of the 9 thhe was exchanged and restored to our army. [AEK]

NNR 70.214 June 6, 1846 expedition against Santa Fe planned

  MOVEMENT AGAINST SANTA FE. It was a matter of course, if war with Mexico occurred, that our government would immediately take measures for securing Santa Fe.

  An extract of a letter written by a U.S. senator, “in confidence of the government,” on the day after war was recognized by congress, to Col. R. Campbell, and to the governor of Missouri, is published in the St. Louis Republican of the 22nd of May, which says –

  “Our first care in this sudden change in our relations with that country was to try and take care of our Santa Fe trade.  For this purpose, it will be proposed to the people of New Mexico, Chihuahua, and the other internal provinces, that they remain quiet and continue trading with us as usual, upon which condition they shall be protected in all their rights and treated as friends. To give effect to this proposition and to make sure of protection to the persons and property of our traders, (besides the proclamation of the president to that effect,) Col. Kearney will start immediately with three hundred dragoons; to be followed as quick as possible by one thousand mounted volunteers from Missouri, and with authority to engage the services, if necessary, of all the Americans in that part of the world. This military movement will be to make sure of the main object, to wit:  peace and trade, to be secured peaceably if possible, forcibly if necessary. For, unless they accept these conditions, the country will have to be taken possession of as a conquest. This, however, we hope will not be necessary, as it will be so obvious to the interest of the inhabitants of that part of Mexico, (too far off from the central government to have any effect in general hostilities,) to enjoy the benefits of peace and trade, with the full protection of all their rights of person, and religion.

  This letter caused a great deal of excitement in St. Louis. A book was opened for the enrollment of names of persons desirous of entering upon an expedition to Santa Fe.  The Republican says that a gentleman – understood to be the bearer of important dispatches from the government to the governor of Missouri and Col. Kearney – arrived at St. Louis on Thursday, and would proceed on his route as fast as steam could carry him. No doubt seemed to be entertained that the statement contained in the letter was true, and that a requisition on Missouri for one thousand mounted volunteers would be speedily made. The requisition, it is said, can be filled immediately. [JCB]

NNR 70.214-215June 6, 1846

  COMMANDER OF THE AMERICAN ARMY Major General Scott. From announcements which made their appearance in the official journal at Washington, as well as elsewhere, it was understood that General Scott, who, next to the president, is commander in chief of the army of the United States so soon as sufficient forces were concentrated upon the frontier, for an effectual invasion of Mexico, was to proceed to the field and assume command. The Union of the 16th ult., for instance, the following article, under the head of

  “Military arrangements. During the week the first active preparations have been made to give effect to the measures of congress for a vigorous prosecution of war with Mexico. We do not doubt that large discretion given to the president, will be felt to be in safe hands. While the public may rest assured that the utmost care will be used to control the economy, and to secure a force competent to the protection of the national honor, and to a speedy termination of the war, we do not apprehend that the authorized number of troops will be immediately mustered into service.

  “True economy and a due regard to the high national interests, however, make it indispensable that a force shall be at once put into active service extraordinary for us in point of numbers, as large that officers of the highest rank will of necessity be in command. From the mixed character of the corps – partly of regular troops and more largely of volunteers – it seems natural that the general chief of the army should take the field – and we assume that Gen, Scott will, as a matter of courage to assume command.”

  The foregoing article, and others of like idea rendered it certain that the president, at that designed that Gen. Scott should have command of the army intended for the invasion of Mexico.

  Subsequent publications have led the public to apprehend that the views of the president in this aspect have changed.  The official journal for two weeks past remained silent on the subject while papers out of Washington, however, have not presented silence. It is feared that an unpleasant difficulty is experienced.

  The Philadelphia North American, of the 26th has an article on the subject which assesses “There is serious reason to believe an effort is being made by the administration to supercede Gen. Scott in the command of the southeastern army!!!  In order to present the case fairly, it is necessary to refer to the circumstances which brought about his selection to this post. After the first indications of his return from the frontier, Gen. Scott was called in for council as to military operations. It was then presented to him by the president and secretary of war to proceed to the Rio grande and take command of those forces – in plain terms, they desired to displace Gen. Taylor.  With all the true instincts of a commander and the noble qualities of a man, Gen. Scott respectfully requested to be relieved from such duty. He stated that Gen. Taylor was his personal friend – they had served on the field of battle together – he had always shown himself superior to every emergency in which he had been placed, and was a brave and gallant officer, and would come out victoriously. Afer this urgent remonstrance, at various interviews, the subject was renewed, and it was then submitted whether he would accept the command of forces ordered by congress. To this he readily assented, alleging that General Taylor would then have no proper ground for exception, inasmuch as his higher rank would entitle him to the position, and could not be regarded as any disparagement to Gen. Taylor. When this understanding had been perfected, the president at once entered into what was presumed to be very confidential intercourse with Gen. Scott, and they were closeted nearly two days without interruption of any sort, in arranging the requisitions upon the states, and other details.

  It was well  known with what a cordial and universal response the selection of Gen. Scott was received all over the Union, and by men of all parties. – The echo found its way back to Washington, and fell upon the ears of some high office, in anything, but grateful notes. I shall not say how much or how little the prospect of a future, beyond the successful termination of this Mexican war, may have influenced those in power in the course of conduct which has been manifested towards Gen. Scott since this acclimation was heard; but I know, and proclaim it, that the president and his advisers have acted with  marked coolness, and in a manner utterly at variance with their recent profession. Whether this be the result of cause and effect, is left to others to judge.

  During all these consultations and councils, no order of any sort was issued to Gen. Scott. The president expressed his desire he should take command of the army, when it was mustered into service, and General Scott made but one stipulation, viz., that in the event of war with England, he should be permitted to return from the frontier, to the more honorable command, which was granted.

  Thus stood matters until about nine days ago. – Gen. Scott was all the while pushing forward his arrangements, and was devoting night and day to the organization of troops. Then, much to his surprise, the president, and the secretary of war, and others connected with the administration on different occasions, renewed the suggestion, that he ought to go to the seat of war. He replied as before – Gen. Taylor had accomplished as much as any officer could do, under the circumstances – had proven himself in every way capable of coping with the enemy, and deserved whatever laurels were to be won from the campaign on the Rio Grande. Still it was pressed upon his attention, so as to become disagreeable. – About this time, (a week ago,) it became necessary to frame a bill systematizing the details of that granting the supplies. This was confided to General Scott, and was laid before the military committee of the senate in his handwriting. It was done with the knowledge and consent, and I believe at the request of the war department.

  The military committee of the senate met, and Mr. Marcy, the secretary of war, appeared in person before them – a proceeding altogether unusual. Several members being absent, a section was introduced without any conference with General Scott, which appears as the very first in the bill reported on Tuesday morning last by Col. Benton. It is as follows:

  Be it enacted by the senate and house of representatives of the United States of America in congress assembled, that the president of the United States be, and he hereby is authorized to appoint, by and with the advice and consent of senate, two major generals, and four brigadier-generals, in addition to the present military establishment.

  Within the last few days Gen. Scott being still without orders, the subject not being resumed, and this bill, itself singularly expressive, being before congress – he addressed a letter to the president, stating at length his reasons fr declining the appointment to supercede Gen. Taylor, and why he could, without any reflection upon that gallant officer, assume command of the whole force to be called out. No reply has been given, as yet, and it is now a matter of much doubt if he will be ordered.”

  The N.Y. Express intimates that a sharp correspondence has taken place between Gen. Scott and the administration, which will shortly be published.

That general Scott might not be acceptable commander to southern volunteers, we can readily imagine. Without pretending to decide whether he deserved the imputation, certain it is he was accused, of having more regard to his own perogative of command than to the true interests of his country, in giving his orders to General Clinch, durning his, General Scott’s, first campaign in Florida, not to move from the spot they were at, not to “give any aid to the interloper,” as he is said to have designated General Gaines, who was at the moment, at the head of a corps, in very much such a predicament – nay, a worse one than was General Taylor recently on the Rio Grande. Gen. Clinch’s forces, if allowed to move, might have relieved them promptly. They proposed to do so – Gen. Scott’s orders forbid them.  The men under Gaines were literally in a state of starvation when subsequently relieved by Gen. Clinch.

These and similar incidents, with which southern volunteers are familiar, growing out of Gen. Scott’s unfortunate Florida campaigns, would prevent his being popular commander of volunteers from that section of the Union.  The expression used by him in making his official call upon the government for adequate forces wherewith to commence his second campaign against the Seminoles, with a prospect of better success, has not been forgotten by the ardent spirits that at that time rushed spontaneously to the field, as thousands are now doing, and served their country as devotedly as men ever did:  Gen. Scott told the government upon that occasion, that it would require such and so many troops for the ensuing campaign – “good troops – not volunteers.”

The insinuation, the reflection, contained in this official expression from the commander-in-chief, under whose orders these volunteers had so faithfully served, was keenly felt and will never be forgotten. If commanders induge preferences as to the forces they require to fight with, volunteers will be apt to choose as to who they will volunteer under.

It is an assembly of mainly ‘volunteers” that is now assembling on the frontier.

Yesterday, 5th inst., in the United States senate, we find a warm debate occurred, relative to Gen. Gaines, and the above topic was introduced, and a call was made upon the president for all the correspondence of both generals. [JCB]

NNR 70.215 June 6, 1846 Capt. Thornton's arrest

Capt. Thornton.  We learn that this officer was put under arrest immediately after his exchange, by order of Gen. Taylor. The cause of this proceeding our informant was not at liberty to state, but mentioned that it was on complaint preferred by his officers.  There is a possibility, it is said, that Capt. Thornton may not be brought to trial at all inasmuch as he would be entitled to demand his release and return to duty on the firing of the first gun by the Mexicans. [AEK]

NNR 70.215-217further details of the battles on the Rio Grande

  THE BATTLES OF THE RIO GRANDE.  A letter from an officer who was in both the battles, writes to Gen. Towson, from Fort Polk, Point Isabel, May 16th, the following account of them, which we extract from the Union, of the 30th ult.

  “General Taylor having received information from the fort, on the morning of the 5th of May, that it was doing well, and the enemies shells not doing much execution, concluded  to wait at this place with his army for a few days, and on the morning of the 6th, placed his whole force on the trenches of this work, and by united efforts of officers and men, added greatly to its strength in the course of twenty-four hours. About 3 o’clock on the 7th of May, General Taylor having completed all of his arrangements, moved forward with his army and supplies, to resume his former position opposite Matamoros, determined and prepared to push his way through – (I must here state that it was my good luck to receive orders to join the army on this march, and to be present at the two succeeding engagements.) – His artillery consisted of two 18 pounders on siege carriages, intended to strengthen the fort, and Major Ringgold’s and Capt. Duncan’s light artillery batteries. The cavalry numbered two hundred sabers, divided into two squadrons, and the infantry numbered about 1800 bayonets, composed of the 3rd, 4th, 5th, and 8th regiments, with a battalion of artillery acting on foot.

  At 12 o’clock on the 8th, the scouts reported the appearance of the enemy. Line of battle was immediately formed, and the supply train (consisting of 250 wagons) closed upon the troops. The army then advanced in this order about a mile, when the troops found an abundant supply of water. From this position the enemy was seen drawn up in the form of a crescent, with his left resting on the road leading to the fort. As soon as the two armies had approached within half a mile of each other, the Mexicans opened their batteries. Our battalion was thrown back so as to look to the left flank, which was menaced by the enemies cavalry.

  General Taylor advanced in person with the two 18 pounders, and directed them to be placed in battery as soon as he was told that the range was good. When the fight commenced, Ringgold’s and Duncan’s batteries moved rapidly forward some eighty or ninety yards, and returned the fire of the enemy’s artillery. The two 18 pounders were diected against the cavalry on the left flank of the enemy’s line. – This cavalry, accompanied by two pieces of artillery, soon made a movement to turn our right or to attack the train.  As soon as this was observed, the 5th infantry was advanced to the front and the right, and formed square against cavalry perceiving the square advanced at a charge sufficiently near to discharge their escopettes, but without doing much damage – The fire was immediately answered by one face of the square, which emptied some dozen saddles.  The head of the cavalry column then withdrew, and continued its movement towards our rear.  The 3rd infantry was then placed so as to cover the train, and two pieces of Ringgold’s batteries disposed on the left of the 5th. These movements were executed with great promptitude and effect. The cavalry seeing the 3rd infantry covering the train, began a retrograde movement, and at the same moment the two pieces of Ringgold’s battery under Lieut. Ridgely opened a brisk fire on the column and the two pieces of artillery that accompanied it before they could be unlimbered.  This fire was so galling to the cavalry as to compel them to retire with the utmost precipitation. During these movements Duncan’s battery had done the enemy’s lines great damage.

  The battle commenced at 3 o’clock, P.M., and after continuing for one hour and a half, the smoke from the cannon and burning prairie (between the two armies) became so dense that the artillery fire gradually ceased on both sides, and there was an intermission of three-quarters of an hour. The 5th infantry was then moved forward to the point abandoned by the enemies cavalry. The two 18 pounders were also advanced along the road – the artillery battalion on Ringgold’s left, and Duncan threw himself on the enemy’s right, supported by the 8th infantry. The battle was renewed, and the firing continued until dark, when out train being ordered to the rear of our new front, we all bivouacked for the night around the spot occupied by the 18 pounders. On the morning of the 9th, Gen. Taylor determined to disembarrass himself of his train; and with this view, it was placed in a good position, guarded by the teamsters, the two 18 pounders, and two 12 ponders, (that happened to be in the wagons for the defense of the fort,) with such field-works as could be immediately constructed. The army then moved forward over the ground occupied by the enemy the day before, and for the first time got an idea of the great havoc and distruction that had been done. – 150 of the enemy  had been buried the night before, and upwards of 100 were lying dead on the field. – Most of the wounded had been carried off, but enough remained to tell the dreadful havoc that had been produced in their ranks. They acknowledge their forces to have been upwards of 7,000, and their loss in killed and wounded 500. The loss sustained by our army was 46 killed and wounded; among the latter three officers, one of whom, Major Ringgold, has since died.

  General Taylor had not advanced far before he was informed that the light troops had discovered the enemy, occupying a strong position three miles this side the fort, and prepared to receive him.

  This accompanying sketch represents the position of the enemy as near as could be ascertained. The artillery and infantry of the line were posted as indicated, and their light troops filled the woods up to line A B. General Taylor threw forward one hundred as skirmishers, who engaged those of the enemy and drove them back. Ridgely’s battery pushed along the road until it gained the point C, when it opened upon the guns of the enemy. The 5th, 3rd, 4th, and 8th regiments of infantry were put into the brush on each side of the road, extended as light infantry. Captain May was then ordered to charge the three guns pointed down the road with his squadron of dragoons, which was done in gallant style, and the men driven from their pieces.  The 5th infantry followed up the charge and took possession of the guns.  General La Vega surrendered his sword to Captain May. Duncan’s and Ridgely’s batteries rushed forward, gained the center of the enemy’s position, and directed a terrible fire on the flanks of his broken lines, while the 8th and 5th attacked him from the front; the Mexicans gave way and all the rest was rout. In this battle the slaughter on the part of the Mexicans was immense – between one and two hundred were made prisoners among them twenty officers, eight pieces of cannon, a number of standards, ten or twelve wagon loads of ammunition and arms, 500 pack mules, besides a large quantity of camp equipage, &c., were also captured. General Arista’s private baggage, portfolio, with all his instructions from Toruel, the secretary of war, and a great deal of useful information was also got possession of.  Among the latter was a map of the country showing the dispositions of his army since it crossed the river, a copy of which I send you.

  After detailing the casualties, already mentioned in former accounts; the letter proceeds –

  The rout was followed up by Duncan’s and Ridgely’s batteries, and Captain Ker’s squadron of dragoons, moving at a rapid pace on the road taken by the enemy. The infantry also followed in close pursuit. The second day after the battle an exchange of prisoners was made, and the dragoons previously captured by the Mexicans joined our ranks.

  The cannonading and the bombardment of the fort were kept up by the Mexicans until the evening of the 9th.  They established one mortar battery on this side of the river, and arranged their others so as to bombard the fort from three quarters of a circle. Astonishing to relate that, although 1,500 shells and 3,000 round shot were thrown at the fort during the siege, only three were killed. Among them the gallant Major Brown, its commanding officer. He was struck in the leg by a shell, mortification took place, and he dies while hearing the guns of our second battle. It is the intention of this regiment, the 7th infantry, to gather the shot and shells thrown into the fort, and from them to erect a monument to his memory. This can be easily done, as all their projectiles are copper.

  The following account is from the pen of an officer who bore his share in the duties and dangers of scenes he so graphically describes:

  Camp opposite Matamoros, May 13, 1846. On the 1st of May he army under Gen. Taylor took up its line of march at three o’clock, P.M., for Point Isabel, thirty miles distant, in order to force up from that point provisions, which were necessary to the maintenance of our fort here. To defend it in our absence Gen. Taylor left the 7th regiment of infantry, Bragg’s battery of four six pounders, Capt. Lowd’s battery of four eighteen pounders and some convalescents as garrison – the whole under he command of Major Brown of the army. We had heard of the crossing of six or seven thousand of the enemy to oppose our march to our depot, and expected to fight them going down – but did not meet them.  On the 2nd instant, in the afternoon, we reached Point Isabel, and on the 2d heard the bombardment of our fort at this place. This bombardment continued at intervals for several days. In the meantime, Gen. Taylor – having learned by express from Major Brown that he could hold the fort – put his whole command to work in the entranchmants at Point Isabel, the basis of our operations, and having made it sufficiently strong and loaded about three hundred wagons with provisions and ammunition, he determined to proceed at once to the relief of our gallant little band in this fort, and to give battle to the enemy if necessary. He commenced his march at 2 o’clock, P.M., on the 7th instant, in the following order:  A squadron of dragoons, commanded by Captain May, in front; the third brigade, composed of 3rd and 4th regiments of infantry and Ringgold’s light artillery; the 5th infantry not brigaded, and the first brigade, composed of the artillery battalion serving as infantry; Duncan’s light artillery and the 8th regiment of infantry – to which must be added two eighteen pounders drawn by oxen, and Capt. Kerr’s squadron of dragoons protecting the rear – the wagons on the march being in a degree interspersed between the brigades for greater security.

  On the night of the 7th we encamped about twelve miles from Point Isabel, without seeing the enemy.  On the 8th we had advanced about five miles, when we descried the enemy some two miles distant, drawn up in great force on the open prairie, and occupying the crest of a gentle slope with their backs to the thick bushes, - called in this country “chaparral.”

  We immediately formed line to the front, and advanced calmly and quietly to the attack. Our brave and considerate old general, finding that the enemy waited to receive us, and that we were passing near a lake of water, the day being very hot and the men thirsty, halted in full view of the adversary and directed the men to fill their canteens with water. – We had now a little leisure to examine the force of the enemy and its composition. The horizon in our front and to the right appeared lined with cavalry. – (Lancers and Dragoons.)  The works in their rear were giving p column after column of infantry, which were manoevered with great regularity, and batteries of artillery were abserved taking their designated places in our front and on our flanks. – The lowest estimate, at the time, of the enemy’s force was 5,000 of all arms – our own being under 2,000 fighting men. We have since learned that on this occasion the enemy had over 6,000 fighting men. But the greatest difficulty, under which we labored, was the absolute necessity of protecting in an open prairie, from the enemy’s numerous cavalry, our enormous train of provisions and ammunition, without which, even if we gained a victory, we could not hope to relieve our garrison opposite Matamoros or maintain our position there. Besides we were miserably deficient as to the number of our cavalry, having only some 200 dragoons, while the enemy could not have had less than 1,800 or 2,000. The men being refreshed our general rode to each brigade, told the men to keep cool, and when the enemy charged, not to fire a shot until they were repulsed with the bayonet, and had turned their backs in fight.

  Our advance the recommenced slowly, but firmly, wagons and all; and when we arrived within good artillery range, their batteries opened upon us, some of their balls bouncing along the plain and passing us in “ricochet;” others flying over our heads, and falling in the rear, showing us in a few moments that their pieces were served with skill and precision. A movement was now observed among the enemy’s cavalry as if about to charge, and the regiments nearest them were thrown into square, or formation preparatory to the square, and so disposed as to protect our own artillery whenever it was ordered to fire.  During this time, some fifteen minutes, the enemy’s fire was received in perfect silence by us, and at length, Capt. Duncan having been ordered to open upon them, advanced in a position to be protected by the infantry from the assault of the enemy’s cavalry, and one which would enable him at the same time to gall their cavalry and masses of infantry, sent a withering fire among them, which created some confusion, and which was answered by our squares of infantry by one long simultaneous shout, which showed how anxious they were to be led to the charge at once – but this could not be. – They were destined to give the strongest evidence of the courage that a soldier can exhibit, to stand in squares four hours under the enemy’s artillery, so as to protect from the enemy’s cavalry our own artillery, whilst the latter was mowing down the enemy’s ranks. As soon as Duncan opened, Major Ringgold’s thunder was heard on the right, lieut. Churchill’s from the 18 pounders in the center, and all the enemy’s batteries opening at the same time, a tremendous cannonading ensued, which, on this plain of almost boundless extent, presented a spectacle of great magnificence. The battle commenced at 10 minutes past 2, P.M. It lasted about an hour, when a large body of the enemy’s red Lancers charged the 5th infantry, with a view of cutting off our wagon train. They were met with the most perfect tranquility, and a discharge of musketry from the 5th (Gen. Brook’s) regiment told us their fate. They fled precipitately, leaving men, horses, and guidons on the field. In the mean time, the whole order of battle had been changed to conform to the maneuvers of the enemy, and our brigade, the 1st, which was the left, now found itself in advance and on the right – the artillery battalion being on the extreme right and the most in advance. It must be observed also that in these different changes our general was always slowly but steadfastly gaining ground to the front, and the enemy gradually falling back. The enemy’s fire having slackened, and then ceased, General Taylor, from his new and more advanced position, ordered all his batteries to open, and in his turn attacked the enemy with such fury as to cause evident destruction in his ranks; but still they remained firm. By a charge on them the might have been routed entirely, but then we must have exposed our wagons to be captured by their cavalry, and that could not be thought of.

  The battle now lasted from 10 minutes past 2 P.M. to about 7 P.M. At this moment the enemy was discovered coming down with his left flank in great force of cavalry and indantry, on the artillery battalion and the 18 pounders which that battalion supported. The 18 pounders were served by thirty men, and the artillery battalion was about 360 strong. Both the batteries and this battalion were in such a position that they could not be supported by the other portion of the army, and at the time the charge commenced the battalion had deployed into line. – However, it was thrown into square by a prompt maneuver, and awaited steadily the Mexican charge. On they came, “horse, foot, and dragoons,” shouting and yelling, when a single horseman rode into the square, and said, “Men, I place myself in your square.”  The general was immediately recognized by the men, who gave him three cheers for this evidence of his confidence. At this moment Lieut. Churchill discharged one of his 18 pounders, loaded with grape into the advancing ranks, creating great havoc, but not checking entirely their onward movement. They marched forward to within good musket range, some 150 yards of us, halted and delivered their fire, which our men received quietly at a shoulder. Finding that they would come no nearer, Col. Childs, commanding his battalion, ordered the volley, which was given as in parade, when the enemy immediately retired, and the action ended for the night. Our army slept on their arms precisely as night found them, and occupied the position in which the enemy commenced the battle. The two armies slept quietly almost in presence of each other. The night was serene and beautiful, the moon casting the softest light on everything around us, and, but for the groans of the wounded and the screams of those who were suffering under the knife of the surgeons, no one could have imagined the scenes which had occurred but a few hours previously.

  On our side we had fifty five killed and wounded.  The gallant Major Ringgold was mortally wounded, and his noble steed killed by the same shot, as he was giving his last fire for the night, and after having distinguished himself by the coolness, precision, and effect with which he managed his battery.  Captain John Page, of the 4th infantry, was horribly wounded, supposed to be mortally. Many officers had horses shot under them – Capt. Bliss, Lieut, Daniels, Capt. Montgomery, and several others.

  Many dragoon horses were also killed, and the escapes were almost incredible. In Magruder’s company two men, whilst at an order, had the bayonets of their muskets cut off by cannon balls, passing just over their shoulders and between their heads. He had also a man killed on his immediate right and left.  Some of the balls fell into the centers of the squares, and ricocheted out again, without touching any one. Others fell just on the outside and bounced over. – To stand patiently and coolly, in square, under such fire for five hours, without firing a shot, is the best evidence of discipline and invincible courage that troops can give. But more: - the effect of this conduct, which none but regulars could have shown, must be considered. The next morning the enemy retreated, leaving the field strewed with their dead, and having lost, by their own confession, five hundred killed and wounded; but we have found out since that the loss was much greater. The enemy’s artillery was numerous and served with great rapidity and precision; while we had little cavalry, and they had an immense proportion of that arm. Hence our shell and grape shot told briskly among them. In short, we gained on that day a great victory. When we consider the enemy’s numbers, his numerous and effective regular cavalry, and well-drilled infantry and artillery, and above all that he had chosen his own ground, that upon which he is most accustomed to fight, - the plain, - and compare all this with our inferiority in all arms, and that we were encumbered by a train we could not afford to lose, we can only account for the result by the impression made on the enemy by our firm and unshaken advance; by the steadiness with which we repulsed their cavalry, and by the unrivalled skill of our artillery officers and man – to which must be added a perfect knowledge on the part of both men and officers that if we lost that battle the fort at Matamoros would fall, the army be destroyed, and our depot – Point Isabel – be taken, to the eternal disgrace of the American army and the ruin of the interests of our government, for some time, at least, in this part of the world. We could not afford to be driven back a single inch, and we were prepared for anything but retreat.

  On the morning of the 9th, the Mexican army left the field at early dawn, and after arranging our train, we commenced the march towards our fort at this place. At 2 o’clock, P.M., we found the enemy drawn up in great force, occupying a ravine, which our road crossed, with thick “chaparral” or thorny bushes on either side before it reached the ravine, and a pond of water on either side, where it crossed the ravine, constituting a defile. They were 7,000 strong, we 54 weaker than the previous day.  The general ordered an immediate attack, by all the troops except the first brigade, which was kept in reserve, and soon the rattling fire of musketry, mingled with the heavy sound of artillery, announced the commencement of action. The enemy had chosen his position which he considered impregnable – was vastly superior to us in numbers, and had ten pieces of artillery, planted in the defile, which swept the road with grape, and which it was absolutely necessary for us to take before he could be beaten. These pieces were flanked on either side by a regiment of brave veteran troops, from Tampico, and we were obliged to stand as awful shower of grape and bullet before a charge could reach them. The battle had lasted some two hours with great fury on both sides and many heroic deeds had been done, but no serious impression made, when Gen. Taylor sent for Capt. May, of the 2nd dragoons, and told him he must take that battery with his squadronof dragoons, if he lost every man. May instantly placed himself at the head of his men, and setting off at full speed, with cheers and shouts, dashed into the defile, where he was greeted with an overwhelming discharge of grape and bullets, which nearly annihilated his first and second platoons, but he was seen unhurt darting like lightening, through this murderous hail storm, and in a second, he and his men drove away or cut to pieces the artillerists.

  The speed of his horses was so great, however, that they passed through the battery, and were halted in its rear. There turning, he charged back, and was just in time to rescue a Mexican general officer who would not leave his guns, and who was parrying the strokes of one of the men. He handed his sword to May, announced himself as General Vega, and gave his parole.  May turned him over to an officer, and galloping back to General Taylor, reported that he had captured the enemy’s battery, and the gallant Gen. Vega, bravely defending it, whose sword he had the honor to present to his commanding officer. The general was extremely gratified, and felt no doubt that a blow had been given, from which it would be difficult for the enemy to recover – and so it proved, for a portion of the fifth infantry, finding the enemy had immediately re-occupied and commenced serving their pieces, gallantly charged and brought off several; when the 8th, which had just come up, marched to the attack by its gallant commander, Col, Belknap, seconded nobly by Capt. Montgomery, and took off the remaining pieces. – Col. Belknap, leading his regiment into the thickest of the fight, seized a Mexican standard, and waiving it over his head, dashed on in front of his men, until his horse stumbled over some dead bodies and threw him. Being a heavy man, he was helped on his horse by a soldier, who in the act received a ball through his lungs, and at the same moment, a shot carried away the Mexican flag, leaving but the handle with the colonel. He dashed ahead with that, however, and his regiment carried every thing before it. At this moment, the Mexicans gave way entirely, and throwing down their arms, fled in every direction, leaving all their stores, munitions of war, arms, standards, &c. the killed, wounded, and prisoners, including among the killed those who were drowned in the Rio Grande, do not fall short of 1,500 – so that the enemy’s loss in two days amounts to at least 2,000 men, something more than the number we had in our army.

  When Lieutenant Magruder introduced General Vega to General Taylor, the latter expressed his deep regret that such a misfortune should have happened to an officer whose character he so highly esteemed, and returned to him his sword which he had won so bravely. It is said also that the general gave the captive officer an order on his private banker for a large sum, for his use when he arrived in the United States.

  Immediately after the victory, a regiment marched into this fort, and was received with cheers and open arms. All had done their duty – those who were left to defend our fort – those who marched to relief.  I had nearly forgot to mention that no officer in the battle of the 9th was more distinguished than Lieutenant Randolph Ridgely. His conduct drew praises from the lips of every officer; but I shall never finish if I record the feats of personal valor which occurred in this battle, where officers and men fought hand to hand for hours with the Mexicans. I shall therefore conclude with the hope that in a few days we shall be in Matamoros. [JCB]

NNR 70.217Mexican account of incidents on the Rio Grande

  MEXICAN ACCOUNT OF EVENTS ON THE RIO GRANDE FROM MAY 1ST TO 3RD INCLUSIVE. We have been favored, says the New York Journal of Commerce with the following translation of an article in the Matamoros Eagle of the North, of May 4th, giving an account of what it calls the “retreat of general Taylor” to Point Isabel on the 1st inst., and the subsequent cannonading between the forts of Matamoros and the American encampment opposite. Read in connexion with the events which have since occurred, and with the well known fact that only one man, (a sergeant,) was killed in the American fort on the 3rd and 4th, and only three up to the date of the last accounts, (14th instant,) nothing can be more ridiculous, - unless it be the reports of the same affair which reached this country, representing that 700 Mexicans were killed, their batteries silenced, town burnt, &c. The Eagle limits the death of one sergeant and two artillerymen on the Mexican side during the cannonading of the 3rd, which is two more than were killed in the American fort.  On the whole, the firing on both sides appears to have been nearly harmless. We should like to see what the eagle will say of the actions of the 8th and 9th. Perhaps by this time it has found out that Gen. Taylor is not so great a coward as it supposed him to be. [JCB]

NNR 70.217-218 June 6, 1846 bombardment of Fort Brown

THE BOMBARDMENT OF FORT BROWN. – The New Orleans Picayune says:

  “We have nowhere else seen so circumstantial and interesting an account of the bombardment of the camp opposite Matamoros as is contained in the following letter. It is due the author to state that it was written exclusively for the gratification of “a select few” of his friends – not for the public eye.

  Camp opposite Matamoros, May 13, 1846.  Since the evening of the 9th, nothing has transpired here. You may know ere this, that we gave the Mexicans “jesse” on the 8th and 9th.  General Taylor, after establishing his little sand fort here, right opposite the town left the 7th infantry and two artillery companies in it, with instructions to defend it to the death; he then left with the remainder of his force for brazos Santiago for supplies, and with the hope that the two mortars (which he had ordered six months ago) had arrived from Washington, and also to bring up ammunition enough for our four 18 pounders to batter down Matamoros. – General T. and command left on the 1st of this month. On the morning of the 3rd, at daylight, the Mexicans opened their batteries on our fort, or rather our grand entrenchments; from that moment it was right hot work until 12 o’clock, when both parties had to cease until their guns would cool. Were you ever shot at, in front, with a 12 pounder, in the flank with a 6 pounder, and a shell directed to burst over your head?  If not, try it, just to properly enjoy a brandy toddy after the gun cooling begins. Well, after the refreshments the ball continued, varied only by a little more “vindictate looseness,” and wild-colt comet like flying shells.  It was only 23 minutes after we commenced our fire before one of our 18 pound shot struck their twelve pound cannon directly in the muzzle, and knocked it, head back and stomach into the air about 20 feet, and it was accompanied by legs, hands and arms.

  Seven Mexican officers were wounded, and eight privates who were round their pieces were killed. We have not heard from their 12 pounder since, and so hot was the little fort in which it had been placed, that they were compelled to abandon it. When the first fire came, I rushed into my tent and jerked up my rifle, and as I stepped out, a 9 pound shot struck my tent at the head of my bed, ranged the whole length of my bed, cut off the back upright pole, passed out the back part through the two other tents, and then buried itself in the parapet. I’m glad I was not “caught napping.”

  In the first half hour a sergeant of Captain Lee’s company was killed; he was carried over to the hospital tent (full of sick) and directly after was laid on a bed, a bomb shell was thrown through the top of the tent, lit near the bed, burst and blew the dead man’s head off without injury to anyone else. On Wednesday, 6th of May, and the 3rd day of the bombardment, Major brown was struck on the leg with a bomb shell, and his leg had to be amputated – he diesd on the 9th. These are the only two we have lost during the bombardment, which commenced on Sunday, the 3rd, and lasted, with little intermission, day and night, until the next Saturday at dark. – During this time the enemy had thrown about 3,500 shots – solid and shell – amongst us. It is incredible that the damage should have been so light. Finding we could not dismount their mortars – they being sunk into the ground, with thick embankments in front – and having only about 400 rounds of ammunition to our cannon, we went to work to throw up a kind of temporary bomb proof shelter, by taking our barrels of pork, laying sticks of wood across them, and throwing up six feet of earth upon that. These we built at points in the fort where they would be convenient for the men; and when we saw the smoke from their guns, everyone would fall from the parapet, and “hole.”  When we would see a shell coming we would fall upon the ground, as the explosion takes place upwards. The Mexicans thought they thought they had killed nearly all of us, as they were under the impression that all who fell were shot.

  It was very distressing to stand and be fired at all round and not be able to return it ‘in full force and virtue;” but, knowing our ammunition was scarce, we reserved it till the death struggle should come on. We were in hopes that after a reasonable time of the bombarding, the enemy would attempt to storm us.  Two or three feints were made, but they could not be brought to the scratch. Five mortars were playing on us at once, from every point of their works. General Taylor’s orders to us were to maintain this post, and not to pretend to make any sally, or risk in the least his position here; but in case we were surrounded after he left, hat signal guns should be fired at certain intervals, which would notify him of the attack. This notice was given to the general, as they heard all our guns at Point Isabel. On the 8th, the general commenced his march with the train of provisions, and when about twelve miles from here, he saw the enemy in position. He immediately “walked into their affections.”  We heard the firing of the cannon on both sides, and distinctly the volleys of musketry. We knew well that it was the general poking it into their short ribs. We had then stopped to “licker,” but at the first gun we sprung to our parapets, opened our batteries and for one hour we had the prettiest little cannon fight that ever a man beheld. They gave us gun for gun, while we slung at them “the best the shop contained.”

  But wait, I forgot one thing:  On the first Wednesday, after the bombardment had lasted three days, the enemy “sounded a parley.”  Major Seawell and Lieut. Britton were ordered to go out and see what they wanted.  They did so, and the Mexicans demanded the surrender of the fort for “humanity’s sake.”  They gave us one hour to surrender, or they would put us all to the sword.  They brought us a letter from General Arista to our commanding officer.  The commanding officers, Captain Hawkins – Brown had been shot just before – had a council of war called, and said he presumed we were unanimous on such points, but that he would put the matter to vote as to their feelings. The vote of the youngest member was taken first, and so on throughout. This was the unanimous vote:  “Defend the place to the death.”  Gen, Arista was in thirty minutes replied as follows:

  That we had received his humane communication, but not understanding perfectly the Spanish language, we were doubtful if we had understood exactly his meaning; but from all we could understand, he had proposed that we give him possession of this place or we would all be put to the sword in one hour; if this was proper understanding, we would respectfully decline his proposition, and “took this opportunity to assure his excellency of our distinguished consideration.”  After the reception of this by his “excellency” it just rained balls. The different mortars kept two pair of “saddle bags” in the air all the time, varied only by their six and four pounders. But in the midst of all the storm, the Star Spangled Banner still floated on our breast – works, at the point where they directed their strongest efforts; and we took out our two regimental colors and planted them on different parts of the wall. This fire was kept up all night, while their musketry played on us from the rear, at the distance of five hundred yards. We ordered our men not to fire a shot until they came within eighty yards – but they did not approach. Their object was to exhaust us in ammunition. They knew from deserters that it was scarce and Gen. Taylor had gone for a supply.  They are fond of fighting at long distance, but they can’t stand the cold steel.

  Now for where I left off on the night of the 8th; Gen. Taylor and the Mexican army were twelve miles from here – between this and Brazos. The batteries at Matamoros and around us, and our fort kept up a constant firing until dark, when all ceased. We had no communication from the general, but that he had to lick ‘em or die!  The sound of arms had not retrograded but advanced; besides there was no ringing of bells in the city or signs of rejoicing, therefore we judged they had not the first cause for jollification. That night was the first sound napping that had been done in the fort for six nights. The next morning at daylight the enemy’s batteries opened on us as usual, we laying low, as our cannon ammunition was nearly exhausted, giving them now and then a “crowder” to let them know that the “degenerate sons of Washington” were not all dead yet.  At 1 o’clock we heard General Taylor open again and from that till 4 o’clock, the battle raged with fury, and coming closer almost every shot. – The general was driving them before him in the chaparral at the point of the bayonet. About half a mile in our rear we saw their cavalry retreating for the ferry, to recross the river at Matamoros, and they were in utter confusion; we turned one of our 18 pounders to bear on the mass and gave them a “blizzard” to help them along.

  Then you should have heard the loud huzzas that went up from the little spot. I sprang upon the walls near our regimental flag and requested silence. Every thing was still as death. Says I, “three cheers, altogether, for the Star Spangled Banner.”  It was given in full blast; Matamoros heard the shout, and then, and not till then, every gun of the enemy ceased its fire.

General T. captured more muskets from the enemy, than we had in the fight against them – the biggest pile of ammunition you ever saw, 400 splendid mules, and baggage of all kinds enough to load the steamer “Harney.”  We have lost about 150 killed and wounded – 4 officers killed, 9 wounded. Gen. T. left day before yesterday, for Brazos to bring up his mortars, which we understand have arrived. – He will also organize the volunteers expected.  We look for him to night, and so soon as he arrives, we shall commence operations against Matamoros, and we will have it or faint in our traces. It is my opinion that we have crippled them so by the loss of their cannon, muskets, and ammunition, that they will be forced to retreat to Comargo. [60 miles from here,] or Monterey, [108,] but from indications they may be fortifying the city and preparing to give us a street fight; let it be so – we are prepared for any event. The American never can acknowledge the corn of the cross of Negro and Indian. Some of us will get our pates cracked, but it is our profession. Nevertheless, mark what I say – unless everything we demand is granted, our banner will in a few days waive from the walls of Matamoros. [JCB]

NNR 70.224public journals on finances in light of war

  FINANCES FOR THE WAR. On the 4th inst. In the United States senate –

  MR. LEWIS, of Alabama, (Chairman of the committee on finances,) offered two resolutions, calling upon the president to communicate to the senate the amount of available funds for the ensuing fiscal year, - the probable expenses of a vigorous prosecution of the war with Mexico, - the means relied upon for raising the requisite revenue, - what were the views of the government in reference to duties to be derived from imports whilst in a state of war, - whether a loan was contemplated, - and, in short, information in reference to the state of the finances, with a view to the prosecution of the war.

  No objections being made, the resolutions were adopted.

  On the motion of MR. CRITTENDEN, the resolutions were afterwards reconsidered. His object was to have the enquiry made rather more comprehensive. As adopted they looked only to a modification of the tariff, as a means for an increase in revenue. – He wished to add “and other purposes,” – so as to elicit the president’s general views as to the requisite increase of revenue.

MR. WEBSTER, was anxious that the attention of government should be directed to the fact, that the money market was greatly embarrassed.  The transfer of so large an amount of funds in specie, by land, to N. Orleans, as was now required there, would be difficult, and the sudden abstraction of funds from places where they had been deposited would occasion a deal of mischief. Whether treasury drafts ought be issued – or what measure for relief would meet the views of those who had the country in charge, was a matter of profound interest.  He respectfully enquired of the chairman of the committee on finances, if anything was to be done towards relieving the exchanges, no so unequal?

  MR. LEWIS, knew of no changes in the present mode of conducting the transfers.

  MR. CALHOUN, did not like that one senator should catechize another. The embarrassments spoken of were incident to, and necessary to a state of war. – Exchanges were against New York and in favor of New Orleans, and that was the cause. It could not be avoided by a national bank, or in any other way.

  MR. WEBSTER, said that the government might afford relief by a proper administration of the existing laws, or by framing new ones. If he was called upon to point out the means of relief he should suggest a small issue of treasury notes, the effect of which would be to allay alarm, to increase confidence, to facilitate exchanges. It would not be necessary in doing this to rely upon treasury notes for the support of the war. All that would be necessary would be to aid the government itself by a transfer of its finds in the available means to treasury drafts.

MR. SIMMONS, of R, Island, concurred in this, and thought it a practical remedy for relief.

  MR. NILES, of Conn., was for a vigorous application of the sub-treasury bill, and that was his means of relief.

MR. DAVIS, was glad that the resolution had been brought forward.  It was time that the policy of the administration was made known in reference to the existing war. The policy laid out by the president and his friends six months since was in reference to a time of peace, and not to such a moment as the present.

  After further debate the resolutions were deferred until next day, when –

  MR CRITTENDEN, offered an additional enquiry, by way of amendment, and the whole were adopted without further debate.

  The financial views entertained by the government will no doubt be communicated accordingly. [JCB]

NNR 70.224 June 13, 1846 Volunteers, Mexican schooners to USN, Brooklyn Navy Yard activity

Overwhelmed with articles, that ought to be inserted, many of them of primary interest, it is difficult to select.  We have a number of columns in type, waiting for room, each one seeming to demand immediate insertion, amongst them the "Volunteer" movements, in all directions. Six thousand Volunteers were stated to have reached Point Isabel within a few days past.  The disbursements required for the army now on the frontier are stated to approach half a million of dollars per day, rather an over estimate no doubt, but yet the amount must be heavy.

Amongst the volunteers for the Army, are noticed Henry Clay, Jun., son of Henry Clay, of Ashland Kentucky; a son of Mr. Crittenden, U. States Senator from Kentucky; the youngest son of Daniel Webster, with the approbation of his father, U.S. Senator from Massachusetts is raising, volunteer company in that state, for army of invasion.

Additions to the Navy.--The Bonito, Petrel, and Reefer, three schooners which are recently built at New York for Mexico, not having been paid for, have been sold by their builders to the United States government, delivered at the Brooklyn Navy Yard, and will be forthwith armed and dispatched to the Gulf,-- under command of Lieutenants Shaw, Sterret and Purviance.

Two Steamers, built also at the same port for the Mexican government, have likewise been purchased by our government, and will be ready for delivery in about a month.

The Brooklyn Navy Yard, is all bustle.--The Sloop Albany, will be launched in about two weeks.--The splendid picture, presented by the Albanians in honor of her name, has arrived, and will shortly occupy a conspicuous place in her cabin.  A North River sloop was engaged on Saturday morning in landing some eight or ten Paixhan guns from the West Point Foundry, probably intended for the Albany.  Workmen are likewise engaged in making ready the store ship Relief and the sloop Boston.--Nothing is said about preparing the frigate Macedonian, Lexington, or the frigate Sabine, the latter of which is on the stocks.  There are now some eight hundred additional hands of all kinds who have been placed in employment since the arrival of recent orders for fitting out the government vessels. [AEK]

NNR 70.225indignation of disbanded volunteers

 A letter from New Orleans says:  “The disbanded mounted gun-men,’ which were being raised under Colonel Lafayette Saunders, and who had been at great expense in procuring equipiments, &c., have held several meetings to express their indignation at the conduct of the war department, in rejecting their services. Their disappointment seems to have been very great, and they express it in no measured terms. [JCB]

NNR 70.225 June 13, 1846 Official Reports

June 13, 1846  GENERAL TAYLOR’S OFFICIAL REPORTS, of the battles of the 8th and 9th of May, have been received at Washington, but not yet published. Despatches from him dated Matamoros, 18th, 20th, 21st, and 24th May, giving an account of the retreat of the Mexicans and of his having taken possession of Matamoros, displaying the American flag over “Fort Paredes,” and referring to the embarrassments which General Gaines’ requisition for other volunteers than had been asked for in his, Gen. Taylor’s requisition, &c., &c., reached us too late for insertion in this number. [JCB]

NNR 70.226, 256 June 1846 escape of two Mexican steamers from Veracruz for Havana

June 13, 1846  THE MEXICAN STEAMERS - Montezuma and Guadaloupe. – A slip from the office of the Charleston Courier, dated May 31st says – The schooner F. A. Crown, four and a half days from Havana , reports that two Mexican steamers, Montezuma and Guadaloupe, had escaped from Vera Cruz and arrived at Havana under English colors on the 24th ult. In 6 days. [JCB]

June 20, 1846  The Mexican steamers, Guadaloupe and Montezuma have reached Havana, their officers rejoicing at their escape from the American squadron. Santa Anna is said to have connived the purchasers of these vessels.

The probability is, that British capital was obtained where with to pay for building those vessels, and that the Mexican governemtn having never paid for their construction and outfit, the capitalists concerned have paid themselves as far as they could, by taking the steamers as a purchase from the Mexican government. The British government it is thought have had no agency in this transaction.  The steamers were built in New York. [JCB]

NNR 70.227difficulties developing over requisitions for volunteers

The difficulties which were foreseen and pointed out in the first reception of intelligence that requisitions from different authorities were being made for volunteers, are now developed, exactly as predicted. Government finds them exceedingly embarrassing, the state authorities scarcely less so, and the volunteers themselves are provoked and disheartened at the outset, by an evident want of proper arrangement in the premises. Meantime officers of the army heretofore high in estimation, are to be overhauled, perhaps, court martialled, instead of being in command at the moment when and where their experience and military knowledge ought to be available to the country. [JCB]

NNR 70.227confusion about mustering of the Saint Louis Legion into US service, troops raised for service against Santa Fe 

THE MISSOURI VOLUNTEERS, or rather, the St. Louis legion, numbering 700 men, promptly assembled under command of Col. A.R. Easton, under Gen. Gaines’requisition to aid Gen. Taylor on the Rio Grande, were utterly confounded on being informed that under instructions from the war department, General Gaines’ requisition would not be recognized, and that consequently they could not be mustered into the U. States service. Afer endevouring in vain to reconcile the difficulty, the legion spiritedly resolved to embark for the Rio Grande on their own hook, and had made arrangements to leave on the 23rd ult. Just as they were leaving, Col. Campbell received a letter from Gov. Edwards, then in Washington, stating that Gen. Gaines requisition on Missouri had been approved by the president, and the volunteers that had started would be accepted, but the president desired that all who had not started, would be detained for the expedition against Santa Fe. Volunteers for Santa Fe, are pouring into St. Louis. [JCB]

NNR 70.227

KENTUCKY VOLUNTEERS. The Louisville legion, appear to have been too quick for the counter orders from the war department. At least they were off for New Orleans in virtue of impulse, if not of Gen. Gaines’ requisition. They will contrive to get themselves mustered into the United States service, we hope, under some constitutional clause or other. Gen. Gaines’ requisition was recognized by Gov. Owsley on the 17th of May, and the volunteers on that day were called for. The Frankfort Commonwealth, of the 26th says:  “The requisition has been met. Before 12 o’clock on Monday, 13 companies of infantry, and nine of cavalry had been tendered to the governor. The governor accepted them in the order in which they tendered themselves, so that there were three superfluous companies of infantry, while but one company of cavalry remains to be tendered to fill up the requisition.” [JCB]

NNR 70.227 over 5,000 Tennessee volunteers for the Rio Grande

TENNESSEE. Over five thousand volunteers have offered their services already to the governor, for the Rio Grande, twice the number the state is to furnish.  Ex-governor Jones, (the late whig candidate,) is raising volunteers. [JCB]

NNR 70.227 Gov. James Pinckney Henderson takes command of the Texas volunteers and proceeds to frontier

TEXAS. Gov. Henderson and a portion of his staff left for the Rio Grande on the 19th ult. [JCB]

NNR 70.227 departure of Texas companies of volunteers for the Rio Grande

A splendid company of volunteers from Montgomery, under Captain (late colonel) Jo. Bennet, left Galveston for the Rio Grande on the 29th ult. A company of about sixty mounted riflemen, under the command of Capt. Early, had started from Washington county for the Rio Grande; another company was to follow in a few days. [JCB]

NNR 70.227general orders specifying routes of western volunteers to the frontier

ROUTE OF VOLUNTEERS. A general order from the headquarters of the army, at Washington, under date of 19th May, thus specifies the destination and routes of the quotas of volunteers called from the western states:

“The regiments of cavalry or mounted men called from Kentucky and Tennessee, will, from their respective state-rendezvous, take up their line of march, by the best routes, via Memphis, Little Rock, on the Arkansas, Fulton, on the Red River, and Robins’ Ferry, on the Trinity River, upon San Antonio de Baxar, Texas. The regiments of cavalry or mounted men called from Arkansas, will, from its state-rendezvous (say) Washington, take the same route from Fulton to San Antonio de Bexar.

“Exception one regiment of the Kentucky and one of the Illinois quote of foot – to which General Wool is charged with giving different routes, and alos excepting the Arkansas battalion which will receive instructions through Brevet Brigadier General Arbuckle, all other regiments and battalions of volunteer infantry or rifle called for, from the said states, will be embarked at the nearest navigable points to their state-rendezvous, and thence proceed by water, with or without transshipment at Mobile, or New Orleans, to Point Isabel or Brazos Santiago, Texas, like the troops ordered to San Antonio de Bexar? The whole will come under the orders of the general officer in the chief command of the United States’ land forces operating against Mexico.” [JCB]

NNR 70.227discouragement of Indiana volunteers

INDIANA VOLUNTEERS. The requisition on Indiana called for three regiments of volunteer infantry, artillery and riflemen.

A public meeting was called at Indianapolis, which was addressed by gov. Whitcomb, (a warm partisan of the administration,) who addressed the people, and exhorted them to volunteer for the defense of the country. As to supplies, he said no provision had been made by the general government for supplies of any kind, and the volunteers must pay their own expenses, until mustered into service, but be thought the general government would refund! – he stated that the Madison bank had offered to place $10,000 to his credit for supplying volunteers, but he had scruples about his right to accept it. He would consider of the proposition further, and, in case the bank would agree to advance and look only to the United States for payment, he did not know but he would accept it!  Before this speech, says the statement, some were determined to volunteer, but they were discouraged and did not offer. [JCB]

NNR 70.227difficulty in supplying Ohio troops mustered into US service

  OHIO VOLUNTEERS. The requisition on this state was for three regiments, 2,400 men.

  Cincinnati prompty responded, by parading the following companies –

  Cincinnati Greys, numbering 80, Montgomery Gaurds, 160, Washington Cadets, 80, Morgan Riflemen, 80, German Volunteer Companies, 500, total, 900.

  Difficulties were encountered as to meeting expenditures. The Ohio Life Insurance and Trust Company placed to the credit of the governor of the state the sum of $10,000 to meet the immediate demands of fitting out the volunteers.

  The quota of the state was filled up. The Cincinnati Gazette on announcing the fact, adds – “We regret to learn that arrangements supposed to have been completed for passing the troops into the service of the United States, and for the prompt supply of volunteers by the general government, have failed, and that major Tompkins declines furnishing supplies, or to pay for those heretofore furnished. The state officers, therefore, continue to perform these duties.

  Why is the burthrn thrown upon the state officers?  Why this disregard by the war department of the wants of men invited in its behalf into the service of the country?  These volunteers are United States troops, brought into service under the law of the U. States. The action of the state executive has been invoked to facilitate the raising these troops for the United States, not for the state.  The governor has acted promptly with mean procured of individuals and state institutions – no menas whatever having been furnished by the war department, though congress had placed $10,000,000 at the disposal of the president, for the express purpose of raising and supplying this force. The action of the state governors and other state officers is gratuitous as it regards the general government. The act of congress confers no authority and impresses no obligation upon state officers. Why, then, are they asked to assume these onerous duties?  And why, if these duties are readily assumed, and the department relieved, are they left to raise the means as best they may?  Surely, if asked to perform these duties, they should be supplied with means. There is culpable negligence somewhere.

  Major Tompkins, of the quarter master’s department of the army, has been here some days, but for some reason unknown to us, refuses to relieve or provide for the troops in camp!  The law provides a method of mustering the volunteers into the service of the United States. This has been complied with.  The law expressly provides, that when mustered into service, these volunteers shall be subject to the rules and articles of war, and shall be “in all respects, except as to clothing and pay, placed on the same footing with similar corps in the United States army.”  The volunteers of camp Washington have been mustered into service, and have taken the oath according to law.  They are entitled to subsistence from the United States most clearly. Under what pretext so plain a duty as to supply them is neglected or thrown upon the state, we are unable to discover. The word now is, they must wait the arrival of ge. Wool. There is great fault somewhere, and it should be ferreted out and exposed. But we are glad to learn that the governor will furnish supplies rather than let the troops suffer.” [JCB]

NNR 70.228American consul at Veracruz and all Americans ordered to leave

It was reported that Gen. Paredes intended leaving the city of Mexico with troops to reinforce the army at the north. By an order from the Mexican government the American consul at Vera Cruz was ordered to close his office, and, with all Americans to leave in eight days from the date of the order, which was on the 18th of May.

The consul intended to embark on board of the U.S. steamer Mississippi on the 26th. At anchor off the Isla Vorda, U.S. frigate Raritan and steamer Mississippi, and off the port the U.S. sloop Falmouth. [JCB]

NNR 70.228 June 13, 1846 Maryland volunteers

Maryland volunteers. We noticed in our last, the departure on the 29th of three fine companies of volunteers, raised within a few preceding days in the city or Baltimore, for the Mexican war. Impatient of delay, they determined to report themselves at once to the secretary of war, and for that purpose took passage in the cars for Washington.  No provisions having been made for their reception there, they had some difficulty in the then extremely crowded condition of the city, to find accommodations.--A touch of campaigning even in the capitol of their own made republic they had to begin the service with.  They soon made themselves known however, and were then duly appreciated and their services were accepted.  The president requested the governor of Maryland to make the appointments of that portion of "the District of Columbia Battalion composed of Maryland volunteers." Gov. Pratt accordingly commissioned Wm. H. Watson, late captain of the Independent Blues, (of Baltimore) to lieutenant colonel of said battalion.  Another company also from Baltimore joined the battalion a few days after, and the whole embarked on the 11th instant, on board the steamer Massachusetts, for the Rio Grande. [AEK]

NNR 70.228  June 13, 1846 Mexico--Latest, Vera Cruz blockade, Battles of May 8th and 9th

Advices to the 25th ult., were received at New Orleans, on the 1st inst., from Vera Cruz, brought by the barque Louisiana, Capt. Williams.

The blockade of Vera Cruz commenced on 20th May, and 15 days were allowed for all neutral vessels to load and depart.  The British mail steamers will enter and leave the port as usual; but will only be allowed to take specie. 

The day the Louisiana sailed, information reached Vera Cruz that Mazatlan and Lepia had proclaimed in favor of General Santa Anna. Gen. Alvarez, in the south, was carrying on a disastrous war against the government.

It was reported that Gen. Paredes intended leaving the city of Mexico with troops to reinforce the army at the north.  By an order from the Mexican government the American consul at Vera Cruz was ordered to close his office, and, with all Americans, to leave in eight days from the date of the order, which was on the 18th May.

The consul intended to embark on board of the U.S. steamer Mississippi on the 26th.  At anchor off the Isle Vorda, U.S. frigate Raritan and Steamer Mississippi, and off the port the U.S. sloop Falmouth

Great animosity prevailed against the Americans since the defeat of the Mexicans at Matamoros was known.  The Louisiana sailed from Vera Cruz in company with the brig Helen McLeod (of Baltimore) for this port.  I learn from Capt. Williams that no American vessels were left in port at the time he sailed.  The packet brig St. Petersburg sailed for New York on the 20th ult.

The N. O. Picayune, June 2d, says--"The enormous forced loans which the government had imposed upon the clergy, the latter had declared itself totally unable to meet.  The Metropolitan church was ordered to furnish a subsidy of $98,000 per month; the Mechoacan $35,000; of Puebla $40,000; of Guadalajara $2,000; of Durango $15,000, and of Oajaca $8,000.  These great sums per month show that the president is determined to prosecute the war with energy.  He will never be able to collect such loans.

In regard to Paredes putting himself at the head of the army, El Republicano says it is uncertain whether he will repair to the Rio Grande or to Vera Cruz; but he will leave the capital as soon as congress assembles.  Full accounts of the disastrous actions of the 8th and 9th had reached the capital and appeared in the official journal.

They are more accurate by far than Mexican bulletins generally, and do credit to Arista.

The news was received with profound regret, but with an apparent determination to fight the war out."

The Mexican papers claim positively that the number of the killed and wounded on the part of the Americans was more considerable than that of the Mexicans.  Gen. Arista sets down the force of the Mexicans in the action of the 8th May at 3000 men and twelve pieces artillery; our numbers are stated to have been 3000 men, more or less, with great superiority in artillery.  The destruction by our artillery is represented to have been severe--over three thousand shot are said to have been fired at the Mexicans in the same time discharged seven hundred and fifty shots from their artillery.

The Mexican loss on the 8th is set down at 352 killed, wounded, and missing--and they claim to have retained possession of the field of battle.

We have not the description of the action of the 9th, by Gen. Arista, as we had supposed in our has, but we have by us a journal friendly to him.  His position is represented to have been gallantly forced, notwithstanding the repeated charges of the Mexican cavalry, the last of which was headed by Arista in person, and during which they actually "cut to pieces two entire companies of the Americans."  The loss of the Americans is still represented as superior to that of the Mexicans.

The papers make very patriotic appeals to all good citizens to come up now to the rescue of the country.

In regard to the loan attempted to be raised from the cleft of Mexico, we have the official letter of the minister of the treasury, Senor Iturbe, dated the 13th, before the news of the actions of the 8thand 9th could have been received. It sets for the grievous necessity of money for the war, and urges the duty of the clergy to submit to the hardship forced upon all by the national calamities.

He tells the archbishop that the government has appropriated all revenues which were mortgaged, suspending, without exception, all payments to its creditors; that it withheld a fourth part of the salaries of all its employees; that all classes were call upon to make sacrifices, and the clergy must not be exempt.  He then calls for a loan of $2,400,000, payable in twelve monthly installments, commencing the 30thof June.  The archbishop is called upon to partition the loan among the various bodies of the clergy.

On the 15th the archbishop replied, that he had summoned an ecclesiastic convention to meet that morning, before whom the matter would be laid; and that he would co-operate to the extent of his powers "in a war in which were at stake the two precious objects of Mexicans, its independence and its religion."

The next we hear of the loan is an announcement in El Republicano, of the 21st, that the metropolitan churches could not contribute the $98,000 a month allotted to them, as the total of their revenues will fall short of that sum.  The same paper states that the collection of such sums as are assigned to the other churches is utterly impracticable in the present ruinous state of the tithes and the general depreciation of ecclesiastical property. [AEK]

NNR 70.228proclamation in favor of Gen. Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna

  The day the Louisiana sailed, information reached Vera Cruz that Mazatlan and Lepia had proclaimed in favor of General Santa Anna. Gen. Alvarez, in the south, was carrying on a disastrous [. . . ]

NNR 70.228 Gen. Mariano Paredes y Arrillaga intends to move north with troops

  In regard to Paredes putting himself at the head of the army, El Republicano says it is uncertain whether he will repair to the Rio Grande or to Vera Cruz; but he will leave the capital as soon as congress assembles. Full accounts of the disasterous actions of the 8th and 9th had reached the capital and appeared in the official journal.

  They are more accurate by far than Mexican bulletins generally, and do credit to Arista. [JCB]

NNR 70.228animosity against the United States

  Great animosity prevailed against the Americans since the defeat of the Mexicans at Matamoros was known.  The Louisiana sailed from Vera Cruz in company with the brig Helen McLeod (of Baltimore) for this port. I learn from Capt. Williams that no American vessels were left in port at the time he sailed. The packet brig St. Petersburg sailed for New York on the 20th ult. [JCB]

NNR 70.228Mexican clergy refuse to loan funds for the war

  The N.O. Picayune, June 2d, says – “The enormous forced loans which the government had imposed upon the clergy, the latter had declared itself totally unable to meet. The Metropolitan church was ordered to furnish a subsidy of$98,000 per month; the Mechoacan $35,000; of Puebla $40,000; of Guadalajara $2,000; of Durango $15,000, and of Oajaca $8,000. These great sums per month show that the president is determined to prosecute the war with energy. He will never be able to collect such loans. [JCB]

NNR 70.228 Mexican account of casualties in the late battles

  The Mexican papers claim positively that the number killed and wounded on the part of the Americans was more considerable than that of the Mexicans. Gen. Arista sets down the force of the Mexicans in the action of the 8th May at 3000 men and twelve pieces of artillery. The destruction by our artillery represented to have been severe. – Over three thousand shot are said to have been fired at the Mexicans by our artillery, between 2 o’clock. P.M., and 7, in the evening, when the battle closed.  The Mexicans in the same time discharged seven hundred and fifty shots from their artillery.

  The Mexican loss on the 8th is set down at 352 killed, wounded, and missing – and they claim to have retained possession of the field of battle. [JCB]

NNR 70.228 patriotic effusions of Mexican journals

  We have not the description of the action of the 9th by Gen. Arista, as we had supposed in our haste, but we have by us in a journal friendly to him. His position is represented to have been gallantly forced, notwithstanding the repeated charges of the Mexican cavalry, the last of which was headed by Arista in person, and during which they actually “cut to pieces two entire companies of the Americans.”  The loss of the Americans is still represented as superior to that of the Mexicans.

  The papers make very patriotic appeals to all good citizens to come up now to the rescue of the country. [JCB]

NNR 70.228 further discussions with the clergy about the proposed loan to the Mexican government

  In regard to the loan attempted to be raised from the clergy of Mexico, we have the official letter of the minister of the treasury, Senor Iturbe, dated the 13th, before the news of the actions of the 8th and 9th could have been received. It sets forth the grievous necessity of money for the war, and urges the duty of the clergy to submit to the hardship forced upon all by the national calamities.

  He tells the archbishop that the government has appropriated all revenues which were mortgaged, suspending, without exception, all payments to its creditors; that it withheld a fourth part of the salaries of all its employees; that all classes were called upon to make sacrifices, and the clergy must not be exempt. He then calls for a loan of $2,400,000, payable in twelve monthly instalments, commencing the 30th of June. The archbishop is called upon to partition the loan among the various bodies of the clergy.

  On the 15th the archbishop replied, that he had summoned an ecclesiastic convention to meet that morning, before whom the matter would be laid; and that he would co-operate to the extent of his powers “in a war in which were at stake the two precious objects of the Mexicans, its independence and its religion.”

  The next we hear of the loan is an announcement in El Republicano, of the 21st, that the metropolitan churches could not contribute the $98,000 a month allotted to them, as the total of their revenue will fall short of that sum. The same paper states that the collection of such sums as are assigned  to the other churches is utterly impracticable in the present ruinous state of the tithes and the general depreciation of ecclesiastical property. [JCB]

NNR 70.228 preparations for an expedition against Santa Fe

  EXPEDITION AGAINST SANTA FE.  The St. Louis Republican of the 1st instant says – Yesterday capt. Turner, of col. Kearney’s staff, arrived in this city, direct from Fort Leavenworth, with instructions to the proper officer to furnish the necessary provisions, baggage, trains, &c. &c. for the contemplated expedition to New Mexico. They will be supplied at an early day, and shipped to Fort Leavenworth.

  Upon the reception of the orders of the president, col. Kearney put every means in requisition to expedite his departure at as early a day as possible.

  We are gratified to learn that col. K. does not go on this expedition, with the meager force which has been reported. His power, we hear, is ample to call for any force which the exigencies of the service may require. We do not know the whole amount of troops which he will dem proper to call for, but we understand that, in addition to two companies of artillery and mounted men, he will take a large infantry force. [JCB]

NNR 70.228

  GEN. TAYLORS ARMY. – The Washington Union says: - “Gen. Taylor had, according to, the last accounts, about 8,000 troops under his eagles. Hundreds and thousands of volunteers were pouring into his camp. He will soon be in advance into the enemy’s country and we shall not be surprised to hear of his reaching Monterey, about 130 miles from Matamoros about the commencement of the table land, in a healthy region, at no distant day.” [JCB]

NNR 70.228 operation of the Army on the Rio Grande, talk between Gen. Pedro Ampudia and Gen. Zachary Taylor

  ARMY ON THE RIO GRANDE. The steamship New York, at New Orleans, from Galveston, brings papers of the latter place to the 30th of May, inclusive. A letter in the New Orleans Commercial Times says –

  Gen. Taylor took possession of Matamoros without opposition, on the 18th. He sent out Captain Walker and a company of dragoons, on a scouting part, and to observe the Mexican Army on their retreat. They had a slight skirmish with the vanguard of the army, in which they killed several of the enemy, and took twenty-five prisoners. It is reported that the enemy are strongly fortifying Monterey, and receiving strong reinforcements. Gen. Taylor, it is supposed, has now about nine thousand men, and reinforcements coming in daily.

  Gen. Taylor’s encampment is a mile from Matamoros, and our soldiers are not permitted to enter the town – the citizens of which are respected and protected in all their rights.

  A correspondent of the New Orleans Deltas furnishes the following particulars of the capture of Matamoros:

  On the morning of the 17th, Gen. Taylor demanded an interview with Gen. Ampudia, which was granted. Ampudia arrived at our camp, and a big talk was to be had.

  Ampudia talked of an armistice:  Gen. Taylor demanded an unconditional surrender of the town. – Ampudia wished the armistice:  Gen. Taylor told him that the time for such things had passed; and that it was no use now to talk about it, particularly since he had been put t the trouble of transporting those heavy pieces of artillery. Ampudia still hesitated; at length he proposed to exclude the public buildings and public property. “No,” says the general, “I will have everything.”  Finally, Ampudia agreed to return an answer by a certain hour that day – and took his leave, casting a woeful look at the heavy mortars as he passed them.

  The hour at which the answer was to be given arrived, but no answer came. Gen. Taylor immediately ordered preparations to be made for crossing the river; parties were sent up and down the river, to secure all boats that could be seen on either side.  That night, just after dark, the army moved three miles up the river, and encamped for the night opposite the crossing. Next morning, every thing being ready, the passage of the river was commenced just after sunrise, and the whole army landed on the opposite side without firing a single gun. It was understood that the Mexican army, after throwing part of their ammunition and cannon into the river, and concealing another portion of the same, had commenced their retreat about dusk on the evening before, by way of the main road towards the interior, in number from four to five thousand men, Arista at their head.

  After our troops had crossed, Adjutant General Bliss advanced towards the main fort in front of the town, and sounded a peal.  The principal Alcalde made his appearance, and a formal demand was made for the surrender of the town, with a promise that all religious and civil rights should be secured to them – all private property protected. The Alcalde wished to know if the public buildings and property would be free. The answer was, every thing belonging to the government must be given up.  The Alcalde then said Gen. Taylor could take possession as soon as he thought proper, and that he would meet with no resistance. This was done, our army encamping in front of the town. [JCB]

NNR 70.228-229 a party of Americans taken and barbarously treated between Point Isabel and Corpus Christi

  The Galveston News, May 29th says – “The most distressing news is the murder of a party of fifteen Americans, including two women and a child, between Point Isabel and Corpus Christi, by a party of Mexicans, exceeding in cold-blooded cruelty and of the previous atrocities of these savages. It appears that a party of fifteen, of whom Mr. Rogers spoken of above was one, left Corpus Christi for Point Isabel on the 2nd or 3rd inst. They arrived at Little Colorado just previous to the battle of the 8th ult., where they were surprised by a company of Rancheros, and being overpowered by numbers, were induced by Mexican promises to surrender as prisoners of war.

  No sooner had those blood-thirsty dogs obtained possession of their arms than they stripped and robbed their victims, bound them beyond the power of resistance, and having ravished the women before their faces, cut all their throats, one fiend performing the horriblke butchery. Rogers saw his father and brother butchered in this terrible manner, before his own turn came, and his own escape was owing to the fact that while the wound upon his throat was not fatal, he had the presence of mind to feign himself dead, and was accordingly, with all the balance, thrown into the Colorado, where he managed to escape unseen, and swam to the other side of the river.

  Thence he subsequently made his way to the Rio Grande, was taken prisoner, sent to the hospital in Matamoros, and after the battle, exchanged. It is stated that a letter was written from Corpus Christi two days before the departure of this company, giving information to the Mexicans of their march, and of the amount of their money. It was not, we learn, without much reluctance, and some threats from an American officer, that the Mexican officer consented to exchange Mr. Rogers. [JCB]

NNR 70.229 items of information from Brazos 

  The New Orleans Commercial Times, June 2nd, says – “By the arrival of steamer Mary Kingsland from Brazos, which place she left on the 27th ult., eight hours after Galveston, we are put in possession of the following items of intelligence: [JCB]

NNR 70.229 arrival of Texas Rangers and infantry at Point Isabel

  On the 26th, a reinforcement of 600 Texans arrived at Point Isabel; 400 mounted rangers and 200 infantry, from Padre Island. Amongst the latter is a German company, 80 strong, from Point Lavaca, said to be one of the finest looking bodies of men yet seen in camp.

  It is confidently stated that Arista is concentrating his forces at Reinosa.

  The troops that went by the Mary Kingsland, were to march on the 28th for Matamoros, by way of Bocca Chica and Barita.

  The U.S. brig Lawrence was the only vessel of war left at the mouth of the Rio Grande. [JCB]

NNR 70.229 Mexican account of incidents from 1st to 3rd May

  MEXICAN ACCOUNT OF THE INCIDENTS, from the 1st to the 3rd of May, inclusive. [From the Matamoros Eagle, May 4th.]  

  The first day of this month, at 11 A.M., his excellency, the general-in-chief, left his place to join the army, which had marched a few hours previous, for the purpose of passing the river at no great distance from the enemy’s camp. In consequence of the orders given for the accomplishment of this dangerous operation, with proper security and comformable to the rules of the military art, on the arrival of our troops at the point designated, all the troops under the command of Gen. Torrejon had already occupied the left bank. The enthusiasm of our soldiers to overcome the obstacle that separated them from the enemy was so great, that they appeared sorrowful at the delay caused by the injuries received by the flatboats that had necessarily been conveyed by land on carts, and were so much damaged that they immediately filled with water on being put into the river. Nevertheless such was the activity of the general-in-chief, whose orders were fulfilled with the greatest celerity and exactness, that a few hours sufficed to transport to the opposite margin of the Bravo a strong division, with all their artillery and train of war.

  This rapid and well combined movement ought to have demonstrated to the invaders, that the Mexicans have not only instruction and aptitude for war, but that these qualities appeared realized on the present occasion by the most pure and refined patriotism. – The Division of the North, encountering fatigue and overcoming difficulties, ran in search of the enemy, who covered by parapets and defended by cannons of such heavy caliber, can, with indisputable advantage, await the attack. With deep losses, with a multitude of fortifications, the defenses were easy against those who present to them their bare breasts. But Gen. Taylor dared not resist the valor and enthusiasm of the sons of Mexico!  Well he foresaw the intrepidity with which our soldiers would have rushed upon the usurpers of our national territory; well he knew that those who have so many injuries to avenge, those who have grasped their arms not to augment their own property by despoiling others, not in favor of independence of the country; well he knew, we again repreat, that Mexicans have no dread, either of forces, or fortifications, or heavy artillery. Thus it is, the chief of the American forces, intimidated the moment he knew by the proximity of the situation of his camp that our army prepared to pass the river, sallied out precipitately for the Fronton de Santa Isabel, with nearly all his troops and pieces of artillery, and some wagons.

  The march was observed from this place, during which his Excellency Sr. General D. Francisco Mejia sent an express to communicate the notice to the general-in-chief. Here we must render to our heros the honor that they merit. The express verbally informed some soldiers, who had not yet reached the river, of the retreat of the enemy; they immediately set off at a run spontaneously the rest of the distance, such was the ardor and the anxious desire to come up with the enemy. The complete flight and terror that these set off with, from the frontier, to shut themselves in and evade the encounter, frustrated the active measures of Sr. Gen. Arista, given with the object of advancing the cavalry on the plain, to cut off the retreat of the fugitives. But it was not possible, even by a forced march in the night. Gen. Taylor left his camp at 2 P.M., and as fear has wings, he succeeded in getting into the Fronton; for when the cavalry got to the point where they ought to have cut them off, they were already past, and some leagues ahead.  Great was the disappointment of our valiants that they could not meet the enemy face to face; Their route would have been certain, and the greatest part of the American army, who thought to cast down the Mexicans, would have perished in the first battle of importance. But we want to fight, and the Americans do not know how to use any arms except deceit and perfidy. Why did they not remain firm and fight at the foot of their flag?  Why did they leave the land they iniquitously pretend to usurp?  Is this the way the general fulfils his word of honor? – Has not Mr. Taylor said in all his communications, that he was prepared to repel those that offered to attack him?  Why then did he run away cowardly, and shut himself up in the Fenton?  The chief of the American army has covered himself with disgrace and ignominy; sacrificing, to save himself, a part of his forces that he left in the fortifications; for it is certain he would not return to succor them.  He is not ignorant of the danger they run, but he calculates that his would be greater if he had the temerity to attempt to resist on the plain the bayonets and lances of the Mexicans.

  We pass on to relate the glorious success of yesterday (Sunday, May 3d.)  At day break our batteries opened fire on the fortifications of the enemy, and the thundering of the Mexican cannon was saluted by the drums of all the barracks and points of the line, by the bells of the parish church, and by the cheers of the inhabitants of Matamoros. In a moment the streets were filled, and all were happy that the hour had arrived to give a terrible lesson to the American camp, whose odious presence ought no longer be tolerated.  The enemy answered, but were soon convinced that their artillery, although of superior caliber, could not compete with that  of this place. After five hours fire, our bulwarks remained immovable from their solidity, and the knowledge displayed in the rules of the art of their construction; but it did not happen so with the fortifications of our opponents, for their parapets were completely demolished, in such a manner that by 11 o’clock, A.M., they ceased to play their artillery, and silenced their fire.  For our part we continued actively the rest of the day without the enemy daring to answer, for the parapets which they sheltered themselves under, being destroyed, they had not the courage to load their cannons, that remained entirely uncovered. The result demonstrates what is in reality the exaggerated skill of the American artillery. – They have 18 pounders, and those of our line do not exceed the caliber of 8 pounds; nevertheless the skill and practice of the Mexicans sufficed to vanquish those that handled superior arms. Unfading glory and eternal honor to our valiant artillery!

  The enemy, in their impotent rage, and previous to hiding their shame behind the most ditant parapets, had the barbarity to direct their arms on the city, to destroy the edifices, since it was not easy to destroy the fortifications from whence they received so much injury. The mean vengance, that can only be in the souls of miserable cowards, fortunately did not succeed as they intended. They who so unworthily adorn themselves with the title of illustrated (illustrious?) philanthropists!  But their awkwardness was equal to their malice, for nearly all the balls went over, and those that struck the houses, although they were 18 pounders, did no other damage than mark one or two holes in the walls. If those who conceived the infamous idea of destroying Matamoros, had seen the smile of contempt that the owners of the houses displayed, and their indifference for the losses they might sustain, they would have admired the patriotism and unconcern of the Mexicans, who are always ready to make the greatest sacrifices to maintain their country and independence. The brilliant 3rd of May is another testimony of this truth. In the hottest of the fire we noticed the enthusiasm of all the inhabitants. A ball scarcely fell before the children ran in search of it, without fear that another, directed by the same arm, might strike the same place. – This occurred in our presence in the principal square, where a great many citizens had collected. The triumph of our arms has been complete, and we have only to lament the death or one sergeant and two artillerymen, who died gloriously fighting for their country. The families of these victims will be provided for by the supreme government, to whose paternal gratitude they have been recommended by the general-in-chief. It will also serve to console us that the blood of those valiants has been avenged by their brave companions.

  As the artillery of our bastions introduced many balls in the enemy’s embrasures, the loss of the Americans must have been very great; and although we do not know with certainty the number of deaths, the most exact information makes them 56. It is probable it is so – their abandoning their cannon since 11 A.M., in consequence of two of them being dismounted, and the rest entirely uncovered – the terror and panic with which they retreated to their farthest entrenchments at the greatest speed; their taking every thing away from the reach of our artillery – the destruction which ought to have been occasioned by the grenades which were so well directed that some were scarcely a vara (yard?) distant from the spot where they ought to have fallen – all contribute to prove that the enemy has suffered terrible injury. If it was not so, why, if they have any valor left, did they not dare to repair their fortifications during the night?  It is true that from time to time we fired a few cannons in the dark, but the aim could not be certain, and nothing but cowardice hindered them from answering the fire we opened on them at the break of day; not an American has shown his head. Silence reigns in their camp, and for this motive we have suspended our fire today to a few shots, for there is no enemy to present himself within reach of our batteries. To conclude, we insert a brilliant paragraph in the answer given by his excellency the general-in-chief, to the account which he received of the proceedings of yesterday.  He says, “Mexico ought to glory, especially the valiant division of the North, that a force inferior in discipline, and perhaps in numbers, and who require nearly two months to receive their necessary supplies from the Capital, are proudly defying, on an immense plain, the army of the U.S., and all the powers of that republic, who, although they can receive assistance in fifty hours, have not dared to come out of the Fronton and give us battle.” [JCB]

NNR 70.229 June 13, 1846 Mexican Statement of their own loss, May 8th and 9 th

Plan of Campaign. Among the papers found in the captured effects of Arista, was the morning return of the Mexican force on the day of battle, which shows the strength of the enemy to have exceeded 8,000; though it is not absolutely certain the whole of that force was on the United States bank of the Rio Grande.  Gen. Arista's aid, while making arrangements with a distinguished officer of our army for the exchange of prisoners and the care of the wounded, stated that the Mexican loss, in killed on the field of battle and drowned, was 800. Among the latter was one of the perished in his flight in the waters of the Rio Grande.  In this number, the wounded and prisoners of course are not included. Fifteen hundred Mexican muskets (all king's arms,) had been collected by our troops.

The plan of campaign, as developed by Arista's papers, was that the general, after demolishing the small force under command of Gen. Taylor, to overrun Texas; and, having effected "the conquest of that revolted province," if it should be necessary to secure the fruits of victory, it was arranged that Gen. Paredes himself should march an army of occupation into the conquered country. [N.Y. Jour. Com. ] [AEK]

NNR 70.230 June 13, 1846 La Barita taken

Was the post, in Mexico, (according to the geography assumed by the president of the U. States,) first occupied by the American forces in the present war.

It was taken possession of by Col. Wilson, on the 17th May, 1846.  An officer under his command furnishes the following account of the post and of its capture:

"La Barita, May 17, 1846.--I am here to select a site for the depot of our new base of operations and to intrnchit.  This village is about then miles from the mouth of the river and the same distance from Brazos Santiago, or Fort Polka, (Point Isabel.)  the prominent features which might induce me to decide upon this as the proper point for the depot, are, that it is the first high land you reach in ascending the river, that it is above hurricane tides, that the ground is naturally formed for a military position, commanding everything around it, and commanded by nothing.  It is equi-distant, and not very inaccessible, from our other depots.  The worst road is to Fort Polk--while the direct line is only then miles, the only road for wagons is over twenty.  Col. Wilson is in command.  He has four companies of his regiment--1 st infantry, and four of volunteers.

This movement up the river was intended to have been a combined one with Commodore Conner.  It has been delayed two days by unfavorable weather, rendering the bar too rough.  The commodore's limited stay here compelled him to notify the general not to count upon his co-operation in an expedition up the river.  This morning, at daylight, I started the Neva (a river boat) out from the Brazos; she entered the Rio Bravo without difficulty about 8 A.M. I rode down the beach. Col. Wilson's command has been bivouacking for two days on our side of the mouth.  We crossed them all over by 12; before 1 P.M., the column was en route up the river.  The banks of the river are but slightly higher than the surface of the water for some miles up.  The whole country low and filled with lagoons.  There is a high ridge of sand hills some twenty feet high, extending up and down the coast, resting immediately on the beach.  The couture back of this ridge is one vast plain of prairie and lagoon.  The road up the river is tolerably good.  The river is very serpentine. The road runs from bend to bend.  The distance by river nearly double that by road.  The road up the right bank is skirted to the left and south by lagoons until you reach Barita; so that a march of a column up this side was by no means exposed to a thick attack.  The steamboat deck gave me a fine opportunity of observing the country.  We can find no difficulty in making use of the river for transporting our supplies." [AEK]

NNR 70.235-239 June 13, 1846 Albert Gallatin's address to the people of the United States on the subject of war with Mexico

[June 13, 1846]  COL. BENTON’S SPEECH ON THE OREGON. U.S. senate, May 25, 1846.

In resuming my speech on this subject, I wish to say, Mr. President, that the bill now before the senate is not the one recommended by the president of the United States.  He recommended that the sovereignty and jurisdiction of the United States be extended to our Oregon territory to the same extent that Great Britain had extended her sovereignty and jurisdiction to the same country.  In this recommendation I fully concur:  and venture to say that, if such a bill was brought in, it might pass the senate, (leaving out unnecessary speeches) in as little time as it would require to read it three times by its title.  But the bill before the senate is not of that character.  It goes for beyond the president’s recommendation.  It proposes many things not found in the British act of 1821 – things implying exclusive jurisdiction and sovereignty in us, and that to an undefined extent of country, and under circumstances which must immediately produce hostile collisions between our agents and the British agents on the other side of the Rocky Mountains.  I am opposed ti all this; but I am not in favor of the indefinite postponement of the bill.  I wish to see it amended and made conformable to the president’s recommendation.  If gentlemen who have the conduct of the measure here will bring in such an amendment, and put it on its passage without speeches, I will stop my speech until it is passed.

I will now proceed to show, as well as I can, the degree and extent of our just claims beyond the Rocky Mountains.

To understand what I mean to say, it is necessary to recollect the geography of the country in question, and see it presenting as it does, three distinct geographical divisions, to each of which a different claim and a different degree of claim attaches, and which cannot be confounded under any one general view, without a general mystification and total confusion of the whole subject.  The Columbia river and its valley is one of these divisions; the islands along the coast is another; Frazier’s river and its valley, (called by the British New Caledonia) is the third.  Under these three divisions I now propose to speak of the country.  Under these divisions I have always spoken of it; and what I have said of one part had no application to the other.  When I spoke of the great river of the west and its valley, either by its American name of Columbia or its Indian name of Oregon, I never intended Frazier’s river as its valley, or Vancouver’s Island, or the Gulf of Georgia, or Desolation Sound, or Broughton’s Arch.  When I speak of the coast and the islands, I do not mean the continent and the mountains; and when I speak of Frazier’s river or New Caledonia, I do not mean the Columbia river.  I repudiate all such loose and slovenly verbiage; and, desiring to be understood according to my words, I go on to speak of the country beyond the Rocky Mountains under the three great geographical divisions into which nature has formed it, and to which political events have so naturally adapted themselves.

I begin with the islands.

From the straits of Fuca, (in fact from Puget’s Sound to the peninsula of Alaska – a distance of one thousand miles – these is a net-work of islands – an archipelago – some large, some small, checquered in together, and covering the coast to the extent of one, two, even three hundred miles in front of the continent.  They are most of them of volcanic impression, and separated from each other and the continent by deep bays, gulfs, and straits, and by long deep chasms, to which navigators have given the name of canals.  This long chequer-board of islands, and the waters which contain them, have been the theatre of maritime discovery to many nations, and especially Spanish, British, and Russian; but except the Russians, no nation made permanent settlement on any of these islands; and they only as low down as 55.  The British and Spaniards both abandoned Vancouver’s Island after the Nootka Sound controversy; and from the time had no settlement of any kind on the coast, or the islands north of Cape Mendocino, lat. 41; and the British had none any where.  In this state of the case the question came on between Russia, Great Britain, and the United States, in which the distinction between the islands and the continent was acknowledged by all the powers, and Russia excluded from the continent and confined to the islands, because her discoveries and settlements were not continental, but insular.  The conventions with Russia, (British and American), of 1824-25 were framed upon that principle; and now I proceed to read the instructions from our government under which this distinction between the islands and the continent was asserted and maintained.  I read from Mr. Adam’s dispatch to Mr. Middleton, July 22nd, 1823:

“It never has been admitted by the various European nations which have formed settlements in this hemisphere, that the occupation of an island gave any claim whatever to territorial possessions on the continent to which it was adjoining.  The recognized principle has rather been the reverse; as by the law of nature, islands must rather be considered as appurtenant to continents, than continents to islands.

And again, to Mr. Middleton’s communications to the Russian government:

“The Russians have an establishment upon the island of Sitka, in latitude 57 degrees 30 minutes. - This fort, built in 1799, was destroyed three years after by the natives of the country, and re-established in 1804 by Mr. Lisianski, who called it New Archangel.  Russia cannot, however, avail herself of the circumstances of that possession to form a foundation for rights on the continent, the usage of nations never having established that the occupation of an island could give rights upon a neighboring continent, that the inverse of the proposition.”

These were the instructions of our minister, under which we treated with Russia 1824, and upon which the conventions of that period were formed.  They establish the fact that these islands in front of the northwest coast were considered a separate geographical division of the country, governed by national law applicable to islands; and that discoveries among them, even perfected by settlement, gave no claims upon the continent.  I have considered it a cardinal error, in all recent discussions on Oregon, to bottom continental claims upon these insular discoveries.  The Spaniards, as so well shown in the speech by the senator from N. York, (Mr. Dix), were the predecessors of the British in these discoveries; but I did not understand him as claiming the continent out to the Rocky Mountains, and up to 54° 40, by virtue of these maritime discoveries; and I am very sure that I limited my own sanction of his views to the tracks of ships which made the discoveries.  I consider Spanish discoveries along that coast as dominant over the British, both for priority of date and for the spirit of ownership in which they were made.  The Spaniards explored as masters of the country, looking after their own extended and contiguous possessions, and to which no limit had ever been placed:  the British explored in the character of adventurers, seeking new lands in a distant region.  Neither made permanent settlements; both abandoned; and, now, I see nothing, either in the value or the title of these islands, for the two nations to fight about.  The principle of convenience and mutual good will, so magnanimously proposed by the emperor Alexander in 1823, seems to me to be properly applicable to these desolate islands, chiefly valuable for harbors, which are often nothing but volcanic chasms, too deep for anchorage and to abrupt for approach.  In the discussions of 1824, so far as they were not settled, they were considered appurtenant to the continent, instead of the continent being held appurtenant to them; and the reversal of the principle, I apprehend, has been the great error of the recent discussions, and has led to the great mistake in relation to Frazier’s river.  I dismiss the question, then, as to this geographical division of the country, with saying that our title to these islands is better thatn that of the British, but that neither is perfect for want of settlement; and that now, as proposed in 1824, they should follow the fate of the continental divisions in front of which they lie.

Frazier’s river and its valley, known in the northwestern geography as New Caledonia, is the next division of the disputed country to which I shall ask the attention of senate.  It is a river of about a thousand miles in length, (following its windings), rising in the Rocky Mountains, opposite the head of the Unjigah, or Peace river, which flows into the Frozen ocean in latitude about 70.  The course of the river is nearly north and south, rising in latitude 55, flowing south to near latitude 49, and along that parallel, and just north of it, to the Gulf of Georgia, into which it falls behind Vancouver’s Island.  The upper part of this river is good for navigation; the lower half, plunging through volcanic chasms in mountains of rock, is wholly unnavigable for any species of craft.  This river was discovered by sir Alexander Mackenzie in 1793, was settled by the northwest company in 1806, and soon covered by their establishments from head to mouth.  No American or Spaniard had ever left a track upon this river or its valley.  Our claim to it, as far as I can see, rested wholly upon the treaty with Spain of 1819; and her claim rested wholly upon those discoveries among the islands, the value of which, as conferring claims upon the continent, it has been my providence to show that our negotiations with Russia in 1824.  At the time that we acquired this Spanish claim to Frazier’s river, it had already been discovered twenty six years by the British; had been settled by them for twelve years; was known by a British name; and no Spaniard had ever made a track on its banks.  New Caledonia, or Western Caledonia, was the name which it then bore; and it so happens that an American citizen, a native of Vermont, respectably known the senators now present from that state, and who had spent twenty years of his life in the hyperborean regions of Northwest America, in publishing an account of his travels and sojournings in that quarter, actually published a description of this New Caledonia, as a British province at the very moment that we were getting it from Spain, and without the least suspicion that it belonged to Spain!  I speak of Mr. David Harmon, whose journal of nineteen year’s residence between latitude 47 and 58 in Northwestern America, was published at Andover, in his native state, in the year 1820, the precise year after we had purchased this New Caledonia from the Spaniards.  I read, not from the volume itself, which is not in the library of congress, but from the London Quarterly Review, January number, 1822, as reprinted at Boston; article, Western Caledonia.

“The descent of the Peace river through a deep chasm in the Rocky Mountains first opened a passage to the adventurers above mentioned into the unexplored country behind them, to which they gave the name New Caledonia – a name, however, which, being already occupied by the Australasians, might advantageously be changed to that of Western Caledonia.  This passage lies in 56° 30’.  MacKenzie had crossed the rocky chain many years before in latitude 54 ½ ° and descended a large river flowing to the southward, named Tacontche Tessa, which he conceived to be the Columbia; but is now known to empty itself about Birch’s Bay of Vancouver, in latitude 49°, whereas the mouth of the Columbia lies in 46° 15’.  Another river called the Caledonia, (Frazer’s river,) holding a parallel course to the Tacontche Tesse, (Columbia), falls into the sea near the Admiralty Inlet of Vancouver, in latitude 48°, and forms a natural boundary between the new territory of Caledonia and the United States, falling in precisely with a continued line on the same parallel with the Lake of the Woods, and leaving about two degrees of latitude between it and the Columbia.  Its northern boundary may be taken in latitude 57°, close to the southernmost of the Russian settlements.  The length, therefore, will be about 550, and the breadth, from the mountains to the Pacific, from 330 to 350 geographical miles.

“The whole of this vast country is in fact so intersected with rivers and lakes, that Mr. Harmon thinks one sixth part of it may be considered as water.  The largest of the latter yet visited is named Stuart’s and is supposed to be about 400 miles in circumfrence.  A post has been established on its margin in latitude 54°34’ north, longitude 125°west.  Fifty miles to the westward of this is Frazer’s lake, about eighty or ninety miles in circumference, here, too, a post was established in 1896.  A third, of sixty or seventy miles in circumference, has been named Mcleod’s lake, on the shore of which a fort has been built in latitude 55° north, longitude 124°west.  The waters of this lake fall into the Peace river; those flowing out of the other two are supposed to empty themselves into the Pacific, and are probably the two rivers pointed out by Vancouver, near Point Essington, as we had occasion to observe in a former article.  The immense quantity of salmon which annually visit these two lakes, leave no doubt whatever of their communication with the Pacific; and the absence of this fish from McLeod’s lake , makes it almost equally certain that its outlet is not into that ocean.  The river flowing out of Stuart’s lake passes through the populous tribes of the Nate-ote-tains, who say that white people come up in large boats to trade with the A-te-nas, (a nation dwelling between them and the sea), which was fully proved by the guns, iron pots, cloth, tar, and other articles found in their possession.

“Most of the mountains of Western Caledonia are clothed with timber trees to their very summits, consisting principally of spruce and other kinds of fir, birch, poplar, aspen, cypress, and, generallyspeaking, all those which are usually found on the opposite side of the Rocky Mountains.  The large animals common to North America, such as buffalo, elk, moose, reindeer, bears, &c. are not numerous in this new territory; but there is no scarcity of the beaver, otter, wolverine, marten, foxes of different kinds, and the rest of the fur animals, any more than of wolver, badgers, and polecats; fowls. Also, of all the descriptions found in North America, are plentiful in Western Caledonia; cranes visit them in prodigious numbers, as do swans, bustards, geese, and ducks.”

This is the account given by Mr. Harmonof New Caledonia, and given of it by him at the exact moment that we were purchasing the Spanish title to it!  Of this Spanish title, of which the Spaniards never heard, the narrator seems to have been as profoundly ignorant as the Spaniards were themselves; and made his description of New Caledonia as of a British possession, without any more reference to adverse title than if he had been speaking of Canada.  So much for the written description:  now let us look at the map, and see how it stands there.  Here is a map – a 54° 40’ map – which will show us the features of the country, and the names of the settlements upon it.  Here is Frazer’s river, running from 55° to 49°, and here is a line of British posts upon it, from Fort McLeod at its head, to Fort Langley, at its mouth, and from Thompson’s Fork, on one side, to Stuart’s Fork, on the other.  And here are clusters of British names, imposed by the British, visible every where; Forts George, St. James, Simpson, Thompson, Frazer, McLeod, Langley, and others; rivers and lakes with the same names, and others; and here is deserter’s Creek, so named by Mckenzie, because his guide deserted him there in July, 1793; and here is an Indian village which is named Friendly, because the people were the most friendly to strangers that he had ever seen; and here another called Rascals’ village, so named by Mackenzie fifty-three years ago, because its inhabitants were the most rascally Indians he had ever seen; and here is the representation of that famous boundary line 54°40’, which is supposed to be the exact boundary of American territorial rights in that quarter, and which happens to include the whole of New Caledonia, except McLeod’s Fort, and the half of Stuart’s lake, and a spring, which is left to the British, while we take the branch, which flows from it.  This line takes all in – rivers, lakes, forts, villages. – See how it goes!  Starting at the sea, it gives us, by a quarter of an inch on the map, Fort Simpson, so named after the British Governor Simpson, and founded by the Hudson Bay Company.  Upon what principle we take this British fort  I know not – except it be on the assumption that our sacred right and title being adjusted to a minute, by the aid of these 40 minutes, so oppositely determined by the emperor Paul’s character to a fur company in 1799, to be on this straight line, the bad example of even a slight deviation from it at the start should not be allowed even to spare a British fort away up at Point McIntyre, in Chatham sound.  On this principle, we can understand the inclusion, by a quarter of an inch on the map, of this remote and isolated British post. – The cutting in two of Stuart’s lake, which the line does as it runs, is quite intelligible:  it must be on the principle stated in one of the fifty-four fourty papers, that Great Britain should not have one drop of our water; therefore, we divide the lake, each taking their own share of drops.  The fate of the two forts, McLeod and St. James, so near to each other and so far from us, united all their lives, and now so unexpectedly divided from each other by this line, is less comprehensible; and I cannot account for the difference of their fates, unless it is upon the law of the day of judgment, when, of two men in the field, one shall be taken and the other left , and no man being able to tell the reason why.  All the rest of the inclusions of British establishments which the line makes, from head to mouth of Frazer’s river, are intelligible enough:  they turn upon the principle of all or none! – upon the principle that ever acre and every inch, every grain of sand, drop of water, and blade of grass in all Oregon, up to fifty-four forty is ours!  And have it we will.

This is the country which geography and history five and twenty years ago called New Caledonia and treated as a British possession; and it is the country which an organized party among ourselves of the present day all “the whole od Oregon or none,” and every inch of which they say belongs to us.  Well, let us proceed a little further with the documents of 1823, and see what the men of that day – Pesident Monroe and his cabinet – the men who made the treaty with Spain by which we became masters of this large domain; let us proceed a little further, and see what they thought of our title up to fifty-four forty.  I read from the same document of 1823:

Mr. Adams to Mr. Middleton, July 22, 1823.  “The right of the United States, from the 42nd to the 49th parallel of latitude on the Pacific ocean we consider as unquestionable, being founded, first, on the acquisition by the treaty of 22nd February, 1819, of all the rights of Spain; second, by the discovery of the Columbia river, first, from the sea at its mouth, an then by land by Lewis and Clarke; and, third, by the settlement at its mouth in 1841.  This territory is to the United States of an importance which no possession in North America can be to any European nation, not only as it is but the continuity of their possessions from the Atlantic to the Pacific ocean, but as it offers their inhabitants the means of establishing hereafter water communications from one to the other.”


Mr. Adams to Mr. Rush.  Same date.  “By the treaty of amity, settlement, and limits, between the United States and Spain, of 22nd February, 1819, the boundary line between them was fixed at the forty-second degree of latitude, from the source of the Arkansas river to the South sea.  By which treaty the United States acquired all the rights of Spain north of that parallel.

“The right of the United States to the Columbia river, and to the interior territory washed by its waters, rests upon its discovery from the sea and nomination by a citizen of the United States, upon its exploration to the sea, made by Captains Lewis and Clarke; upon the settlement of Astoria, made under the protection of the United States, and thus restored to them in 1818; and upon this subsequent acquisition of all the rights of Spain, the only European power who, prior to the discovery of the river, had any pretensions to territorial rights on the northwest coast of America.

“The waters of the Columbia river extend, by the Multnomah, to the 42nd degree of latitude, where its source approaches within a few miles of those of the Platte and Arkansas; and by Clarke’s river to the 50th or 51st degree of latitude; thence descending, southward, till its sources almost intersect those of the Missouri.”

“To the territory thus watered, and immediately contiguous to the original possessions of the united States, as first bounded on the Mississippi, they consider their right to be now established by all the principles which have ever been applied to European settlements upon the American hemisphere.”

This is an extract of great value, and is an amplification and development of the principle laid down in the extract just read.  It recites the Spanish treaty of 1819, and claims nothing under it beyond the Columbia and its valley.  To this our title ia alleged to be complete, on American grounds, independent of the treaty, namely, discovery, settlement, and colonization by Mr. Astor, under the protection of the United States.  Again:

Mr. Adams to Mr. Rush.  Same dispatch.  “If the British Northwest and Hudson Bay Companies have any posts on the coast, as suggested in the article in the Quarterly Review above cited, the third article of the convention of the 20th of October, 1818, is applicable to them.  Mr. Midleton is authorized to propose an article of similar import, to be inserted in a joint convention between the United States, Great Britain, and Russia, for a term of ten years from its signiture.  You are authorized to make the same proposal to the British government; and, with a view to draw a definite line of demarcation for the future, to stipulate that no settlement shall hereafter be made on the northwest coast, or on any of the islands thereto adjoining, by Russian subjects, south of latitude 55; by citizens by citizens of the United States north of latitude 51; or by British subjects either south of 51 or north of 55.

“I mention the latitude of 51, as the bound within which we are willing to limit the future settlement of the United States, because it is not to be doubted that the Columbia river branches as far north as 51, although it is most probably not Taconeschee Tess of Mackenzie.  As, however, the line already runs in latitude 49 to the Stony mountains, should it be earnestly insisted upon by Great Britain, we will consent to carry it in continuance, on the same parallel, to the sea.  Copies of this instruction will likewise be forwarded to Mr. Middleton, with whom you will freely but cautiously correspond on this subject, as well as in regard to your negotiation respecting the suppression of the slave trade.”

Four things must strike the attention in this extract:  1. The offer of a partnership to the Emperor Alexander, which he wisely refused.  2. The offer of the same to Great Britain, which she sagaciously accepted.  3. The offer of 55 to Great Britain as her permanent northern boundary.  4. The offer of 51 to her as her permanent southern boundary, and its offer on a principle not valid, with the alternative to fall back upon the line of 49.

The British, who know all this, and a great deal more, must be astonished at our fifty-four-fourty war fever of to-day!  Again:

Mr. Rush to Mr. Adams.  London, Dec.22, 1823.  “In an interview I had with Mr. Canning last week, I made known to him, preparatory to the negotiation, the views of our government relative to the northwest coast of America.  These, as you know, are:

“First.  That as regards the country westward of the Rocky Mountains, the three powers, viz:  Great Britain, the United States, and Russia, should jointly agree to a convention, to be in force ten years, similar in its nature to the third article of the convention of October, 1818, now subsisting between the two former powers; and, secondly, that the United States would stipulate not to make any settlements on that coast north of the fifty-first degree of latitude, provided Great Britain would stipulate not to make any south of 51° or north of 55°; and Russia not to make any south of 55°.

“Mr. Canning expressed no opinion on the above proposition further than to hint, under his first impressions, strong objections to the one which goes to limit Great Britain northward to 55°.  His object in wishing to learn from me our propositions at this point of time, was as I understood, that he might better write to Sir Charles Bagot on the whole subject to which they relate.”  Again:

Same to same, December 19, 1823.  “And secondly, that the United States were willing to stipulate to make no settlements north of the 51st degree of north latitude on that coast, provided Great Britain stipulated to make none south of 51 or north of 55; and Russian t make none south of 55.”  Again:  Same to same, same date.

“That they (the United States) were willing, however, waiving for the present the full advantage of these claims, to forebear all settlements north of 51, as that limit might be sufficient to give them the benefit of all the waters of the Columbia river; but that they would expect Great Britain to abstain from coming south of that limit or going above 55; the latter parallel being taken as that beyond which it was not imagined that she had any actual settlements.”

On Friday, Mr. Presidnet, I read one passage from the documents of 1823, to let you see that fifty-four forty (for that is the true reading of fifty-five) had been offered to Great Britain for her northern boundary; to-day I read you six passages from the same documents to show the same thing.  And let me remark one more – the remark will bear eternal repetition – these offers were made by the men who had acquired the Spanish title to Oregon!  And who must be presumed to know as much about it as those whose acquaintance with Oregon dates from the epoch of the Baltimore convention – whose love for it dates from the era of its promulgation as a party watchword – whose knowledge of it extends to the luminous pages of Mr. Greenhow’s book!

Six times Mr. Monroe and his cabinet renounced Frazer’s river and its valley, and left it to the British!  They did so on the intelligible principle that the British and discovered it, and settled it, and were in actual possession of it when we got the Spanish claim; which claim Spain never made!  Upon this principle, New Caledonia was left to the British in 1823.  Upon what principle is it claimed now!

This is what Mr. Monroe and his cabinet thought of our title to the whole of Oregon or none, in the year 1823.  They took neither branch of this proposition.  They did not go for all or none, but for some!  They took some, and left some; and they divided by the line right in itself, and convenient in itself, and mutually suitable to each party.  This president and his cabinet carry their “unquestionable right” to Oregon as far as 49, and no further.  This is exactly what was done six years before.  Mr. Gallatin and Mr. Rush offered the same line as being the continuation of the line of Utrecht, (describing it by that name in their dispatch of October 20th, 1818,) and as covering the valley of the Columbia river, to which they alleged our title to be indisputable.  Mr. Jefferson had offered the same line in 1807.  All these offers leave Frazer’s river and its valley to the British, because they discovered and settled it.  All these offers hold on to the Columbia river and its valley, because we discovered and settled it; and all these offers let the principle of continuity work equally on the British as on the American side of the line of Utrecht.

This is what the statesmen did who made the acquisition of the Spanish claim to Oregon in 1819. – In four years afterwards they had freely offered all north of 49 to Great Britain; and no one ever thought of arraigning them for it.  Most of these statesmen have gone through firey trials since, and been fiercely assailed on all the deeds of their lives, but I never heard one of them being called to account, much less lose an election, for the part he acted in offering 49 to Great Britain in 1823, or at any other time. – For my part, I thought they were right then, and I think so now; I was a senator then, as I am now.  I thought with them that New Caledonia belonged to the British; and thinking so still, and acting upon the first half of the great maxim – ask nothing but what is right – I shall not ask them for it, much less fight them for it now.

I come now to the third geographical division of the contested country; purposely reserved for the last, because it furnishes the subject for the application of the second half of the great maxim:  Submit to nothing that is wrong.  I come to the river Columbia, and its vast and magnificent valley.  I once made a description of it, with an anathema against its alientation.  I described it by metes and bounds – by marks and features – and then wrote its name in its face.  The fifty-four forties got hold of my description – rubbed out the name – obliterating the features – expanded the boundaries – took in New Caledonia, and all the rivers, lakes, bays, sounds, islands, valleys, forts, and settlements, all the way up to 54 40!  And then turned my own anathema against myself, because their minds could not apply words to things.  Well!  I take no offense at this.  There are some people too simple to get angry with.  All we do with them in the West, is to have them “cut for the simples;” after which they are cured.  They can perform this operation for themselves, or have it done.  If by themselves, all they have to do is to rub their eyes, and read again:  if by others, the operator must rend, and caution the listening patient to stick the word to the thing.

The valley of the Columbia is ours; ours by discovery, by settlement, and by the treaty of Utrecht!  And has, too often, been so admitted by Great Britain to admit of her disputing it now.  I do not plead our title to that great country.  I did that twenty years ago, when there were few to repeat or applaud what I said.  I pass over the ground which I trod so long ago, and which has been again so much trodden of late, and take up the question at a fresh place – the admissions of Great Britain!  And show that she is concluded by her own acts and words from ever setting up any claim to the river and valley of the Columbia, or to any part of the territory south of the 49th degree.

I begin with Mr. Astor’s settlement on the Columbia, and rest upon it as a corner-stone in this new edifice of argument against Great Britain.  What was the settlement?  Not a mere trading post, for temporary traffic, down in a corner, and without the knowledge of nations or the sanction of his own government.  On the contrary, it was the foundation of a colony, and the occupation of the whole valley of the Columbia, and the establishment of a commercial emporium, of which the mouth of the river was the seat, and the Rocky mountains on one hand and Eastern Asia on the other were the outposts.  Great Britain saw it without objection – the United States with approbation; and every circumstance which proclaimed and legitimated a national undertaking signalized and commemorated its commencement, existence, and overthrow.

It was in the year 1810 – four years after the return of Lewis and Clarke’s expedition – that Mr. Astor, with the enlarged and comprehensive views of a “merchant prince,” projected from our eastern shore at the Atlantic this great establishment on the eastern coast of the Pacific ocean.  A ship commanded by an officer of the United States navy, freighted with every thing necessary for the foundation of a colony, sailed from New York to double Cape Horn:  an overland expedition of ninety men, led by a gentleman of New Jersey, proceeded from St. Louis to cross the Rocky mountains.  In the spring of 1811 the two expeditions met at the mouth of the Columbia, and immediately proceeded to fulfill the intentions of the bold projector of the enterprise.  Astoria was founded:  its dependent post, the Okenakan, was established six hundred miles up the river:  the Spokan, another dependant, was established two hundred miles higher up, and at the base of the mountains:  a third, the Wahlamath, was established upon the river of that name, two hundred and fifty miles southeast of Astoria.  Parties of traders and hunters covered all the waters of the Columbia river from head to mouth; fleets of bateaus, carrying up merchandize and bringing down furs, had their regular arrival and departure from Astoria. – Two more ships arrived from New York.  Canton, the Sandwich Islands, New Archangel, the coast of California, were visited by Mr. Astor’;s ships.  The Pacific Fur company was in full tide of success. – Astoria became the centre of an extended trade; her name became known to the world.  This was notice to the world that an American colony was being founded on the Columbia, and no power in the wide world objected to it.  It was before the Spanish treaty of 1819, and Spain did not object.  It was after all the pretended claims of Great Britain, as now set up, and she did not object.  Special notice had previously been given to the minister of Great Britain , and he had nothing to say against it.  Special notice had already been given to the northwest company, and they invited to join in the enterprise as traders which they refused to do, because it was an American enterprise.  Far from objecting to the settlement, they sent a special agent across the continent to stipulate with Mr. Astor’s agents that they should confine themselves to the valley of the Columbia, which arrangement was made.  Special notice was given to our own government, its sanction obtained, and its protection solicited; and if protection, in the full sense of the word, was not promised, it was because it was felt to be impossible to send troops and ships there, in the event of a war, to prevent its falling into the hands of the British; but that it was to be protected, in the general sense of the word, was promised, as was proved at Ghent when peace came to be made.

Two years passed off in this way; Great Britain made no objection; her agent, the northwest company, agreed to our occupation of the whole valley; and acquiescence under these circumstances, becomes an admission of American title which forever closes the mouth of Great Britain.

In this manner the Columbia was settled by Mr. Astor; in this manner it was held by him for two years.  Now for the manner in which it fell into the hands of Great Britain.  Two years had eclipsed from the time of the foundation of Astoria, when intelligence arrived at that place with the news of war between the United States and Great Britain, and information of a departure of a ship of war from London to join the squadron under Commodor Hillyar, in the Pacific ocean, and proceed to capture Astoria as an important American colony.  At the same time several partners of the Northwest company arrived at Astoria, confirmed the information of the British designs on the post, and offered to purchase all the stocks on hand, goods and furs, of Mr. Astor, as the only means of preventing them from becoming a prize of the British squadron.  The agents of Mr. Astor sold under this duresse, receiving the fourth or fifth part of what the property was worth.  Soon after a ship of war from Commodor Hillyar’s squadron arrived, took possession of the post without opposition, but with all the formalities of a British conquest, and with great shagrin to the officers at the loss of their expected booty.  This is the manner in which the British got possession of Astoria, and with it the whole valley of the Columbia.  As a British conquest they took it, as such they agreed to restore it under the treaty of Ghent.  And thus, at the settlement of Astoria, and the occupation of the whole valley of the Columbia, the British government, by its silent acquiescence, admitted our unquestionable right to it.  By seizing it as a British conquest; they admitted our right again.  By agreeing to restore it under the treaty of Ghent, they admitted it a third time – three times in five years; and this ought to be enough, in all conscience, to preclude present claims, founded on previous stale and vague pretensions.

Now for the proof of all that I have said.

I happen to have in my possession the book, of all others, which gives the fullest and most authentic details on all the points I have mentioned, and written at the same time and under circumstances when the author (himself a British subject, and familiar on the Columbia) had no more idea that the British would lay claim to that river than Mr. Harmon, the American writer whom I am quoted, ever thought of our claiming New Caledonia.  It is the work of Mr. Franchere, a gentleman of Montreal, with whom I have the pleasure of being personally acquainted, and one of those employed by Mr. Astor in founding his colony.  He was at the founding of Astoria at the sale of the Northwest Company; saw the place seized as a British conquest; and remained three years afterwards in the country, in the service of the Northwest company.  He wrote in French:  his work has not been done into English, though it well deserves it, and I read from the French text.  He first gives a brief and true account of the discovery of the Columbia.  He says:

“In 1792, Captain Gray, commanding the ship Columbia, of Boston, discovered the entrance of a large bayin 46 degrees 19 minutes of north latitude.  He entered it; and finding by the fresh water which he found at little distance from its mouth, that it was a large river, he ascended it eighteen miles, and cast anchor along the left bank, at the entrance of a deep bay.  He there drew up a chart of what he had discovered of this river and of the neighboring country; and, after having trafficked with the natives, (the object for which he came upon these coast,) he regained the sea; and soon after met Capt. Vancouver, whoi was sailing under the orders of the British government in search of discoveries.  Capt. Gray made known to him the discovery which he had made, and even communicated the chart of it which he had drawn up.  Vancouver sent his first lieutenant, Broughton who ascended the river 118 miles; took possession of it in the name of his Britannic majesty; gave it the name of Columbia, and to the bay where Captain Gray had stopped the name of Gray’s bay.  Since this period the country has been much frequented, especially by Americans.”

This brief and plain account of the discovery of the Columbia is valuable for showing:  first, that we discovered the river; secondly, that we showed it to British navigators; and thirdly, that one of those to whom we showed it immediately claimed it as British property.  We shall soon see that the British government, or its agents in these parts, the Northwest Company, gave no attention to this claim of Mr. Broughton, so little creditable to his candor and justice.  Vancouver, like a man of honor, never claimed Capt. Gray’s discovery, but assigned to him the entire credit of it, with thanks for his communication of it to himself.

The design of Mr. Astor’s establishment is thus spoken of:

‘Mr. John Jacob Astor, merchant of New York, who carried on alone the trade in furs to the south of the great lakes Huron and Superior, and who had acquired by this commerce a prodigious fortune, believed he could yet augment his fortune by forming on the banks of the Columbia an establishment, of, which the entrepot should be at its mouth.  He communicated his views to the agents of the Northwest Company; he wished even to make this establishment in concert with them; but after some negotiations, the wintering partners (les proprietaires hivernants) having rejected his propositions, Mr. Astor determined to make the attempt alone.  It was essential to his successthat he should have persons long accustomed to trade with the Indians, and he did not delay to find them.  Mr. Alexander McKay, (the same who had accompanied Sir Alexander Mackenzie in his voyages,) a man bold and enterprising, joined him; and, soon after, Messrs. Duncan McDougall, Donald Mackenzie, (heretofore in the service of the Northwest Company,) David Stuart, and Robert Stuart, all of Canada, did the same.  Finally, in the winter of 1810, Mr. Wilson Price Hunt, of St. Louis, on the Mississippi, having also joined them, they determined that the expedition should take place the following spring.”

This shows a direct communication of Mr. Astor’s design with the Northwest Company, and of their refusal to act in concert with him, because of the American character of the enterprise; also the reason why he employed many Canadians in his service.  It was for the sake of having experienced traders to assist in conducting his business.  It shows also that, among other Canadian gentlemen, he had employed Mr. Alexander McKay, the faithful companion of Sir Alexander Mackenzie in his expedition to the Pacific Ocean in 1793.  This gentleman knew where Mackenzie’s discoveries were, and whether Mr. Astor intended to trespass upon them.  This then was the time to speak:  on the contrary, the companion of Mackenzie goes on to assist in laying the foundation of the American colony on the Columbia.

Mr. Franchere proceeds:

“It is well to state that, during our sojourn in N. York, and before leaving that city, Mr. McKay believed it would be prudent to see Mr. Jackson, the minister plenipotentiary of his Britannic majesty, in order to inform him of the object for which he was about to embark, and to ask his advice as to what should do in case of a rupture between the two powers; intimating to him that we were all British subjects, and that we were going to trade under the American flag.   After some moments’ reflection, Mr. Jackson said to him, ‘that we were going to form a mercantile establishment at the risk of our lives; that all he could promise us was, that in case of a war between the two powers, we should be respected as British subjects and traders.’ – This answer appeared satisfactory, and Mr. McKay believed that he had nothing more to fear from that quarter.”

This was in the year 1810 – seventeen years after the discoveries of Mackenzie, and eight years after Mr. Broughton took possession of the Columbia in the name of his Britannic majesty; and at this time the minister of Great Britain, on a special communicationmade to him of Mr. Astor’s design to occupy the Columbia, has not a word to say against it.  Up to that time, it had not occurred to the British government that the Columbia river was theirs!

The ship Tonquin, carrying the maritime part of the expedition, arrived at the mouth of the Columbia, March 25th, 1811.  The approaches to the coast revealed nothing but lofty ranges of mountains, white with snow, through a gap of which the great river of the west entered the sea.  The weather was bad – the night dark – two boats had been swamped – no pilots, lights, or buoys – yet the captain (a rash man who afterwards blew up his ship at Nootka) entered safely, and anchored at midnight in a commodious harbor.  On the 12th of April, after examining both sides of the bay for the best situation, a site was chosen on the south side, about four or five leagues from the sea, and the foundation of Astoria began – a name in itself the baget of American title.  On the 15th of July, the young Astoria received an important visit, which is thus described:

“All was ready at the day appointed, (for an expedition to the interior,) and we were preparing to load the canoes when, towards mid-day, we saw a large canoe, carrying a flag, which was rounding the point called by us Tongue-Point.  We were ignorant who they might be, for we did not look so soon for our people, who (as the reader may remember) were to cross the continent by the route which Captains Lewis and Clarke had followed in 1805, and winter for this purpose on the banks of the Missouri.  Our uncertainty was soon banished by nearing of the canoe, which landed near a little quay which we had built to facilitate the unloading of our vessel. – The flag which this canoe carried was the British flag; and her crew amounted only to nine persons in all.  A man, quite well dressed, and who appeared to command, leaped first to shore, and accosting us without ceremony, told us that he was named David Thompson, and was one of the proprietors of the Northwest Company.  We invited him to ascend to our lodging, which was in one end of the shed, our house not yet being finished.  After the usual hospitalities, Mr. Thompson told us that he had crossed the continent during the preceding winter; but that the desertion of a part of his men had abliged him to winter at the foot of the mountains near the head of the Columbia river; that in the spring he had built a canoe and had come to our establishment.  He added that that the proprietors wintering in them had resolved to abandon all the posts which they had west of the mountains, rather than enter into competition with us, on condition that we would promise not to trouble them in the trade on the eastern side; and to sustain what he said, he produced a letter to Mr. William McGillivray to the same effect.

“Mr. Thompson kept, as it seemed to m, a regular journal, and traveled rather as a geographer than a trader in furs:  he had a good quadrant; and during a sojourn of eight days, which he made at our establishment, he had occasion to make several astronomical observations.”

This was a visit of great moment in the history of Astoria, and in the consideration of the British claim to the Columbia, which has been lately brought forward.  Mr. Thompson was one of the N.W. Company, its astronomer, a gentleman of science and character, to whom we are greatly indebted for fixing important geographical positions in the interior of North America.  Ha had crossed the continent from Montreal simultaneously with Mr. Astor’s land expedition from St. Louis, but in a higher latitude, and arrived a few days before it.  He came to the Columbia to give the information to Mr. Astor’s agents that the Northwest Company, to avoid competitions with them, would abandon all their establishment west of the mountains, provided Mr. Astor would not interfere with them in the east.  This proposal was agreed to.  The valley of the Columbia was left to the free enjoyment of the Americans; and the extensions of the posts to the mountains went on without question according to the original intention.  The Northwest Company, at that time, no more then the British government, had happened yet to take it into its head that the Columbia River, or any part of it was British property!

Mr. Astor’s agent proceeded to the establishment of the interior posts, and the dispatch of parties to hunt and trade up the Columbia to the mountains. – The Okanakan, about six hundred miles up, on the north side of the rive, and at the mouth of the river of that name, was the most considerable, and was remarkable for being nearest to the British establishments in New Caledonia; for by that name the valley and district of Frazer’s river was then known; and that was ten years before Mr. Harmon published his book.  The Spokane, two hundred miles higher up, and on the south side, was established at the same time.  The post on the Wahlamath, two hundred and fifty miles southwest from Astoria, was established the next year and of all these establishments Mr. Franchere gives a particular account, which is not necessary to read here.  The country was, at the same time, completely penetrated by parties of traders and hunters, up to the headwaters of Clarke’s river, and Lewis’ river, and into the Rocky Mountains.  Two years every thing had gone on without interruption, when two events occurred, in communicating which I will use Mr. Franchere’s own words:

“The 15th of January, 1813, Mr. Mackenzie arrived from his establishment, which he had abandoned after having cached part of his effects.  He came to announce to us that war had been declared between Great Britain and the United States.  This news had been brought to his post by some gentleman belonging to the Northwest Company, who had given him a letter containing the president’s proclamation to that effect.”

“On learning this news we strongly desired, that is, all of us at Astoria who were English and Canadians, to see ourselves in Canada:  but we could not even permit ourselves to think of it, at least at present – we were separated from our country by an immense space, and the difficulties of travel were insurmountable at this season.  We held then a sort of council of war, and, after having thoroughly weighed the crisis in which we found ourselves, after having considered seriously that although we were almost all British subjects, we nevertheless traded under the American flag, and that we could not expect assistance, all the ports of the United States being probably blockaded, we decided to abandon the establishment by the following spring, or in the beginning of the summer at furthest.  We did not tell our engages of this resolve for fear that they might abandon thair work at once, but we stopped trading with the natives from that moment, as much because we were not provided with a large supply of merchandize, as that we had more furs than we could carry away.”

Here is as important fact stated, that of hearing of the war and despairing of protection from the United States.  The agents of Mr. Astor, upon full consultation determined to abandon that country.

Mr. Franchere continues:

“Some days after Mackenzie’s departure, we perceived, to our great surprise, at the extremity of Tongue Point, two canoes carrying the British flag, and between them another bearing that of America.  It was Mackenzie himself, who was returning with Messrs. J.G. McTavish and Angus Bethune, of the Northwest Company.  He had met these gentlemen near the Rapids, and had determined to return with them to the establishment in consequence of the news which they had given him.  They were on the light canoes, having left behind them Messrs. John Stuart and McMillan with a brgade of eight canoes loaded with furs.

“Mr. McTavish came up to our lodging and showed us a letter which had been written to him by Mr. A. Shaw, one of the agents of the Northwest Company.  This gentleman announced to him in the letter that the ship Issac Todd had sailed from London in March in company with frigate Phoebe, and that they were coming by order of the government to take possession of our establishment – this establishment being represented to the lords of the admiralty as an important colony founded by the American government.

“The eight canoes which had been left behind having joined the first, a camp of nearly seventy-five men was formed at the little bay near our establishment.  As they were without provisions we furnished them with what they needed; nevertheless we kept our guard for fear of some surprise from them, for we were much inferior to them in number.

“The season advancing, and their vessel not arriving caused them to find their situation very disagreeable; without provision and without merchandize to procure any from the natives, who looked on them with an evil eye, having good hunters but wanting ammunition.  Tired of recurring incessantly to us for provisions, they proposed that we should sell them our establishment and its contents.  Placed in the situation in which we were, in the daily expectation of seeing an English man of war appear to take away what we possessed, we listened to their proposition.  We had several consultations; the negotiations grew wearily long; at length they agreed on the price of the furs and merchandize, and the treaty was signed by both parties on the 23rd of October.  The gentlemen of the Northwest Company took possession of Astoria, having agreed to pay to each of the servants of the endevant Pacific Fur Company (a name chosen by Mr. Astor) the amount of their wages in full, deducted from the price of the goods we delivered to them, to feed them, and to furnish a passage gratis to those amongst them who wished to return to Canada.

“It was thus that, after having crossed seas and endured all sorts of fatigues and privaiions, I lost, in an instant, all my hope of fortune.  I could not prevent myself from remarking that we should not look for such treatment from the British government, after the assurances we received from his majesty’s minister before we left New York.  But as I have just said, the value of our trading post had been much exaggerated to the ministers; for if they had known it, they surely would not have taken offense at it, at least would not have judged it worthy of a maritime expedition.”

This is the manner in which the effects of Mr. Astor passed into the hands of the Northwest Company; this the manner in which they became installed in the valley of the Columbia.  It was a purchase of goods and furs, and of the buildings which contained them, and nothing more.  No one was childish enough to suppose that the sovereignty of the country was or could have been transferred as an appurtenance to the skins and blankets.  We will now see how the British government obtained possession of the country.

“The 15th of November, 1813, Messrs. Alexander Stuart and Alexander Henry, both proprietors of the Northwest Company, arrived at the establishment in two bark canoes, manned by sixteen voyageurs.  These gentlemen had left Fort William, on Lake Superior, in July.  They lent us some Canadian newspapers, by which we learned that the British arms had up to that time kept the ascendancy.  They also confirmed the news that the English frigate was to take our endevant establishment:  they were even ver much surprised not to see the Isac Todd in the harbour.

“On the morning of the 30th, we perceived a vessel which was doubling Cape Disappointment, and which soon anchored in Baker’s Bay.  Not knowing if it was a friendly vessel or otherwise, we thought it prudent to send to it in a conoe Mr. McDougall, with those of the men who had been in the service of the endevant P.F.C, with the injunction to call themselves American if the ship was American, and English, if it was the contrary.  Whilst they were on their way, Mr. McTavish had all the furs which were marked with the name of N.W.Co. packed upon two barges, which were at the fort, and remounted the river to Tongue Point, where he was to wait for a signal which we had agreed upon.  Towards midnight Mr. Halsey, who had accompanied Mr. McDougall to the vessel, returned to the fort, and announced to us that it was the British sloop Racoon, of 26 guns, and 120 men in her crew, Captain Black commanding.  Mr. John McDonald, proprietor in the Northwest Company, had come as passenger in the Racoon, accompanied by five engages.  This gentleman had left England in the frigate Poebe, which had sailed with the Issac Todd as far as Rio de Janero.  Having rejoined their English squadron, the admiral had given them for the convoy the sloop Racoon and Cherub.  These four vessels had sailed in company to Cape Horn, where they had separated after having agreed to meet at the island of Juan Fernandez.  The three vessels of war did go there; but after having waited a long time in vain for the Issac Todd, Commodore Hillyar, who cammanded the little squadron, having learned that the American Commodore Porter was doing great damage to the English commerce, especially among the whalers who frequented these seas, he resolved to go and find him and give battle; giving to Capt. Black orders to go and destroy the American establishment of the Columbia river.  Consequently Mr. McDonald and his men had embarked on the Racoon.  This gentleman told us that they had endured the most terrible weather in doubling Cape Horn.  He thought that if the Issac Todd had not slackened at some spot it would arrive in the river within a fortnight.  At the agreed signal, Mr. McTavish returned to Astoria with his furs, and learned with much pleasure the arrival of Mr. McDonald.

“The first of December, the barge of the corvette came to the fort of Astoria with McDonald, and the first lieutenant, named sheriff.  As there were on the Racoon goods for the Northwest Company, a boat was sent to Baker’s Bay to bring them to the fort; but the weather was so bad and the wind so violent, that she did not return till the 12th with the goods, bringing also with Capt. Black five marines and four sailors.

“We regard our hosts with as much splendor as was possible.  After dinner the captain had fire arms given to the company’s servants; and, we repaired, thus armed, to the platform by which we had erected a flag staff.  There the captain took a British flag, which he had brought for the purpose, and had it hoisted to the top of the staff; and then taking a bottle full of Maderia, he broke it on the staff, declaring in a loud voice that he took possession of the establishment and the country in the name of his British majesty; and he changed the name of Astoria to that of Fort George.  The Indian chiefs had been assembled to witness this ceremony, and I explained to them their own language what it meant.  They fired three discharged of artillery and musket shot, and health of the king was drank according to the received customs in such cases.

“The vessel finding itself detained by the contrary winds, the captain had an exact survey made of the mouth of the river and the channel between Baker’s Bay and Fort george.  The officers came frequently to see us and appeared to me generally to be very much discontented with their voyage; they had expected to meet several American vessels loaded with rich furs, and had calculated beforehand their share in the taking of Astoria.  They had met nothing, and their astonishment was at its height when they saw our establishment had been transferred to the Northwest Company, and was under the British flag.  It will be sufficient to quote Captain Black’s expression to show how much they were mistaken with regard to us.  This captain landed in the night; when we showed him the palisades of the establishment in the morning, he asked if there was not another fort, and having learnt that there was not, he cried out with an air of the greatest astonishment, “What!  Is this fort represented to me as formidable?  Good God!  I could batter it down with a four pounder in two hours!”

“The greater part of the Pacific Fur Company’s servants engaged themselves to the Northwest Company.  Some others preferred returning to their country, and I was among the later.  Nevertheless, Mr. McTavish having intimated to me that my services would be need at the establishment, I engaged myself for the space of five months, that is to say until the setting out of the party which was to ascend the river in the spring, to go to Canada, by way of the Rocky Mountains and the rivers of the interior.  Messrs. John Stuart and Mackenzie left at the end of the month, the last to deliver over to the first the trading posts which had been established in the interior by the before mentioned company.”

This is the way that the British got possession of the Columbia – as a conquest – accompanied by all the circumstances of a national act.  The lords of the admiralty in London, charged with the naval operations of the war, plan the expedition, and plan it against the colony of Mr. Astor, and against it as an important American colony.  They dispatched a ship of war from London to join the squadron in the Pacific to attack the colony.  A ship from the squadron arrives; finds the goods and furs sold; is enraged at the loss of the booty, but finds the American sovereignty of the country remaining in the form of a little fort; takes possession of it as a British conquest; runs up the British flag; christens it in a bottle of run; and agents are sent off to the Okenakane, the Spokane, and Wahlamath, to deliver up the dependent posts, and with them the whole valley of the Columbia; as a conquest the British took it; as a conquest they held it; as a conquest they agreed to restore it under the Ghent treaty.  And here I will answer a question which has been put to me:  Does the fight of restoration extend to the whole valley of the Columbia river, or only to the post at the mouth of the river?  I answer, the whole valley; and, to parley about any thing less is to suffer ourselves to be bamboozled and distracted.

I here cease my readings from Mr. Franchere, satisfied that, upon his testimony, I have made out the fullest and most authentic case of unqualified British admissions, by acts, of our title to the Columbia.  To these admissions, by acts I will now add admissions by words.  For it so happens that at the time of the negotiations of 1823, at the time we were offering fifty-five for a southern, the parallel of forty-nine was the most southern one to which her claims extended.  This was understood and agreed upon by both parties in 1818, 1820, and 1823, and here is the evidence of it in documents of unimpeachable authority.  I read first from Mr. Adams to Mr. Rush, July 22nd, 1823:

“Previous to the restoration of the settlement at the mouth of the Columbia river in 1818, and again upon the first introduction in congress of the plan for constituting a territorial government there, some disposition was manifested by Sir Charles Bagot and Mr. Canning (minister in Washington) to dispute the right of the U. States to that establishment, and some vague intimations was given of British claims on the Northwest coast.  The restoration of that place, and the convention of 1818, were considered as a final disposal of Mr. Bagot’s objections; and Mr. Canning declined committing to paper those which he had intimated in conversation.”

Two dates and a great fact are here mentioned, with both of which I was contemporary, and, my writings of the time prove, not an inattentive observer.  The nominal restoaration of the Columbia, which was, infact, an empty ceremony, and the non-execution of the Ghent treaty, in favor of the west, as it had happened before the non-execution of treaties which required the British western ports to be given up.  That is one date.  The introduction of Dr. Floyd’s Oregon bill in the house of representatives, in 1820-’21, is another of those dates, and of which I know something.  The great fact is, and my speech of 1824 will show that I knew something of that, is the vague intimation of British claims to the Columbia at that time, the refusal of the minister to write them down, and their utter and entire abandonment!

This was done by Mr. Canning, the prime minister of Great Britain, to Mr. Rush, in London, in 1823, of which Mr. Rush’s dispatch of the 19th January, 1824, bears witness.  Here it is:

“It was an omission in me not to have stated in my communication of the 6th instant what are to be the aims of Great Britain on the northwest coast of America, though as yet Mr. Canning has has not made them known to me formally.  She will claim, I understand, a point northwards above 55, though how much above I am not able to say, and southwards as low down as 49.  Whether he designs to push a claim to the whole of this space with earnestness, I am also unable as yet to say, but wait the more full and accurate disclosure of her views.”

Thus on the nineteenth day of January, in the year 1824, the parallel of forty-nine was the furthest south to which the British minister, Mr. Canning – a minister of head, and for forty years’ experience in public affairs – proposed to push the British claim.

After this authentic and express admission of Mr. Canning, the prime minister of Great Britain in 1824, it is hardly excusable to have recourse to secondary of inferior testimony, however persuasive or convincing that testimony may be.  But I have still a piece of British testimony in hand sufficiently respectable to be quoted after Mr. Canning, and sufficiently coincident in time and terms to identify the minister’s answer with public opinion of the time, that the extent of the British claims stated to Mr. Rush in January, 1824, was the opinion of the public as well as of the minister.  It is found in the London Quarterly Review, October number, 1822.  it is in discussing the boundaries of New Caledonia, for which he proposes on the south the line of the Lake of the Woods to the sea:

“Another river, called the Caledonia, (Frazer’s.) holding a parallel course to the Tacoutche Tesse, (Columbia,) falls into the sea near the Admiralty Inlet of Vancouver, in latitude 48, and forms a natural boundary between the new territory (Western Caledonia) and that of the United States, and falling in precisely with a continued line with the same parallel with the Lake of the Woods, and leaving about two degrees of latitude between it and the Columbia.”

So said the Quarterly Review in January, 1822, No. 72, article “Western Caledonia.”

I sat out to establish, upon the admission of Great Britain herself, our right to the Columbia river and its valley.  I have done more.  I have established her admission to the line of 49, giving us near three degrees on the coast, the valuable waters about the Straits of Fuca and Puget’s Sound, and the whole Olympic district, no part of all which is in the valley of the Columbia.

We thus see that, in 1824, the British government, by authentic acts, and by the language of Mr. Canning, admitted our right to the river and valley of the Columbia; and, what was better, limited their claim to 49 – At the same time we see that the two governments were of accord, and the question is, why they did not agree.  The documents furnished the answer to this question, and a strange answer it is.  Nothing else than a love of partnerships, and a desire to go into partnership with Russia and Great Britain in the use of all the country beyond the Rocky Mountains, each enjoying the use of the whole in common with others, and the title to remain in abeyance.  The Emperor of Russia, like a wise man, declined all share in this mixed concern, got his own part laid off to himself, and has enjoyed it ever since in peace and quietness.  The British government, like another wise man, accepted our proposal, went into partnership with us, took the use of the whole to herself, and now claims it as her own.  We were only unwise in the transaction, and our improvidence, so visible to every body now, seen only by myself then, evidently resulted from the under-estimate of the country, which was then so universal.  By our proposal of partnership, we prevented the settlement of the boundary, and put a power stronger than ourselves in possession of our property – a power which has kept it so long that it begins to dream that it is its own; and now we are raising fleets and armies, and preparing to set the four corners of the world on fire, to get him out again.  I had the vanity to denounce it the day I first heard of it, in the year 1818, and thought I was doing something.  I even published my denunciation in articles which I deem quite sensible, and expected to make a great sensation.  On the contrary, not one responsive note was obtained from the thousand newspapers which the United States contained; and I found myself as solitary then in advance of the public as I am now behind it. 

I trust that I have made good our title, and that upon British admissions, to the Columbia river and its valley, modified by the line of Utrecht.  Up to that line, if it becomes necessary, I am willing to fight; but, before fighting, I want to talk – to talk understandingly, with a knowledge of the subject – and to talk righteously, with the great maxim before me:  ask nothing but what is right – submit to nothing that is wrong.  Upon this principle I have spoken, whether wisely, it is not for me to say; but it is not new – it is not new to talk with me.  Twenty-eight years ago I wrote what I now speak.  Eighteen years ago, and when I had already been eight years a member of this body, I submitted a resolution in relation to this Oregon question, which I have seen no reason to retract or modify since that time, and which may stand for the text of my speech this day.  It was in these words:

“Resolved, That it is not expedient for the government of the United States to treat with his Britannic majesty in reference to their territorial claims and boundaries west of the Rocky Mountains, upon the basis of a joint occupation by the citizens of the United States and subjects of Great Britain of the country claimed by each power.

“Resolved, That it is expedient for the government of the United States to treat with his Britannic majesty in reference to their said claims and boundaries, upon the basis of a separation of interests, and the establishment of the 49th degree of north latitude as a permanent boundary between them, in the shortest possible time.”

It was ina session of the 1827-’28, and before the ratification of the second partnership convention – the one we are now determined to get rid of even at the price of war – and with the view of preventing the ratification of that convention, that this resolution was submitted.  It presented my view of the settlement of this question, namely, no partnerships, the immediate establishment of a boundary, and the 49th parallel for that boundary.  They are my views now; and, having said enough against partnerships, and enough in favor of setting upon some line, I go on to give my reasons in favor of that of forty-nine.

It is the line which parts, more suitably than a line following their highlands could do it, the valleys of the Columbia and of Frazer’s river, saving to us all our discoveries and settlements beyond the Rocky Mountains, and leaving to the British the whole of theirs.  It is a continuation of the line on this side of the mountains – a line which happens to conform to the geographical features of the continent on this side of the mountains, and equally so on the other.  On this side, it parts the two systems of waters, one of which belongs to the valley of the Mississippi, and the other to the basin of Hudson’s Bay; on the other side, it parts the system of waters which belong to the valley of the Columbia from those which belong to Frazer’s river, cutting off the heads of a few streams, of about equal value on each hand.  It is the line of Utrecht – a line which will now be denied but by few – and to which few, nothing more on this point will ever be said by me.  It is the line of right, resulting from the treaty of Utrecht; and as such, always looked to, in the early stages of this controversy, both by British and American statesmen, as the ultimate line of settlement and boundary between the countries.  It is the line of right, resulting from the said treaty of Utrecht, up to which Mr. Adams, in his dispatch to Mr. Middleton, of July 19, 1823, alleged an “unquestionable title” to extend; for only upon that treaty could a line of “unquestionable title” be averred. – On any other basis, it could only be a line of convention – a conventional line of mutual agreement; and Mr. Adams was not a man to confound two things so different in their nature.  It is the best line for us; for it gives us all the waters of Puget’s Sound and Bellingham’s Bay – I do not say the Straits of Fuca; (for those straits, like all the other great straits of the world, are part of the high seas, and incapable of self-appropriation by any nation) it gives us these waters and with them the picture sque and the fertile square, of more than an hundred miles every way, lying between the Straits of Fuca and the Columbia, and between the Pacific coast and the Cascade range of mountains, and on which Mount Olympus, near the centre, is the crowning ornament, and from which the whole district derives its classic name of Olympic.

All this the line of the treaty of Utrecht gives us, which the line of the valley of the Columbia would not; for that river has no valley at its mouth, and enters the sea through a gap in the iron-bound coast.  The valley of that river is a fan expanded, the spreading part in the Rocky Mountains, the handle in the sea.  It is the best line for the British, for it gives them the upper part of the north fork of the Columbia, where it heads opposite the Athabasca and Saskatchiwine – British rivers and covered by British posts – and from all which the valley of Frazer’s river would be cut off from communication if the head of the Columbia remained in our hands, just as Halifax was cut off from Quebec by the northern waters of the St. John’s.  Thus, the line of right – the line of Utrecht – is the best for both parties, giving to each what is convenient and necessary to it, (for the triangle at the head of the Columbia is as necessary to them as the Olympic square is to us,) and taking from each a detached district, of little value except for annoyance.  The British could annoy us in the Olympic district; we could annoy them at the head of the Columbia; but why do it, except upon principle of laying eggs to hatch further disputes?  Upon the machiavellian principle of depositing the seeds of a new contestion while assuming to settle the mischiefs of an old one?  Forty-nine is the line which Mr. Jefferson proposed in 1807, as I have shown heretofore to the senate.  It is the line of which Mr. Gallatin and Mr. Rush said in 1818:

“The forty-ninth degree of north latitude had, in pursuance of the treaty of Utrecht, been fixed, indefinitely, as the line between the British northern possessions and those of France, including Louisiana, now a part of our territories.  There was no reason why, if the two countries extend their claims westward, the same line should not be continued to the Pacific Ocean.  So far as the discovery gives a claim, ours to the whole country on the waters of the Columbia river was indisputable.

It is the line of all the American statesmen, without exception, twenty and forty years ago.  It was the line of Mr. Canning in 1823.  It is the line for the rejection of which by Mr. Parkenham, without reference to his government, Sir Robert Peel has lately, and publicly, and in the face of the world, expressed regret.  It is a line which we have never presented as an ultimatum; which we have often proposed gently, and which the British have as often gently shoved aside, because they saw, from our own coetaneous propositions, that they could do better, and get the whole, at least for a long time, under our own delusive project of joint usufruction.  But now all this gentle and delusive work is done with.  The joint use is to terminate – events advance – and the question must be settled now by reason and judgment, or it will soon settle itself by chance and arms.  Forty-nine is the line of right with me; and, acting upon the second half of the great maxim, submit to nothing wrong!  I shall submit to no invasion or encroachment upon that line.

Senators may now see the reason why, for twenty-five years, I have adhered to the line of Utrecht.  It is the line of right, which gives to us the Olympic district and it invaluable waters, and secures to us the river and valley of the Columbia.  It is the fighting line of the United States.  The Union can be rallied on that line. [JCB].

NNR 70.240 expenses of the war, need for action to raise funds, lack of funds for purchasing supplies at New Orleans

  FINANCIAL – National Expenses – During a discussion in the U.S. Senate on Friday last week, Mr. Webster intimated that he had learned, very much to his astonishment, that the expenses of the government at present amounted to very near half a million of dollars per day.

  On Monday, Mr. Sevier, in reference to that remark, stated, that the daily expenditures of the army and navy, amounted to $106,000 only.

  Mr. WEBSTER, in explanation of his statement, replied, that he did not refer to the expences of the army and navy proper, alone, but including that of the volunteers – and the vast changes for transportation provisions, munitions, and other expences incident to the war, the amount of which altogether he has ascertained from good authority, fell but little short of half a million dollars per day.

  Although prepared by some examination, for a large announcement on this score, this exceeds our worst apprehensions.  If it be but half true, it is full time that Mr. SECRETARY WALKER were bestirring himself in looking out ways and means t meet drafts upon his department. – Be it rembered too, that this amount of expenditures is for the army now in the field, say some 10 or 12,000 men at most, and they yet within our realm. What amount will be requisite when the army shall number 35,000 men, as is contemplated, and have to be provided with stores and munitions some five hundred to a thousand miles within an enemy’s country?  To count the cost, and be provided with ways and means to sustain the cost, is the first consideration with Statesmen, in proposing a foreign war.

  The New Orleans correspondent of the New York Courier, writing under date of the 26th ult. Says – “Would you believe it, that up to the mail of today inclusive, the quartermaster general at this place is still without funds, and the treasury with 6 or $800,000 lying to its credit in the deposit banks of this city!!!  The state has already advanced $250,000. – The banks, on their own responsibility, and without any security, have advanced largely. Large amounts are due by the quartermaster all over the city, for supplies of ever kind that have been purchased not only for the volunteers but also for the regular army, for which he is unable to pay, and without all these aids and means nothing could have been done to reinforce general Taylor or even send him supplies, and yet though they had known at Washington for some eight or ten days of the crisis that had occurred, and the exertions that were making here, yet this criminal neglect is exhibited as to placing means at the disposal of the proper officers which they must have known would be so vitally necessary. [JCB]

NNR 70.240naval operations on the Mexican coast

The latest intelligence from the army is by the steamer Alabama, which took out 458 soldiers, and reached Brazos Bar on the 28th ult. The same evening, at 8 o’clock, it commenced blowing a heavy gale, and at 11 o’clock it increased to a completer hurricane, which caused both anchors to drag from 70 into 3 fathoms of water.

  The following is the list of vessels in the harbor, and blown ashore at Brazos Bar:  steamer Col. Harney, ashore, will be got off; steamer Augusta, ashore badly; schr. Waterman, do. Unloaded; schr. Eufalia, do. do.; steamer Sea, badly ashore inside.  The pilot boat L.H. Hitchcock reported to be lost in the same gale.

Vessels at Brazos. Steamers Monmouth, Sea, and Florida; a barque from Galveston with trops, name unknown; brig Apalachicola; schrs. Water Witch, Wm. Bryan, Ellen and Clara, Enterprise, Cornelia, Southerner, and Arista – also, a ship off the bar waiting to be discharged, name unknown.

The only U.S. vessel off the point was the schooner Flirt.

The Alabama left Brazos on the 1st inst. Gen. Taylor was still at Matamoros, waiting for reinforcements.

Major Lear, who crossed the country from Fort Jesup, and for whose safety fears were entertained, had reached the camp in safety.

Col. McIntosh was alive yet, and hopes are entertained of his recovery.  Capt. Page is recovering.

Capt. Saunders, engineer, and Cols. Winthrop and Z. Lyons, attached to General Taylor’s staff, came on board the Alabama as passengers, and took at Balize, Capt. Major and A Maretta – also, the following sick and wounded officers from the army:  Lieut. Arthur, 2d artillery, Lieuts. Gates and McClay and Capt. Kells, 8th infantry, Lieut. Stevens, 5th infantry. [JCB]

NNR 70.240 attack on Capt. John Charles Fremont threatened by Don Jose Castro

  LIEUT. COL. FREMONT. The navy department have received letters from Monterey, dated 18th April. Lieut. Fremont having been ordered by Don Jose Castro to quit California, and expecting an attack, fortified himself, and thus apprised the American consul at Monterey of his purposes.

  “MY DEAR SIR: - I this moment have received your letters, and without waiting to read them, acknowledge the receipt which the courier requires instantly. I am making myself as stong as possible, in the intention that if we are unjustly attacked, we will fight to extremity and refuse quarter, trusting to our country to avenge our death. No one has reached my camp; and from the heights we are able to see troops (with the glass) mustering at Saint John’s, and preparing cannon. I thank you for your kindness and good wishes, and would write more at length as to my intentions, did I not fear that my letter will be intercepted. We have in no wise done wrong to the people or to the authorities of the country; and if we are hemmed in and assaulted, we will die, every man of us, under the flag of our country.

  Very truly, yours,

  “P.S. – I am encamped on the top of the Sierra, at the headwaters of a stream, which strikes the road to Monterey, at the house of D. Joaquin Gomez. J.C.F.”

  Castro assembled about 100 men in front of the entrenchments. After remaining there three days, he concluded to retreat, when it was discovered that the party had quietly gone off, leaving some old saddles and trash which the Californians had magnified into munitions of war. Three hundred riflemen offered their services to Capt. F., but they were declined.

The movement against Lieut. Fremont seems to have been directed by the central government of Mexico; but it is not believed that the people of California entertained an ill-will towards him, or would willingly have done him harm. His own conduct in the whole matter seems to have been marked alike by courage and discretion. [JCB]

NNR 70.240 demand on ships for freights at New Orleans

  FREIGHTS – NEW ORLEANS TRADE. – The Bulletin of the 1st inst. proceeds to account for the high rate of freights at that port, on other grounds, than that of an apprehension of losing their vessels in the war with Mexico – They say: - “On Tuesday last there were nine ships and eight barks less in port than at the same time last year; while the excess of receipts this year over last; would supply cargoes for two or three hundred vessels.  We state them, in round numbers, as follows: -

5,531,000 lbs. bulk pork and bacon; 133,000bbls. beef & pork; 25,000 tierces beef; 11,000 hhds, Pork, Hams and Bacon; 50,000 bbls. lard; 71,000 kegs do.; 559,000 bushelscorn; 140,000 bbls. corn, in ears; 218,000 bbls. & sk.wheat; 261,000 do flour, 40,000 bushels oats, 18,000 bbls. whiskey, 3,000 hhds. tobacco; 22,000 pks. buffalo robes; 72,000 bales cotton.

  The weight of the above cannot be short of 256 millions of punds, making 114,223 tons, and requiring to transport it about 250 ships; of average size. We repeat, New Orleans offers a golden harvest to the shipping interest. [JCB]

NNR 70.240 Catholic Chaplains

  CATHOLIC CHAPLAINS. As many rumors are in circulation respecting the Catholic chaplains to be sent to the army of occupation, we think that we would be doing a favor to our readers be stating briefly what we know on the subject from the best authority,  A request was communicated to the superior of the Society of Jesus in Maryland, through two Catholic prelates, on the part of the United States government, that he should appoint two clergymen to go as chaplains to the army in Texas. – The request was laid before several bishops then on a visit in Georgetown College, and the principal clergymen attached to that institution. It was  the unanimous opinion that it should be acceded to. Fathers McElroy and Rey were then proposed as proper persons to fill the office. All present approved of their nomination. – On the same day the superior, accompanied by two bishops, waited upon the secretaries of war and state, and had a full understanding with them. The two gentlemen are expected to depart for the army next week. [Catholic Herald] [JCB]

NNR 70.241 The State of National Finances

  THE STATE OF NATIONAL FINANCES.  The message of the president, in compliance with the call of the senate, as to his views on ways and means, and the treasury estimates under a state of war with Mexico, are insterted in a following page.  It will be seen that the deficiency of means under existing laws would be many millions. His principal reliance for improving the revenue is, by diminishing the duties payable upon importations, so as to induce a much larger importation of foreign goods. The effect would be, according to our notion, to distress the community in far greater proportion than it would relieve the government. True, perhaps, the government could get the duties, but so sure ast it did the people would have the goods, thus flooded upon them, to pay for. Their prospect of paying forty or fifty millions more to Europeans per annum, for importations, than they now have to pay them, would be rather an embarrassing task, at the present prices for our produce. That it could be done, we verily do not believe. That the attempt would at once drain the country of its specie – and then spread ruin over the land, similar to what we have recently experienced, is most seriously to be dreaded.

  There is no suggestion for sustaining the national credit beyond the brief period which the president seems to contemplate the present war with Mexico will be confined to. Should that war unhappily be procrastinated – a case certainly within the scope of possibilities, another year would find, according to the project submitted, an empty treasury – temporary expecients exhausted, and a resort to heavy direct taxation to retrieve credit, inevitable.

  That a reduction of duties would increase the revenues, except for the moment, is extremely problematical. A sufficient flood of foreign goods would probably be inundated to prostrate our own establishments. Then would come the pinch of poverty. We could no longer import because we could no longer pay, and would have no credit left except by showing that we had provided sufficient taxes to meet the interest loans that would be required. [JCB]

NNR 70.241 offer of British ministers to mediate differences between the United States and Mexico

  MEDIATION OFFERED. As a matter of course, when it was decided in the British cabinet to settle their own dispute with the United States amicably, they would become anxious for an immediate termination of the war between the United States and Mexico, otherwise they could hardly hope to keep Europe out of the fray. The question in the cabinet, as to offering the terms which Mr. Pakenham has offered, and which have been acceded to, was decided by a majority of but one vote, Mr. Peel, the minister, voted in the negative, though he acquiesced on finding a majority against him.  Had the declaration of war against Mexico been received, Mr. McLane is said to have expressed his conviction that no such terms would have been offered. Having been made, the British cabinet now offer their friendly interference as mediators for a peace between the United States and Mexico, through Mr. Pakenham, and have dispatched a similar proposition to Mexico. Vol. XX. Siglo 19. [JCB]

NNR 70.242 June 20, 1846 Mexico, revolutionary movement in favor of Santa Anna, Vera Cruz blockade, neutral powers protest blockade.

Revolutionary Movements. Mazatlan and Tepec, principal ports on the Pacific, have declared against Paredes, and in favor of the return of Santa Anna.

The heavy demands made on the departments and on the clergy for funds had rendered Paredes unpopular. The death of the archbishop, was a death blow to the monarchical scheme, of which he was the main stay.  The federalists of themselves, were not in sufficient force to contend with Paredes, but united with Santa Anna's adherents they would be an overmatch for him.  Santa Anna and Almonte were expected at Vera Cruz, from Cuba

Our latest dates are from the Havana Diario del Marina, of June 9, containing Vera Cruz dates of June 1.

The consuls of neutral powers had protested against the Unites States blockade of the port, issued 20 th May.  Many families were leaving the city for the interior.  Affairs were as in 1838, when blockaded by the French, except that the acts is in better condition. There are, including the water battery lately constructed, 200 pieces of heavy ordinance bristling from its portholes. Bravo, who commands, is a generous and liberal as well as a brave man.

The Mexican Congress, assembled on the 27th May.  Bustamente, (ex-president) was elected to preside. [AEK]

NNR 70.243 Dr. William Maxwell Wood, bearer of dispatches from the Pacific squadron, passing through Mexico, meets and forwards to Com. John Drake Sloat intelligence of the war

  The Steam frigate Mississippi, arrived at Pensacola on the 8th from Vera Cruz, bringing Dr. Wood, U.S.N. bearer of dispatches to the government from the Pacific squadron, who passes through Mexico without interruption. At the post office at Guadalxara, he met the news of the capture of Captain Thornton, near Matamoros, and immediately employed a trusty person to take intelligence to Commodore Sloat, at Mazatlan, who would probably receive the intelligence five days in advance of the Mexicans, who had not expressed the intelligence. J. Parrott, Consul at Mazatlan, accompanied him. They left Mazatlan on the 30th of April, were at Guadalaxara on the 9th of May, and their express was expected to have reached Mazatlan again, by the 17th of May. [JCB]

NNR 70.255 report of taking of Matamoros

  Headquarters of the army of occupation,
City of Matamoros,
May 18, 1846.

  Sir:  I have the honor to report that my very limited means for crossing rivers prevent a complete prosecution of the victory of the 9th instant.  A pontoon train, the necessity of which I exhibited to the department last year, would have enabled the army to cross on the evening of the battle, take this city, with all the artillery and stores of the enemy, and a great number of prisoners – in short, to destroy entirely the Mexican army. But I was compelled to await the arrival of heavy mortars, with which to menace the town from the left bank, and also the accumulation of small boats.  In the meantime, the enemy had somewhat recovered from the confusion of his flight, and ought still with his 3,000 left him, to have made a respectable defense.  In made every preparation to cross the river above the town, while Lieut. Col. Wilson made a diversion on the side of Barita, and the order of march was given out for 1 o’clock yesterday, from the camp near Fort Brown, when I was waited upon by General Reguena, empowered by General Arista, commanding in chief the Mexican forces, to treat for an armistice until the government should finally settle the question. I replied to this, that an armistice was out of the question, that a month since I had proposed one to General Ampudia, which was declined; that circumstances were now changed; that I was receiving large reinforcements, and could not now suspend operations which I had not initiated or provoked; that the possession of Matamoros was a sine quo non; that our troops would occupy the town; but that General Arista might withdraw his forces, leaving the public property of every description. 

  An answer to the above was promised in the afternoon, but none came, and I repaired at sundown to join the army, already in position at a crossing some two miles above the town. Very early this morning the bank was occupied by about two 18 pounders and three batteries of field artillery – and and the crossing commenced – the light companies of all the battalions were first thrown over, followed by the volunteer and regular cavalry. No resistance was made, and I was soon informed from various quarters, that Arista had abandoned the town with all his troops the evening before, leaving only the sick and wounded. I immediately dispatched a staff officer to the prefect to demand surrender; and in the meantime, a commission was sent by the prefect to confer with me on the same point.

  I gave assurances tthat the civil rights of the citizens would be respected, and our troops at once dropped down opposite the town and crossed at the “upper ferry,” the American flag being displayed at “Fort Paredes,” a Mexican redoubt near the crossing. The different corps are now encamped in the outskirts of the city.  To-morrow I shall make suitable arrangements for the occupation of the town, and for taking possession of the public property. – More than three hundred of thethe enemy’s wounded have been left in the hospitals. Arista is in full retreat twords Monterey with the fragments of his army.

  I deeply regret to report that Lieut. George Stevens, a very promising young officer of the second dragoons, was accidentally drowned this morning while attempting to swim the river with his squadron.

  I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Brevet brig. Gen. U.S.A comd’g.

To the ADJUNT GENERAL of the army

Washington D.C.

Headquarters army of occupation,
Matamoros, Mexico
, May 20, 1846.

SIR:  On the 26th of April, I had occasion to advise the department that hostilities had actually broken out, and that in consequence I had found it necessary to use the authority with which I was vested, and call upon the governors of Louisiana and Texas for a force, each, of four regiments. The eight regiments thus called for would make a force of nearly 5,000 men, which I deemed sufficient to meet the wants of service in this quarter.

  At the same time that I wrote to the governor of Louisiana requesting this volunteer force, I addressed a letter to gen. Gaines, desiring him to assist in organizing these regiments and having them promptly supplied. In my communicastion to the governor, the organization was very exactly proscribed, being that indicated from your office on the 25th of August, 1845. I find, however, that this organization has been exceeded, and, moreover, that gen. Gaines has called for many ,ore volunteers than I deemed necessary, extending the call to other staes besides Louisiana.

  It will, of course, be for the government to decide whether the future operations in this quarter will require the amount of force (entirely unknown) which is coming hither. I only desire to say, that this reinforcement, beyond the eight regiments mentioned above, was never asked for by me, and that in making the call of the 26th of April, I well knew that if the Mexicans fought us at all, it would be before the arrival of the volunteers. It was for the purpose of clearing the river, and performing such further service as the government might direct, that I thought it proper to ask for reinforcements.

  It is extremely doubtful whether the foot regiment from Texas can be raised, and I shall desire the governor, who is expected here, to suspend the call for them. None of the mounted companies, except Capt. Price’s, already in service, have reported to me.

  I fear that the volunteers have exhausted the supply of tents deposited in New Orleans for the use of this army. We are greatly in want of them; and I must request that immediate measures be taken to send direct to Brazos Santiago, say 1,000 tents, for the use of the army in the field. The tents of the 7th infantry were cut up to make sandbags during the recent bombardment of Fort Brown.

  I am, sir, very respectfully, your ob’t servant,
Z. TAYLOR, Brevet brig. Gen. U.S.A. com’ding.

  The ADJUTANT GENERAL of the army,
Washington, D.C.

Extracts from a dispatch from General taylor, dated, “Matamoros, May 21, 1846. “Our future movements must depend, in a great degree, on the extent to which the Rio grande is navigable for steamboats, and I fear that my expectations in this particular will not be realized. – Though, at times, navigable as high as Camargo, or even Mier, it is doubtful whether a boat can now be pushed higher than Remosa. Indeed, the “Neva,” which is in the river, and accompanied the expedition under General Smith, has not yet reached this place, though hourly expected.

I shall lose no time in ascertaining the practicability of the river for steamboats and shall occupy Reinosa, and such other points as a boat may be able to reach.

“All the cavalry (regular and irregular) of the army, under command of Lieut. Col. Garland, is in pursuit of the retreating army, to harass its rear, and capture prisoners and baggage. We have no authentic intelligence from the lieutenant colonel since his depature. Deserters are, however, coming in from the Mexicans.

  “Lieut. Col. Wilson’s battalion, 1st infantry, with some 200 volunteers, was at barita on the 17th, and has since been reinforced by Gen. Smith, with about 700 Louisiana volunteers. This column is ordered to move up the right bank of the river, and I look hourly for its arrival.

  A large amount of public stores, chiefly ordnance, has been found concealed in this town. We are gradually recovering it from the places where it was hidden. Two field pieces, several hundred muskets, and 200 shells are among the articles recovered.

Headquarters of the army of occupation, City of Matamoros, May 24, 1846. SIR:  I have to report the arrival this day of gen. Smith, with the battalion of the 1st infantry, the Washington regiment of Louisiana volunteers, and a company of volunteers from Mobile. Another regiment of Louisiana volunteers is below, and will probably arrive this evening or tomorrow. This command was accompanied from the mouth of the river by the steamboat Neva, which succeeded without difficulty in reaching this place.

  Lieut. Col. Garland returned on the 22nd from his expedition in pursuit of the retreating army. He succeeded in capturing a small rear party, after a trifling skirmish in the night, in which a man, and unfortunately a woman, were killed on the Mexican side, and two men slightly wounded on our own. – He pursued the route of the army for sixty miles and then returned agreeably to his instructions. – The scarcity of water and condition of his horse made it useless to proceed farther.

  I would respectfully solicit instructions as to the dispositon to be made of certain property captured in the camp of Gen. Arista. A pavilion and several pieces of massive plate are among the articles. His clothing, and other property purely personal, have been deposited in the city with a view of being returned to him. I would suggest that the pavilion be sent to Washington, to be disposed of as the president may direct.

  The recovery of ordnance and other public stores still continues here. Two pieces of cannon have been taken from the river, and small arms in considerable numbers have been taken in the town.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
brevet brig. General U.S.A. commanding.

  The ADJUTANT GENERAL of the army,
Washington D.C.

NNR 70.255 Com. David Conner's instructions to the squadron on principles of a blockade

 FROM THE HOME SQUADRON. We subjoin a copy of the instructions of Commodore Conner to the commanders of vessels in the home squadron, showing the principles to be abserved in the blockade of the Mexican prots. The ports already under blockade, are Vera Cruz, Tampico, and Alvarado:

INSTRUCTIONS to be observed by officers commanding vessels of the home squadron, in enforcing the blockade of ports of the east coast of Mexico.

1. No neutral vessel, proceeding towards the entrance of a blockaded port, shall be captured or detained, if she shall not previously have received from one of the blockading squadron, a special notification of the existence of the blockade. This notification shall be, moreover, inserted in writing on the muster roll of the neutral vessel by the cruiser which meets her, and it shall contain the announcement, together with the statements of the day, and the latitude in which it was made.

2. Neutral vessels which may be already in the port before the blockade of it, shall have full liberty to depart, with or without cargo, fifteen days after that upon which the blockade  is established.

3. The ports of Vera Cruz and Tampico will remain entirely free for the entrance and departure of neutral non-commercial mail packets.

Mexican boats engaged exclusively in fishing, on any part of the coast, will be allowed to pursue their labors unmolested.

      In its present political condition, the flag of Yucatan is to be respected. 

D. CONNOR, commanding home squadron.  United States ship Cumberland, Off Brazos Santiago, May 14, 1846.

EXTRACT of a letter from Commodore Connor, dated “May 28, 1846.

“On the morning of the 18th, a detachment of nearly two hundred seamen and mariners from the Cumberland and Potomac, under the command of Captain Aulick, in the boats of the two vessels, entered the Del Norte to co-operate with a detachment from the army, under the command of Lieut. Col. Wilson, for the purpose of establishing a post at Barita, on the right bank of the river, about fifteen miles from its mouth.  This was accomplished without opposition.

“On the same day (it appears) our army crossed the river and took possession of matamoros, the Mexican army having abandoned it on the day previous in the greatest confusion and disorder. There being no longer and occasion for the services of our men on shore, Captain Aulick returned on board on the 20th.” [JCB]

NNR 70.256 exhibit of force of the Gulf Squadron, unlikelihood of successful attack on Veracruz

 THE LEXINGTON, sloop of war now at the Brooklyn Naval yard, has been converted into a store ship, and will leave in a few days for the Pacific with supplies for the Navy, under command of Lieut. T. Baily, partially armed – having 6 or 8 guns and 80 men.

The Gulf Squadron. The following is said to be a correct statement of the whole naval force in the gulf:

Three frigates, 156 guns, 1440 crew; Three sloops 66 guns, 600 crew; One steamer, 10 guns, 235 crew; One steamer, 10 guns, 166 crew; Three brigs, 30 guns, 240 crew. Eleven vessels, 292 guns, 2681 crew.

  The aggregate of the crews of these vessels is full one-third of our naval force, as restricted by law to 7,500 seamen, &c..

  A number of revenue Cutters, small steamers, and other vessels of light draft have recently been ordered to the gulf and will be serviceable, but the entire force is considered altogether inadequate to attempt an attack upon Vera Cruz.

  A letter from an officer in the United States Navy, dated at Pensacola, May 30, says: - We shall probably sail, as soon as we are provisioned, for Vera Cruz, but I doubt if any attack will be made on the castle, as they have prepared it so well for defense; and if their practice should be equal to the fire on Gen. Taylor’s camp they would sink the whole of our navy. When the French attacked the castle, there were only twenty-five guns of small caliber at the point of attack; they have now over two hundred pieces, thirteen mortars, and Paixhan guns in quantities, on new batteries, at the same point, and one of our engineer officers says that if they were served well no fleet could ever make any impression. [JCB]

NNR 70.256 rumors of a British offer of mediation between the United States and Mexico

            The English papers state that Mr. McLane and his lady were among the congratulatory callers upon the queen – of course Mr. McLane has recovered from his severe illness.

  General Armstrong, Consul for the U. States at Liverpool, came passenger in the Great Western, on a visit to the United States.  He is announced in N. York papers as the bearer of important dispatches from Mr. McLane.

  Among the recent appointments by the President, confirmed by the senate was that of Mr. Thos G. Reynolds, as Secretary of Legion at Madrid.

  Mr. Parrott, U.S. Consul at Mazatlan, and Dr. Wood of U.S. Navy, bearer of dispatches from the American squadron on the Pacific, passed through Mexico, to Vera Cruz and reached Pensacola, in about twenty-two days from Mazatlan. At Vera Cruz they were joined by F.M. Diamond, U.S. Consul of that port and seven other Americans. – The intelligence brought by them will be found under appropriate heads. [JCB]

NNR 70.257 comments on the possibility of a British offer of mediation between the United States and Mexico

  THE TREATY, between the Great Britain and the U. States of America, relative to Oregon, negotiated between the right hon. Mr. PARKENHAM an the secretary of state, Mr. BUCHANAN, was signed by President Polk, and ratified by the United States senate, was taken out by the steamer Great Western, which left New York on the 25th, for the ratification of the British Government.

  That British government had instructed Mr. Parkenham to offer the mediation of that government in hopes of restoring peace between the United States and Mexico, was so confidently asserted on the arrival of the Cambria, that the article first inserted in the “Union” in reference to such an offer, led us to the conclusion that such was the fact. The Union now states that if such was the fact, they at least are not advised of it. – The probability is, that the statement was at least premature. The application which had been made by the “Mexican association” in England, to the British ministers, for such a mediation, is inserted in this number, and may lead to the adoption of such a course, after the ratification on their part of the Oregon treaty.  Prior to that, such an offer would certainly be out of place. – Their own quarrel with us should at least be settled before proposing to settle the quarrel between us and a foreign power.

  The Union is evidently in now way desirous that such an offer should be made.

  Our own impression is, that it would be better for this country that no such offer be made. We should regret to ascertain that Mr. Parkenham had received such instructions; and this, not because we do not fervently pray for a speedy termination of hostilities, but because we do not believe that such a mediation would be likely to attain that object any sooner than it will be attained without it, if as soon, and because, if offered, we see not how our government can with propriety reject the overture, especially if, as it is said, they have offered the mediation of our government in the case of Buenos Ayres and the French, English, and Argentine quarrel.

  An interesting item in relation to the views of the British government, which will be found under our diplomatic head, if true, sheds light upon the subject in hand.

  Mr. Webster, in his speech in the senate on Wednesday, alluded to the reported offer of mediation. He doubted whether there was any truth in the report. If true, Mexico must come down to a treaty at last. He was for sending a minister at once to Mexico, with full powers to treaty. “If I were to advise,” said Mr. Webster, “I would advise to make Mexico and offer of a formal embassy.  We can afford to do so; we can lose nothing in dignity by it. I would be for keeping ourselves entirely in the right. It is not stooping on our part, because all the world knows that the contest is very unqual.

  This reference to a course of policy, so often urged in our columns, fortifies preconceived impressions. We go now one step further. The claims which conquest might urge, in any settlement with Mexico, we fervently hope will not be asserted. We would like to see our republic not only JUST, but MAGNANIMOUS. It belongs to the character of an intelligent republican people to be so. We have now an opportunity of exhibiting the fact, that the republic of the United States of America, is exactly such a republic, and the PEOPLE, exactly such a people. MILIONS FOR JUSTICE, - FOR CONQUEST, NOT A CENT. [JCB]

NNR 70.258-259 South American and Mexican Association's memorial to the British ministers asking mediation

  AUSTIN FRIARS, LONDON, June 2, 1846.  My Lord:  The committee of the South American and Mexican Association take the liberty to address your lordship, in consequence of the intelligence recently received of the republic of the United States of America having declared war against the republic of Mexico.

  The grevious evils certain to result from this unhappy occurrence, to all parties carrying on intercourse with, or having interests in Mexico, the committee need not point out your lordship. The blockading of ports, the warning off of vessels now on their way to Mexico, with cargoes expressly provided for that market; the impeding of returns being made for cargoes previously sent; the general interruption of the pursuits of commerce; the irregular state of warfare introduced by the issuing of letters of marque, often leading to unlicensed marauding of the seas, are the direct and unavoidable consequences of active hostilities between two nations, respectively situated towards each other as are these republics.

  That a large portion of these evils must fall upon British subjects from the extensive nature of their intercourse and connexion with Mexico, your lordship will also be fully aware.

  The committee venture to hope, that, on an examination of the grounds on which this declaration of war has been issued by the United States, it will be found that the grievance alleged by that power against Mexico is not so deeply rotted, but the friendly interposition of good offices between the contending parties by an independent power, standing in relations of amity and neutrality towards both, may be found available to remove it.

  The President of the United States, in his message to the congress of that republic, declares the ground of offense to be – that a Mexican force had attacked a force of the United States, placed on the left bank of the Rio del Norte, between that river and the river Nueces, said act of hostility on the part of the republic of Mexico constituting in itself a “state of war.”

  The president further adverts, in his message, to the fact that Texas has, “by the final action of the congress of the United States, become an integral part of the Union.”  But it is manifest that the integrity of this part of the Union must be decided by the geographical position of that state, previous to its separation from the mother country. There is not a map in existance, published previous to the separation of the province of Texas, that does not assign the river Nueces as the bboundary of that province.

  The only act by which it is assumed that the boundary of Texas could be obtruded to the Rio del Norte, is an act of the congress of Texas itself, passed in December 1836, Texas being at that time in insurrection against the parent state, and its independence not having been acknowledged by any power whatever. Upon a title of such questionable validity it is that the U. States has thought fit to direct its troops to occupy the territory in question, and to consider the attempt to dislodge them therefrom as an act constituting a declaration of war by Mexico.

  It is to be remarked, that although claiming the whole of the territory in question between the rivers Nueces and river Del Norte to be their own, the Mexicans, so far from provoking hostility with respect to this disputed ground, had wholly continued themselves to the right bank of the Rio del Norte, until the troops of the United States had appeared on the other side, avoiding therefore on the side of Mexico all cause for irritation.

  And if, indeed, there had been some manifestation of irritated feeling on the part of Mexico with regard to Texas, it might perhaps have been considered somewhat excusable. Several hundreds of British subjects are at this time dispersed throughout Mexico, carrying on, under the protection of the treaty between G. Britain and Mexico, their several legitimate pursuits to the advantage of the country in which they are settled and to their own. If these persons were found to congregate themselves together in a remote and thinly peopled province of Mexico, and there to foment an insurrection against the parent state, the a declaration of separation and independence, and, lastly, an act of annexation to the British crown, such a proceeding could hardly be viewed as otherwise than grievous toward the republic of Mexico, and not calculated perhaps to attract a moral sympathy in any quarter. It is now a matter of historical record, that when the signatures to the act of annexation of Texas to the United States came to be examined, they were found to be nearly all those of strangers, and not of native Texans.

  The committee of the South American and Mexican Association respectfully bring these circumstances under the notice of her majesty’s government in the hope that it shall appear, on an impartial view of the political relations between the United States and Mexico, that there is no cause of rupture between the two parties but such as a friendly and respectful interposition of good offices might remove. Her majesty’s government may deem it expedient to endeavor, in that character, to put an end to a state of hostility between the two republics, embarrassing and injurious to both.

  The committee do not conceal that it is from the desire to protect their commercial interests, that they address this representation to your lordship; but they trust that that motive comprehends nothing that is not in accordance with the general interests of civilized states. – At a time when the desire for the maintenance of peace is so generally and practically recognized by the powers of Europe, it cannot be out of place for Englishmen to express a hope that between the republics of the Western Hemisphere, possessing the most free institutions, and a boundless territory, with all the means within themselves of encouraging and rewarding industry and extending civlization and happiness, the elements of strife and discord may speedily be dispersed, and the bonds of amity and good will be strengthened, to their own common advantage, and that of all holding friendly intercourse with them.

  I have the honor to be, my lord, your most faithful servant,
J.D. POWLES, Chairman of the South American and Mexican Association.

The right hon. the earl of Aberdeen, K.T., one of her majesty’s principal secretaries of state, &c., &c.

NNR 70.261-262 article in the "Southern Quarterly Review" reviewing the campaign, noticed

          An article will be found in this number, extracted from the Southern Review, written evidently by a person conversant with the subject on which he treats, and of no ordinary talents. He scribbles with a keen pen, dipped occasionally in caustic ink, yet the facts, which an impartial reader will be able to ascertain in relation to the conducting of the war in which we are engaged, from this writer, are important towards forming a correct judgement of the premnises. Some apprehensions which we took an opportunity to suggest at the time the army was about to proceed to Corpus Christi, as to precautionary outfit, and as to adequate information of the nature of the country about to be entered, the harbors, depths of water, roads, &c., &c., and of force and disposition of the occupants of the territory, have been so far indisputably realized, that we cannot help giving credence to far more of what is stated by the writer alluded to, than we like to do. That he is occasionally severe without due regard to circumstances which should excuse or palliate, we have no doubt. Readers however will judge for themselves. [JCB]

NNR 70.262 formidable force organizing against Santa Fe

  EXPEDITION AGAINST SANTA FE. – The division of the invading army, which is assembling in the state of Missouri, and which is to be commanded by the old veteran officer General Wool, intending to proceed to Santa Fe and Upper California, is mustering with spirit and will soon be far upon their route.- The Missourians and the “We-tern Rangers” mount at the first blast of the bugle, rifle in hand, bowie knife at the girdle, and revolving pistols in their holsters, demanding only to know who is to lead them on to the west. The first requesition for volunteers for the expedition was deemed inadequate, and another regiment is called for. The frontier-men will have the whole of this frolic to themselves. We judge there will be very little fighting. [JCB]

NNR 70.262 Lt. Col. Henry Wilson marches against Reynosa

  Our information from the army on the Rio Grande is to the 6th instant.

  An expedition composed of four companies of the 1st infantry and some volunteers, altogether about 500 men marched from Matamoros on the 5th inst., under command of Lieutenant Col. Wilson, towards Reinoso, a town situated about 60 miles above, upon the Rio Grande.  From thence they designed to proceed to Camargo, 30 miles still further up.

  “The Corporal,” two of whose letters are inserted, writes to the New Orleans Bee on the 6th, from the camp opposite Matamoros. ‘The wet weather and heat of the sun have somewhat impaired the health of our army, though it may yet be considered good. The disease most prevalent is the diarrhea, but I believe it is a milder state of the disease than generally prevails in this climate and at this season of the year. To prevent the spread of this, the surgeon of our regiment has protested against the use of green corn, and accordingly our colonel has totally prohibited its admission in the lines. I assure you there never was an action on the corn laws of England that produced so much dissatisfaction as this direct prohibition of our military ruler.  It was utterly out of the question to hold public meetings on the subject, and had they been held, would have been to no avail, for our king rules without consulting the ministers or parliament, when the health of the troops is brought into question.”

  We are as ignorant here of our destination as you are, other than that we start up the river. Some are of the opinion that the army will be scattered and take and occupy posts on the river, while the larger portion seem sanguine that we march directly for Monterey, where the enmy’s forces are concentrating and fortifying themselves. Should the latter prophesy be verified, we will have warm work in reaching the point, as the sun is warmer in the prairies on the route than you can imagine. Monterey is ninety leagues from Matamoros, and eighty from the Rio grande, and were it not that rains keep the prairies pretty wet, it would be difficult for infantry to reach water when needed, and at easy marches.”

  Captain Stringer has established a post office at Matamoros, and demands his ten cents for postage on letters as if commissioned by postmaster Cave Johnson himself. A mail arrives daily.

  General Worth had arrived. [JCB]

NNR 70.262 Gen. Zachary Taylor's letter complaining of want of transport and the large body of volunteers beyond what he had asked for

           The last official information we have from Gen. Taylor is the following:

Headquarters of the army of occupation, Matamoros, June 3, 1846. Sir:  I respectfully enclose herewith a field return of the forces in and near Matamoros, both regular and volunteer. The corps known to have arrived at Point Isabel, of which no returns have yet been received, will carry the entire forces under my orders to nearly 8,000 men.  I am necessarily detained at this point for want of suitable transportation to carry on offensive operations. There is not a steamboat at my command proper for the navigation of the Rio Grande, and without water transportation I consider it useless to attempt any extensive movement. Measures have been taken to procure boats of suitable draft and description, and one or two may now be expected. In the meantime, I propose to push a battalion of infantry as far as Reinosa, and occupy that town.  For any operations in the direction of Monterey, it will be necessary to establish a large depot at Camargo, which I shall lose no time in doing as soon as proper transports arrive, unless I receive counter instruction from the department.

  I trust the department will see that I could not possibly have anticipated the arrival of such heavy reinforcements from Louisiana as are now here, and on their way hither. Without large means of transportation, this force will embarrass rather than facilitate our operations. I cannot doubt that the department has already given instructions based upon the change in our position since my first call for volunteers.

  Our last accounts of Arista, represent his force to be halted at Coma, an extensive hacienda on the Monterey road, about 100 miles from this point. – He has pickets covering the roads leading to matamoros, with a view to cut off all communication with the interior.  The departmental authorities have issued a decree denouncing as traitors all who hold intercourse with us, or with those who do so. – I am, nevertheless, disposed to believe that in some quarters at least our presence is not unfavorably received. We have no intelligence from the city of Mexico. Ordnance stores, and other munitions of war, are continually discovered in the town. Five pieces of cannon, and a very large amount of balls, shells, and ammunition generally, have been brought to light.

  I am, sir, very respectfully your obedient servant,

Brevet Brig. Gen. U.S. Army comd’g.

To the ADJUTANT GENERAL of the Army.
Washington D.C.

NNR 70.262-263 letters from "The Corporal" at Matamoros

  A correspondent of the N. Orleans Bee, over the signature of “The Corporal,” writes – Matamoros, May 26, 1846.

  GENTELMEN:  Two days after I wrote you, we took up the line of march for this point, which we reached on the 25th. The country through which we passed was lovely to the extreme – being as level as a ball-room floor, and full of little chaparrals and muskeet groves. Our road, though not exactly following the meanderings of the river, touched its banks often enough to obtain water every mile or two. The citizens were friendly to us, and showed us little displeasure at the invasion. In fact, some of them expressed their wish that the country should be governed by Americans or some other people, that would guarantee them a liberal and stable government – so much had they been annoyed by the internal convulsions of their own. At every house we found three or four men, which induced me to believe that the press gang had met with poor success among them.  They say it is not their disposition to play the soldier at any time, particularly the present, and when the call is made for troops they leave their homes in possession of the women and find businessin the chaparral. They are happy, simple people, whose aim seems to be to make provisions for to-day, leaving to-morrow to look out for itself. All along the road they were found waiting with milk, a sort of bread which they call tortillas, cheese, poloncas of maple sugar, and assort of liquor resembling in looks and taste San Croix rum. We paid them liberally for all we obtained, which to them must have presented a strong contrast to the Mexican soldiery, who spread dismay and devastation among their own people, wherever they go. It seems to have been the desire of every man in our ranks to make the line of disparity between the American and Mexican soldiers as palpable as possible, and the good effect of such conduct, if not immediately developed, will in the course of time be more apparent. Our march was very heavy, particularly the day we left the Baritas, and some of our young men were very much used up. Two from company A were so much affected by the scorching sun as to be unable to proceed further, and stopped at the house of a Mexican, where they received the utmost kindness and attention during the night, and were furnished with horses in the morning to catch up with us.

  It was about 10 o’clock in the morning when we reached the town of Matamoros, though its white buildings, so different from those we passed on the route, had attracted the eye long before that time.  There was something far more attractive to the eye than the white buildings of the town – something to awaken a thrill of pleasure in the breast of the whole regiment – the Stripes and Stars were majestically floating in the breeze from the highest point in Matamoros, and between the river and the town hundreds and hundreds of white tents were pitched in such admirable order as to induce the beholder to think it a great town.

  As we entered the town at the east end, thousands of people sallied out of their houses to look upon us, whose looks more bespoke a welcome to their own army than to that of the invaders. At many a half opened door or window was seen the head of a senora, whose timidity or modesty, (albeit they allow so little to the Mexicans,) forbade their emerging into the streets. Some of these women are indeed beautiful, though a great majority are indolent slovenly and destitute of that female delicacy which characterizes our own women.  Their common dress is a white muslim skirt tied quite loosely around the body, without any bodice; their chemise being the only covering for their breasts, in which they wear their jewelry and cross.  I did not see one pair of stockings in all the town. From this style of dressing you will infer that pride of dress gives way to comfort and ease, and that, too, in a greater degree, than I think the largest liberty would warrant them in indulging in. I went into a house yesterday evening, occupied by an old man and two daughters, both speaking a sufficiency of English to be understood. After being seated for a few moments, the eldest of the daughters went to the bed and brought to me a most lovely and interesting child, as white almost as any of our own people. She informed me that she was married about two years ago to a Texan prisoner, and that he had been killed whilst fighting under General taylor. She spoke in the highest terms of her deceased lord, and seemed to worship his image in the child. She is a lovely creature, and I think deeply devoted to our cause.

  Matamoros is a much handsomer place than I expected to find it. It covers two miles square though by no means as compast as an American city – every house except those around the public square having a large garden attached. The houses in the business part of the town are built after the American fashion, though seldom exceeding two stories in height. All the windows to these buildings are grated from top to bottom with iron bars, and half of the door only opens for admittance, which gives them the appearance of prisons more than business houses. The public square is in the centre of the town, and must have been laid off by an American or a European, for the Mexicans never could have laid it out with such beauty and precision. On the four sides of the square the houses are built close enough together, as in black, and are all of the same size and height with the exception of the cathedral, which, though unfinished, still towers above the others. In these houses are sold dry goods, groceries, and every kind of wares, with now and then an exchange of coffee house. They are principally occupied by Europeans, and you can hear French, English, Spanish, and German spoken at the same time. After leaving the public square on either side, the houses decease in size and beauty for two or three squares, when the small reed and thatched huts commence, and continue to the extreme limits of the place.

  In walking through the streets, my attention was attracted to a house in the door of which stood or leaned two half naked Mexicans, so wo begone as to cause me to halt. On my nearing the door a most disagreeable stench almost induced me to bout-face.  I mustered courage to enter the door. On the floor lying upon mats without covering, were nearly fifty Mexicans, wounded in the late engagements, attended by some 10 or 12 women.  The smell of the place was insufferable, and I had to leave it. The next door was the same, and so on for about 20 houses. – A friend of mine called my attention to a room in which there were at least forty of these miserable objects, and this room was scarcely 12 feet square. There was not positively room for the nurses to attend them.  Some had lost a leg, others an arm, and some both legs and arms. I noticed one who will certainly get well, whose legs were shot off within two or three inches above the knee, and he seemed to me to have a greater flow of spirits than some who had only flesh wounds.  I said to him, that had only his wounds been made by a Mexican shot he would have been dead, to which he relpied, the American shot was very good – no poisonous copper in them.  One had died just before I entered the room, and they were making preparations to carry him out. – He had been shot in the mouth by a rifle ball which passed under the left ear, and he had lived from the 9th up to this time. There are between 350 and 400 of these horrid objects in this place, and the sight of them would induce many a stout heart to lament the horrors of war. These men give the number of killed and wounded on the 9th much greater than the Americans ever claimed – some say twelve hundred, some say fifteen hundred, but enough of them.

  Lieut, Wells, of the spies, informed me yesterday that General Arista had halted at the distance of 80 miles from this place, and is receiving reinforcements quite briskly. Lieut. Wells with a few men followed them 60 miles. The Mexicans say he (Arista) will certainly return and attack us at this place, but the best informed Americans entertain no such idea.

  If things are left to Taylor’s discretion, he will march from this place to Monterey, - on this river – and if he does, the Mexicans will give him a hard fight – men will turn out to defend their homes and property in that section that we have never had to cope with yet – men, who when called on heretofore to put down rebellion or to invade Texas, have paid two or three dollars for a miserable substitute, will now take their rifles, and march to the field of fight; and these Rio Grande rancheros know how to use a rifle too. From the manner in which they fought on the 9th, you may safely infer that the fight will be a hard one. They will lways manage to have two ro three to one when they fight us and we look upon it as an equalizing thing, (you may think this boasting but it is an absolute fact.)

  An express was sent from this place to Washington six days ago, and the general belief is, that we will not move from here until advised by the government to that effect. In such a case we will drill during the interim, and make preparations for any contingency.

  The United States Dragoons left yesterday, for Point Isabel, to get their horses shod; they are a fine looking set of men and did much good service in the field.

  Captain Walker, (I believe now a major,) is here with his men. He rode by our quarters yesterday on Tornado, the horse sent from New Orleans to him. Tornado seems as fond of his backer as the backer does of him, and they were the observed of all observers. Walker’s men say he has but one fault and that is too brave for his discretion. Capt. Price, also of the Texas Rangers, is here with a fine set of men, and is a rough customer for a Mexican to run against. Major Hayes is occupying the post at San Antonio by Taylor’s orders and will remain there until we march.  We were about issuing an Army Chronicle here, but before we could get possession of the office, some one took it, and paid or agreed to pay the original owner for the use of it.

  Our troops are in excellent spirits and long for the moment which will place them face to face with the enemy. The two volunteer regiments from your city , are in particularly buoyant spirits, notwithstanding their rate heavy march. They have too much pride to complain.

  P.S. – Since the commencement of my letter I have conversed with a gentleman of much intelligence, who informed me, that Gen. Taylor would positively cease offensive operations, until he heard from Washington. He says that Mtamoros was taken without orders, as the commands were emphatically to act defensive, and not cross the river under any pretence. He will not be blamed admitting he has overstepped his orders, for he has done some good service on the frontier. Unless Arista returns to Mtamoros, there will be no further hostilities until Uncle Sam tells his sons to go ahead. Yours, &c., THE CORPORAL.

Camp opposite Matamoros, May 28th, 1846. (10 o’clock A.M.)  GENTLEMEN:  From the date of this you will perceive that we are again on American ground, though within a stones throw of the enemy’s banks.  Our stay on the Matamoros side of the Rio Grande was brief – too brief to satisfy the curious portion of our troops in the perambulations through the captured city. But I suppose it’s all right; as the policy of our commander is to annoy the inhabitants of the place as little as possible. We are, however, allowed to cross the river occasionally, in small squads, and to remain for a portion of the day.  When I say we, I mean the volunteer regiments, for a greater pert of the regulars, with the Rangers and dragoons, are on the other side – dividing the troops on the two sides.

  A company of regular troops are encamped on the public square to preserve order, as is also a company of Mexican citizens, whom the general has induced to organize to keep their own citizens under proper restrictions. You must not infer from this that the liberty of the Mexican citizens has been in any manner curtailed – it is not so; for I myself, heard Gen. Taylor tell a citizen, (who complained of an injury received from one of his own people,) that he did not, nor would not, exercise the least civil jurisdiction over the place, but leave them to administer their own affairs so long as it did not conflict with his duty as commander of an invading army.

  While at headquarters, two Mexican women cam crying to the general and entreated him to release their husbands, who were prisoners in the fort. He simply bade the interpreter tell them, he could not, and they went on their way, apparently not the least surprised at his refusal. A ranchero also wanted the release of some servants, saying that his cotton was full of grass, but his request me thte same success.

  Capt. Thornton, of the dragoons, whom, you will recollect, was sent out some time ago to take observations, who charged the enemy, was defeated and taken prisoner, is still under arrest, and wills hortly be tried for action without orders. It is not likely that anything will be done to him more then censure, if that.  He is spoken of as a brave and worthy officer.  Lieut. Deas, was exchanged for, though he suffered to remain with the enemy as punishment for his indescretion. He was taken for a spy, and that was the reason why gen. Taylor used to exertion to get him back, thinking ‘twould be a bad precedent.  No one thought him so, and attributed his singular conduct to a generous disposition to find out what had been the fate of Col. Cross.

  Looking over the papers received yesterday, I saw several attempts at a description of a chaparral, but all is incorrect.  It is a series of thickets of various sizes, from 100 yards to a mile through, with musket trees interspersed in various kinds of bushes, and briars, all covered with thorns, and so closely entwined together by their respective branches as to prevent the passage of anything through larger than a wolf or hare. When they are in the course of a traveler he must travel around them, sometimes four or five miles, before he can make half a mile on his route.  In the middle of most of them you will find a small prairie with numerous beds of prickly pears, the fruit of which is often ventured for by those who are accustomed to its use and “know the ropes.”  It was in one of these prairies where Captain Walker as first fired on in the commencement of battles – the enemy had cut down the bushes and drawn a piece of artillery to its edge and planted it just as Walker emerged from the thicket by a mustang trail, on the other side.  In the large thickets, a good woodman can crawl on his belly without coming in contact with the branches, and thus approach near enough to its outer edge to take a deliberate aim at an object in the prairie.

  Four o’clock, P.M. – I ceased writing this morning, because I had nothing to write about; put by implements and crossed the river in search of news. The first place I went was Walker’s headquarters, a place where all the news respecting the enemy is to be found. Walker with the greater part of his men are absent on a ranging or spying expedition, and when he returns he will advise us of the movements of Arista.

  On the other side of the river the war bill has created quite an excitement, and the Mexicans look as though all hope of saving their country from being overrun is lost. Fifty thousand men they think, or pretend to think, will ruin Mexico.  Our soldiers too, seem cheered by the news, and anticipate a brilliant termination of the campaign, which a few days ago they feared would end in smoke.

  One of the volunteers was found dead in the streets of Matamoros this morning, having been stabbed in the back, and another one is missing, supposed also to have been murdered. A Spaniard or Mexican was found dead in his house this morning early, and his wife came to Taylor’s quarters, complained of the deed and pointed out the murderer. He was promptly arrested and placed under guard for trial.

  We have a regular mail arriving here every morning from Point Isabel, which leaves again in the evening for the same place, which will afford me an opportunity of sending you something in the way of words or news every day or two. 



NNR 70.263-264 Gen. Zachary Taylor's letter of 22d April to Gen. Mariano Arista, relative to blockade of the Rio Grande

  The following letter from Gen. Taylor to Gen. Arista, in reply to one from the latter remonstrating against the blockade of the Rio Grande, is worthy of being put on record among materials for a future history of the war. It shows General Taylor not less skilled in the structure of dispatches, than in the conduct of battle:

Headquarters, army of occupation, Camp near Matamoros, (Texas,) April 22, 1846.

  Sir. I have had the honor to receive your communication of this date, in which you complain of measures adopted by my order to close the mouth of the Rio Bravo against vessles bound to Matamoros, and in which you also advert to the case of two Mexicans supposed to be detained as prisoners in this camp.

  After all that has passed since the American army approached the Rio Bravo, I am certainly surprised that you should complain of a measure which is no other than a natural result of the state of war so much insisted upon by the Mexian authorities as actually existing at this time. You will excuse me for recalling a few circumstances, to show that this state of war has not been sought by the American army, but has been forced upon it, and that the exercise of the rights incident to such a state, cannot be made a subject of complaint.

  On breaking up my camp at Corpus Christi, and moving forward with the army under my orders to occupy the left bank of the Rio Bravo, it was my earnest desire to execute my instructions in a pacific manner; to observe the utmost regard for the personal rights of all citizens residing on the left bank of the river, and to take care of the religion and customs of the people should suffer no violation.

            With this view, and to quiet the minds of the inhabitants, I issued orders to the army, enjoining a strict observance of the rights and interests of all Mexicans residing on the river, and caused said orders to be translated into Spanish, and circulated in the several towns on the Bravo. These orders announced the spirit in which we proposed to occupy the country, and I am proud to say that up to this  moment the same spirit has controlled the operations of the army.   On reaching the Arroyo Colorado I was informed by a Mexican officer that the order in question had been received at Matamoros, but was told at the same time that if I attempted to cross the river it would be regarded as a declaration of war. Again, on my march to Frontone I was met by a deputation of the civil authorities of Matamoros, protesting against me occupation of a portion of the department of Tamaulipas, and declaring that if the army was not at once withdrawn, war would result. While this communication was in met hands, it was discovered that the village of Frontone had been set on fire and abandoned. I viewed this as a direct act of war, and informed the deputatien that their communication would be answered by me when opposite Matamoros, which was done in respectful terms.

  On reaching the river I dispatched an officer, high in rank, to convey to the commanding general in Matamoros the expression of my desire for amicablerealations, and my willingness to leave open to the use of the citizens of Matamoros the port of Brassos Santiago until the question of boundary should be definitely settled. This officer received for reply, from the officer selected to confer with him, that my advance to the Rio Bravo was considered as a veritable act of war, and he was actually refused an interview with the American Consul, in itself incompatible with a state of peace. Notwithstanding these repeated assurances on the part of the Mexican authorities, and notwithstanding the most obvious hostile preparations on the right bank of the river, accompanied by a ridged non-intercourse, I carefully abstained from any act of hostility – determined that the onus of producing an actual state of hostilities should not rest on me. Our relations remained in this state until I had the honoh to receive your note of the 12th instant, in which you denounce was as the alternative of my remaining in this position.

  As I could not , under my instruction, recede from my position, I accepted the alternative you offered, and made all my dispositions to meet it suitably. – But, still willing to adopt milder measures before proceeding to others, I contend myself, in the first instance, with ordering a blockade of the mouth of the Rio Brave, by the naval force under my orders – a proceeding perfectly constant with the state of war so often declared to exist, and which you acknowledge in your note of the 16th instant, relative to the late Colonel Cross. If this measure seem oppressive, I wish it borne in mind that it has been forced upon me by the course you have seen fit to adopt. I have reported this blockade to my government, and shall not remove it until I receive instructions to that effect, unless indeed, you desire and armistice, pending the final settlement of the question between the governments, or until war shall be formally declared by either, in which case I will cheerfully open the river. In regard to the consequences you mention as resulting from a refusal to remove the blockade, I beg you to understand that I am prepared for them be they what they may.

  In regard to the particular vessels referred to in your communication, I have the honor to advise you that, in the pursuance of my orders, two American schooners, bound to Matamoros, were warned off on the 17th instant, when near the mouth of the river, and put to sea, returning probably to New Orleans. They were not seized, or their cargoes disturbed in any way, nor have they been in the harbor of Brazos Santiago to my knowledge.  A Mexican schooner, understood to be the “Juanita,” was in or off that harbor when my instructions to blockade that river were issued, but was driven to see in a gale, since which time I have no report concerning her. Since the receipt of your communication, I have learned that two persons sent to the mouth of the river to procure information respecting the vessel, proceeded thence to Brazos Santiago, when they were taken up and detained by the officers in command, until my orders could be received. I shall order their immediate release. A letter from one of them to the Spanish vice consul in respectfully transmitted herewith.

  In relation to the two Mexicans said to have drifted down river in a boat, and to be prisoners at this time in my camp, I have the pleasure to inform you that no such persons have been taken prisoner, or are now detained by my authority. The boat in question was carried down empty by the current of the river, and drifted ashore near one of our pickets, and was secured by the guard. Some time afterward an attempt was made to recover the boat under the cover of darkness; the individuals concerned were hailed by the guard, and failing to answer, were fired upon as a matter of course. What became of them is not known, as no trace of them could be discovered on the following morning – The officer of the Mexican guard directly opposite was informed the next day that the boat would be returned on proper application to me, and I have now only to repeat that assurance.

  In conclusion, I take leave to state that I consider the tone of your communication highly exceptionable, where you stigmatize the movements of the army under my orders as “marked with the seal of universal reprobation.”  You must be aware that such language is not respectful in itself either to me or my government; and while I observe in my own correspondence the courtesy due to your high position and to the magnitude of the interests with which we are respectively charged, I shall expect the same in return.

I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

Z. Taylor, Brevet brig. gen. U.S. army commanding.

Senor Gen. D. Pedro de Ampudia, Commanding in Matamoros. [JCB]

NNR 70.264 council of war after Palo Alto, incidents of the Battle of Resaca de la Palma

  Incidents of the battle field.  The New Orleans Delta, of the 9th contains a long and interesting letter from Point Isabel, May 20th. After speaking of the battle of the 8th, the writer says:

  “The first case of general Taylor was to visit the wounded and see that every comfort was supplied – the constant and well directed energies of the medical department left but little for him to do, every one, whether officer or soldier, had been attended to with unwavering care and watchfulness. The troops having partaken of their meal, the order was given to get the command under arms. General Taylor here summoned a council of war, composed of the heads of the different commands, in all thirteen, excluding the cammander in chief. The general, after returning thanks for their support and bravery on the 8th, and wishing to be advised as to what they thought best to be done, called on each to give his opinion. I twas then ascertained that but four out of the thirteen were in favor of going ahead; the other officers composing the council voted, some to entrench where they were and await the assitance of the volunteers, and others to retire at once to Point Isabel, but the general said, “I will be at Fort Brown before night, if I live!”

  He adds:  “Those who voted for going ahead, as they watched the countenance of the general, might have seen the smile of approbation that lightened up the old man’s honest face at the moment, though he bowed with respect to the opinions of those who differed from him, and in saying engrave on the sacred banner of the stars and stripes the names of Taylor, McIntosh, Morris, Scott, and Duncan, I mean no reflection upon those who voted against them – they were men tried in many a field before, and their deeds on that day proved them equal to the best.

“Lieut. Ridgely, who was entitled to a vote in the council, was at the time in attendance on the lamented Ringgold, and therefore had no choice in the matter, but as he galloped up to the battery, on returning from his visit to the major, someone said:’Ridgely, were you not at the council?’ he replied, ‘no, I did not know that one had been called, but I hope old Zach will go ahead and bring the matter to close quarters.’”

  A full account of the battle is now given, and ample justice is doen to the brave men who participated in the struggle.  Alluding to the charge of May, the writer says:

“The enemy again wavered. Gen. Taylor ordered captain May to charge their battery, and on he started; but on reaching the point of the road where he would have been discovered by the enemy, he was stopped by Ridgely, who told him that the enemy had just loaded their pieces, and if he charged, then, he would be swept away. “Stop,” says Ridgely, “until I draw their fire;” when he deliberately fired each gun; so terrible was the effect of the grape, that the Mexicans poured their fire upon his piece, and then May charged like a bullet, drove off the cannoners, took la Vega prisoner, and retreated. Here lieut. Inge, a noble, gallant soldier, charging at the head of the squadron, was killed and stripped. Lieut. Sacket than whom there is no better officer, had his horse shot from under him, and was pitched foremost into a pond, rose again, covered with mud and water, and escaped. The squadron suffered very much.  I am sure Charley May feels grateful to Ridgely fr his cool judgment and timely advice. Had he charged on the battery, loaded with grape as it was, I do not believe he would have saved a man.”

The letter thus concludes: - “I returned shortly to camp and found that our troops were resting immediately on the battle gound. Alas!  What a sad picture presented itself; around were lying heaps of dead, dying and disabled men – the sigh, the groan, the shriek of agony, filled the air, whilst the eye could not rest upon spot but it met with a head, a leg, an arm, a body cut off by the waist, of the more fortunate dead, who had received their death wound from the rifle or musket.

 “Now my dear sir, how can I describe to you the personal acts of bravery – not only in one instance but in twenty – and not simply by the officer, but by the common soldier. The whole battle was fought by individual squads, led sometimes by an officer and frequently by the non-commissioned officers.  I could not say too much for every man engaged.  So eager were our men for the fight that I cannot better describe their enthusiasm than to give you the idea that struck me  it was this:  Every man, officer and soldier seemed impressed with the idea that there was but a given quantity of fighting to be had – not enough for every man to have his fill of it – and, therefore, it became every on to get what he could as soon as possible.

“Instances there were where one man in charging upon their batteries leaped astride their pieces and holding on with one hand bet of the gunners with their swords, and were cut down.

 “An instance occurred when in a charge upon a piece Lieut. Joran was attacked by 2 Mexicans and bayoneted in two places, when lieut. Lincoln of the 8th, rushed up and with his own sabre made perfect mince meat of the two. Again, when Ridgely charged with his battery across the ravine, and was standing at one of his pieces, he was charged on by three lancers, he mounted his horse and drove them off with his own sabre. But it would take a volume to recite the whole, and I am sure that in gen. Taylor’s detailed report all will appear – the fact is every man was a hero.  If I may say the artillery under Ridgely, and the regiments of infantry, particularly the eighth and 5th. The charge of May’s squadron was a gallant thing; its success however, was attributable to the timely advice of Ridgely and his willingness to receive the fire of the batteries, when it was believed sufficient to sweep whole squadrons – not to say but that May would just as leave have charged on the loaded gun as on the empty one – he is a brave, gallant and efficient officer.” [JCB]

NNR 70.264-265 incidents of the battlefield

  A letter from Point Isabel, dated June 2, to the New Orleans Picayune, contains the following interesting narrative:

  “I left Matamoros yesterday morning, in company with captains Ramsay and Hardee, and four dragoons, and on the route to this place had another view of the two battle grounds. Resaca de la Palma battle ground is covered with the graves of our fallen countrymen, who fell, many of them, fighting hand to hand with the enemy. Terribly were they avenged, however, on the spot, for their antagonists are buried around them by hundreds.  I was shown one grave, near the spot where brave Cochrane was interred, in which some eight Mexicans are said to have been placed, and there are many more which contain a score or two each of slaughtered foe. The grave of poor Inge was pointed out to me. It is near where one of the enemy’s batteries was posted. It was with feelings of deep sadness that I recalled to mind the many virtues of this gallant and noble-hearted officer. He had left a young wife in Baltimore, and had arrived at Point Isabel with a body of recruits, just in time to march with general Taylor; had distinguished himself in both battles by his heroic bearing, and fell at the moment when that brilliant victory, to which he contributed so largely, was about to declare itself in favor of our arms. – Mexican caps and remnants of their clothing are scattered here and there over the battle ground, and the whole field is dotted with marks of the enemy’s camp fires. It is a wild looking place, and advantageous was the position of the enemy, that it will ever remain a wonder to me that our little army was not entirely cut to pieces by their greatly superior force. Over a great portion of the ground on which out army prepared to attack them, the thickets are so dense that a dog would find it difficult to panatrate them. The men actually pushed each other through these thickets, and were divided into snail squads of three to six.

  The Palo Alto battle field, on this side, near the edge of the chaparrals, is an open prairie, quite level, and a most magnificent place for the meeting of two armies. The positions of the Mexican lines were pointed out to me, and we rode over part of the field where the battle raged the hottest. They are represented as having presented a very warlike as well as wild and picturesque appearance as our troops approached them; their compact line extending from an elevated point of chaparrals on their right, about a mile; their left extending across the road near its entrance to the pass. I visited the place where some of their heavy artillery opened upon our army, and against which our two 18 pounders were for a time directed. Convincing evidences of the skill with which our artillery was used against them was still perceptible upon that part of the field; for although they were permitted to bury their dead, and afterwards returned in numbers and spent considerable time in that employment, I counted some thirty dead bodies, stretched out as they fell, in that immediate vicinity.

  Some had been nearly severed in two by cannon ball, others had lost part of the head, both legs, a shoulder, or the whole stomach. Of many of them nothing but the bones, encased in uniform, was left; whilst others had been transformed into mummies, and retained the expression of countenance which their death agonies had stamped upon them. One man had been shot between the hips with a large ball, lay doubled up as he fell, with his hands extended and his face downward between his knees. – Another whose shoulders and back were shot away, seemed to have died in the act of uttering a cry of horror. Dead horses were scattered about in every direction, and the buzzards and wild dogs were fattened upon the carrion.

  During my stay with the army near Matamoros, nothing of consequence occurred. Rumor is always busy enough, spreading ridiculous tales from one encampment to another, and the wags and ‘green ‘uns,’ and literary aspirants, have no doubt kept the newspapers abundantly supplied with the species of “important news.”  There is no probability of the army moving from its present position for a month at least. This you will have heard before this reaches you, from intelligence officers, one of whom has sent to procure boats, &c. for the transportation of supplies up the Rio Grande.  In the mean time the volunteers will be drilled, and those who are not at Matamoros with those who may arrive here, will be sent to Barita, to remain until their services may be needed.

  There are now about four thousand volunteers out here. So far as I have been able to learn, their health is good, and they are doing very well in the way of drill and discipline.

  We had another heavy wind last night, which like the recent gale, overthrew many tents. The tent in which I slept, in the 2nd dragoon camp, was stripped from over us as if it had been a sheet of tissue paper, and the way the lighter articles of our wardrobe dance about the prairie was quite uncomfortable to behold, especially to me, who gave chase to a portion of them.

  It was stated at Matamoros, and generally believed, before I left, that a proclamation had been received from some high functionary, declaring that any Mexican citizen who should hold communication with persons in gen. Taylor’s army, would be punished as traitors, and any Mexican citizen who should hold communication with those who held communication with our troops should likewise be punished as traitors! [JCB]

NNR 70.265 general orders directing rendezvous of the several corps of volunteers

  Head Quarters of the Army. – General Orders No. 15. – Adjutant general’s Office, Washington May 29, 1846

1. Instructions have already been given to Brigadier General Wool, and through him to several officers placed at his disposition for the early inspection and muster into service of the U. States, of the quotas of twelve month volunteers who have been called for by the President of the United States, from Ohio, Indiana, Kentucky, Illinois, Tennessee, and Mississippi, and who may present themselves, for acceptance, under that call, at the rendezvous of those States respectively.

2. Instructions have also been given to other officers of the Army to inspect and muster the quotas, called for in like manner, from Georgia, Alabama, and Arkansas.

3. As soon as inspected and mustered as above, the several regiments and battalions of horse and foot will, without delay, be put on route, as follows:

4. The regiments of cavalry or mounted men called from Kentucky and Tennessee, will from their respective state rendezvous, take up their lines of march by best routes, via Memphis, Little Rock on the Arkansas, Fulton, on the Red River, and Robbins Ferry on the Trinity river, upon San Antonio de Bexar, Texas. The regiment of cavalry or mounted men, called from Arkansas, will from its state-rendezvous,(say) Washington, take the same route to San Antonio de Baxar.

5. Excepting one Regiment of the Kentucky and on of the Illionois quotas on foot to which Brigadier General Wool is charged with giving different routes, and also excepting the Arkansas battalion which will receive instructions through Brevet Brigadier General Arbuckle, all other regiments and battalions of volunteer infantry or rifle called for, from the said States, will be embarked at the nearest navigable points to their respective state-rendezvous; and thence proceed by water, with or without transshipments at Mobile or New Orleans, to Point Isabel or brassos Santiago, Texas, where, like the troops ordered at San Antonio de Bexar, the whole will come under the orders of the general officer in the chief command of the U. States land force operating against Mexico.

6. The chiefs of the general staff of the army, at this place, will each, in what concerns his department charge himself, through his subordinates, with supplying the volunteers (horse and foot) the necessary arms, accoutrements, ammunition, knapsacks, haversacks, canteens, (for water) camp equipage, subsistence, medicines, hospital stores, and means of transportation, by land and water, according to routes and destination, and according to law and regulations.

By command of Major General Scott.
R. Jones, Adjutant General. [JCB]

NNR 70.265Gen. Mariano Arista's official report of the battles of 8th and 9th May

  Mexican account of the Battles of the 8th and 9th. – We find the following translation of an interesting Mexican document in the Union: - The Commander-in-chief of the department of Tamaulipas, to the troops under his command:

  Fellow Soldiers:  The afternoon of the 8th of this month, our brothers of Matamoros have fought with intrepidity and enthusiasm in the Tanque del Ramerino; on the 9th they charged again with the same ardor. – But fate has not crowned our efforts; the enemy passed from the fort, favoured by the dense smoke of a wood on fire, which protected them from our shot; thus have our enemies escaped!

  Soldiers:  another time we shall conquer; such is the fate of war, a defeat to-day and glory to-morrow; that glory which shall be ours at the end of this holy struggle.  The God of battles is trying our valor, but he has not abandoned us; we know how to conquer and we know how to suffer.

  Soldiers:  the lamentation of the soldier for the companion who dies on the field of battle ought to be a shot well aimed at the enemy. Those are the tears which our brothers require of our love. Their tomb must be raised in the American camp. The corpses of the Yankees ought to form their mausoleums.

  Soldiers:  if we have lost some of our brothers, the glory will be greater, there will be fewer conquerors; it is not the number which gives victory. There were but three hundred Spartans, and the powerful Xerxes did not cross the Thermopyle. The celebrated army of the great Napoleon perished in Spain at the hands of a defenseless people, but they were free and intrepid, and were fighting for their liberty.

           Fellow Soldiers:  shall we do less than they did? – We are fighting for liberty, our religion, our country, our cradles, our graves. Let him who does not wish to die a traitor, him who wishes to deserve the tears of his children, let him take breath and sustain his courage; he must not faint, he must not fear, but what have we to fear?  The heart tells us that in it we shall find all that is requisite, and our hearts we will oppose the enemy.

  Soldiers:  vengeance for our brothers!  Glory for our children! Honor for our country.

  We defend those cherished feelings. Do not fear – I swear to you that if the day be a laborious one, our glory will be sweeter; but the glory we will have, and your general and companion will attain it with your loyalty and valor.

Anastasio Parrodi,
Tampico, May 13th, 1846

Mexican Force in the Actions of the Eight and Ninth of May. The official of General Arista, under the date of Matamoros, May 14, 1846, published in the government Diario of May 25th, at the city of Mexico, show clearly, so far as they can be relied upon, that the Mexican force amounted to very nearly, if not quite, 5,000 men. It says: -

  “The file of documents contained in No. 1 will make known to your excellency our number of killed and wounded, and of the dispersed who have not yet presented themselves, and that the corps of the army are reunited, forming a total of 4,000 men, including the prisoners received in exchange, and exclusive of the numerous reinforcements, whose reports have not yet come in at the moment when this express is dispatched.”

Action of the 8th. Killed – Officers 4, non-com. do and privates. 98; Wounded – Officers 11, non-com do and privates. 116; Dispersed – Non com. Officers and privates 26; 240

Action of the 9th.  Killed – Officers 6, non-com. do and privates. 154; Wounded – Officers 23, non-com. do and privates. 205; Dispersed – officers 3, non-com. do and privates 156; -515; 755. [JCB]

NNR 70.265 June 27, 1846 National Military Route from Matamoros to Monterey and Saltillo, Mexican Republic

We publish says the Washington Union , with great pleasure, the following description of the national route towards the city of Mexico. It is drawn up by a gentleman who is perfectly familiar with the localities he mentions:

From Matamoros to Guadaloupe village.  This village contains about 200 souls; herdsmen and farmers, grazing and water abundant--3 leagues.
From Guadaloupe to the Rancho Ensenada--wood, water, and pasture, good - 7 leagues.
From Ensenada to the village of Reynoa, situated on a high rocky hill; has 2,000 souls, mostly herdsmen of black cattle--8 leagues.
To Las Morillos Rancho--of cattle, wood, water and grazing fine---3 leagues,
To Reynosa Viego--500 souls; corn and stock farms--3 leagues.
To Tipaiagquaje farm.  The to right-hand road, tow miles off, is a village called Las Cuevas, of 300 souls; has abundance of corn, meat and water--5 leagues.
To Camargo, village of 3,000 souls, on the St. John's river, 1 mile from the mouth that empties into the Rio Grande--5 leagues.

Here the road continues on the other side of St. John's river, which is 150 yards wide, ahs 10 feet of water at its month, bank steep, they ferry across in flat-boats. Steamboats can ascend up to this, and some three leagues above, from Matamoros, not to draw over 6 feet of water, on account of bars; there is considerable trade here in cattle from the neighboring ranchos; there is a ford some 40 miles upstream; but very boggy and bad.

To El Guardado, village of 500 souls; good road, good pasture, well-stocked; wood and water; 3 leagues.
To Mier, village of 800 souls; everything scarce--From Matamoros to this you are never 11/2 miles from the Rio Grande; but now leave the river nearly a west course--6 leagues.
To Creiso, ranchito of 100 souls; wood, water and pasture--3 leagues.
To Papa Gallos Rancho, 100 souls; meat and corn, wood and water 7 leagues.
To Ramos Rancho, 100 souls; meat and corn, wood and water--4 leagues.
To Aqua Frio, village of 400 souls, good pasture--8 leagues.
To Marina, village of 1,000 souls; abundance--5 leagues:
To Monterey city, 12,000 souls--8 leagues.

This last eight leagues has many ranchos and sugarcane farms on and off the road.  A fine stream of pure mountain water runs through the city; well paved streets, and mostly one story buildings; lies at the foot of the trade-land.  From Matamoros to this by government measure, is 100 leagues castillanos.--here the mountains become lofty and abrupt; the road now all up-hill, dry and broad, winding through the canones up to the next village, called -3 leagues.

Santa Clara, which contains 400 souls, farmers. The road to Tampico forks off here, or in the city of Monterrey; water by the road side, but no wood; country sterile, to the vicinity of the  La Renconada Hacienda, which is 6 leagues.

Here are abundance of provisions and fine streams of water.  The mountains here precipitate themselves like curtains.  A determined enemy could make a storm resistance here; long 18 pounders would soon clear the track.  The road is wide and good for artillery; the face of the lands here is very broken and covered with the prickly pear and dwarf bayonet plant; soldiers on foot should have on good boots.--from this place the road is bad, steep, and very fatiguing; country dry and barren to Los Muestos, a poor rancho, distant, ascending more rapidly over a bad road--3 leagues.

To Oja Caliente, which is hot water spring--2 leagues.
To Santa Maria Hacienda--5 Leagues.

You are now ascending on plains very broad.--this estate is very  large, produces abundance of wheat and corn, and barley, well watered, about 3,000 feet above the level of the sea, latitude 26--has some 600 souls.

To the Capilleanea village, 2,000 souls, is 5 leagues.

Scattered along the road, the water now generally is brackish.

To Saltillo city, of 12,000 souls, all dishonest rascals, notorious robbers and petty thieves; water from springs in abundance; the country yields abundance of wheat, corn, and barley; extensive grazing estates in the vicinity.  Horses, mules, sheep, goats, in abundance and cheap.  From this leads off the great roads to Mexico, and to the west and south.  From this to the city of Mexico is 300 leagues.

Mexican force in the actions of the eight and ninth May 

The official of General Arista, under date of Matamoros, May 14, 1846, published in the government Diario of May 25th, at the city of Mexico, show clearly, so far as they can be relied upon, that the Mexican force amounted to very nearly, if not quite, 5,000 men.

It says:--

"The file of documents contained in No. 1 will make known to your excellency our number of killed and wounded, and of the dispersed who have not yet presented themselves, and that the corps of the army are reunited, forming a total of 4,000 men, including the prisoners received in exchange, and exclusive of the numerous reinforcements, whose reports have not yet come in at the moment when this express is despatched." [AEK]

NNR 70.265-266 movement of the Mexicans

                Movements of the enemy. A traveler from Tampico met a government courier between that place and Victoria about ten days ago, hunting for the Mexican army, for whom he bore orders, he said, to retreat upon Tampico. This would seem to indicate that the government consider the day as tentatively lost in this quarter, or were unable to reinforce their army sufficiently to enable it to stand another battle, and were collecting its fragments for the defense of Vera Cruz.

The port of Tampico was not blockaded, he states, as vessels were entering and departing, though an American sloop of war – the St, Mary’s – was in sight. Mr. Schatzell and the other Americans, who were so rudely driven from Matamoros by Ampudia, had reached Tampico safely, though shaken in health by their forced journey of three hundred miles. They took shipping on the 23rd ult, for this place, where they may be hourly expected.

In order that friends abroad may not be apprehensive as to the troops stationed here suffering for the absolute necessaries of life, we will inform them that of all things necessary to subsist so large a body, there is sufficiency, and to spare; besides scarcely any of the delicacies which our southern cities present but what can be obtained here in abundance.  Eggs, milk, poultry, fresh beef, and a variety of vegetables are constantly huckstered round by the Mexicans among our troops, and though the rates they impose upon us are rather exorbitant, they are cheerfully paid, as an inducement for them to continue their supplies. Coffee and eating houses under the supervision of Americans, are becoming numerous throughout the city; and taking all things together – barring the fleas – Matamoros is not a bad place to live in.

Gen. Ampudia. We are compelled to cut down somewhat of an article upon this Mexican brave: - an amusing story is told by a ranchero’s wife of the haste and trepidation in which he crossed the river on he afternoon of the 9th of May – a day likely to be remembered in his calendar. The good woman says that Ampudia came to her house soon after the firing commenced, at full speed and alone, and begged her husband like a hound to cross him over the river before those shouting devils, the Americans, could overtake him. The poor husbandman complied and ferried the poor crest-fallen, terror-stricken hero across; but he had no sooner landed and placed the broad river between himself and his pursuers, than he became the haughty, supercilious Gen. Ampudia again, and ordered his preserver to play lacquey and groom to himself and horse.

He is notorious in this city for his meanness in pecuniary matters, especially in swindling the people from whom he hired the furniture of his house, since his last arrival – and for his cold-blooded cruelty to our consul, Mr. Schatzell, a man near 70 years of age, whom he ordered to leave the place, under a guard, for the interior, in such basic as to compel the old man to go on the floor, and sleep for the first night in the open air, in a servere nother. He is also remembered as the first man from the field of battle, who, as an apology for his own cowardice, swore that the entire Mexican army was destroyed. One of the many rumors afloat is, that Ampudia has charged Arista with treachery – with having sold the army to the Americans. A hard bargain, indded, to Arista, for his only pay was cannon balls and cold steel. Ampudia says further, that he would have won the day had he had command. The lying braggart – the man who ran at the first volley, when second in command, to talk of what he would have done as chief.

Arista’s retreat will doubtless continue to the mountains.  After losing the day with five to one at Palo Alto and Resaca de la Palma, it is not likely he will make a stand on the plains. Gen. Taylor takes the field with so overwhelming a force, and so admirably equipped in that terrible arm of light artillery, that it would be madness in the enemy to fight again, where defeat would be certain and retreat impossible. Monterey is the first position of any natural strength, and it also commands the entrance to the mountain pass to Saltillo. It is there, in all probability, that Arista will make his great effort, which the importance of the object, his wounded pride, and the advantages of the ground, will all conspire to make a brilliant but a bloody day in the history of this war.

  We understand that Canales is at Olmitos Rancho, five leagues on this side of Reynosa, levying contributions upon the people, and plundering them of all their mules and movable property. He has closed the roads and intercepts all communication from this direction, treating all those who are suspected of coming from this place with the greatest harshness.

  The steamboat Neva entered the river last week and came up to this place. She found five feet of water at the bar, and five feet scant in the shallowest places inside. [JCB]

NNR 70.266-268 review of the campaign from the "Southern Quarterly Review"

From the Southern Quarterly Review. A military expedition has been recently sent out solely under the direction and control of the chief of the war department, as the commanding general was set aside. With an overflowing treasury, with arsenals teeming with arms of every description, with an experienced and energetic officer to carry out his minutest instructions, with disciplined officers ready to follow their officer even to inevitable destruction, and last, though not least, with the warnings of the past, surely we might have reasonably expected from the secretary a faultless combination of excellence in the outfit, skill in the plan, and efficiency in the conduct of this campaign. We propose an impartial review of this campaign, from its commencement until the present moment, and though truth will compel us to be unsparing of censure, yet it will be given with reluctance, and only from the sincere hope, that the exposure of past management may prevent their recurrence.

  In the spring of 1844, pending the negotiation for the annexation of Texas, two regiments of infantry and one of dragoons, constituting a corps of observation were concentrated near the Sabine.  The command of this corps or army, was entrusted to General Taylor, a veteran officer, distinguished for his gallantry on many a bloody field, and for his enduring constancy on many an arduous campaign.  He was instructed, in general terms, to protect Texas from Mexican invasion during the negotiation, and, for this purpose, was vested with large definite and discretionary powers, such as are not even granted to the commander-in-chief, but upon extraordinary occasions. In fact, so unbounded was the confidence reposed, that, as the opposition presses complained, the war making power was delegated to a subordinate officer of our petty army. But ample were his powers, by some strong fatuity, Gen. Taylor was not authorized to make any exploration of the country with whose defense he was entrusted, nor any survey of its coasts, bays, harbors, inlets, etc.  And this country was Texas, concerning which, there were hen thousand contradictory statements, and absolutely no reliable information whatever, - the Utopian dreamer and interested speculator representing it as the El Dorado of hope, the land of promise, - the disappointed settler as a timberless waste, fit only for the wild horse of the desert, and the gaunt wolf of the prairie. Time rolled on; the senate, in their wisdom refused to add another brilliant star to our glorious constellation. The “Tyler treaty” was rejected, but “the army of observation” was still left on the banks of the Sabine to inhale noxious vapors, and broil beneath a tropical sun, poorly sheltered by wretched huts and tents. Forgotten by all their friends, the devoted little corps awaited, with anxiety, the result of the stormy presidential contest, upon which their subsequent movements depended. A recent historian assures us, that democracies have a liquorish appetite for the acquisition of territory. In this instance, Mr. Allison’s assertion proved an “axiomatic fact,” as a Georgia member says. “The sovereigns” of our vast republic declared that they had not breathing space, and would have more, and adopting the rallying cry of “texas and Oregon,” elected, by an overwhelming majority, the more territory candidate. Of course, the first measures of the new administration were directed to regain, if possible the rejected prize.  The previous instructions to our Charge to “the republic of the lone star” were renewed. He was “to make liberal offers, to promise a large and splendidly appointed army for the protection of the frontier, against the depredations of the marauding Mexicans,” etc. Won by his overture, the Texans had once more consented to unite their destinies with the great American people.  It remained for the new administration to make good those pledges. In compliance with our Charge’s promise, the “army of observation,” augmented by on artillery company from Carleston Harbor, S.C., was ordered to the southern frontier of Texas in midsummer, 1845. The “large” army, promised by our Charge, consisted then but of two regiments of infantry, one of dragoons, and a single company of artillery, in all fifteen hundred men. The authorities in Washington thought that there would be an immense sacrifice of life among troops sent upon an active campaign, to a tropical region in the month of July. They therefore ordered out a minimum force, which they deemed competent to guard the Texas frontier until time for the winter operations to begin. The “army of observation ”was then the forlorn hope, the advanced guard, - to perish by disease or the sword of the enemy. To conceal its weakness, the pioneer detachment was baptized with the sounding title of “army of occupation,” and it was pompously announced, that a magnificent corps of artillery was one of the elements of this army.  But the Texas army was not only to be “large,” but “splendidly appointed,” also. Let us examine its splendid appointments.

  The dragoon regiment had just been formed from a rifle corps, half of the men were raw, undisciplined recruits, many unable to ride; their horses recently purchased, were small, weak, and undrilled.  The infantry regiments were enfeebled by their long exposure, in miserable tents, to the withering heat and drenching rains of a low southern latitude. The artillery were without their guns. Such was the “splendidly appointed” army sent to a distant frontier, to repel the invasion of a country numbering nine millions of inhabitants!  But, although the army was small and inefficient, yet, doubtless, the plan of the campaign was masterly and ably executed under the auspices of Secretary Marcy, a hero of the last war, and a man of lofty order on intellect. We will see. In the latter part of June, 1845, an artillery company, equipped as infantry, at Fort Moultrie, Charleston, S.C., was ordered to New Orleans, there to receive further orders. This company, armed only witg muskets, sailed from Charleston on the 26th of June; neither officers nor men having the remotest idea of the nature of the orders awaiting them in New Orleans. On their arrival in that city, the 19th July, they found that though ignorant themselves of their ultimate destination, the whole army, and all their citizens curious about military movements, had known it almost from the moment of their embarkation at Charleston. The expected instructions to the Lieutenant commanding, informed him that his company was to be mounted and equipped, as flying artillery, for the Texan campaign under Gen. Taylor, that horse would be sent him, and a battery for his use shipped from New York for, New Orleans, upon the arrival of which, he was ordered to proceed with it to join Gen. Taylor at the mouth of the Sabine. – As the age of giants, as well as that of chivalry, is gone, it would have been a serious undertaking for the company, unprovided with horses, to have dragged their cannon by hand through the marshes of Louisiana. Fortunately for them, they found Gen. Taylor in the crescent city, with a brigade of infantry, (the 3rd and 4th regiments,) ready to embark for Aransas bay, Texas, without having the slightest intention of approaching within two hundred miles of the Sabine. The 3rd infantry left New Orleans on the 21st, the 4th infantry and the company from Charleston, on the 23rd July.  Their cannon no having arrived, the artillery sailed without them. These guns reached two months afterwards; their horses have not yet made their appearance!  To some it may seem strange, that the artillery company was sent away with muskets only, leaving a splendid battery in park, at Fort Moultrie, where such battery was utterly useless, to await, in New Orleans, the arrival of another battery from Watervleit arsenal, with all the contingencies of delay in the outfit, delay in shipment, delay by baffling head winds, etc., etc. It was part of that wise, but mysterious policy of the war department, which only the initiated can understand.

  Gen. Taylor sailed from New Orleans with three ships and two steamboats in search of the Bay of Aransas. His orders were to cross the Nueces, and he was told in New Orleans, the western coast of Texas was a terra incognita, and no reliable chart of it could be procured. A pilot, however, was at length obtained for enormous wages, who professed a thorough knowledge of the Texan waters in general and almost a friendly intimacy with the briny particles of the Bay of Aransas. He was put in charge of one of the vessels loaded with troops, and satisfactorily demonstrated, on his first entrance into port, that Texas pilots, unlike popes, are not always infallible, by running he vessel aground among the breakers, where it inevitably would have gone to pieces, had not timely assistance been rendered.  The captain of another of the vessels sailed along the coast, in sight on land, for several days, seeking an inlet to enter.  And when his ship was at length anchored of St. Joseph’s Island, he roundly asserted, that it was the island of Espirito Santo!  Gen. Taylor has been blamed for not using the United States topographical chart. The accomplished and indefatigable chief of the topographical bureau had, with infnite pains and much ingenuity, prepared a map of Texas froma  vast collection of Texan maps and charts, each one differing, in toto from all the others. Remembering the maxim, in medio veritas, and that the juste milieu is always just right, out worthy chief split the difference between them all, i.e., for instance, one map gave the length of some rivers, a hundred and twenty miles, and another but one hundred, he jotted down the the length as one hundred and ten miles!  The ingenious novelist, Dumas, wrote his fascinating incidents of travel without ever having been beyond the precincts of “the joyous city.”  His thrilling adventure with brigands, and his perilous ascents of the Alps, by no means interfered with strolls on the Boulevards and saunters in the Champs Elysees.  The French, with just pride, boast of the originality of their ingenious writer. – But surely we have more cause to celebrate the creative imagination and bold conception of out illustrious topographical chief. It was under the revealings of inspired genius, he was prompted to make a map of Texas in his cosy studies at Washington. – That was no ordinary mind, which conceived the bold design of making a map of a country thousands of miles distant, without or exploration, jotting down a shoal here, a reef there, an island in this place, and an inlet at that. The accuracy of this map may seem incredible, but we advisedly assert, that no place in Texas is more than 40 miles from its topographical position. Upon the whole we are disposed to exonerate Gen. Taylor from all blame in not using the geographical chart. In fact, he have heard that our distinguished topographical chief prized his pet bantling as the apple of his eye, and far too highly to entrust its guardianship to other hands.  It is, therefore, highly probably, that Gen. Taylor was not provided with the ingenious chart.

  By the 3rd of August, the whole “Army of Occupation” had landed at St. Joseph’s island, about thirty miles from the Nueces. In compliance with orders, that river was yet to be crossed. A spot on Corpus Christi bay near “Kinney’s Rancho,” and about three miles south of the Nueces, was selected as the site for the encampment. The Bay of Corpus Christi, though large and tempestuous, is connected with that of Aransas by a shallow tortuous channel. The army now found that, in their ignorance of the country, they had brought as lighters, steamboats drawing several feet of water too much for the channel. They were, therefore, unable to move from St. Joseph’s island, and by no possibility could have ever crossed the Nueces, with the means with which they left the United States. Fortunately for them, Kinney’s Rancho,” a smuggling villiage, contained some light craft, which the smugglers generously proffered for a consideration. A few sail and row boats were chartered, at enormous rates, and, with these, a single company was first sent across the Nueces. A detachment of forty men, armed only with muskets, to begin the invasion of a populous nation!  Forty men were landed on the enemy’s territory on the first day, but the average number per day afterwards, did not exceed thirty. The disembarkation of troops is usually effected under the protection of a powerful battery of cannon, but in this case, there was a necessary departure from the usages of war, as the guns of the artillery company were snuggly housed in the Watervliet arsenal!  Fifty resolute Mexicans, with one field piece, could have repelled all the skiffs that Gen. Taylor could have mustered, and prevented the landing of even a single United States soldier. Secretary Marcy projected the first campaign with infantry alone, that is to be met with in the annals of all times. Napoleon gained a diadem and immortality by despising the musty military maxims of his day. Surely our secretary deserves at least a congressional medal for inventing a new mode of invasion, regardless of the vulgar prejudice concerning the essential necessity of cooperation of dragoons and artillery with infantry.  The economy of this original system of warfare will recommend it to those time and money-saving utilitarians, who scoff at time hallowed opinions and usages, and are sturdy advocates of turnpikes and railroads to knowledge; soon may we expect them to add a shilling edition of “War made easy,” to their splendid library of cheap publications, such as “French,” “German,” and “Italian without a master,” “Astronomy taught in four lessons,” etc. etc. We have said that our secretary was a man of lofty order of intellect, and has not his genius soared far above the loftiest flight of napolean?  Even that skeptical general had some faith in the long established military principale, that infantry is weak and inefficient, unaided by the dragoons and artillery. But the Herculean mind of the modern Caesar, was not to be shackled by the vulgar prejudice, though hoary with age. The 2nd dragoons, an important, if not essential portion of the “Army of Occupation,” were not put in motion from Fort Jessup, in time to cooperate with the infantry on their first landing at Corpus Christi, and did not arrive for a month afterwards. We have every confidence in the wisdom of the war department, and do therefore implicitly believe, that the dragoon regiments were delayed for some weighty reasons; perhaps it was to demonstrate the practicability of the secretary’s new mode of warfare.

  Our sensitive pay department, taking seriously to heart the foul aspersion of being “mercenary.” That has been cast upon the United States’ troops, resolved to show the world, that they would endure the hardships of a campaign, and incur the dangers of the field, “without money and without price.”  To effect this noble design, a portion of them were therefore kept without pay for six months, and the rest for four months, although the law strictly requires payment every two months. All were without the prospect, almost, without the hope, of ever being paid, for although it was frequently reported that pay masters were coming, the oft told store was at length disregarded, and the soldiers began to believe the pay masters had dissolved in their own golden showers; and when a real live one actually showed himself in camp, he was an object of astonishment as the Grand Mogul would have been. The malicious have insinuated, that the nonappearance of the paymasters, for so long a period, was not owing to their wholesome dread of the Dons, and to their refined antipathy to the discomforts of “the tented field.”  We, however, are more charitable, and unhesitatingly give them credit for an honest, though mistaken, zeal to elevate the “hireling soldiery” in the yes of the “sovereign,” so disinterested in all their actions. But although the pay masters, in their experimenting, were actuated by purer motives than the quarter masters, yet the pay like the mustang experiment, was disgraceful and melancholy in its results. Officers and soldiers, destitute of food, were compelled to borrow, upon the strength of pay due, of their more fortunate companions, or of the Shylocks in search of victims that polluted the camp. Sick soldiers directed by their surgeons to return to the United States, had either to remain and die, or to submit to being shaved by unfeeling villains in their pension certificates and pay accounts, and though the law requires the pay masters to cash them in specie. The soldiers who had encountered the parils of a dangerous coast without chart or pilot, who had braved the horrors (ideal though they were) of southern malaria, and a savage foe; who had endured hardships, discomforts, and privation, until disease was preying upon his vitals, was left to dies, like a dog, in camp, or owe his salvation to the tender mercies of note-shaving knaves!  We deprecate a repitition of the cruel experiment of the pay department, though it showed, that the hands of the “mercenaries” would still grasp firmly their colors even when “yellow dirt” did not glue them there.

  The cup of army suffering wanted but one drop more to be full to overflowing; that drop was not wanting long. On the first landing of the 3rd and 4th infantry at Corpus Christi. “Kinney’s Rancho,” though a lawless, smuggling town, under the vigorous sway of its martial proprietor, was as quite and peaceful as a village in New England. But every fresh arrival of troops was followed by some portion of that vast horde of liquor selling harpies, that are ever to be found in the train of all armies, ready to prey upon the simple and unsuspecting among the soldiers. In a short time, hundreds of temporary structures were erected on the outskirts of the “Rancho,” and in them, all the cut-thoats, thieves, and murderers of the United States and Texas, seemed to have congregated. No sight could have been more truly melancholy that that of their bloated and sin-marked visages, as they longed through the purlieus of this modern Pandemonium. The air, by day, was polluted with their horrid oaths and imprecations, - and the savage yells, exulting shouts, and despairing groans of their murderous frays, made night hideous. But, not content with confining their hellish deeds to their own worthy fraternity, they laid their worthless hands on the troops. – Many of the soldiers, enticed to their dram-shops, were drugged with stupefying portions, and then robbed of their hard earnings, or murdered in cold blood.  These fiendish acts were promptly reported to the commanding general, but he took no measures to bring the perpetrators to condign punishment, though, the army was in the disputed territory, over which no civil jurisdiction was extended. Many censured him, and all were deeply pained at his refusing to proclaim martial law, thereby permitting theft and murder to go unpunished. But those who know trhe iron will and generous nature of General Taylor, knew that it was not from want of firmness and sympathy with his troops, that he declared to take summary vengeance upon the murderous wretches, who swarmed around the encampment like vultures around their prey; but because he was fettered by the orders of an imbecile department, fearing to offend the “sovereigns,” by permitting a military chieftain to exercise the functions of the civil magistrate. But did not these soldiers themselves avenge their murdered companions?  No!  they calmly acquiesced in the decision of their general. No punishing hand was raised, no act of violence committed. Surely the supremacy of military discipline was never more complete, the subordination to martial authority never more perfect.  The men who had been outraged, annoyed, and distressed in every conceivable manner, allowed the butchers of their associates and friends to escape with impunity, because they are told that such was the will of a man thousands of miles off, who ignorant and regardless of their wrongs and sufferings!  The high compliments of veterans, who had served in Europe, were perhaps not merely idle words, when they said, that “the soldiers of the ‘Army of Occupation,’ in discipline, military skill, and martial bearing, were not inferior to the choicest troops that rallied around the eagles of Napoleon.

  Although we have already extended this article beyond our original intention, we cannot conclude it without adverting, once more, to the inefficiency and shameful misconduct of the quarter mater’s department.  With the expectation of remaining in camp, at Corpus Christi, during the rainy season, General Taylor, at its commencement, ordered the quarter master to provide tent floors, so that the troops might not be compelled to sleep in the mud and water. With all the enterprise that so distinguishes their department, they did succeed, in less than four months, in procuring plank for tent floors, but not until the rainy season was over, and General Taylor was daily expecting orders to break up his encampment. Without a single accruing benefit, all that expense was incurred, which might have materially contributed to the comfort and health of the army.

  Again, six months after the army had taken the field, there were not teams and wagons enough to transport one half of the troops; so that, in case of hostilities, had a forward movement been ordered, it could only have been effected by detachments and, in consequence, that most fatal of all military error would have been committed, of permitting the enemy to attack and beat the detail. The few teams furnished, it is natural to think, were the choicest to be found in the west. For, it had been said, that though the “Army of Occupation” was small, the great celerity of its movements, from the superiority of American horses, would contribute, as well as the greater bravery of its men, to make it more than a match for the largest Mexican force. Can any one for a moment suppose, that the quartermasters were insane enough to adopt the weakness of their enemy, - to harness their baggage wagons and provision trains, Mexican horses instead of American?  How then can it be believed, that they only purchase little mustangs and oxen, to ensure rapidity in military operations; though the mustang is as much inferior to the Mexican horse as the Mexican is to the American?  Ninety yoke of oxen and several hundred mustangs were bought, but not a single American horse. Such madness is rarely to be found beyond the walls of a lunatic asylum.

  We have said that three batteries of artillery were added to the one which, at length reached the company from Charleston.  Horses were sent with two of them, to maneuver them rapidly on the field of battle, and to transport them wherever the army might go. But the third came unprovided with horses, - none have yet been furnished it, and, if General Taylor advances to the Rio Grande, as he now has permission to do, it must be left on the ground at Corpus Christi, or to be dragged by oxen, - and, in that case, be useless in an engagment. For all the services that this battery can render, it might as well be at Fort Monroe, Va., whence it came.

  When the New Orleans volunteers left Corpus Christi, their artillery horse were turned over to the company from Carleston.  This company, having always acted as infantry, had never even seen a flying artillery drill, - half of the men could not ride, - many had never ridden at all, and, in mounting for the first time, made Mr. Wu\inkle’s mistake as to which stirrup to use. It was certainly an original idea in our secretary, and one worthy of his genius, to convert, in a single day, a company of foot into light artillery.  The military authorities say, that very few soldiers are fit for the light artillery arm, - that it requires picked men, bold and expert horsemen, etc. – and that these only become good light artillerists after long practice in riding, driving, managing, and attending their horses, and in using the sabre; - and our secretary, untrammeled by the musty maxims, decided that his selection and long practice was entirely useless, and that all that was necessary was simply to write light company, A or B, instead of company A or B, and, presto, the men would ride like Cossacks, and drive like Jehus. However, as horses had at length been given to the company from Charleston, it was the ardent desire of the lieutenant commanding – the peculiar views of the secretary to the contrary notwithstanding, - to teach his men to ride and drive, and the sabre exercise. This seeming reflection on the secretary’s theory, the loyal quartermaster resolved to prevent, and, at the same time, to show to the world how economical they were. They, therefore, refused to purchase any more hay and told the dragoons and light artillery, that they, themselves, must cut and haul the dry and sapless broom straw of the prairie, and forage their horse on that.  We approve this measure, - it was good economy; and it taught the men the use of the scythe. We all know that it is far more important to tech troops to mow, than to be expert in military exercises, because farmers are more needed in a campaign than soldiers. Oh, that the golden vision and poetic fancies of our quartermasters could be realized. We should see meek oxen with dilated nostrils and sparkling eyes, proudly dashing along eith splendid batteries of artillery; we should see the fiery natives  of the prairie, the wild mustangs with slow plodding pace, quietly dragging cart loads of pork and beans; we should see men who had been shivering all day from want of fires, in the wet and cold, lying laughingly at night in mud and water; we should see fierce veterans, whose delight was to inhale the reeking atmosphere of the carnage field, laying aside their muskets, and grasping their scythes, in order that they might enjoy the perfumes of the new mown hay; truly we should see such wondrous changes on this little globe of ours, as would make us fancy ourselves in another planet! – Both dragoons and infantry were compelled to suspend drills and military exercises, and turn farmers in earnest.  But in consequence of the horrible condition of the prairie, they were not able, with the most strenuous exertions, to procure a sufficiency of the juiceless broom straw; so that, for days in succession, during the terrible months of November and December their horses were without a mouthful of this wretched substitute for hay. The suffering of these poor animals, under the terrible “northers,’ would have softened the hearts of the most unfeeling miser, and would have induced him to open his purse strings for the purchase of nutritious forage; but our conscientious quartermasters, in their scrupulous care of the public funds, refused, though with hearts bleeding with compassion, to incur what they deemed an unnecessary expense. – Those in the encampment, who could not appreciate the Brutus like firmness of the quarter masters, insinuated that, as the army regulations positively require them to furnish an abundance of the best forage, they by dispensing with some of their superfluous luxuries purchased with the United States’ money, might have relieved the sufferings of the horses, and, at the same time, retrenched the public expenditures.  We decline expressing any opinion on the subject, as we could not see their hearts, and read the high motives at work there.  But we could deprecate the cruel system of economy, did we not feel in our inmost heart, the essential necessity of teaching soldiers how to use a scythe. In order, however, to teach this sublime art, it was found necessary to sacrifice much military instruction. We have said, that on taking the field, one of the companies of light infantry had never been drilled at all, and that the regiment of dragoons having been formed but a short time previous, a large number of the men never having been taught to ride. As all drilling had to be suspended for foraging purposes, the artillery company, at this moment, cannot perform a single maneuver or evolution on the field – and many of the “blood dragoons” dare not venture a brisker gait than an honest, plough horse canter. – And yet, it has been the earnest desire of both the light artillery and dragoon officers and soldiers, to perfect themselves in the duties of their particular service. We admire the zeal of the quarter masters for retrenchment, but would it not be better economy to disband the undrilled light artillery company, and the dragoons who cannot ride, since both must be useless in an engagement!  Would it not be still greater economy, to disband the whole “Army of Occupation?”  The medical department has been indefatigable in its exertions to relieve the sufferings in camp, and the commissariat has furnished an abundant supply of excellent provisions. But, if an advance movement be made towards the Rio Grande, we learn, that with the present inadequate means of transportation, there will be dreadful suffering among the troops, from want of medical stores and the necessities of life. We remember that though commissary supplies, in the greatest profusion, have been furnished the unfortunate Winchester, the quarter master’s department, inefficient then as now, having provided no horses, his brave troops could only secure rations for a few days, by harnessing themselves to wagons, and, when led into battle, had been subsisting on nuts and bark for a week. The rejoicings around the war fires of the Indians, and the wailings of the houses of Kentucky, announced the melancholy result of this wretched state of things.  We are no croakers, and we believe, that in courage, discipline, and efficiency, our soldiers are inferior to no troops in the world, - but as human ingenuity has been tortured to the utmost in inventing obstacles and obstructions to impede and employ them, may we not fear that the terrible scenes of the River Raisin may be witnessed again on the banks of the Rio Grande? [JCB]

NNR 70.272 Reynosa and Camargo taken

  Mexican War. – Latest. The Fashion, landed troops from N. Orleans at Brazos Santiago, all well, and left there on the 14th instant.  The captain thinks the distance can easily be performed from N. Orleans to that port in 60 hours. Just before leaving a report reached Brazos, that Reinosa and Camargo, had both surrendered to Col. Wilson without resistance.   [JCB]

NNR 70.272 June 27, 1846 Gen. Zachary Taylor awaiting transport to join the advance corps

  Gen. Taylor was only waiting for transports to push on and join the advanced corps. [JCB]

NNR 70.272 positions of regulars and volunteers

            Most of the regulars are on the right of the river; Capt. Desha and the Washington and Jackson regiments of La. on the left.

The Alabama companies, St. Louis and Louisville Legions are at Brazos Island. Col. Dankin’s Peyton’s, Davisis’, and Featherston’s regiments of Louisiana volunteers are at Brazos. [JCB]

NNR 70.272 Gov. James Pinckney Henderson reaches Rio Grande accompanied by Tonkawa Indians

  Gov. Henderson, at the head of about one thousand Texas troops, reached the banks of the Rio Grande on the 10th inst. Seventeen warriors of the Tonkaway tribe of the Indians accompanied the Texans. The sight of these Indians created much alarm to the inhabitants of Matamoros and its vicinity, as they fear that Gen. Taylor will let them loose upon them. [JCB]

NNR 70.273 March on Barita

  We have Brazos Santiago, dates to the 20th, brought to New Orleans by the steamer James L. Day.

  Col. Edward Featherston’s regiment, took up their line of march for Burrita,on the 19th.

  Reinosa was taken possession of by the detachment under Col. Wilson, without opposition. Canales published an order a few days before Wilson reached Reinosa, calling the citizens to their allegiance and commanding them to hold no communication with the Americans. He, it is believed, was in, or near the town, and had expressed himself desirous of having a “talk” with Wilson. The supposition is that his band is within the immediate vicinity of Reinosa, and should an opportunity present itself, would co-operate with such of the rancheros as might wish to dispute the progress of the Colonel’s march. A great many of the citizens kept aloof or had quitted the place. Col. Wilson encamped in the public square of Reinoso, on the 11th, thinking it impossible to throw up fortifications. The place was nearly deserted. [JCB]

NNR 70.273 Capt. McCullough’s Expedition

 Captain McCullough’s Rangers started out on the 16th from Matamoros, with 12 days provisions on a spying expedition. [JCB]

70.273 July 4, 1846 deaths of Mexican wounded, deserters from Mexican forces

  A Mexican captain, wounded in the battle of the 9th, died at Matamoros, on the 15th, and the church bells were tolled throughout the day. Nearly all of the prisoners in the hospitals have recovered or died of their wounds. Near 200 deserters from the enemy have arrived here amongst their friends, who state that many others are on the road. [JCB]

NNR 70.273 July 4, 1846 reported dispute between Gen. Mariano Arista and Gen. Pedro Ampudia over defeats

  It is said that Gen. Arista and Gen. Ampudia have both been taken to Mexico to answer for the recent defeats of the army, or Ampudia is sent for to sustain the charges against Arista.  Many Mexicans believe that Arista sold his army to the Americans. [JCB]

NNR 70.273 July 4, 1846 court of inquiry ordered on Gen. Edmund Pendleton Gaines for his requisition of troops and supplies

  Major Gen. Gaines. A court of Inquiry, to consist of Brevet Brig. Gens. H. Brady an G.M. Brooke, and Col. J. Crane, members, and Brevet Capt. J.F. Lee, recorder, is ordered by the president to assemble at Fort Monroe, on the 18th of July, to investigate the late conduct of Major Gen. Gaines, in calling upon governors of states for volunteers, in organizing and mustering certain volunteers, and in giving orders to officers since 1st of May, 1846, for subsistence, stores, &c., and for payment to certain individuals or bodies of men, &c. [JCB]

NNR 70.273 July 4, 1846 Yucatan declares independence

  Yucatan. The congress of Yucatan have declared independence, and no longer admit the authority of the Mexican government. A vessel from thence has arrived at new Orleans under the national flag of the new republic, which exhibits three stars, in the manner of our union flag.

  The design of the Yucatanese to take this step, was suspected by our naval officer in command on the Mexican coast, at the time he received information of the declaration of war, and he dispatched a sloop of war to communicate with the authorities, at the same time exempting their coast from the general blockade, until he ascertained the facts.

  It will be recollected that the Yucatanese sent a deputation to the United States, asking to be admitted into the Union, long before the annexation of Texas was proposed at all. The United States government declined to recognize the commissioners. – A war ensued between Yucatan and Mexico, which was terminated, after the defeat of a Mexican army, by a treaty, in which Yucatan agreed upon certain conditions, to return to their allegiance to Mexico. They now assert that those conditions have not been fulfilled on the part of Mexico, and once more they proclaim independence. [JCB]

NNR 70.273 July 4, 1846 revolution in favor of Gen. Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna and federalism at Jalisco

  A revolution in the province of Jalisco, commenced on the 20th of May, in the city of Guadalajara. The battalion of Lagos, followed by other bodies of military and by the enthusiastic populace, attacked the palace of the governor. The assault was so prompt that the defenders had scarcelt time for a single discharge of artillery, by which one man only was killed and one wounded. This cry of the assailants was “Long live the Republic, and death to a Foreign Prince.”  The revolution as to that department was conclusive. The government commander had to submit, and was allowed only to the 22nd to quit with his forces for the city of Mexico. The 6th article of the treaty dictated by the revolutionists, was to the following effect.

  “As Gen. Don Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna had the glory of founding the Republic, and whatever may have been his errors, has been its strongest support, in spite of policy of Europe and the instigations of some perverse Mexicans, and opposed himself to the usurpations by North America; the garrison of Jalisco proclaims the said general as the chief of the grand enterprise for which this plan is entered into.” [JCB]

NNR 70.274 July 4, 1846 a plea for peace

  Amongst the incidents of the day in which we live, the organizations of a Peace Society, embracing philanthropists of many nations and Christian members of many denominations, is a remarkable incident. Their ramifications have extended into associations throughout several countries. It is hped that good may come of so humane an object. Such certainly should be the influence of concentrated efforts from such a body of men, most of whom are individually respectable, some highly influential in communities amongst whom they labor and with the government under which they live, especially in an age when public opinion is coming into so much sway, and cannot well be disregarded.

  Another movement, not less striking, and perhaps more practical in its influences, as it is far more simple and unpretending in its measures, and apparently better adopted to the object pproposed, has grown out of the late apprehension of a war between England and America, and which deserves to be recorded.

It is well known that the Society of Friends, or Quakers, have been pioneers as a society in many of the most benevolent reforms of the last two centuries. They were the first to testify against the African slave trade, and to protest against their members holding their fellow men in a state of slavery, - the first to move in the temperance reform, having for a century been in  that respect, a temperate society, - the first of the modern religious sects to assert the principles on which the peace society, above referred to, is predicated.

  We mention the foregoing facts merely as an introduction to the incident that follows.

  Another reform, for which the Society of Friends ought to have credit, or for which they should be accountable, as the case may be, is that of recognizing to a large extent, the equality of the female sex with that of males, in departments of church, as well in social relations. Females are allowed to preach as ministers of the gospel, and the females have their own meetings separate from those of the males, in which their church affairs are conducted.

  There has been, nevertheless, a certain control exercised by the males, in their meetings over that, or at least in correspondence with the meetings of the females.

  The earnest effort of the Friend’s Society has ever been exerted for the prevention of war, and for the preservation or restoration of peace to the nations. When it was perceived that there was danger of a war between Great Britain and America, the subject was introduced in one or more of the regular meetings, and measures were proposed for an appeal to the friends of peace in both countries to endeavor to avert so awful an evil.

  One of the female meetings that at Exeter, a populous town near the center of England, understanding that the subject was agitated in the meeting of the males, proposed to associate in the labor of love.  After some consideration, the men’s meeting declined this offer, as deeming the subject more immediately belonging to their sex.

  With this conclusion, the female meeting at Exeter was not entirely satisfied, and they decided to originate a movement of their own, and to execute it in their own characteristic way.

  The meeting prepared an address from the females of Exeter, in England, to the females of Philadelphia, upon the subject.  We had a copy of the address, and as it was brief, and breathed the spirit of affectionate regard to human family, we intended to insert it, but it has been mislaid. It was signed by 1,623 women of Exeter, and forwarded by one of the steamers that arrived during the last month.

The females of Philadelphia have promptly responded to this movement of their sisters over the big waters.

  A large meeting assembled in consequence of the following notice:

  “The women of Philadelphia are particularly invited to a meeting to be held at the Franklin Hall, Sixth St., at 4 o’clock, to hear and reply to an address from 1,623 women of Exeter, England, to the women of Philadelphia, on the subject of peace. As this is a subject which appeals to the highest interests of mankind, a large and general attendance is requested.

Mrs. Sidney Ann Lewis, J.R. Chandler, Sarah Tyndale, Lucretia Mott, R.V. Massey, Win. Morrison, Miss Sarah Pugh, Hannah L. Stickney, Susan Grew, and Margaret Jones, Mrs. J.N. Bennett.

In conformity to the above call, a meeting was organized by electing Mrs. Sarah Pugh, president, and Mrs. Anne D. Morrison, Secretary.

The address of the women of England was then read and received with demonstrations of much satisfaction.

The following address was then read by Lucretia Mott, and adopted in answer:

From the women of Philadelphia, U.S.A, in answer to the friendly address of the women of Exeter, England, on the subject of peace.

Dear friends and sisters:  Your communication has met with a cordial reception by us. Heartily do we respond to your earnest desire, that so terrible a calamity as war between your country and ours, may never come upon us. We feel assured that the fraternal addresses, sent by thousands of English men and women, will do much to avert so fearful an evil.

We rejoice that your attention has been awakened to this subject, and that you have been thus ready to acknowledge the bond of human brotherhood – a bond far more holy, than that mistaken patriotism “which would make the people of two nations whose interests are identical, enemies of each other, thus impeding the progress of peace and good will to man.”

We hold it to be the duty of women to look with an attentive eye, upon the great events which are transpiring around them; in order that, with an emlightened judgement, as well as with a feeling heart, they may direct the force of their moral influence against the iniquitous spirit of war. Great is the responsibility of woman in relation to this subject. The false love of glory, the cruel spirit of revenge, the bloodthirsty ambition, swelling in the breast of the soldier on the battle field – these are often but the ripened harvest, from the seed sown by the mother’s hand, when in his childish hours, she gave him tiny weapons, and taught him how to mimie war’s murderous game.

Let us then, dear sisters, be unceasingly faithful in all our relations, whether of the social circle, or the more extended sphere, employing the mighty influences that cluster around the domestic hearth and the way-side, the pen and the press, in bearing testimony to the superiority of Christian love and forgiveness, over the law of physical force.

We are gratified that the late difficulties between our countries are in progress of amicable settlement – but let us not forget that we have other brethren entitled to our sympathy, urging upon us the duty in impress upon the heart of this generation the idea of the brotherhood of the race.  The war waged by your government against India, and that of ours against Mexico, admonish us that it is now, as ever, important to instill the principles of justice, mercy, and peace.

For your word of councel and cheer, we thank you; and would unite with you in prayer, that the kingdom of our Father in heaven may come; and the Gospel of His dear Son, breathing peace on earth and good will to men, may extend from “sea to sea, and from the rivers to the ends of the earth.”

After adopting the address, a committee was appointed to further the object, and in the course of a few days 3,525 signatures, of which the editor of the Philadelphia Inquirer takes occasion to say:  “We looked over the signatures with no little delight. All were clearly and distinctly written, and many in a style of elegant penmanship. The address is about twn yards long, and embraces 24 sheets foolscap. The Exeter document was signed by 1, 623, so that the response contains more than double that number of signatures. Mr. Peter, the British consul for Philadelphia, has kindly consented to forward the response – the whole matter being under the care of Elihu Burritt, the “learned blacksmith,” whose praiseworthy efforts in the cause of peace, entitle him to the kindly regards of every friend of humanity. The movement reflects infinite credit upon our mothers, wives, and daughters.

The province of the female in this transaction is certainly far more appropriately presented, than in the instance which we find commended in the following paragraph: [JCB]

NNR 70.274 July 4, 1846 toast to the Heroine of Fort Brown

  “Among the toasts offered at the entertainment which was given at Matamoros by Gen. Taylor to the committee of the Louisiana legislature, was the following, by Lieut. Bragg, of the artillery:

The Heroine of Fort Brown. In offering this toast he said that “during the whole of the bombardment the wife of one of the soldiers, whose husband was ordered with the army to Point Isabel, remained in the fort, and though the shot and shells were constantly flying on every side, she disdained to seek shelter in the bomb-proofs, but labored the whole time cooking and taking care of the soldiers, without the least regard to her own safety.  Her bravery was the admiration of all who were in the fort, and she has thus acquired the name of “The Great Western.” [JCB]

NNR 70.276 July 4, 1846 discussion of general officers chosen to conduct the war with Mexico

  Congress have decided, after very brief discussion, some knotty points in relation to the command of the armies, and to the appointment of officers for the volunteer army.

  The president a few weeks since, gave or signified his intention to give the command of the army, ambracing both the regular army and the volunteer forces, intended to operate against Mexico, to Major General Scott, as senior officer of the United States army. Before he quit the capital on that service, a misunderstanding occurred:  he was deprived of the command and retained in service at the seat of government.

  A bill within the same brief period was brought in, and after warm debate, was passed into a law, by congress, Which authorizes the president at the close of the existing war with Mexico to reduce the number of officers which the state of war may call into service, by striking from the roll any of the major generals, so as to leave but one in service on restoration of peace. We know not whether the object contemplated was, or was not, to enable the government to remove either General Scott or General Gaines, or both of the old generals, Scott and Gaines, from the army, but certain it is the apprehension that such will be the result, is very general.

  The command of “the Army of Occupation” has been confirmed to GeneralTtaylor, - “Old rough and ready.”  As he was but a colonel in lineal rank, a brigade general only by brevet, it was necessary to promote him, or other officers now ordered to the Rio Grande would have outranked him. He had won a fair title to promotion; the government has promptly awarded it, and the people applaud the measure. General Taylor is now a major general in the United States army, - and in command of the force now concentrated upon the banks of the Rio Grande.

  For the command of the volunteer forces, the law which passed congress this week, and dates 26th of June, 1846, authorizes the president to appoint two major generals, and eight brigade generals.

William O. Butler, of Kentucky, was nominated and has been confirmed by the senate as a major general under the act.

Gen’l Patterson, of Philadelphia, is nominated as the other major general, and will no doubt also be confirmed.

  Six of the eight brigadier generals authorized by the law, have been nominated to the senate.

  The present arrangements in relation to the command of the army destined for the invasion of Mexico we understand to be, that General Taylor will move one division from the Rio Grande, towards the city of Mexico.

  Gen. Wool of the United States army, in command of the division which is now mustering in the northwest, will move forthwith upon Upper California.

  Col. Kearney, United States army, will command a division which is already concentrating at Fort Leavenworth, and is to proceed against Santa Fe. – We may throw in a few interesting items as to this service, clipped from papers just received. [JCB]

NNR 70.276-277 various incidents of the late battles, the field after battle, &c.

A visit to the battle fields. A correspondent of the New Orleans Picayune, writing from point Isabel, says:

I left Matamoros yesterday morning, in company with captains Ramsay and Hardee, and four dragoons, and on the route to this place had another view of the two battle grounds.  Resaca de la Palma battle ground is covered with the graves of our fallen countrymen, who fell, many of them, fighting hand to hand with the enemy. Terribly were they avenged, however, on the spot, for their antagonists are buried around them by hundreds. I was shown one grave, near the spot where brave Cochrane was interred, in which some eight Mexicans are said to have been placed, and there are many more which contain a score or two each of slaughtered foe. The grave of poor Inge was pointed out to me. It is near where one of the enemy’s batteries was posted. It was with feelings of deep sadness that I recalled to mind the many virtues of this gallant and noble-hearted officer. He had left a young wife in Baltimore, and had arrived at Point Isabel with a body of recruits, just in time to march with general Taylor; had distinguished himself in both battles by his heroic bearing, and fell at the moment when that brilliant victory, to which he contributed so largely, was about to declare itself in favor of our arms. – Mexican caps and remnants of their clothing are scattered here and there over the battle ground, and the whole field is dotted with marks of the enemy’s camp fires.  It is a wild looking place, and advantageous was the position of the enemy, that it will ever remain a wonder to me that our little army was not entirely cut to pieces by their greatly superior force. Over a great portion of the ground on which out army prepared to attack them, the thickets are so dense that a dog would find it difficult to panatrate them. The men actually pushed each other through these thickets, and were divided into snail squads of three to six.

  The Palo Alto battle field, on this side, near the edge of the chaparrals, is an open prairie, quite level, and a most magnificent place for the meeting of two armies. The positions of the Mexican lines were pointed out to me, and we rode over part of the field where the battle raged the hottest. They are represented as having presented a very warlike as well as wild and picturesque appearance as our troops approached them; their compact line extending from an elevated point of chaparrals on their right, about a mile; their left extending across the road near its entrance to the pass. I visited the place where some of their heavy artillery opened upon our army, and against which our two 18 pounders were for a time directed. Convincing evidences of the skill with which our artillery was used against them was still perceptible upon that part of the field; for although they were permitted to bury their dead, and afterwards returned in numbers and spent considerable time in that employment, I counted some thirty dead bodies, stretched out as they fell, in that immediate vicinity.

  Some had been nearly severed in two by cannon ball, others had lost part of the head, both legs, a shoulder, or the whole stomach. Of many of them nothing but the bones, encased in uniform, was left; whilst others had been transformed into mummies, and retained the expression of countenance which their death agonies had stamped upon them. One man had been shot between the hips with a large ball, lay doubled up as he fell, with his hands extended and his face downward between his knees. – Another whose shoulders and back were shot away, seemed to have died in the act of uttering a cry of horror. Dead horses were scattered about in every direction, and the buzzards and wild dogs were fattened upon the carrion.

       The Battles of Palo Alto and Resaca de la Palma.  But now the eventful moment was drawing nigh, and scarcely had we entered the second chaparral, when word came from the advance that the enemy were in force at Resaca de la Palma, and within five hundred yard of the advance guard. Orders were immediately given to park the wagons, and from the order of battle. The wagons were placed as designated in the map, and the srtillery brigade, with Duncan’s battery left to protect them. Capt. Kerr’s squadron coving the extreme rear. – The 3rd, 4th, 8th, and 5th infantry, with May’s squadron, were posted along the road, within the chaparral. Gen. Taylor the ordered Ridgely, with his battery to go forward and clear the way – Capts. McCall and Smith to deploy on the right and left, as skirmishers, until reinforced by the 5th and 8th. – Ridgely waited not a moment, but started his battery at full speed, determined to have no more long faw shooting, but to test  the Mexican metal at close quarters. As he charged, with one loud shot from his men, the Mexicans opened their artillery and musketry upon him. On he went, until he halted within one hundred yard of the muzzle of the enemy’s pieces and commenced the action. Smith and McCall soon deployed, and engaged the infantry.

  The fire from the Mexican guns was awful. The infantry were engaged within twenty paces of Ridgely’s battery, and the whole fire of their nine pieces concentrated on his battery, the first shot from the Mexican battery knocked over one man and three horsse at our first piece. The enemy fired too high, as on the day before. The 5th and 6th infantry soon came up, deployed as skirmishers, and took a hand in the game – the space separating the two lines of infantry not exceeding twenty paces. Our men and officers seemed particularly determined to have a close hug of the enemy, and so cool and collected were all hands, that not a shot was thrown away. – The command from one end of the line to the other was, not to fire until you could see the whites of their eyes.

  At this time, no adequate idea can be had of the showers of grape, canister, and round shot that flew from the enemy’s batteries – it was a perfect hailstorm. Their battery, composed of nine pieces kept up an incessant roar, whilst Ridgely gave it to them at a rate of four guns per minute from each piece. The cannoneers threw off their coats, tied their suspenders around their waists, rolled their sleeves to the shoulder, and plied the match unceasingly. For twenty minutes the battery, supported by the 5th and 8th bore the concentrated fire of the enemy. As yet the enemy budged not an inch, but soon the entering wedge was placed; the 5th and 8th, under cover of our battery, tried the effect of cold steel, and wherever a soldier missed the Mexican with his shot, he advanced – as did the brave Mexican – and whoever got the first stab at the other was a lucky man.

  A moment before this enemy pressed Ridgely’s battery very hard; the infantry covering his battery, in deploying, got to far at times from his pieces, and left them exposed. I was requested by Ridgely to ride back and say to the general that they were pressing his pieces hard, to send up some infantry. I at once did so, and met the general riding along as though nothing was going on. – He replied to the message – “Oh, never mind!  He is doing very well. Let him alone – there is no fear of him.”  I returned and found them driving the enemy.

  By this time the 3rd and 4th came gallantly on, deploying on the right and the left. Then came the heavy blows that kept the wedge moving. First came a round from the battery, then a blow from the left by the 8th and 4th; and so it was – the word was “Push along – keep moving!”  until our men stood on the same ground that had been held by their infantry, and which was then covered by their dead and wounded.

  By this time General Taylor was up in the front rank of the fight, with Colonel McIntosh, Pyne, and his staff. His attention was riveted on Ridgely’s battery as though wondering if it were possible a light artillery battery could do so much service: - entre nous, the general was not particularly an advocate of this arm before this campaign. Very soon it appeared as though the enemy in retiring with their batteries across the ravine to the point C, had arranged it so as to have the General and Ridgely’s battery both in their line of fire, for the grape flew thick and fast around him. Adj’t General Bliss advised him to change his position, but no, he saw very well from where he was, and did not leave it for some time.

  At this time the struggle was tremendous, the infantry had captured one piece of artillery on this side of the ravine, and was charging across the pond of water.  At times an intervals would be left between two of our companies, and the Mexicans would chagrge across the ravine and take apposition there. – In one instance, Lieutenant Deas, the gallant adjutant of the 5th, with ten me, asking me to rally as many more and follow, charged into the bushes where a party of Mexicans on our side of the ravine, were obstinantely disputing inch by inch with our men, and after placing men in position, we wheeled to ride out for reinforcement, when seven Mexicans jumped from behind us, and within ten paces of us, and fired, as we charged past them without doing any injury, however the consequence. For some time the cannonading and musketry, though doing tremendous execution, could not drive the enemy, but at last, as the infantry closed the distance, the enemy had to move.  Every regiment of infantry did its duty, the fighting assumed the character hand to hand combat, the bayonet was crossed and the sword was used. Ridgely still plied the dash of grape and round shot with terrible effect; his Lieuts. Shover, Fremont, and French, were often engaged in carrying ammunition to the guns and loading them. Just here, Lt. Duncan came up with his battery, but was unable to bring it into action for some time, from the fact that there was no room to place it and open on the enemy without endangering our own infantry in front.

  The enemy again waivered. Gen Taylor ordered Captain May to charge the battery, and on he started; but on reaching the point of the road where he would have been discovered by the enemy, he was stopped by Ridgely, ho told him that the enemy had just loaded all their pieces, and if he charged then, he would be swept away.  “Stop, ‘ says Ridgely, “until I draw their fire;”  when he deliberately fired each gun; so terrible was the effect of the grape, that the Mexicans poured their fire upon his piece, and then May charged like a bullet, drove off their cannoneers, took la Vega prisoner, and retreated. Here Lieutenant Inge, a noble, gallant soldier, charged at the head of the squadron, was killed and stripped. Lieutenant Sackett, than whom there is no better officer, had his horse shot under him, and was pitched head foremost into the pond, rose again, covered with mud and water, and escaped. The squadron suffered very much.  I am cure Charley May feels grateful to Ridgely for his cool judgement and timely advice. He had charged on the battery, loaded with grape as it was, I do not believe ha would have saved a man.

  The Mexicans returned to their guns, and immediately the 5th infantry took the matter in hand, and resolved to try the bayonet again. On they went, and piece by piece fell before their determined bravery, until the entire battery was taken.  The infantry and cannoneers fought hand to hand between the wheels. Ridgely and Duncan then pushed their batteries across the ravine, and both opened on the retreating enemy.  The 5th, 8th, 3rd, and 4th were all across, having each driven everything before them. The route commenced, the whip was applied, and the battle was won again. The 5th charged on the enemy’s camp, where the savory odor of the dinner in the act of preparing for a grand jubilee by the Mexicans had probably lured them, knowing that the Mexicans would fight the harder for his dinner.  Here the struggle was short; they captured everything, even to Arista’s private baggage and portfolio, their entire camp equipage, and 300 mules.

Now my dear sir, how can I describe to you the personal acts of bravery – not only in one instance but in twenty – and not simply by the officer, but by the common soldier. The whole battle was fought by individual squads, led sometimes by an officer and frequently by the non-commissioned officers. I could not say too much for every man engaged. So eager were our men for the fight that I cannot better describe their enthusiasm than to give you the idea that struck me  it was this:  Every man, officer and soldier seemed impressed with the idea that there was but a given quantity of fighting to be had – not enough for every man to have his fill of it – and, therefore, it became every on to get what he could as soon as possible.

Instances there were where one man in charging upon their batteries leaped astride their pieces and holding on with one hand bet of the gunners with their swords, and were cut down.

  An instance occurred when in a charge upon a piece lieut. Joran was attacked by 2 Mexicans and bayoneted in two places, when lieut. Lincoln of the 8th, rushed up and with his own sabre made perfect mince meat of the two. Again, when Ridgely charged with his battery across the ravine, and was standing at one of his pieces, he was charged on by three lancers, he mounted his horse and drove them off with his own sabre. But it would take a volume to recite the whole, and I am sure that in gen. Taylor’s detailed report all will appear – the fact is every man was a hero.

  And let me not overlook the non-commissioned officers and privates, to them the country owes a deep debt of gratitude for their unflinching bravery during both days. As to our good general and his intelligent and efficient staff, too much cannot be said – the peals of approbation are heard from Maine to Georgia, and the page of history will be graced through time with the names of Taylor. [JCB]

NNR 70.277-278 July 4, 1846 Mexican plan of campaign

  Plan of the Mexican Campaign.  A late number of the New Orleans Bulletin contains a plan of campaign, signed William H. Chase, Chasefield, near Pensecola, which appears to be the result of reflection, and accurate information, the writer having conversed, while at Corpus Christi, with intelligent persons who had recently been in Matamoros, Monterey, Satillo, &c. He sets out with the assumption that the march of the army of observation ought to have been over instead of to the Rio Grande, en route to San Louis de Potosi, with the view to the liberation of the Northern provinces of Mexico. He argues that “if general Taylor had been authorized to pass the Rio Grande with ten thousand men, and march upon Monterey and Satillo, he would have been hailed as the liberator of the Northern Provinces; the people would have thrown off the yolk of military despotism, under which they have so long suffered, and adopting the institutions of the United States as a model for their government, would have rejoiced in a new political existence. The halt upon the left bank of the Rio Grande afforded an opportunity to the Mexican agents and priests to appeal to the people and assure them that the Americans were their common enemies.”

  The author of the article, in memoranda, which he has appended, states that the Paredes revolution was extensively a military one, to which a large portion of the Mexican people are opposed – that the provinces of Tamaulipas, New Leon, Coahuila, San Luis de Potosi, Zacatecas, and Chihuahua, are especially opposed to the Paredes movement, and only await a favorable moment to declare in force their opposition. Gen. Arista, it is said, desires the independence of these provinces, and would have set up the standard of revolt some months since, and previously to the Paredes demonstration, if the troops of the United States had taken a strong position on the Rio Grande.

  The writer then enters on his plan of campaign, in some detail, which is as follows:  first stating that the naval operations in the Gulf of Mexico should be strictly confined to the blockade of the ports of Mexico, and the possessions of Tampico, with a view to its establishment as the main depot of supply to the army after it reached the Panuca of Tampico river and San Luis de Potosi.

  “The coast of the Pacific should be blockaded, and Monterey and St. Francisco taken possession of by the naval forces in the Pacific. The reasons for this are briefly stated:  The reduction of St. Juan d’Ulloa could only be effected, if properly defended, by great loss, and when taken would exhibit a point in our possession neither affording facilities as a depot nor as a starting point for an invading army on the city of Mexico.  The road leading from Mexico to Vera Cruz could easily be defended by a very inferior force. The force considered necessary to march upon Panuca is the thousand men; say five thousand regulars and five thousand volunteers, of which there should be three thousand Texans, who have held arms in their hands for ten years, and two thousand volunteers from Louisiana. If more troops were required, the northern provinces f Mexico would furnish them, under able officers, of whom General Arista is acknowledged to be the ablest. – The squadron operating before Tampico should be supplied with one thousand marines and artillerists, to assist in the reduction of that place. The plan of campaign is as follows:  Five thousand men march from Loredo, on Satillo. The two columns march on converging roads to San Luis Potosi, and the communication with Tampico along the line of the Panuco is established.  The Panuco thus becomes the base of operations, from which negotiations with Mexico would most probably be begun. If the government of Mexico, after being reinforced by ten thousand men, the principal part of which might be landed at Tampico.

           “The road from Mier to Monterey, and thence to San Luis de Potosi, is said the be a very good one, and the country affords ample provisions and water. The road from Laredo, by Satillo, afford equal facilities except, in the supply of water on a  distance of fourty-eight miles only. This distance could be overcome in two days by forced marches. The object in marching in two columns to San Luis de Potosi is to secure the only two roads leading to that point from the Rio Grande. A favorable impression would also be produced among the population by the prudent conduct of the troops. A detachment must remain at Laredo to observe the road to San Antonio, and keep the Indians in check. One thousand mounted riflemen should be assembled at Bent’s Fort, and march thence on Santa Fe. It would only be necessary to send 2, 000 regulars to the present army of occupation, and raise 5,000 volunteers, which could be effected in one month from the date of orders. In six weeks the whole army could be en route beyond the Rio Grande.  In thirty days after, the line of the Panuco will be established.  This brief memoir does not enter into details, for the military man will at once appreciate the demonstration it possesses; and the statesman will as readily grasp it consequences as most favorable to an honorable peace with Mexico; And to the improved political condition of a new born contiguous republic, whose people desire protection and peace in order to develop the bounteous resources of their country; and to the interests of the United States by securing a well defined frontier, and an increase of internal trade.” [JCB]

NNR 70.278 July 4, 1846 compliment to the Marylanders in Mexico

 You Marylanders must feel proud of the prowess of your countrymen who so greatly distinguished themselves at Palo Alto and Resaca de la Palma. – The lamented Ringgold was a native of Washington county; Captain Walker of Prince George’s; and Lieutenant Ridgely of Anne Arundel. Accounts state that the latter gentleman exhibited the greatest bravery on the field. And Captain May, too, is from Washington city, which you know, is a part of Maryland. May’s charge was equal to that of McDonald’s, under Napoleon, at Wadram, so graphically portrayed by Allison.  However, give the Missouri boys a chance, and we will show you some “tall” fighting. They know nothing about the “scienc,” but when it come to the “strong” they are thar. [JCB]

NNR 70.278 July 4, 1846 accounts of wounded officers, suspicion that Mexicans use shot containing arsenic

 The wounded. – We learn from Lieut. Stevenson who left the army on the 2nd instant, that most of the wounded are doing well. Col. McIntosh is however still very low and not out of danger.  His worst wound is the bayonet thrust in the mouth and neck. Lieutenant Colonel Payne was shot through the abdomen, and the ball is still in him. The crifice of the wound is large byut the surgeons are unable to determine whether it was by a musket ball or grape shot. He suffers too much pain and his condition is critical. Captain Hooe, who lost his right arm above the elbow, is nearly well. He is by this time on his way north. Lieutenant Luther was wounded in the calf of the leg, not in the lip as heretofore reported.  Captain Page, it is thought, will recover, notwithstanding the dreadful nature of his wounds.

  The shot of the Mexicans, except the musket and carbine balls, are of a composition which has not yet been fully ascertained.  It is supposed to contain arsenic. Wounds received from these shot are slow to heal. Lieut. S. had one in his possession which he proposes to have analyzed. The army generally was in good health and faring sumptuously in the “quarters of the enemy.”

  Among the hairbreadth escapes it may not be improper to state that Lieut .Stevenson had the sole of his foot taken off by a grape shot, without the least injury to his foot. [Detroit Adv. [JCB]

NNR 70.278 Lt. July 4, 1846 Theodoric H. Porter's body found

The body of Lieut. Porter, of the 4th infantry, has been found about 26 miles from Matamoros, on the other side of the river. It was recognized by a peculiar mark upon one arm.

  A party passing from Point Isabel lately saw the remains of no less than seven of the unfortunate Rogers party, so cruelly murdered, a few weeks since. Five skeletons, one of them apparently a female, were lying upon the banks, where they had drifted, after their throats had been cut. Two others were discovered near the wagon. The wolves and buzzards had done their work upon all. [JCB]

NNR 70.278 July 4, 1846 >account of the wounded in the hospitals

  A person writing from Matamoros, says he recently passed through the hospitals, and looked at the poor fellows who were wounded in the two battles. Of whom three had died in the hospital at Point Isabel. Fifty have been sent to St. Joseph’s island. There are twelve cases of amputation of thigh, leg, and arm under treatment, and are most of them doing well. [JCB]

NNR 70.278 July 4, 1846 compliment by Gen. Romulo Diaz de la Vega to Gen. Zachary Taylor on the quality of Taylor's troops

  Mexican fighting. I am told that Gen. Vega, after he was prisoner in our camp, and saw for himself the number and kind of men composing our army, remarked to General Tylor that with ten thousand such troops he might march to the city of Mexico without difficulty; and I have little doubt this might be done by Taylor, for certainly he is the man above all others that we know to make war with the Mexicans. He understands them perfectly, and knows they will not and cannot stand the charge of the bayonet, which is his favorite arm and mode of fighting, though he had but little opportunity of using it in the late battles, as the enemy kept pretty much at artillery distance, which is their favorite arm. And the general himself told me (for he paid us a visit at Point Isabel since the battles) that he thought they loaded and fired their pieces with as great celerity and accuracy as we did ours, though they did not maneuver them so well in the field. – Nearly every death and wound on our side was from their cannon shot. [JCB]

NNR 70.278 July 4, 1846 hunting for "Rio Grande deer"

  Rio Grande Deer. – Largest on record. – There are wandering over the prairies in the vicinity of our camp on the Rio Grande a large number of the finest large horned cattle in the world. “Our volunteers,” wishing for a fresh steak, would make some of them occasionally bite the dust. An order came that no more “killing beef” must take place, and no more beef was killed. Scouting parties now went out for venison some good shots were fortunate enough to kill one.  It was dragged into camp and duly divided up among the knowing ones of the regiment. When daylight appeared, suspicions got out that beef had been killed, this was stoutly denied, and the reports were contradicted by the assertion, that a deer had been killed weighing over eight hundred pounds. This caused universal surprise, especially among certain officers, who demanded to see the horns. After a great deal of delay they were produced, and examined by a court martial, who solemnly decided that the venison of the Rio Grande had horns perfectly smooth, and resembling those of an ox species, in other parts of the world. [N.O. Tropic [JCB]

NNR 70.278-279 July 4, 1846 Gen. Zachary Taylor's letter accompanying Gen. Mariano Arista's invitation to American soldiers to desert

Official dispatches from the army. We have been permitted to lay before our readers the following extract from the last official dispatches of gen. Taylor, which have been received at the war department:

Headquarters of the army of occupation,
Matamoros, May 30, 1846.

  I enclose an original draft, found in gen. Arista’s papers, of an invitation of our soldiers to desert. A similar call was previously made by Ampudia, and has already found its way into the public prints. – The department may see from these documents what arms were used against us.

I am, sir, very respectfully your obedient servant,
Z. Taylor, Brevet Brig. Gen. U.S. Army comd’g.

To the Adjutant General of the army, Washington, D.C.

General Arista’s advice to the soldiers of the U.S. army.
  Headquarters at Matamoros, April 20, 1846.

  Soldiers!  You have enlisted in a time of peace to serve in that army for a specific term; but your obligations never implied that you were bound to violate the laws of God, and the most sacred rights of friends! The United States government, contrary to the wishes of a majority of all honest anf honorable Americans, has ordered you to take forcibly the possession of the territory of a friendly neighbor, who has never given her consent to such occupation. In other words, while the treaty of peace and commerce between Mexico and the United States is in full force, the U. States, presuming her strength and prosperity, and our supposed imbecility and cowardice, attempts to make you the blind instruments of her unholy and mad ambition, and force you to appear as the hateful robbers of our dear homes, and the unprovoked violators of our dearest feelings as men and patriots. Such villany and outrage, I know, is perfectly repugnant to the noble sentiments of any gentleman, and it is base and foul to rush you on to certain death, in order to aggrandize a few lawless individuals, in defiance of the laws of God and man!

  It is to no purpose if they tell you that the law for the annexation of Texas justifies your occupation of the Rio Bravo del Norte; for by this act they rob us of a great portion of Tamaulipas, Coahuila, Chihuahua, and New Mexico; and it is barbarous to send a handful of men on such an errand against a powerful and warlike nation. Besides the most of you are Europeans, and we are the declared friends of a majority of the nations of Europe. The North Americans are ambitious, overbearing, and insolent as a nation, and they will only make use of you as vile tools to carry out their abominable plans to pillage and rapine.

  I warn you in the name of justice, honor, and your own interest and self respect, to abandon their desperate and unholy cause, and become peaceful Mexican citizens. I guarantee you in such case, a section of land, or 230 acres, to settle upon, gratis.  Be wise, the, and just, and honorable, and take no part in murdering us who have no unkind feelings for you. Lands shall be given to officers, sereants add corporals, according to rank, privates receiving 320 acres as stated.

  If in time of action you wish to espouse our cause, throw away your arms and run to us, and we will embrace you as true friends and Christians. It is not decent or prudent to say more. But should any of you render any important service to Mexico, you shall be accordingly considered and preferred.

  M. Arista, com’der in chief of the Mexican army.


NNR 70.279 reception of deputation that delivered the thanks of Louisiana to Gen. Zachary Taylor

Louisiana and gen’l Taylor. – The committee appointed by the legislature of Louisiana to present the resolutions and thanks of the general assembly the gen. Taylor, arrived at Matamoros on the 8th inst., and were presented to the brave old chieftain at 11 o’clock on the 8th by Col. Labuzan, one of the aides of Governor Johnson.  On being presented to the general, his staff, and officers of the army, the colonels and their staff and officers of the army, the colonels and their staff who were invited to be present on the occasion, Mr. Zacharie, chairman of the committee, said –

  “General, I have the honor of presenting to you the resolutions and vote of thanks and the act appropriating a sword which were unanimously passed by the stae of Louisiana, to you, your brave officers, and the army under your command, for the gallantry displayed by them in the battles of the 8th and 9th of May. I am no orator, General, but my own heart and the heart of every Louisianian approves of the beautiful sentiments of these resolutions. In behalf of the stae of Louisiana, I thank you and your brave army for the additional luster which those glorious victories have shed upon American arms.”

  To which the general, briefly and with much emotion, replied:  “My heart feels too deeply and sensibly the high honor that has been conferred upon me, my officers, and men, to respond to your expressions of gratitude and thanks. I always felt assured that he patriotic stat of Louisiana would be among the first to rush to the assistance of our little army in time of need. I well knew, as did also my officers and men, that she was a gallant, brave, and noble state; that chivalry, noble daring, and ardent patriotism were her high attributes. Her volunteers have readily abandoned their homes and business, to assist us in the hour of danger. We feel deep debt of gratitude to them and to you.

  The generous and timely action of the legislature of Louisiana will never be forgotten by us; its name will be embalmed on our hearts as a cherished memorial. We feel that we have only done our duty; yet we cannot but feel highly gratified to have gained the approbation of our fellow citizens. Together with the love of country, which is common to us all, it is that approbation which cheers and animates the soldiers in the hour of battle. Gentlemen, I am unaccustomed to public speaking; I, therefore, in the name of my officers and men, thank you and the patriotic state which you represent for the honor conferred upon us.”

  At the conclusion of his reply, the general invited the committee and all present  to a splendid collation which he had ordered to be prepared for the occasion, and to which ample justice was done. Numerous toasts were drunk. Mr. Zacharie gave “Old Rough and Ready – long life to him.”

  Mr. Carrigan gave:  “gen. Taylor – Ampudia has at least discovered that he was a tailor who understood well how to take his measures, and that the officers and army under his command had shown to the Mexicans and to the world that they perfectly understood the art of making breeches.”

  Mr. Ashbel Smith gave:  “American Independence – It was not proclaimed and maintained by the heros of ’76. It was confirmed upon the plains of Chalmette in ’14 – ’15. It was again asserted and maintained in 1836 at the battle of San Jacinto, and in 1846 will be thoroughly established throughout the whole extent of Mexico.”

  Rev. Mr. Crenshaw, chaplain of the Andrew Jackson regiment, gave the following:

  “The Church and State, may they never be united.  We will pray for the one and fight for the other.”

  The ladies and volunteers of Louisiana were severally toasted.

  The next day the committee were invited to a dinner given by the officers of the army at the headquarters of General Arista in Matamoros. Colonel Twiggs presided. Gen. Taylor was present. A splendid band of music performed occasionally on the gallery, and hundreds of citizens of Matamoros thronged the plaza to listen to the exulting and joyous strains.

  Governor Henderson of Texas and suite, together with Ashbel Smith, Generals Hunt, Johnson, Cook, Burleson, and others were present. The festival was kept up until midnight and right merrily did the wine sparkle around the board intermingled with toasts and songs. This was the first time since the battles of the 8th and 9th of May that officers had met together as a body upon a convivial occasion, and you may depend the shots directed by them were as effectual as they were a month previous, although there were not so many killed or wounded. [JCB]

NNR 70.281 July 4, 1846 comments on the expedition against Santa Fe

  The march to Santa Fe. The St. Louis Reveille has some timely and sensible remarks, addressed to those about to engage in the expedition to Santa Fe, showing them that it is no holiday service they will be called to perform.  We copy the following:

  “Those who will be afforded ample opportunity to display the most commendable qualities of soldiers – subordination, fortitude, patience, and endurance. They must be prepared for privations greater than those of the army in the neighborhood of Matamoros. The march across the prairies to Santa Fe – a distance of 1,000 miles from independence and 1,300 from this city – will subject them to aslternate exposure to burning sun, rude storms, scarcity of water, scarcity of provisions, and other circumstances “too tedious to mention,” which will all prove their soldierly qualities by the severest tests. They must have, at least, stomachs which cannot only digest any kind of food present, but which can submit to “short allowance,” when necessary. Going to matamoros may be going to fight; but it is not, now at least, going to starve.  Going to Santa fe is going to endure a toilsome march on limited supplies, with precarious means of subsistence when there, and on the return. Hence, let none undertake the trip who have not soldiers’ hearts, and, we may add, soldier’s bodies and soldiers’ stomachs. – But let all who go, do so, with the gallant determination to act up  to their parts through all the trials.

  It is a mistake to suppose that a soldiers only business is to fight. His first business is always to be prepared to fight – his second, to fight when necessary. On this Santa Fe expedition, the greatest difficulty will be to keep up this very preparation. Subordination, discipline, and endurance, will be essential; and woe to him who undertakes the trip unprepared for them.

  We throw out these hints, on the suggestion of a friend, that the expedition ought not to be underrated, as involving none of the exposures, perils, &c., which make up the account of military effort, and result in the sum total of military glory. We have no idea of discouraging any, but rather to stimulate, by showing the service to be one really worthy of brave men. Such, in truth, it is; and it ought so to be regarded. Men familiar with the sort of life which the troops will lead, will tell you it will be a glorious trip, and all that sort of thing. – but only, because it is such a trip as we have represented. They would not prize it – if it were a mere jaunt of pleasure, like the journey to a country wedding, through a cultivated rural district, with green meadows and lowing herds on every hand.” [JCB]

NNR 70.288 July 4, 1846 notice of strong discontent expressed by volunteers whose services were declined by the government

  The following pithy paragraphs, taken very much at random from numbers that we find in papers which have reached us by this weeks mails, show something of what is going on in this department.

  We have numerous accounts and from various places of strong discontent being expressed by the volunteers that had preferred their services and left their homes in hopes of a tour of duty, but whose services could not be accepted, the requisition having already been filled.

  Still stronger expressions of dissatisfaction are uttered by those volunteers who assembled under the requisition of General Gaines, and whose services were subsequently declined by the government.  We have room at present only to mention the existence  of those complaints. [JCB]

NNR 70.288 July 4, 1846 seven companies of volunteers depart from Nashville

 Seven companies of Tennessee volunteers took their departure from Nashville on the 4th ultimo. – Thousands were assembled to witness the departure and the scene was one of touching interest. Four companies of Tennessee volunteers left N. Orleans on the 16th for the Rio Grande, viz:  Memphis Rifle Guards, Capt. E.F. Ruth; Gaines Guards, Captain M.B. Cook; Avengers, Captain Jones; Tennessee Guards, Capt. Murray; all under command of Capt. Ruth. [JCB]

NNR 70.288 twenty-three Alabama companies ready for the Rio Grande

  Alabama Volunteers. – Twenty-three companies altogether have reported to the governor as ready to march to the Rio Grande. [JCB]

NNR 70.288 July 4, 1846 volunteers raised in Missouri for Santa Fe refused by US government

  Volunteers for Santa Fe, New Mexico. – We learn from the St. Louis papers, that Col. R. Campbell, aid to the governor, has raised several companies of volunteers under the requisition of General Gaines, and marched them into St. Louis. He reported them to Col. Davenport, of the United States army, who refused to muster them into the service of the united States, because Gen. Gaines authority to make requesition had not been acquiesced in by the government!  This, says the Cincinnati Gazette, is anything but right. Here are hundreds of men, brought into the field by the state executive on the requisition of a commanding general of the army, in service, and they are turned loose, to get home the best way they can, and to bear the lose of time and expense of equipment because the requisition is disapproved. If the requisition is regular, and the men have been brought out under it, the least that could be done, it seems to us, would be to receive them into the service, supply them with rations, &c. and disband them. [JCB]

NNR 70.288 July 4, 1846 recruits engaged for a mounted regiment against Santa Fe

  While these men are thus turned aside, it is said that Col. Grimsley and Mr. Bent, the latter long engaged in the Santa Fe trade, have succeeded in engaging some 883 recruits, drawn from trappers, &c., of the country, for a mounted regiment to march for the Santa Fe towns, New Mexico. Many of these have seen service in the country, are inured to its hardships, and perfectly familiar with the duties required them. Such men cannot but be useful in such a campaign. [JCB]

NNR 70.288 blundering in the calling out of volunteers

  More blunders. – There appear to be much blundering and miserable management in calling out volunteers, that subject the volunteer companies to much vexation, trouble, and expense.  A large number of volunteers have been called out in Illinois and marched to the appointed place of rendezvous, and when they arrive it appear that the officers of the United States are not authorized to muster them into service or to provide for their subsistence, and they will have to return home and wait for further orders from Washington city.  The brave volunteers from Missouri were trifled with and harassed in the same manner. This course is unjust to the gallant volunteers of Illinois and tends to discourage persons from entering the volunteer service. From the St. Louis New  Era. [Amer. Sentinel [JCB]

NNR 70.288 July 4, 1846 volunteers at Fort Leavenworth

Volunteers at Fort Leavenworth. – We are informed by the officers of the steamer Amaranth that they left Fort Leavenworth on Tuesday last. – Three volunteer companies, numbering about 300 men have already arrived there. More were hourly expected and from the number that were reported as raised and on their way to that point, Colonel Kearney thought that he would have  his full compliment of troops in a short time, and would be able to leave the fort for New Mexico. [St. Louis New Era, June 12.

  There were at Fort Leavenworth, on the 18th of June, 884 volunteers, of which one company is infantry.  Capt. Fisher’s company, to arrive, would increase the force to 1,000. it was thought that Brigade Gen, Kearney would start from the fort about the 22nd or 23rd ult. [JCB]

NNR 70.288 July4, 1846 a volunteer heroine among the Indiana troops

  A heroine. – The Indiana volunteers were all mustered into the service of the United States on Friday, June 19.  On Saturday, one of Capt. Walker’s company, from Evansville, lost a hankerchief. On sitting down to mess he observed it sticking out of the bosom of one of his comrades.  He immediately took hold of it, when, to his surprise, he discovered that his messmate was a female. On inquiring into this strange proceeding, she stated, that being very poor, and wishing to go to her father, who resided in Texas, resolved to join one of the volunteer companies. She afterwards came to this city, and her fellow soldiers raised a subscription to carry her to her father. [Louisville Journal. [JCB]

NNR 70.288 July 4, 1846 full complement of Ohio volunteers enrolled

  Ohio Volunteers. – The adjutant general of Ohio has given notice that officers returns have been received at Columbus of the full compliment of volunteers to fill the requisition on Ohio. The whole number of men will be in Camp Washington at an early day. More offered than could be accepted. [JCB]

NNR 70.288 requisition on Illinois for volunteers is filled

  The requisition of the state of Illinois for volunteers has been filled; and 1,500 men were at Alton, at the last accounts, awaiting the arrival of Gen. Wool, who was expected in a few days to muster them into the service of the United States. [JCB]

NNR 70.288 July 4, 1846 apathy among volunteers on the Rio Grande described by "The Corporal"

  Volunteers. – The latest accounts from the volunteers now with Gen. Taylor on the Rio Grande, is from the letter of “The Corporal” with whose productions our readers are already familiar, dated June 15, which says:  “The most perfect apathy prevails among the volunteer troops here now, and every day the inroads of discontent are more apparent. The sun is unusually warm, and from 10 to 4 o’clock, it is so intense that but for the prairie breeze, it would be imposable to stir about. Our tents are gradually made of common Lowell cotton and afford little protection either from rain or sun. All such things combined with no occupation for the mind leaves nothing for excitement, and all that can be said is that we are here. If they would only march us a few miles up the river, or get up a few false alarms, it might, in a measure, tend to dispel the apathy and wind up the chain of excitement.” [JCB]

NNR 70.289 July 11, 1846 Appointments of Officers

  Appointments by the president.  By and with the advice and consent of the Senate.

Robert Patterson, of Pennsylvania, to be major general, and Thomas L. Hamer of Ohio; Joseph Lane, of Indiana; James Shields, of Illinois; Thomas Marshall, of Kentucky; Gideon J. Pillow, of Tennessee; and John A. Quitman, of Mississippi; to be brigadier generals in the military service of the United States, in accordance with the provisions of the act (for the organization of the volunteer forces, &c.) approved June 26, 1846.

Assistant Generals, under the act of June 18, 1846.

Captain George A. McCall, of the 4th infantry, to be assistant adjutant general, with the brevet rank of major.
Brevet Captain William W. S. Bliss, assistant adjutant general, to be assistant adjutant general with the brevet rank of major.
First Lieutenant Randolph Ridgely, of the 3rd artillery, to be assistant adjutant general, with the brevet rank of captain.
First Lieutenant George Lincoln, of the 8th infantry, to be assistant adjutant general with the brevet rank of captain.
First Lieutenant Oscar F. Winship, of the 2nd dragoons, to be assistant adjutant general, with the brevet rank of Captain, in place of W.W.S Bliss, promoted.

[These five officers appear to have been selected for appointments in view of their several distinguished achievements during the battles of the 8th and 9th of May.]

In the regiment of mounted riflemen, or 3rd dragoons. Charles Ruff, of Missouri, to be captain, in the place of Bela M. Hughes, who declines to accept.

Abraham Van Buren, paymaster in the army of the United States.

Appointments in the quartermaster’s and commissary’s departments under the act approved June 18, 1846. In the quartermaster’s department. To be quartermaster with the rank of major. John S. Love, of Ohio; Samuel P. Mooney, of Indiana; Alexander Dunlap, of Illinois; George A. Caldwell, of Kentucky; Levin H. Coe, of Tennessee; Thomas B. Eastland, of Louisiana.

Assistant Quartermaster with the rank of captain. T. Giblert, of Ohio; S.H. Webb, of Ohio; Thomas H. Wilkins of Ohio; Robert Mitchell, of Indiana; John Neff, of Indiana; Elanson W. Enos, of Indiana; Jas H. Ralston, of Illinois; Henry Scott, of Illinois; Joe Naper, of Illinois; Henry M. Vandeven, of Illinois; Theodore O’Hara, of Kentucky; George P. Smith, of Kentucky; Benjamin F. Grahm, of Kentucky; Robert B. Reynolds, of Tennessee; Jonas E. Thomas, of Tennessee; Philip B. Glenn, of Tennessee; Samuel M. Rutherford, of Arkansas; Franklin E. Smith of Mississippi; Henry Toulmin, of Alabama; Robert R. Howard, of Georgia; George W. Miller, of Missouri; George Kennerly, of Missouri; Joseph Daniels, of Texas.

In the commissary department,
To be commissaries with the rank of major.  Wm. F. Johnson, of Ohio; James C. Sloo, of Illinois; Alfred Boyd, of Ky.; Julius W. Blackwell, of Tenn.; William Robbit, of Mississippi.

Assistant commissaries with the rank of captain. Wm. C. McCauslin, of Ohio; Jesse B. Stevens, of Ohio; John Caldwell, of Ohio; Delany R. Eckles, of Indiana; Christopher C. Grahm, of Indiana; Newton Hill, of Indiana; J.S. Post, of Illinois; James M. Campbell, of Illinois; William Walters, of Illinois; Samuel Hackelton, of Illinois; Richard Gholston, of Ky.; Thomas J. Turpin, of Ky.; Wm. Garrard, of Ky.; James R. Copeland, of Tenn.; Wm. B. Cherry; Wm. Fields, of Arkansas; Robert Fenner, of Ala.; Kemp S. Holland, of Mississippi; Thomas P. Randale, of Georgia; Wm. Shields, of Missouri; Amos F. Garrison, of Missouri; Stephen Z. Hoyle, of Texas.

Naval Store Keeper.  Adam P. Pentz, esq. Of New York, naval store keeper at Brooklyn naval yard.

Charles Mason, re-appointed chief justice, and T.S. Wilson, associate judge of the supreme court of Iowa, whose commissions expire July 27. Vol. XX. Sig. 19 [JCB]

NNR 70.289 July 11, 1846 Soldiers arrive at Baltimore

  Soldiers from the seat of war.  A detachment of 28 soldiers from the Rio Grande, belonging to the 7th regiment of U.S. infantry, arrived in this city (Baltimore) on Saturday night and put up at Burk’s hotel, Pratt street. They are of those who defended Fort Brown so gallantly during its bombardment of 7 days by the Mexicans. The detachment left this city for Boston, under the command of Capt. Hawkins. Their object is to obtain recruits.

  Companies B and K, 1st regiment .S. dragoons, numbering 115 non-commissioned officers and privates, 119 horses, and 15 mules reached St. Louis on the 27th ult., from Forts Atchison and Crawford, under command of Capts. E.V. Sumner and P. St. G. Cook, Lieuts Hammond and Davidson, Surgeon R.A. Simpson. They are to join the expedition against Santa Fe, at Fort Leavenworth.

  Capt. Page, who was so dreadfully wounded in the battle of the 8th inst., has arrived at new Orleans. Amongst the melancholy incidents to which the campaign has already been fruitful, we have met with none more truly painful than that of this gallant officer and his devoted wife. The latter was at the city of Baltimore when intelligence arrived of the fate of her husband. Without a moment’s hesitation she determined to proceed to administer a wife’s attention and consolation to her wounded husband. – She embarked for New Orleans, and thence took passage in a steamer about to leave for Point Isabel. The steamer had to stop at Mobile, and was there delayed some days. On reaching Point Isabel, she ascertained that Capt. Page had embarked for New Orleans a few days before, where we sincerely hope she may soon join him. [JCB]

NNR 70.289 July 11, 1846 Army depot established at Robinson's Ferry on the Trinity

The steamship Alabama arrived at Galveston, the 22nd June, and left again the following day for Brazos Santiago. She landed at Galveston some government stores for a new military depot which has been established at Robinson’s Ferry, on the Trinity, to supply volunteers on their march through Texas. The stores are forwarded from Galveston to the depot by steam. [JCB]

NNR 70.289 July 11, 1846 Maj. Thomas Turner Fauntleroy ordered to proceed to San Antonio with dragoons

  The Austin New Era says that orders have been received by Maj. Fountelroy, requiring him to proceed immediately to San Antonio with the company of dragoons under his command. [JCB]

NNR 70.289 Bibles forwarded to Army in Texas

 The Bible.  We are gratified to learn, says the Savanah Republican, that the army in Texas applied to the American Bible Society for the scriptures – and that four thousand copies of the New Testament have been forwarded for their use. If it is desirable to inculcate the love of peace among soldiers, the New Testament is the best of all books for them. [JCB]

NNR 70.289 July 11, 1846 officers from the Rio Grande arrive in Philadelphia

Soldiers from the seat of war.  A detachment of 28 soldiers from the Rio Grande, belonging to 7th regiment of the U.S. infantry, arrived in the city (Baltimore) on Saturday night and put up at Burk’s Hotel, Pratt street.  They are of those who defended Fort Brown so gallantly during it’s bombardment of 7 days by the Mexicans.  The detachment left this city for Boston, under command of Capt. Hawkins.  Their object is to obtain recruits. [VRD]

NNR 70.289-290 July 11, 1846 specifications relating to Gen. Edmund Pendleton Gaines' call for volunteers to be examined by the court of inquiry

GEN. GAINES.  The “Union” gives the following specifications of inquiry to which Gen. G. is is to be subjected by the court to assemble at Fort Monroe on the 18th instant:

1st In calling upon the governors of several of the states for volunteers or militia to be mustered into the service of the United States between the 1st and 16th May. 1816; and to examine also into the authority and circumstances under which the said calls were made. 

2d.  In calling upon the governors of several of the states, between the 16th of May and the 10th of June, 1846, for volunteers or militia to be mustered into the service of the United States; and also in appointing or authorizing certain individuals- from the 1st of May to the 15th of June 1846 [unclear] raise troops to be mustered into service of the United States; and to examine into the authority and circumstances under which such acts were done.

3d. In organizing and mustering, or causing to be mustered, into service of the United States, a body of volunteers or militia of a state of Alabama about the 12th of June, 1846; and to examine into circumstances calling for the said act of General Gaines, in reference to instructions given to him by the secretary of war, in letter dated respectively the 28th of May, and the 1st of June, 1846, and the order of June 2, 1846, relieving him from the command of the western division of the army.

4th.  In giving orders, since the 1st of May, 1846, to officers of the ordnance, commissary, quartermaster, and pay departments, to issue and distribute ordnance and ordnance stores, subsistence stores, for the disbursement and payment of public funds to certain designated individuals or bodies of men; and to inquire also whether the persons to whom such issues of payment were ordered or made were legally in the service of the United States, or properly authorized to receive, or have the custody of public property or money.

The court Is ordered to report the facts of the case, and to express an opinion thereon.

British Troops.  The 14th, 89th, and 60th regiments are under orders to proceed to Halifax this autumn.—They are to be replaced by the rifle brigade, 77th, and a regiment from the West Indies.

H.M. troop ship Athol arrived at Halifax on 13th from Portsmouth, with a detachment for the rifle brigade; also, troop ship Arabian, from Cork, with detachments for 77th, 33d, and Newfoundland Veterans.  The rifles and 77th landed on the 15th, and joined their respective regiments in that garrison. [VRD]

NNR 70.290 July 11, 1846 three ships of the line ordered ready for service

THREE SHIPS OF THE LINE.  The Pennsylvania, of 120 guns, and the North Carolina, of 74, both at Norfolk, and the Ohio, 74, at Boston, have been ordered to be got in readiness for active service.  A heavy bombardment is no doubt thought of. 

The Boston Journal states that commander Breese, a brother of senator Breese, is ordered to the command of the Albany.  We have seen no official announcement of her commander.  There are said to be thirty urgent applicants for the command.  She is expected to be ready for sea in thirty days.

The Boston is nearly ready for sea, though her destination is unknown.  No officers have yet  been ordered to her.

Sloop of war Preble is only waiting the complement of her crew, to sail to the Gulf of Mexico.

Store ship Erie, lieutenant Bullus, is fitting out to carry stores to the Gulf.

Texan Navy.  A survey of three vessels comprising the navy of the late Republic of Texas has been made recently by captain Randolph  of the U. States Navy.  Their hulls were reported to be in excellent order, but the upper works had been much injured by exposure in a warm elimate.  The “Archer,” an 18 gun brig, draws two feet and a half less with every thing on board that our largest class if schooners.  The “Austin,” a ship, has a heavier battery for her draught than any vessel in our navy, and draws three feet less than any of our sloops of war.  The “St. Bernard” Is a schooner of 7 guns.

The Austin, late Texan sloop of war, was towed to sea from Galveston on the 24th ult. Bound to Pensacola for repairs, after which it is said she is to be placed in commission in our navy under command of George N. Hollins, esq.

The steamboat Whiteville, purchased by captain Sanders, intended for government transport on the Rio Grande, left Cincinnati, on the 30th ult. For N. Orleans.  She is a substantially built, light draft boat, and just the kind of craft to navigate the shallow waters and short turns of the great Southwestern river.

The Lawrence, U.S. brig, arrived at Pensacola on the 25th ult. In seven days from Brazos, St. Jago, having been employed blockading the Rio Grande and Brazos, and co-operating with army 103 days. [VRD]

NNR 70.290 July 11, 1846 accounts of the attacks of the Saint Mary's on the fort and gunboats at Tampico

The St. Mary’s U.S. sloop of war, captain Saunders, is blockading Tampico.  A letter from a gentleman on board, dated the 17th ult. States, that the decree of expulsion of all American citizens from thence, issued on the 17th  May, was duly enforced on the 7th June, he had to leave Tampico in consequence, and was kindly received on board the St. Mary’s.

A letter from an officer of the St. Mary’s dated the 13th published in the Norfolk Beacon, gives a long account of an affair which took place on the 8th June.  “We discovered the enemy erecting another fort on the north side of the entrance of the river, got the slip under weigh under topsails, stood in, and when within a mile of the fort and gun boats, the latter, three in number, and tonnage about one hundred, opened fire upon them both.  Being upon a lee shore and in shoal water, we were not able to fire more that eight shot, before it became necessary to claw off, which we did but at three o’clock returned and continued the firing until we had fired 70 shells and 29 round solid shot.  In the last reconnoiter the enemy returned our fire with about ten shot from 18 pound guns, four of which passed near us, two fell directly under our ‘fore foot,’ one passed between the fore and the main top mast, and one over the foot, the others fell at a distance.  The first shell which burst over the fort, ejected every soldier from the neighborhood the whole of them taking immediately to the wood.  One of our shells passed between one of the schooner’s masts, and exploded beyond her, a fragment having struck the bowsprit and bulwarks, tearing both considerably, as we have learned since the fight.  One corner if the custom house was knocked down – a house on the north side of the river, was fired by the explosion of a shell; and a soldier at the fort on guard, by bursting of another shell, exchanged his musket for vacancy, it having been shattered, without I believe, injuring his valuable person.  Having driven the party, from their embryo fort, we returned to our anchorage at half past three.

On the 16th an officer writes – “As circumstances, beyond our control, prevented us from reaching the three gun boats, (spoken of in my letter of the 13th inst.,) moored in Tampico river, and which we had desired to cut out, our captain determined to greet the enemy at long shot from the ship, and accordingly at 7 A.M. we ran out a kedge on the quarter, and brought our guns to bear on the gun boats, and fort under which they were anchored.  The boats anchored in a line abreast across the river, with springs on their cables anticipating an attack from us.  As soon as we opened our broadside upon them they returned fire briskly; but two of our Paixhan shells, which exploded over the fort, silenced it, the boats still maintaining the action – they fired I suppose about fifteen shot, all of which proved harmless.  In return for these civilities we presented him with 19 Paixhan shells and 11 solid shot.  The bar intervening between us and the fort and the gun boats, we rendered it impossible for us to choose our distance; we were therefore reluctantly compelled to engage them at long shot.  Discovering that we did not do the execution which we desired, the captain thought this child’s play caused a useless waste of powder and ball, and therefore gave order at 8 A.M. to cease firing, when we weighed the stream and kedge and stood out to our anchorage.[VRD]

NNR 70.291 July 11, 1846 account of the Princeton in the blockade of Veracruz

The Princeton, U.S. steamer, arrived off Vera Cruz in 17 days from Boston, and a letter states that for 12 days she had been underway just out of reach of the guns of the Castle.  When vessels make their appearance she makes sail for them,  and when they are very fast and wish to run, she fires up – goes alongside and places a prize officer on board.  She is the admiration of the English and French men-of-war here.  The P. is more useful here than three frigates.[VRD]

NNR 70.291 July 11, 1846 California expedition fitting at New York

  The Expedition, fitting out at New York, which is to proceed round Cap Horn for California, the N. York Express says, is going on famously.  The regiment of which Jonathan D. Stevens is to be the colonel, is filling up with considerable rapidity.  It is said that whole companies have been enrolled at the same time; and that several West Point cadets, and even one professor at the same institution have eagerly joined the expedition.  The transportation is to be effected on commercial vessels of from six to eight hundred tons barthen, laden for the occasion; and they are to be conveyed by several ships of war, carrying engineers, men of skill and companies of artillery.  The regiment is to be reviewed on the 20th inst. And immediately afterwards put into motion. [VRD]

NNR 70.291 July 11, 1846 three schooners being constructed at New York for the Mexican government purchased by the American government

Three schooners, which were built at New York for the Mexican government, have recently been purchased by government, and are now fitting at Brooklyn navy yard.  Their officers have been appointed.

The Reefer, is commanded by Lieut. Com’g. J.S. Sterrett

The Petrel, by Lieut. Com’g. T.D. Shaw.

The Bonita, by Lieut. Com’g T.G. Benhain.

They are fitting for the gulf service, of course.

Enlistments for the navy are progressing, - $20 bonunty for seamen, and $15 for ordinary seamen, are given.  [VRD]

NNR 70.293 July 11, 1846 recruitment of regulars commended for a foreign invasion
70.293 notice of various troop movements


We have never believed otherwise that that, if the war with Mexico is procrastinated to a second campaign, from any cause whatever, and it should become necessary to push an army towards the city of Mexico, that army, to insure success, must be composed principally of regulars.

For the defence of our own terra firma, our cities, property, firesides, and families, armed citizens, volunteers, and militia, may be depended upon, to a large extent.  For operations beyond boundaries of civilization, in the wilderness and wilds of the west, in sparse settlements as Santa Fe, and the like, frontiersmen and dashing volunteers are exactly the kind of troops required.  But for entering an enemy’s country where troops that are disciplined as well, and fight as obstinately as the Mexican troops did at Palma Alto and Resaca de la Palma, we must have disciplined troops, and troops whose tour of service will not expire in the midst of a campaign.

If the army of 30,000 volunteers now ordered to the Rio Grande, can be concentrated there in sufficient force, in a sufficiently short space of time, and be sufficiently disciplined, and have on the spot all the requisite “fixings” to undertake a dashing movement upon Mexico, something effective may be done.  The government no doubt believe, and having the whole subject before them, they ought to be able to judge in the premises, - they certainly believe that one dashing campaign will terminate the conflict, and they have concluded to rely upon volunteers furnishing three-fourths of the requisite force for that service.

Such having been announced by government as their reliance and their course, no true American would attempt to defeat their object.  Every facility and encouragement should be, and so far has been given, fairly to test the efficiency of the project. – The number and description of forces asked for by the president, the officering of the forces by men of his own preference, the money asked for, for carrying on the war, the laws which the occasion calls for, all are promptly voted both by political opponents as well as by political supporters of the administration.  The volunteer ranks are crowded by men without the least regard to political distinction.  Fifty thousand volunteers are asked for by the president on the 26th of May.  By the 1st of July eighty thousand, it is stated, have offered their services.  Many of them, without waiting official movements, have hurried off to the field on their own resources and responsibility, ready to be recognized when the “due form of law” gets up.

There has been no hesitation.  Whatever the government asked for, it has been promptly accorded.  It is to be hoped that their purpose of making a short war of it may be successful.  Nothing that would obstruct that aim, ought to be thought of. – We fervently desire that hostilities may terminate with the present campaign, and that honorably.

But it is gratifying to notice, as we have a war on hand, that the attention of the government has been directed to the necessity of earnest efforts for obtaining recruits for the regular army.  No man can pretend to say how long the war with Mexico may last.  Let the present campaign terminate without obtaining peace, and an army be required for a second campaign to march some five hundred or a thousand miles into the interior of the settled portion of Mexico, and regulars will be required, our word for it. [VRD]

NNR 70.293 July 11, 1846 copy of act authorizing organization of volunteer forces


An act to provide for the organization of the volunteer forces, brought into the service of the United States, into brigades and divisions, and for the appointment of the necessary number if general officers to command the same: Passed June 26th, 1846.

Be it enacted, &c., That the president of the United States be, and he is hereby authorised to organize into brigades and divisions, such of the volunteer forces as have been or may be called into service of the United States under the net approved May thirteen, eighteen hundred and forty six, entitled “An Act providing for the prosecution of the existing war between the United States and the republic of Mexico;” and that he be, and hereby in authorised to appoint by and with the advice and consent of the senate such number of major generals and brigadier generals as the organization of such volunteer forces into brigades and divisions may render necessary; Provided, that the brigadier generals and maj. Generals so appointed shall be discharged from service by the president of the United States, when the war with Mexico shall be terminated by a definitive treaty of peace, duly concluded and ratified; or in case the brigades or divisions of volunteers at any time in the service shall be reduced in number, the brigadier generals and major generals herein provided for shall be discharged in proportion to the reduction in the number if brigades and divisions: And provided further, That each brigades of volunteer shall consist of not less than three regiments, and each division shall consist of not less than two brigades. [VRD]

NNR 70.293 July 11, 1846 response of citizens of New Hampshire to the call for volunteers

NEW HAMPSHIRE.  The N.H. Patriot says that the people of that “state are responding to the call for volunteers with gratifying alacrity.”  Among those who have enlisted is Hon. Franklin Pierce, late U.S. senator.  [VRD]

NNR 70.293 July 11, 1846 formation of companies of volunteers in Connecticut

CONNECTICUT.  The Norwich Journal states that a company of army volunteers is forming in Oxford and another at Hamilton.  Gen. Dimick is also engaged in a similar effort in Norwich, and the Telegraph states that the requisite number have tendered their services.  [VRD]

NNR 70.293-294 July 11, 1846 requisition on Massachusetts for troops, extract from the general orders of Gov. George Nixon Briggs

MASSACHUSETTS.  The governor and the commander-in-chief of the militia of Massachusetts, having received from the secretary of war a requisition for a regiment of infantry, to consist of ten companies and 778 men, officers included, has made a call upon the people of the state, for the enrollment of volunteers.  The volunteers proposed to be enrolled will constitute the first regiment of Massachusetts infantry, and will be a distinct corps from the present volunteer militia of the state, although the companies belonging to the existing regiments, should they tender their services, will be incorporated into the new regiment.

Gov. Brigg, in his general orders, says- “Whatever may be the difference of opinion as to the origin or necessity of a war, the constitutional authorities of the country have declared, that war with a foreign country actually exists.

“It is alike the dictate of patriotism and humanity, that every means, honorable to ourselves and just to our enemy, should be employed to bring “said war to a speedy and successful termination,’ and thus abbreviate its calamities, and save sacrifice of human life, and the wasting of the public treasures.

“A prompt and energetic co-operation of the whole people in the use of those means, is eminently calculated to produce that most desirable result.

“To that end, I call upon the citizen-soldiers of Massachusetts at once to enroll themselves in sufficient numbers to meet this request of the president of the United States; and to hold themselves in readiness to be mustered into the service of the republic when the exigencies of the country shall require it.”  [VRD]

NNR 70.294 July 11, 1846 tendering of New York troops for service in Mexico

NEW YORK.  At a meeting of the Albany Burgesses corps, held on the 9th ult., it was unanimously- Resolved, That Capt. Townsend be authorized and instructed to tender the services of his corps, through the commander-in-chief of this state, to the president of the United States, for the prosecution of the war with a foreign power.

Capt. Frisbee, of the Albany Van Rensselaer Guards, has tendered his services and that of his company, to Col. Stevenson, for the Mexican war, and the offer has been accepted.  The company will be immediately enrolled and ordered into service. – About twenty more are required to perfect the compliment. – Albany Argus  [VRD]

NNR 70.294 July 11, 1846 nineteen companies of North Carolina volunteers report for duty in Mexico

NORTH CAROLINA.  Nineteen companies of volunteers have reported themselves to the adjutant general of North Carolina.  They are from different parts of the state, and are said to be ready to march to Mexico at a moment’s notice.  The Newberian says – “This is many more than the president has called for.  The number, however, could be quadrupled in a month.”  [VRD]

NNR 70.294 July 11, 1846 Alabama volunteers leave for the Rio Grande

THE ALABAMA VOLUNTEERS, all except one company, left Mobile, on the 29th ult., for the Rio Grande.  [VRD]

NNR 70.294 July 11, 1846 recruiting of Mississippi volunteers for service in Mexico

MISSISSIPPI.  A letter from Port Gibson says: - “We are all in arms here.  Many Marylanders are among us, all of whom are ready for Texas.”  Among the names mentioned, are J.M. Duffield, Major general of the Mississippi militia, a native of Somerset county, Md., and Wm. H. Jacobs and Edward P. G. Harold, natives of Queen Anne’s county- Hurrah for the old “Maryland Line.”

Mississippi regiment of volunteers, numbering 930 rank and file, was mustered into service on the 17th ult., at Vicksburg.  Jeff. Dans, Esq., member if congress, was selected to the command.  [VRD]

NNR 70.294 July 11, 1846 mustering of Ohio volunteers for service in Mexico

OHIO.  Gen. Wool reviewed the volunteers of Ohio at Camp Washington on the 21st of June. – They were next day to be inspected and mustered by a United States officer, Capt. Shriver, and were then to proceed without delay to the south.

A tall company.  A new company for the Mexican war is forming here.  Twenty-one volunteers have enrolled themselves; their aggregate height is 126 feet, being an average of 6 feet all around. – Dayton (O.) Journal.  [VRD]

NNR 70.294 July 11, 1846 complaints about Gov. Thomas Ford of Illinois in mustering volunteers for Mexico

ILLINOIS.  Serious Complaints.  We learn from Alton, that the Clinton county volunteers are not the only company which received harsh usage at the hands of Gov. Ford.  The Clark county volunteers, it is represented to us, enrolled themselves at an early day- their officers were elected- they reported the company as ready for duty, to the proper officer at Springfield, and they were accepted and registered as one of the thirty companies to compose the three regiments.  Gov. Ford named them in the list of companies published in this paper, as having been received.  But it seems that suspicions of favoritism and unfairness were aroused.  The company determined to present themselves at the rendezvous for inspection, and to be mustered into the service; and accordingly made a forced march, traveling all night, and arriving at Alton yesterday morning.- There they found that they had been overslaughed, and other companies received, although this is the only one from the Wabash line.  They complain, also of the neglect of the proper officers in furnishing them with provisions, but this they do not seem to care so much about, as the rank injustice which has been done to them by the governor.  They still insist upon the right of admission into one of the regiments; and, if possible, they ought to be gratified.  They have already incurred a heavy expense, in preparing for the expedition, and in marching to Alton, and it would be a shame to disappoint them.  [St. Louis Rep., 27th June.  [VRD]

NNR 70.294 July 11, 1846 comments on arrangements for payment for clothing for volunteers

Payment for clothing. The St. Louis Reporter states that paymaster Stuart has been authorized to pay the Illinois volunteers their commutation money for clothing, which is $42 for each man, and that the whole sum required for this purpose will be about one hundred and thirty thousand dollars.” –(for the Illinois quota, we presume). 

[There certainly must be some mistake as to this matter.  It is not likely that government would pay the whole sum to the volunteers for the clothing required for a twelve months’ tour, in advance.  If they do, many a poor fellow will be bare foot, and bare backed too, before the city of Mexico blesses his eye sight.  The harpies that always hang round a camp watching to grab the soldiers’ pay, would get most of the cash, --and before a month’s wear was had of the clothing; and then what quarter-master would supply the wants of the improvident for the ensuing eleven months?—Ed. Nat. Reg]  [St. Louis Rep., 27th June. [VRD]

NNR 70.294 July 11, 1846 departure of Kentucky units for Mexico

KENTUCKY.  The 2nd regiment of Kentucky infantry left Louisville on the 30th ult. In two steamers for New Orleans.  The Kentucky cavalry regiment was to leave on the 2nd inst., for Memphis, by water, if transportation could be had, and thence through Arkansas by land. [St. Louis Rep., 27th June. [VRD]

NNR 70.294 July 11, 1846 dissatisfaction of Missouri volunteers at Fort Leavenworth

MISSOURI. –Volunteering.  It is rumored that some of the volunteers who went to Fort Leavenworth did not find volunteering what is was cracked up to be.  When their rations were issued to them in the morning, some of them ate or wasted at breakfast the rations for the whole day, and were mush surprised that they had to go hungry at dinner and supper.  But a little hungry experience taught them more economy.  Some of them were terribly surprised that their food was not cooked for them, and swore that they would starve before they would cook; but a few weeks’ service will teach them the fashionable accomplishment of cooking.  One young man, who has been clerk in a mercantile house in this city, was found driving a cart from the river to the fort and was not together pleased that he had been put at suck work; but he will probably be benefited by learning the useful business of ox-driving.  A portion of the volunteers were dissatisfied, but would soon be enured to actual service. [St. Louis Rep., 27th June. [VRD]

NNR 70.294 July 11, 1846 financial support for volunteers in Tennessee

TENNESSE- Volunteers’ fixings.  The way they do things in Tennesse may be gathered from the following paragraph from the last Memphis Enquirer:--[VRD]

NNR 70.294 July 11, 1846 movement of companies of Texas volunteers toward the seat of the war

TEXAS—Volunteers.  The Galveston News of the 9th ult. says—“A full company, under Capt. Arnold, have arrived by the steamer Samuel M. Williams, on the 5th inst.  They are from Nacogdoches, and carry a standard with the words “Old Nacogdoches” on it.  They are find looking men, and have has a most fatiguing march on foot, of several hundred miles.  They have been mustered into service and received their arms, which could hardly fall into better hands to do good service.

“A company from Jaspar and Jefferson counties arrived from Sabine, by water, last Saturday, the 6th, commanded by Capt. Cheshire, who was in the battle of San Jucinto.  These have also been received, and left for Point Isabel on the schooner Vesta, Capt. Frisk, this morning.

“A company of mounted men, under Capt.  L. Balloo, left Brazoria for the seat of war, on the 27th ult.  About 20 persons has left the country previously with the same destination.”  [St. Louis Rep., 27th June. [VRD]

NNR 70.294 July 11, 1846 statement of Cassius Marcellus Clay on the war

Cassius M. Clay of the True American, the anti-slavery journal, has left the editorial chair to be occupied by some assistant, whilst he takes command of a company of mounted volunteers, and is off for the Mexican frontier.  On leaving, he publishes an address to his readers, commencing thus—

“We have volunteered for the war; and will say a word, in parting, to our friends.  We have denounced, enspairingly, the annexation of Texas, as a boldly flagitious scheme, and a war with Mexico as kindred with that disgraceful and degrading act—degrading alike to the government that consummated, and the people that submitted to it.  The one is perfected; Texas, unfortunately, is apart of our Union.  The other is just begun  That the war with Mexico might easily have been avoided—that the commonest regard for justice, and a moderate share of prudence on the part of the government, could have prevented it—is palpable as the day.  But though this be so, we connot change the fact.  War exists—It has been declared by a government chosen by the people themselves.

Our Opinion is, that war, with so unjustly and wickedly begun, should be pressed with vigor.  It Is the only alternative left.  Clouds and darkness, in consequence, rest upon out path in the future; but it has to be trod.  We act upon this necessity, and do not hesitate to support the government; to peril all to sustain it; for we war not against slavery; and when there is a common foe in the field, and the summons comes to the citizen soldier, we know and can know but one country and one duty, and would not urge another to go where we are not willing ourselves to lead.”  [St. Louis Rep., 27th June. [VRD]

NNR 70.295 July 11, 1846 Gen. Robert Desha's prompt response to news of the outbreak of hostilities with Mexico


In awarding due meed of praise to those who do signal service to their country, we perform a pleasing duty, and at the same time do public good, by stimulating others to deserve equal praise.  The alacrity with which the chivalrous sons of the south and west have responded to the recent call for volunteers, entitles all who have so gallantly offered their services to the country to the highest praises, and among these, conspicuous above all others, stands the name of the veteran soldier- gen. Robert Desha

On the 3d day of May- a quiet Sabbath morning- our city was startled by the intelligence that hostilities had commenced on the Rio Grande.  Point Isabel was represented to be in the most imminent peril, and the whole “Army of Occupation” in great danger of starvation and defeat.  In addition to the perilous situation of the “pioneer army,” the honor of the country was at stake.  Upon the history of American arms, heretofore unstained in its glories, a dark and bloody page was about being written.  Inspired by the noblest patriotism, General Desha saw at a glance what was necessary- immediate action.  With other patriotic citizens he at once pledged himself to pay the expenses of equipping and transporting volunteers who were willing to embark immediately for Point Isabel, and gallantly placed his own name at the head of a roll of volunteers; thus, without stopping to look at the consequences, offering his purse and his sword to the country.  On the 4th of May he was on his way to the scene of danger- was the first volunteer that reported to gen. Gaines “present and ready for action.” And the first that reached Point Isabel.  It must be recollected too, that his dangers, so far as his knowledge extended, were not the ordinary dangers of ordinary warfare.  He had every reason to believe that Point Isabel would be attacked by forces of cruel and merciless, numbering perhaps ten to one, and the struggle would be bloody and desperate.  In this enterprise an example if boldness and daring courage was presented which has had a powerful influence in kindling the patriotic fire still burning in the bosoms of the brave soldiers now in the service of their country.  In deeds like these, there is a moral grandeur- a sublimity which acts like electricity upon the masses – stimulating the patriotic and the ambitious to dispute with each other the positions of greatest personal peril and adding fresh laurels to the country’s fame.

Gen. Taylor’s valor, it is true, prevented general Desha from rendering that service which his patriotism burned to perform; but this detracted nothing from honors justly his due.  He has heretofore fought nobly for his country, under the lamented Harrison, and had he met the enemy, as all believed he would. At Point Isabel, he would have given a glorious account of himself and his little band of volunteers – and had there been a sufficient number of volunteers raised in this city to justify the chartering of a vessel direct for Point Isabel, which was gen. D’s anxious desire, he would have reached gen. Taylor’s army in ample time for the glorious battles of the 8th and 9th of May.  Major Chase remarked in this city, and the correctness of the remark was evident, that one hundred volunteers sent at the time gen. Desha left here, were of vastly more importance than five hundred a few days later.  With such men as gen. Desha to raise and lead volunteers to battle, it might truly be said that the “militia are the standing army of the country.”

The circumstances thus noticed, when viewed in connection with the facts that gen. D. is advancing towards the “sere and yellow leaf” of life, is without political aspirations – is engaged in extensive commercial and planting business requiring his constant attention, and has an interesting family, to which he is devotedly attached, to bind him to his house, fully establish his claim ti the highest praises yet won by any volunteer for the Mexican wars.  Should opportunity offer, he will entitle himself to still higher praises by actual service.  Gen. Taylor reposes the greatest confidence in gen. D. and has already sent him on two expeditions where there were strongest hopes of active service – to Barita and Reynosa.  He possesses many of the highest qualifications necessary to the good soldier, and in several respects strongly resembles gen. Jackson, particularly in decision and prompt execution.  He is an entire stranger to fear, and though ardently rash, is yet cool and calculating when in dangerous positions, and never fails to turn every advantage to the best possible account.

While, to the relinquishment of all the delights of home, of competence and social enjoyment, they are toiling through dangers, privations and the inclemencies of the climate, with no motive but patriotism, to protect the rights and reputation of the country against foreign hostilities – that country should not be forgetful of their names or services – and we at home should always be ready and proud to give them the meed of the highest praise.  This is the only adequate recompense of the citizen soldier, and it is a public duty to see that it is paid.  Alabama should then proudly point to gen. Desha as one of her contributors to the cause of the country – the prompt patriot, the gallant soldier, the first volunteer.  He is in some sense, in this war, the Cincinnatus of our state, and when he shall lay aside the sword and return to the avocations of peace, we are confident that he will not find his fellow citizens forgetful of his gallant conduct and patriotic devotion.  [Mobile Daily Advertiser.    [VRD]

NNR 70.295-296 July 11, 1846 ceremony of surrender of Matamoros

CEREMONIES OF THE SURRENDER OF MATAMOROS.  On the 17th of May, eight days after the defeat of the Mexicans, Gen’l Taylor made his preparations to cross the river above the town, at the same time, Lieut. Col. Wilson was to advance from the side of Barita.  Orders were given to Col. Twiggs to cross, when Gen. Taylor was waited on by the Mexican general, Reguena, empowered by General Arista, commander in chief of the Mexican forces, to treat for an armistice, until the two governments finally settled the difficulties pending.  This cunning, on the part of the Mexican chief, was too apparent to Gen. Taylor; he was aware that Matamoros was filled with the munitions of war, and time was only wanted to move them off.  Gen. Taylor replied promptly to Gen. Reguena, that an armistice could not be granted; he recapitulated the circumstances of the preceding month, when he himself had proposed an armistice, which General Ampudia had declined.  He stated that he was receiving large reinforcements, that he would not then suspend hostilities which he had not invited no provoked; he also said that the possession of Matamoros, was a “sine qua non,” and that the American troops would occupy the city, at the same time giving to Gen. Arista and his forces, leave to withdraw from the town, leaving behind the public property of every description.  Gen. Taylor remarked that “Generals Ampudia and Arista, had promised that the war should be conducted agreeably to the usage of civilized nations, and yet the Mexican forces had in the battles of the 8th and 9th, stripped our dead and mutilated their bodies.”—General Reguena replied, that “the women (!) and rancheros did it, and that they could not be controlled.”  Gen. Taylor said he would come over to Matamoros, and control such people for them.

The answer promised by Reguena to be delivered to Gen. Taylor, positively at three o’clock, did not come.  It afterwards appeared, that while the delegation was treating with Gen. Taylor, Gen. Arista was busy in getting out of the city; that even the promise to give Gen. Taylor a positive answer at 3 o’clock, was a mere subterfuge.  Gen. Arista taking advantage of the delay, succeeded in moving much of the military stores, securing two or three pieces of cannon, and with the fragment of his army, that very night, abandoned Matamoros and fled precipitately towards Monterey.  At sundown, Gen. Taylor perceiving that no word was to be sent to him, he repaired from Fort Brown, to join the army two miles above the fort, in position for crossing the Rio Grande.

Early on in the morning of the 18th, the east bank was defended by two 18 pounders, and the three batteries of our artillery; and the crossing commenced, Co. Twiggs ordering the bands to strike up Yankee Doodle.  The light companies of battalions, first went over, followed by the volunteer and regular infantry.  Lieut. Hays, of the 4th infantry, and ten select men, with Capt. Walker of the Rangers, first crossed the river with orders to ascertain and report the number and position of the enemy, if near the river.  Immediately after Lieut. Hays had crossed, the flank companies of the 3d, 4th, and 5th infantry, were thrown across, commanded by Capt. Buchanan, and Capt. Larned.  After these commands had crossed, Capt. Smith of the artillery battalion, crossed with two companies, followed by Capt. Kerr’s squadron of dragoons.  After this force had crossed, Ridgely’s artillery was dismounted and taken over in parts.—In the meantime, the infantry already over, had advanced, and occupied the hedge fence covering the crossing; after occupying this position some two hours, a civil deputation from Matamoros presented itself, requesting to see Gen. Taylor.  The deputation was sent over the river, in charge of an officer, to meet the general who had not then crossed.  The object of the deputation was to inform the commanding general of the American forces, that Gen. Arista and the Mexican troops had abandoned Matamoros, together with his sick and wounded, and wishing to know from Gen. Taylor, what treatment the city might expect from him.  Gen. Taylor, finding on inquiry, that this report was true, ordered that portion of the American forces that had not crossed the river, to return to Fort Brown and cross there.  Gen. Taylor informed the prefect that the civil and religious rights of the citizens, would be sacredly respected.  While this was going forward, the dragoons under Captain Kerr, passed below where they had landed, and raised up on the walls of Fort Paredes, “The Star Spangled Banner.”

The different regiments already on the west side of the Rio Grande, were marched to their respective places of encampment, without noise or disorder, save when the flag of our country, was unexpectedly seen waving from Fort Paredes; discipline then gave way to feeling, and nine hearty cheers rent the air, and announced the occupation of Matamoros by American troops.

That evening, a small guard was established in Matamoros, to keep the peace.  No troops except under command that night, visited it.  The civil and religious rights of the citizens were guaranteed, and the Metamorians slept secure under the protection of the American government, a boon ever denied to them by their own.

A gloom was thrown over the brilliant events of this day by a most unfortunate accident; Lieutenant George Stephens, a graduate of West Point, in 1843, a most promising officer in the second dragoons, was swept by the swift current from his horse while crossing the river at the head of his command.  He had distinguished himself on the brilliant days of the 8th and 9th, and his untimely death was universally lamented.  His friends, two days after he was drowned, had the melancholy satisfaction of recovering his body and giving it the ceremonies of a soldier’s burial. [N.O. Tropic, June 25] [VRD]

NNR 70.296 July 11, 1846 account of enterprise on the Rio Grande under American influence

INTERESTING MEXICAN ITEMS.—Commerce on the Rio Grande—This river, under the influence of American enterprise, is assuming a very busy appearance.  The steamers Frontier and Cincinnati have arrived at Matamoros, giving to the port of the town a lively appearance.  “River front lots” will soon become valuable in that city, and stores will be erected on the water’s edge.  There was never but one steamer on the Rio Grande, we believe, before the army occupation arrived on its banks, and that was owned by one of the Texas Austins, as far back as 1827.  The boat carried on a very brisk trade as high up the river as Comargo, in hides, tallow, bones, etc.; but the ranchero muleteers, who had the commerce of the country in their own hands, complained to the government of Mexico, and Austin’s boat was ordered off, and ever after prohibited entering the Rio Grande.  [VRD]

NNR 70.296 July 11, 1846 Mexican ladies at Matamoros reconciled to the Americans

Mexican ladies—The Republic states, that the Mexican ladies of Matamoros are fast becoming reconciled to “our people,” and begin to believe that the Americans at least “are not cannibals.”

This may be true, but we heard one “volunteer officer” say, that he saw one Signoreta living in Calle Independencia that looked so sweet under her rebza and dark eye lashes, that he felt as if he could “eat her up.”  [VRD]

NNR 70.296 July 11, 1846 Mexican compliment to American behavior after their victories

The “Republica de Rio Grande,” has an editorial drawing a comparison between the treatment of the English on the Sutlej, and the Americans on the Rio Grande.  The contrast between our troops after their victories, and the English after their triumphs, is certainly astonishing, and opens a fine field for the speculations of the philanthrophist.    [VRD]

NNR 70.296 July 11, 1846 death of Capt. Jose A. Baragan

Died—On Sunday morning, at 6 o’clock, Captain Jose A. Baragan, of the Mexican army, wounded in the battle on the 9th of May.  Capt. Baragan was a brave and meritorious officer, and behaved gallantly on the field of battle.  He was much esteemed by the American officers, and received from them every respect and attention. [Matamoros Republic of the Rio Grande. 

We had the melancholy pleasure of seeing Capt. Baragan, while in Matamoros.  He was confined to he bed by wounds he received in the battle of the 9th.  He was an object of interest to the officers of the army, because of his gallant bearing in the field of battle, and for the manner he acted while suffering under his wounds.  We heard Col. Twiggs observe, that if he died, he should ask permission from headquarters to bury the brave Mexican officer with military honors, as a last token of admiration for his virtues.  These incidents are interesting, because they display the better side of the soldier’s feelings, and the soldier’s heart.  [VRD]

NNR 70.296 July 11, 1846 reconnoiter after Gen. Mariano Arista

Pursuit of Arista. —The day following the taking of Matamoros, Lieut. Col. Garland with all the regular and irregular calvalry of the army, about two hundred and fifty dragoons and rangers, started in pursuit of the retreating Mexicans, with orders to harass their rear, and to capture prisoners and baggage.  ON the 22d, Col. Garland returned from his pursuit.  He succeeded in capturing a small rear party, after a slight show of resistance on their part in which two Mexicans were killed and twenty two taken prisoners, two of our own troops slightly wounded, one wagon with ammunition and clothing of an artillery company was captured.  The scarcity of water, the barrenness of the country, and the condition of the horses compelled Col. Garland to return to Matamoros, having penetrated over sixty miles into the enemy’s country.

The retreating army of the Mexicans, under Gen. Arista, was but twenty four hours ahead of our cavalry, and our officers stopped at the ranches where the enemy had the night previous.  A ranchero, at one of these stopping places, inquired with great simplicity of Capt.---- where the Americans were going; he was told in pursuit of the retreating Mexican army.  “Retreating army!” said the fellow with astonishment, “why Gen. Ampudia stopped at my house last night, and said that his troops had conquered the Americans, and that he was on his way to Mexico to take the news.”  The man remained confounded, for it was impossible to believe his nation had been whipped in battle, and still more incomprehensible, that a small number of American dragoons should seriously and for purposes of war really drive before them over three thousand troops.  [VRD]

NNR 70.296 July 11, 1846 interview between Col. Matthew Mountjoy Payne and Gen. Romulo Diaz de la Vega
70.296 examination of the trophies of the war, including the flag of the Tampico guards

 FRIENDLY INTERVIEW.—The first meeting of the gallant officers, Col. Payne, of the United States army, and the Mexican general, VEGA, after the battles of the 8th and 9th of May, in which both were engaged, took place in the ladies’ parlor of the St. Charles hotel, N. Orleans.  The N.O. Delta says—

“The meeting between these two brave soldiers was one of cordial greeting, and a kindly interchange of compliments.  The general expressed his regret to the colonel at seeing that he was wounded, and indulged the hope that he would shortly recover from the effects of it.  The colonel thanked him for his sympathy, and congratulated him in having escaped a similar infliction; he trusted that he would find his residence in the United States as agreeable as the circumstances would admit or:  he assured him that his gallantry was appreciated by the officers of the U. States army, and by the citizens of the United States.”

The pleasure of this friendly greeting was greatly enhanced by the presence and approving smiles of a numerous assemblage of ladies, invited by Mrs. Gen. GAINES.

Col. Paine, it will be recollected, has brought with him a number of military standards captured from the Mexicans.  They are thus noticed in the Tropic:

“The trophies of war. —Among the most interesting relics obtaiend in the battles of the 8th and 9th, are the standards of the different companies and regiments.  We spent half and hour in examining these pomps and circumstances of war with the greatest interest.  We found eighteen in all, seventeen of which are of tri-colored woollen or baize cloths, ornamented with the appropriate letters and symbols.  They were mounted on staffs sharpened with iron, and were not only ornamental, but dangerous as offensive weapons.  But the flag of the most obsorbing interest, is that lettered


This magnificent and torn flag, apart from its associations, is remarkable for its appearance and the materialals of which it is formed.  It is of large size—its field, of tri-colored silk, green, white, and red.  In the centre is embroidered the Mexican coat of arms, more beautifully than we conceived any modern Penelope had power to do, even if her delicate fingers were over skilled at the work.  The Mexican eagle, with its outstretched wings, fairly lay before us, each rustle of the flag on which it rested, causing the prismatic colors of the atmosphere to play over the brilliant floss silk needlework as brilliantly as if it had been the plumage of the bird itself.  Some fair Mexican damsel’s bright eyes must have grown weary under their long dark lashes, in thus delicately counterfeiting nature.  Perhaps it were the work of cloistered nuns, it is so elaborate,--some holy sisterhood, who by ascetic life, have long attenuated fingers, and thus made more nimble, than those possessed by the “world’s gazers” of their sex.  The members of a whole convent, probably, have said their matins and then by turns wrought upon that banner, which they fondly hoped was destined to lead gloriously the arms of their country in every fight.  Alas! For the fortunes of war.

That flag, in the battle of the Palo Alto, was torn by our cannon shot, and now bears upon its folds the the shattered shreds thus rudely made; at the Reseca de la Palma, it waved over the breavest troops, and floated in the wind as long as its regiment lasted before the terrible tire of our arms.  When all was lost, its bearer tore it from its staff, and fled to save it from the stain of capture.  Such, however, was not to be its fortune.  The brave man was met by one of our troops, and hand to hand they fought for the prize,--the Mexican nerved by every feeling of patriotism, the American by every feeling of a soldier’s ambition.  The brave standard—bearer bit the dust, and the precious objec of his care became an object of curiosity in the hands of his enemy.  May it ever be respected among our people, as the only evidence existing of the once brave “Batallon de Tampico.”  These trophies are in charge of Colonel M.M. Payne, and will be by him carried to Washington.”  [VRD]

NNR 70.296 July 11, 1846 Mexican treatment of American prisoners

TREATMENT OF AMERICAN PRISIONERS BY THE MEXICANS – Capt. Hardee, who was taken prisoner in the capture of Thornton’s company, states in a letter to a friend in Savannah, that they are treated with the greatest consideration and kindness. – Gen. Arista received the prisoners in the most gracious manner, and said that “his nation had been regarded as barbarous, and that he wished to prove to them the country.”  Capt. Hardee said – “Lieut. Kane and myself are living with Gen. Ampudia, lodge in his hotel, and sit at his table.  We are not on parole, but in company with one of the genre4al’s aids- go pretty much where and when we please.  Two of his aids speak excellent English, and the general himself speaks French, so that we are admirably off in this respect.  Every one around us use their utmost endeavors to make out time pass pleasantly, and if anything could make us forget our captivity it would be the frank and agreeable manners and generous hospitality of Gen. Ampudia. – He and General Arista are both men of high tone and character.”  These facts are highly honorable to the Mexicans.  [VRD]

NNR 70.296 July 11, 1846 Gen. Mariano Arista's official account of killed and wounded in the battles of the 8th and 9th of May, &c., his account of evacuation of Matamoros

GENERAL ARISTA, in his official accounts of the battles of the 8th and 9th May, makes the following statement of the loss sustained by the Mexicans: Killed on the 8th – officers, 4; soldiers 98.  Wounded- - colonel, 1; officers, 10; soldiers, 116.  Missing- soldiers,26.  Killed on the 9th- officers, 6; soldiers, 154,  Wounded-  colonels, 2; majors, 2; officers, 19; soldiers, 205.  Missing- officers, 3; soldiers, 156- Total Killed,  10 officers, 252 soldiers.  Wounded- 5 superior officers; 29 officers; 321 soldiers.  Missing- 3 officers; 182 soldiers.  Grand total, 802. 

ARISTA’S OFFICIAL REPORT OF THE EVACUATION OF MATAMOROS.  Headquarters in the Rancho de la Venada, May 18, 1846.

Division of the North- Commander in chief:  All the means of subsistence of this division being consumed, its activity paralysed, and its artillery diminished, while that of the enemy has been greatly increased in the number of pieces and the calibre of his guns, in such a manner that, were he to open his fire, the city of Matamoros would be instantly destroyed, to the utter ruin of national and foreign interests, I have decided to retire from it with the forces under my command before I find myself summoned and very likely obliged to evacuate it with dishonor, which I shall thus avoid; for the march is slow, out pieces being drawn by oxen and our munitions in carts.  My object now is to defend the soil of these departments, which have been entrusted to me; and for that purpose I am going to post myself at those points most convenient and within reach of supplies, of which I will hereafter inform your highness, though your communications must seek me by the road of China or that of Linares. – The step to which I have referred has saved the national honor; and I communicate it to your highness for your information, recommending you to secure the camp equipage, placing it in a convenient point and preserving the 16 pounders in that city, to which, moreover, I will order reinforcement.  MARIANO ARISTA  To the commandant gen’l of Tamaulipas.  [VRD]

NNR 70.304 July 11, 1846 proposed expedition against Yucatan, denial that the American government intends to support it

Expedition for Yucatan.  The Philadelphia Sentinel of the S., states that

“George Washington Dixon, has been parading our streets in a general’s uniform for some days past, representing, it is said that “he is in the pay of the government” and making arrangements for an expedition to Yucatan.”

The Washington “Union,” in referring the subject, says: “We deem it our duty, therefore, to expose the impostor.  G. W. Dixon has no commission, and no species of authority from the government of the United States.  We warn our western friends to beware of such an imposition.  The plan, too, which is here attributed to him is abhorrent to the policy of our government.  Conquer Yucatan!  Why Yucatan is already independent of Mexico, and is the friend of the United States.  We have no disposition to “annex that portion of Mexico to the (American) constellation,” whether it be by conquest of her soil, or even by the voluntary consent of her people.  Let no man, therefore, be taken in by this adventurer.”

The plan of the expedition which the Union speaks of is described by the Sentinel as follows:

“The movement is remarkable on many accounts-The men are generally resolute-tearless fellows, who will fall head up wherever they may be thrown-and their objects are not merely to defend American rights with the bayonet, but also to revolutionize Mexico by means of pronunciamentos, pamphlets, &c.  Aided by some of our best mercantile houses, Gen. Dixon ahs already sent on a printing press, types, and Spanish compositors to Laguira, Yucatan, where part of the company will a proceed, and there, (where popular sentiment will be in their favor, and where the central government of Mexico is least powerful,) these dauntless fellows will operate with greater certainty of success than ten times their number could have from the bayonet alone.  Many who at first were disposed to see it chimeneal, now see its feasibly, and see also that these pioneers will ere long attract thousands from this place.”  [VRD]

NNR 70.304 July 11, 1846 British view of the Mexican war, sympathy with Mexico, British mediation suggested

Paris, June 15. The Journal des Debats lately published a remarkable article on the state of affairs between Mexico and the United States.  Out contemporary, says an English paper, asserts that Mr. Polk has only gone against Mexico to compensate for his defeat in Oregon, and to regain popularity.  It thinks Mexico is totally unable to resist the United States, and that existing hostilities will result in its dismemberment.  It thinks that the states will endeavor to seize the Californias to make up for their being obliged to lose Oregon, and that the Californias are infinitely more valuable.  It views all this with regret, but beyond a few sneers at Mr. Polk, for whom it appears to have cherished the most profound contempt, it says nothing offensive to the United States.  It points out the necessity of France and England interfering in the matter, in order to bring about a reconciliation, and to protect Mexico.  It alleges that France has interests at stake in Mexico which call promptly for such interference.  [VRD]

NNR 70.304 July 11, 1846 Charles Bent, Saint Vrain, and Folger arrive at Saint Louis and report, Gen. Jose Urrea said to be advancing to relief of Santa Fe
70.304 Santa Fe traders pushing forward rapidly in advance of US troops

 SANTA FE.  Messrs. Bent, St. Vrain, and Folger, traders to New Mexico, for whose safety there had been much solicitude, reached St. Louis on 2sd inst. all safe.  They left Santa Fe on the 27th May at which time nothing was known there of the war now existing.  Mr. B. in a conversation with ARMIJO the commandant of New Mexico, did learn that Gen. URREA was on his route to Santa Fe, with a force of from three to five thousand men, gathered in Sonora, Zacatecas and Durango.  The object of this expedition was not stated, if known, by Gov. ARMIJO; but there can be little doubt that the presence of Gov. URREA there, at such a time, was the result of his orders from the Mexican government, and with an intention to resist any invasion from this quarter.—There were only 180 troops in Sante Fe at the time of Mr. BENT’s departure. 

Mr. BENT did not see the advance party of the traders, composed of one of the Armijo’s, Speyers, Colburn, and others; but he learned from a company of about 100 Mexicans, who were out hunting buffalo, that they were met by them at Sand, near Simarone, and sixty miles from Arkansas.  They were pushing on with great rapidity, travelling at the rate of thirty to forty miles per day.  An express from Independence had informed him of the intention to send a detachment of dragoons to stop the progress of Speyers, as was then understood, but as we know, of all the traders; and hence the rapidity of their travelling.—So intent were they upon getting along that a hundred extra miles were purchased, and when a wagon broke down it was abandoned in the road after transferring the goods to another.  Capt. MOOR’s command of dragoons were met on the 17th between the Pawnee Fork, and the Caches of the Arkansas.  He was six or eight days, travel behind Speyer’s party, and it was supposed that he could not overtake them.

Mr. HOWARD, the gentleman dispatched by Government on a special mission to New Mexico, was met on the 16th, at the crossing of the Arkansas, with his pack-mules broken down.  He had, however, dispatched two men as an express to Santa Fe on fresh mules, and they were expected to reach there in nine days.  From thence they were to return to the foot of the Taos mountains, where Mr. H. was to await their coming. 

Mr. Bent saw on the route one hundred and thirty wagons belonging to the traders.  He met two long trains of provision wagons—the first within twenty miles of Council Grove and the other at Dragoon creek.  They were ordered to stop at Fort Bent, where it is understood the whole expedition will rendezvous.  The party arrived at Westport on the 27th, thirty days from Santa Fe.  Mr. F.P. Blair and George Bent were left at Taos.  [VRD]

NNR 70.304 July 11, 1846 federal government accepts services of Missouri mounted regiment and artillery for operations against New Mexico

“The president has accepted the services of another regiment of mounted volunteers, and a separate battalion of artillery, to be composed of five companies.  These troops are to rendevous at Independence, it is said, by the first of August next, and, whatever others may say to the contrary, are to reinforce the command of Col. Kearney, destined to operate against New Mexico.  The president, although he has no more authority, under our law, to do it that we have, has agreed to accept the services of the Hon. Sterling Price, now a member if congress from this state, as colonel; and Major D.D. Mitchell and Wm. Gilpin are named as the other field officers of the regiment.

“We hear further, that the traders who have gone ahead of the expedition, and in pursuit of whom Capt. Moore’s command of dragoons was sent forward, are only to be stopped until Col. Kearney’s force can pass them.  He is to precede them, if it be possible, into Santa Fe, they will follow, each in possession of his own property.  The traders will be protected, Mexicans as well as our own people; but it is possible, we surmise, that the duties on the goods will be paid, if paid at all, to another government that now administered by Armijo.”  [VRD]

NNR 70.304 July 11, 1846 Santa Fe expedition

THE EXPEDITION AGAINST SANTA FE-The volunteers under Col. Kearney have started from Fort Leavenworth.  Captains Waldo’s and Reed’s companies took up their line of march on the 22d June.  Lieutenant Col. Ruff marched on the 27th with the companies under Captains Walton, Parsons, Moss, and Johnson.  Col. A. W. Doniphan and Maj. Gilpin marched on the 29th with the companies under Captains Hudson, Rogers, and Harrison.  Captain Agney’s and captain Murphy’s companies of infantry left the same day.  Captains Weightman’s and Fischer’s companies of flying artillery, and Col. Kearney with his staff started on the 30th.  All the troops in excellent health and spirite.  [VRD]

NNR 70.305 July 18, 1846 withdrawal of troops from our Indian frontiers, leaving them exposed to outbreaks

The Northwest Frontier.-If any reliance is to be placed upon the last accounts that we have from the northwest, and which are inserted under the Indian journal head, the movement of what few troops were left for the protection of that frontier will be very inoperative.  The Detroit Advertiser says:  “An order was received yesterday by Col. Riley, from the war department, to move the 2d regiment of infantry, stationed on the frontier, at once to Point Isabel, Texas.  The company at this post and one at Fort Gratiot will march forthwith.  Orders have been dispatched to the companies to Lake Superior to follow Company C, Captain Byrne, stationed at Mackinac, will remain at that post.  The other companies are at Buffalo, Fort Niagara, and Sacketts Harbor.  No information has been received by whom their places are to be supplied on the frontier.  [VRD]

NNR 70.305 July 18, 1846 volunteers reach the Rio Grande
70.305-306 lack of authentic intelligence from the interior of Mexico


Official-Army of Occupation, June 24, 1846.

“Some volunteers have arrived at Brazos Santiago from Tennessee, presumed to be of the twelve months quota.  The volunteers which previously arrived from New Orleans have nearly all moved to Barita, except two regiments in this place.  I shall bring them up the river as soon as I can procure transportation, which we are impatiently awaiting.  The volunteers from Texas are encamped near Point Isabel, and are now organizing under the direction of the governor.

“We have no authentic intelligence from the interior of Mexico.  The army at Linarez is believed to be moving towards Monterey, much reduced in numbers by desertion and sickness.  It is rumored that Bustamente is at the head of the government, and that Paredes is advancing with a large force to this frontier.”  [VRD]

NNR 70.306 July 18, 1846 present of exploded shot by Capt. D.S. Miles to the Baltimore high school


Camp of the 7th U. States Infantry, On the Rio del Norte, Opposite Matamoros, June 21st, 1846.

To his honor, Col. JACOB G. DAVIES,
Mayor of Baltimore, Md.

DEAR SIR:  Understanding that one of the High Schools of Baltimore is making a collection of curiosities, I take pleasure in sending through you, to be presented to it, a sample of exploded shells and round shot, thrown by the Mexicans from their batteries opposite this place, into Fort Brown, during its bormbardment, viz: from 5 o’clock, A.M., on the 3d of May, till 5 o’clock, P.M., on the 9th of the same month ultimo.

It may be interesting to you to say, the regiment to which I am attached, the 7th infantry, together with on company of the 2d artillery, commanded by Captain Lowd, and another company 3d artillery, commanded by Lieutenant Bragg, constituted the garrison of Fort Brown; and among the officers in command of these troops, a number are natives of Maryland-those marked with a *, natives of Baltimore, vis: placed according to rank.

Captain D. S. MILES, 7th infantry.
A. DRANE, 5th infantry
R. H. ROSS, 7th infantry
1st Lieut. A. ELZEY, (formerly Jones,) 2d artillery.
1st Lieut. H. LITTLE, 7th infantry.
2d Lieut. L. GANTT, 7th infantry
3d Lieut. N. J. T. DANA, 7th infantry
Assistant Surgeon, L. McPhail.*

I am, sir,with great respect, your ob’t serv’t,
Captain 7th infantry U.S.A. [VRD]

NNR 70.306 July 18, 1846 account of the rank and file in the late battles

THE RANK AND FILE OF THE ARMY.-All the officers with whom we have conversed, who were engaged at Palo Alto and Resaca de la Palma, speak in terms of the greatest enthusiasm of the conduct of the rank and file on those trying occasions.  Not only did the men behave well in the fight, but they manifested the utmost anxiety to get into it.  Lieut. Crittenden related several incidents to us which places the conduct of privates and non-commissioned officers in the most favorable aspect.  After Colonel McIntosh had been wounded on the 8th, one of the men was detailed to take charge of him.  He complained bitterly.  He loved his colonel, he said, and would be proud to nurse and take car of him; but he did not like to lose his chance in another fight, and begged to be excused.  One of the corporals was wounded by a ball in the forehead, which at first looked as if it would prove fatal.  He pressed his hand to his head and said “I am hurt, I am mortally hurt.”  Then reflecting, he said-“No I ain’t; I  am good for something yet!”  He then bound up his head with his handkerchief, went into the fight, and did his duty like a man.  By the time, however, his head had swollen greatly, and he was forced by his officers to place himself in the hands of the surgeon.  This noble fellow is now in the detachment commanded by Capt. Marcy and Lieut. Crittenden, and leaves with them to day.

After battles of the 9th, when more hot work was expected, Lieut. Crittenden and his men-or what remained of them, for he had suffered severely in these engagements-were bivouacked on a spot near the river.  Early in the evening he was called upon by Lieut. Hays, of this state, who had received an order from General Taylor to cross the river in the morning.  Ten of the best men were required for duty then believed to be full of peril, and Lieut. Hays wanted  to know if he could obtain this sort of metal in the ranks of Crittenden’s company.  The latter thought he could accommodate him.-Most of his men were lying on the ground asleep, or overcome with fatigue.  He woke them up  “Men,” said he, “Mr. Hays wants ten daring cool fellows to cross the river with him in the morning.  All who are willing to go will rise-though all must be aware that it is an enterprise full of danger.”  Every man jumped to his feet in a moment!  A selection had to be made, however.  Those who were not taken were loud in their complaints, and one of the sergeants came to Crittenden several timed during the evening, and begged to be detailed.  His lieutenant told him that privates not officers were required.  “O, never mind,” said the sergeant, “you’ll find that I will play the private very well.”

Is it wonderful that against such a spirit the best torrps, and the overwhelming numbers of the foe, were unavailing.     [Pennsylvanian of Monday.  [VRD]

          ARMY OF OCCUPATION.  We have but little that is new from the army on the Rio Grande, and have been actually amazed at the impatience which we find expressed in various directions, and even exhibiting itself in congress in the form of a resolution to enquire why the army upon the Rio Grande has remained so long inactive since the victories of the 8th and 9th of May?  Persons who indulge in such inquiries must be grossly ignorant of the nature and difficulties of a campaign, or of the preparations which are indispensable to a successful prosecution of a foreign invasion.  Flatter ourselves as we may, the fact is that, owing to an error in estimating the capacities of the enemy, the army under General Taylor made a narrow escape from almost utter annihilation, an escape, to effect which, good fortune as well as severe fighting was indispensable.-Had Gen. Arista anticipated Gen. Taylor’s movement from Fort Brown to Point Isabel by a single day, and taken that post, with the stores then there, (and why he did not is to us incomprehensible: it was a fatal error to him and his army;) had he made that movement, Gen. Taylor’s predicament would have been irretrievable.  Even with the advantage which Arista’s want of generalship in this particular gave to Gen. Taylor-his predicament still was such, that it seems almost miraculous that he reached Fort Brown with the supplies of which they were there so much in want.  The battle of the 8th was most gallantly maintained by the Mexicans.  The anxiety with which every officer and man under Gen. Taylor grasped his arms, instead of reposing upon them during the gloom of that night, was unexpectedly relieved in the morning by finding that the many hours bravely fought for.  And the battle of the 9th too, seemed to turn upon the coincidence of a variety of circumstances of the moment, as disastrous to the Mexicans as the want of these coincidents might have been to Gen. Taylor’s army, if “fortune” as well as superior generalship had not favored them.

One lesson of this kind, we venture to predict, will be a sufficient admonition to Gen. Taylor.  He will not be apt to adventure again so far upon Mexican imbecility.  He will be cautious to keep his troops within reach of supplies and to have at hand the means of transportation.  We should like Gen. Taylor, in maintaining the appellation of “rough and ready,” not to forget the pre-requisite of “safe and sure.”  Another such a state of anxiety for the safety of the army as was awakened at its recent predicament, we hope may not be courted.

NNR 70.309-311 July 18, 1846 Gen. Zachary Taylor, for want of transports and supplies, unable to improve his victories, inundated by volunteers of whose services he cannot avail; items from the Rio Grande; letter from the seat of war

That Gen. Taylor will improve to the very best advantage the resources he has at command, we have full confidence.  But he is embarrassed by an inundation of volunteers, whose term of service will not enable him to fit them for effective operation and for whose supplies and subsistence even, much less for whose transportation, adequate provision had not been made.  The water in the river, in the meantime, it appears is falling, and it is quite uncertain whether, by the time the flat and light draft boats reach, will find sufficient water to enable them to ascend to where the advance corps, under Col. Wilson, is already pushed.  The steamer Neva left Reynosa, on the 24th June, at which time the river had fallen three feet from what it was when it ascended.

The Neva, after arriving at Matamoros, was found to require repairs, and was ordered round to St. Josephs to be overhauled.  The 7th infantry, which were to have gone to Reynosa, had to be disembarked on the 30th of June.  The distance from Matamoros to Reynosa by the river, is 180 miles, by land about 80 miles.  Notwithstanding the fall of the water of the river, the quantity of rain that had fallen rendered it almost impossible to transport provisions, munitions, &c., on wheels.  The movement of troops must of course be delayed.

But suppose the principal part of the army under Gen. Taylor, by great efforts, were now either marched or steered up the Del Norte as high as Camargo-what then?  Where are the wagons, or horses or mules, wherewith to commence a march into the interior of Mexico?  Until these reach him-and reach him in numbers, too, that persons who have not thought upon the subject, very little suspect to be necessary-until they reach him in sufficient numbers and with sufficient subsistence for their own support as well as that of the army, not a peg can Gen. Taylor move from The Rio Grande.  It is better, indeed, that his army should remain at Matamoros than that, if they could without difficulty, be transported to Camargo-they had to remain there for want of the means of penetrating towards Mexico.

A letter which we find in the New Orleans Picayune, of the 6th, dated Point Isabel, July 3, from a correspondent who left Matamoros the evening before says-“The road we came over last night­­­-I mean the wagon road between Point Isabel and Matamoros-is still impassable for loaded wagons, and it is a wonder to me how a light wagon can be dragged over it.  From the river to the Palo Alto, some nine miles, there is not, altogether, half a mile of good road.  The mud is generally a foot deep-and in some places two or three feet deep, and there is at least four miles of water, in many places hardly fordable for horses.  The gentlemen who accompanied me down captured a garfish on “six mile prairie,” between the battle fields the other day nearly three feet long.  I passed over the same place four or five times when it was perfectly dry, with no appearance of having ever been overflowed.  At the Resaca de la Palma where, as you will observe on the map a road passes between the ponds and that is deep enough anywhere for a respectable sized steamboat to pass through it.  The Palo Alto battle field is two-thirds covered with water.

“The mosquitoes showed themselves in numbers for the first time at head-quarters last evening.-The volunteer camp was perfectly shrounded by smoke, raised by the men to keep off the intruders.  A rumor obtains in camp that a portion of the Louisiana volunteers are soon to be disbanded, and, though they have been assured that such will not probably be the case, they are quite uneasy about it-a few, because they want to go home, and fear the rumor is not well founded, but most of them because they desire to stay and ‘see the thing out.’  ‘When can we move?  Can we ever get a fight out of them?’ are the questions constantly put to persons coming from Gen. Taylor’s quarter.”

We should have been spared the task of penning the above, had the following article reached us before the foregoing was put in type.  It is not for the gratification of verifying what has been said, but for the value of the facts and the cogency of the reasoning that we extract the following from the National Intelligencer, of the 14th.

Copy of the letter received by a member of congress from the seat of war, dated Point Isabel, June 28, 1846.

Sir:  Being here among that (to many) unfortunate class called volunteers, and having not much else to do but protect myself from the effects of a hot sun and almost daily rains fro the last two weeks, I have concluded to make a few notes for the information of those who keep an eye on the acts and management of the persons charged with the prosecution of the war with Mexico.  My position enables me to see and hear much of what is going on; but I do not, like some others, pretend to know every thing; therefore you must not discredit what I state because I do not tell all you may wish to know or all that occurs.

I was here some time before the difficulties commenced in April.  On the 20th of that month a young Spaniard and a Mexican were arrested on the point of Brasos Santiago Island upon some suspicion of being spies.  When examined nothing was elicited calculated to confirm the suspicion.  They stated there were then between six and seven thousand men in Matamoros, commanded by Gen. Ampudia, who was anxious to fight; but that Gen. Arista was on his way to take command, and was daily expected.  This statement seemed to excite but little attention here, and it was not for two days transmitted to Gen. Taylor.  ON the 23d of April a Mexican came voluntarily to this place, and stated that a large Mexican force would cross the Rio Grande on that evening or the next day, for the purpose of making an attack on this place.  I was present when a young officer was interrogating him through an interpreter, and it seemed to me the purpose was more to intimidate the man than to elicit information.  The statements of the Mexican caused a good deal of talk during the day, but seemed to cause no additional vigilance or extra preparation.  On the 19th of April, Capt. Price, who commands a company of Texas Rangers, arrived here.  He had for a long time been stationed at Goliad doing nothing.  His object was to get Gen. Taylor to order his company to join the army.  He went to see the general on the 20th, and left him on the afternoon of the 21st, being told that his company was not wanting then, but whenever there was a probability of the Mexicans fighting they would be informed and ordered to join.  On the 24th, the day the Mexicans crossed the river, about ten or eleven leagues from here, the government steamer Monmouth and the chartered steamer Cincinnati towed to sea some four or five vessels, on board of which, passengers and seamen, perhaps eighty or one hundred persons left the place, nearly all of whom would willingly have remained if it had been supposed there was any probability of an attack.  That same afternoon the steamer Cincinnati left here for St. Joseph’s Island for the purpose of bringing the women and children left there to this place, so secure did every thing appear.  I mention these circumstances, and refer you to the correspondence between Generals Taylor and Worth, to prove that the former and many of his officers believed that the Mexicans would not fight-an opinion that was nearly proving fatal to a portion, if not the whole army.  The feeling manifested by the murder of Col. Cross, the attack upon Lieut. Porter and his party, and other circumstances, induced me to think it was their intention to fight soon, and I so expressed myself to several officers high in command.  Indeed, the circumstance of two armies being within a few hundred yards of each other in hostile array was certain to produce collision in a short time.  The events that took place on the 24th April and the days subsequent, until the 8th and 9th of May, I shall pass over.-Some things, it appears to me, might have been ordered differently and probably better, but I am not soldier enough to form a correct opinion; but the results are sufficiently brilliant to induce a belief that all was right, and will atone for previous want of diligence and over-confidence in the pacific intentions of the enemy.

The president, in his message of the 11th of May, says-“American blood has been shed on American soil,”   alluding to the affair that took place on the 24th April between the dragoons, under the command of Captains Thornton and Hardee, in which some were killed and the others taken prisoners by the Mexicans.  There is much to be said upon the question whether it is rightfully American soil where this affair took place; but certain it is that as soon as Capt. Thornton was given up by the Mexicans, on the 10th or 11th of May, he was put under arrest by Gen. Taylor for disobeying his orders while on that expedition, and bringing on that fight contrary to his wishes.  He is now here under arrest-a circumstance I have not seen mentioned in a public manner.  I may at some future time send you a statement of some fact bearing on the assertions of the president and the circumstances relied on to prove that the bank of the Rio Grande was American soil  It may be so considered now.

As soon as the alarm of war was rung through the country, volunteers hastened here from various quarters, until there is now on this frontier some eight or ten thousand, and many more on the way.-Many of these men have left comfortable homes, and have come expecting to see active service.  Instead of that, they are scattered over the country, in different encampments, exposed to the heat of the sun in latitude 26, and the soaking rains of the summer solstice, inactive, and many indulging in dissipation to kill time and chase away ennui.  I will explain why this is so.  The great object seems to have been to hasten men on here, without any particular object.  If it be for purposes of defence, Gen. Taylor has proved he did not want many to assist him certainly no more than he called for.  If the object be invasion, the men come poorly provided.  They come with  in their hands, and there are, provisions enough, easily obtained, but there is not a sufficiency of transportation for an army of five thousand men.  If some attention had been paid to the necessary means of transporting supplies for an army, it would have been much better than sending masses of men to suffer in this climate.  An army cannot move without provisions, and if we penetrate far into the country it will require a great number of wagons.-There are about three hundred wagons and teams here, but not drivers enough for them; when I say here, understand with the army.  We are told the government has three hundred wagons in or about Philadelphia; when they will be here no one can tell; mules have to be purchased, and no chance of getting them, except from the Mexicans; they are perfectly wild, and must be tamed and taught to work; they will take a long time after the wagons arrive.  The Mexican officers are having the mules driven off as fast as they can into the interior, and forbid any sales to us; still a good many are brought to Matamoros and are purchased.  A month ago an officer was sent to New Orleans to purchase several steamboats suitable to navigate the Rio Grande.  None of them are here yet, and, from what we have been informed when they do arrive, it is not probable they will answer the purpose.  In the mean time the mouth of the river has been closed by a bar, the steamers Sea and Cincinnati, chartered at high rates, were caught inside, and are of little or no use; drawing too much water.  The Col. Harney steamer, belonging to the government, was during the last week, in open daylight, run on the bar, off this harbor, and has gone to pieces-a great piece of negligence.  The utter neglect to supply the army with sufficient transportation for ammunition and supplies now paralyzes every thing and prevents the army moving on.  If we had had one month ago three hundred additional wagons and two or three small steamers in the Rio Grande, we should now be far on our way to Monterey, in a high healthy country, the men contented and well, and no time given the enemy to recruit their forces or recover from the consequences of their defeat.  Instead of this, I do not believe the army will leave the banks of the Ro Grande before the middle of August or the commencement of September.  Until then the men must be paid and supported-at what cost you will see when you get hold of the accounts.

The staff department of the army, particularly the quartermaster’s branch, is most inefficient and extravagant.  The only persons qualified for the station of a quartermaster are real business men-men of system and order, well acquainted with accounts-These officers require no military skill or education, but thorough mercantile habits and capacity.  The consequence of the quartermasters not being such men, will be developed when the accounts are exhibited and the expenses come to be added up.  Their unacquaintance with business, the state of the markets, &c., subjects them to the grossest impositions in making contracts and purchases; and there are those who say favoritism goes a long way, but of that I know nothing.

When the expenses of this war are paid and the accounts exhibited, the Florida expenditures will appear small.  The most enormous rates are paid for many things, particularly for the use of ships and other vessels engaged in transporting troops and stores; from twenty-five to fifty per cent.  More than a commercial man would pay for similar vessels for his own use.  Let me give you a few instances-The steamship Alabama is chartered at the rate of $16,500 per month.  She was here about the end of May with volunteers, and returned to New Orleans on the 1st inst.  She reached the bar off this port several days ago, and was soon after blown off with out landing the men on her, and has not yet got back.  The steamers Augusta and Cincinnati have long been in service under high charters.  The former has been fast aground since the 29th May, until two days ago.  The latter is cooped up in the Rio Grande and is but little service.  An old French barque called the Blayaise, was condemned at Galvestone the last of April, or early in May, as being unsea worthy, and sold in the latter month at auction.  The hull, lower masts, and some of the ground tackle &c., was purchased for about $1,100 or $1,200:  An expense of $300 perhaps was incurred in partially rigging her; when a Lieut. Kingsbury chartered her to bring two companies of Texan volunteers to this place, giving $950 for the trip.  Soon after her arrival she was dismantled, and the rigging sold or otherwise disposed of, and the hull alone hired by the quartermaster at $30 per day-$10,950 per annum; a good interest on $1,500!  Other cases as remarkable could be mentioned.  A new quartermaster general is on his way here, it is said, and thing may be better managed perhaps.  At some proper time it might be well to have an exhibit of the amount paid to each steamer and sailing vessel engaged in transporting troops and supplies to this place for the army, their tonnage, value, &c., and then obtaining from practical business men what such vessels could have been employed for by individuals for their own use.  The most enormous rates were also paid last year for transportation to Corpos Christi and St. Joseph’s Island.  Sometimes as much was paid for a vessel from New Orleans as she could have made on a voyage to Liverpool, and the rates have not abated.  At an early period it will be well to look into these expenditures, and know who has made them or sanctioned them.

No one can tell when they army will make a forward movement.  My belief is it will be a considerable time, and solely for the want of transportation.  In the mean time the volunteers are much exposed.  For two weeks or more it has rained almost every day, and the appearances are strongly in favor of a continuance of it.  When it does not rain the sun is hot enough.  The tents furnished are of an indifferent kind, and there are a number of companies particularly among the Texans, that have none at all.-Yet the men so far continue tolerably healthy.  How long it will last no one can tell.

Whether the Mexicans will risk another battle of a general kind is a question that cannot be decided now.  If they could have been pursued soon after the battles in May, their force must have been dispersed, killed, or captured.  As it is, they have ample time to raise reinforcements and recruit their spirits, and may make another stand in the hilly country.  If they do, I have no doubt they will be defeated, and the war may be terminated soon; but if they do not conclude to make another general fight, the war will be of a partisan character, and no one can tell when it will terminate.  We may overrun the country, but will not subdue it.  As long as private property is respected, and the lives and rights of those not found in arms secured, the Mexicans do not car about our traveling through their country and paying the highest prices for what they have to sell.  It is a species of warfare better for many of them than the state of peace they have heretofore enjoyed.  The men are frequently employed here by the quartermaster, and are much better paid than they ever were before.  Yet these people, as a mass, have the bitterest feelings against us.  Their priests and demagogues have, for their own purposes, fostered their prejudices and animosities, and the idea of “extending the area of freedom” so as to include them, seems to me ridiculous and absurd.

The rumor is (and I think it worthy of credit) that the Mexicans are fortifying the town of Monterey.  It is a place of considerable importance in a civil and military point of view, and it is possible the enemy may fight for it.  If they do not, they will make no general fight, that is certain; and the war will then be of theguerrilla kind, and be waged in a most sanguinary spirit.  Our people, particularly the Texans, feel very hostile and much exasperated against the Mexicans; and if ever the army is broken up into detachments and small parties they will not be spared by them.  As long as we are embodied, under the control of high officers, a proper restraint will be exercised; but as soon as the small chiefs have sway then will bloodshed and rapine spread over the country.  [VRD]

NNR 70.311 July 18, 1846 departure of the expedition against Santa Fe from Fort Leavenworth

Gen. Urrea, who, it is said, is advancing with a force of from three to five thousand men, upon Santa Fe, with a view of defending that section of the republic of Mexico from invasion, is said to be a man of approved courage and military capacity.  Should he make his appearance there in time to avail himself of the best point to repel invasion, as he, doubtless, has done, he many give the force under the command of Colonel Kearney something to do, before possession of New Mexico is obtained.  In his absence, however and with the acknowledged disposition of Armijo to show the Americans all possible favor, very little, if any opposition will be made to the entrance of Col. Kearney into that department of the republic.  It will be, we suppose, the middle or latter end of August; before Colonel Kearney can cross the Rio del Norte, and Gen. Urrea has, unquestionably, full time to prepare for his reception.  The prospect of resistance, only give to the expedition a little more interest, and all eyes will be henceforth on the watch for news from that quarter.  [St. Louis Repub. 3d  [VRD]

NNR 70.311 July 18, 1846 Louisiana habeas corpus case

HABEAS CORPUS-DESERTERS-Judge McCaleb, U.S. district court, N. Orleans, a few days since, in the case of Henry Grammont, arrested as a deserter from Major Gally’s battalion of volunteers, now stationed at Fort Jackson, after hearing able argument, in which the counsel for the government contended that Grammont was regularly and legally enlisted as a volunteer, under authority of Gen. Gaines-that he was legally enlisted under authority of the state of Louisiana, as expressed in resolutions of the legislature,-and that his voluntary act legally bound him to serve as a soldier in the army of the United States, thus decided.

The judge reviewed the case, and the laws applicable thereto, at some length, and concluded by deciding, that Gen. Gaines had no legal authority for calling out the battalion in question-that the president had not recognized his having so called them into service.  That the battalion having been mustered into service by authority of the state of Louisiana, the court could have nothing to do with, unless such mustering was in pursuance of an order from the president or a law of congress;-that the voluntary enlistment of the individual could not be plead against his application, unless his enlistment had been made under due authority of law.  His volunteering was for the purpose of aiding Gen. Taylor on the Rio Grande, and could not be construed to cover enlistments made to man forts within the limits of Louisiana, and for service far from the scene of operations, and on a territory where not the remotest apprehension of invasion was apprehended; a service, when we take into consideration that motives and object of the petitioned when he enlisted, comparatively ignoble in its nature.  We cannot suppose that it was ever in the contemplation of those who consented to abandon the comforts of domestic life, to engage in the military service of the country, that they would be confined within the walls of a garrison, instead of being allowed to participate in the more exciting and honorable events of the war, for the prosecution of which they were called into service.  Li is therefore ordered that the petitioner be discharged from custody.  [VRD]

NNR 70.311-312 July 18, 1846 Gen. Zachary Taylor's interview with a gentleman's son among the volunteers

INCIDENTS, &C.-Our friend, Capt. Church, of the Bulletin, on his late trip from New Orleans, brought with him a number of officers just from the army.-They were full of anecdote, of course, and the following little illustration of character is interesting as well as amusing:

Among the volunteers was a “gentleman’s son”-a full private, who, heartily sick of rainy weather, mud and no shelter, first went to his captain with his complaints, but meeting with no particular sympathy, resolved to have a talk with General Taylor himself.  Arrived at the commander’s quarters, the general was pointed out to him, but he was rather incredulous-“That old fellow General Taylor?-Nonsense!”  Satisfied, however, that such was even the case, he marched up, and rather patronizingly, opened his business.

“General Taylor, I believe?”

“Yes, sir.”

“Well, General, I’m devilish glad to see you-am indeed!”  The general retuned the civility.

“General, you’ll excuse me, but since I’ve been here I’ve been doing all I could for you-have, indeed; but the fact is, the accommodations are very bad-are, indeed; mud, sir! Actually mud!-’bleeged to lie down in it, actually; and the fact is, General, I’m a gentleman’s son, and not used to it.”

The general no doubt deeply impressed with the fact of having a gentleman’s son in his army, expressed his regret that such grievances should ever exist under any circumstances, in a civilized army.

Well-but, General, What am I to do?”

“Well, really, I don’t know, unless you take my place.”

“Well, now, that’s civil-’tis indeed.  Of course don’t mean to turn you out, but a few hour’s sleep-a cot or a bunk, or anything-would be so refreshing!  Your place, where is it, General?”

“Oh. just drop down-anywhere about here-any place about camp will answer!”

The look which the “gentleman’s son” gave the general was peculiar.

“Well, no wonder they call you ‘Rough and Ready!’ ” said he; and amid the smiled of all but ‘Rough and Ready’ himself, “gentleman’s son” returned to take his chance of the weather.
[St. Louis Reveille, July 2.  [VRD]

NNR 70.312 July 18, 1846 organizing of the regiments of Illinois volunteers

          ILLINOIS VOLUNTEERS.-The 1st regiment of Illinois volunteers, now at Alton, under the command of Col. J. J. Hardin, has been fully organized, by the election of Wm. Weatherford, of Jacksonville, as lieutenant colonel, and Wm. B. Warren, of the same place, as major.

A letter from Alton, dated on Saturday evening last, informs us that all the companies comprising the three regiments of Illinois, except four, had arrived at the encampment and been mustered into service.  The companies yet behind are to come from the southern counties:  Gallatin, Pulaski, Pope, and Wayne.  The company from Gallatin passed up on Saturday night last. [St. Louis Rep.]  [VRD]

Officers-The board of officers, to whom was referred the question of rank between Col. Baker and Gen. Hardin, have decided in favor of Hardin.-The question of rank between Majors Morrison and Trial has been decided in favor of the former.
[St. Louis Era.] [VRD]

NNR 70.312 July 18, 1846 call on Iowa for an additional company of volunteers

IOWA VOLUNTEERS.-A requisition has been made by the president on the governor of Iowa, for one company of volunteers, in addition to the regiment called for from that territory.  This company is to be stationed at Fort Atkinson, where they will probably remain for one year.  Captain James M. Morgan is in command; 1st lieut., J. H. McKinney; 2d, D. S. Wilson.  [VRD]

Commander of the Iowa volunteers.-The Burlington Hawk-Eye says:  “We understand, a few days since, not knowing anything about the feeble state of Ex Governor Chambers’ health, Governor Clarke visited Col. Chambers at his delightful country seat, for the sole purpose of offering him, without any solicitation on the part of any person, the command of the regiment of Iowa volunteers with the well deserved complimentary remark, that if Col. Chambers would accept it, he, Gov. Clarke, had no doubt about the regiment being filled up in forty eight hours after it is known that the ex-governor was to be its commander.  When Gov. Clarke ahd seen for himself that the illness and feebleness of his predecessor utterly prohibited the acceptance of the offer, he expressed much sincere regret.”  [VRD]

NNR 70.312-313 July 18, 1846 indignation over appointment of Sterling Price as commander of a company of Missouri volunteers

The Plamyra (Mo) Courier says: “It is now positively ascertained that an additional thousand volunteer for Santa Fe will be accepted from Missouri.  There has, however, been no regular call upon the state for that number; but the privilege to raise a regiment of one thousand volunteers, has been delegated to certain men, who are to act as commanders.  The individuals are, Sterling Price, of Chariton, as colonel; D.D. Mitchel, of St. Louis. Lieut. Colonel; Wm. Gilpin, of Jackson, and Thomas Price, of Cole, majors.  No complaint is made of these men as officers; but many object to the mode of their attaining command.  It is greatly repugnant to the ideas and feelings of our citizens to be denied the right of selecting their own officers, as they have been accustomed to do.  In consequence of this feeling, little disposition is manifested to volunteer.  While we cannot approve the manner in which these officer [UNREADABLE] Missouri refased a privilege that thousands in other states are eager to accept because a condition is attached that they are to receive as officers men whose exertions and influence doubtless obtained for them that privilege.

Gen. Willock having returned from Jefferson city with assurance that one or two companies would be received from this division, has, with his usual promptitude and energy, set about raising a company.  His headquarters are at the Missouri house, where persons wishing to volunteer may enroll their names.  The general expects to be off in eight or ten days, and has expressed a determination to go whether he gets a company or not.  As his company is, however, rapidly filling up, those wishing to join had better report themselves immediately.”

Thomas L. Price, of Jefferson city, who was designated to take the command of a battalion of artillery in the same way Col. S. Price was designated for the regiment, has abandoned the project, assigning other engagements as the reason for this course. [St. Louis Republican.  [VRD]

NNR 70.312 July 18, 1846 Alabama volunteers,
NNR 70.313 July 18, 1846 Alabama election of officers, departure for Point Isabel

ALABAMA VOLUNTEERS  The regiment encamped near mobile elected their officers on the 27th. Ult.- JOHN R. COFFEE, a private in the Jackson county company was elected colonel; Richard G. Earl, captain of the company from Benton county, lieutenant colonel; Geo. Bryan, of the Tallapoosa volunteers major.  The regiment embarked from Mobile on the 29th for Point Isabel.  [VRD]

NNR 70.313 arrival of volunteers from Maryland and the District of Columbia at Brazos
70.313 use of a draft in North Carolina to determine troops chosen for service in Mexico
70.313 departure of Ohio volunteers for the Rio Grande
70.313 destination of Kentucky volunteers in Mexico

THE DETACHMENT OF MARYLAND AND DISTRICT OF COLOMBIA VOLUNTEERS, which recently left Alexandria in the steamer Massachusetts, the New Orleans Bulletin of the 8th states, had arrived at Brazos in 15 days and disembarked.  [VRD]

NORTH CAROLINA VOLUNTEERS. -  The Raleigh Register states, that about FORTY companies had tendered their services, and as ten companies only were required from that state, that number had to be drafted from the whole that offered.  One out of every four drew prizes from the wheel used for the purpose.  [VRD]

OHIO VOLUNTEERS. – Col. Morgan’s regiment of volunteers left Cincinnati on the night of the 10th inst., on board two steamboats, for New Orleans – All the Ohio volunteers are now on their way to the Rio Grande.  [VRD]

KENTUCKY VOLUNTEERS. – Orders have been received from Washington, changing the destination of Col. McKee’s regiment of infantry.  They will embark this evening for the Rio Grande to join Gen. Taylor.  The steamers Louisville and Sultana have been chartered to carry them to N. Orleans.  Col. Marshall’s cavalry regiment will probably start on Thursday next, by which time it is expected all their equipage will be got ready.  They will proceed from here to Memphis – by water, if transportation can be obtained at a reasonable rate; otherwise by land. – From Memphis, they will take up their march by land through Arkansas.  This information is official.  [Louisville Journal.  [VRD]

NNR 70.313-314 July 18, 1846 correspondence of Gen. William Jenkins Worth and Gen. Zachary Taylor on desire of Worth to retire from his command


Who can view the incidents of the existing war, without profound regret for the fate in which this, one of the most efficient and distinguished officers that belongs to our army, has been subjected?

The services rendered by General Worth in finally bringing to an issue the protracted war with the Seminoles in Florida, had fully prepared the public mind throughout the country for an exhibition of the same military talents upon a large field, in case of another war.  This expectation for a time was fully realized.  General Worth left Florida in September last with his regiment, and was amongst the first upon the ground of Corpus Christi, in command of the first brigade, consisting of twelve companies of artillery, the 8th regiment of infantry, and Duncan’s battery.  On the march from thence to the Rio del Norte, when the Mexican forces threatened to dispute the passage of General Taylor’s army at the Colorado River, General Worth led the advance of the gallant light companies, in face of a dense chaparral, through water four feet deep, and 110 yards wide. Whist the Mexican artillery, un{illegible} with port fired lit, occupied the opposite bank.  It was General Worth, who, with his own hands, first hoisted the American flag on the banks of the Rio Grande, in the face of the enemy’s forces posted at Matamoros, whist the Americans loudly cheered the waving emblem of their nation.

It was curing the quiet which for some time succeeded the occupation of the post last mentioned, that General Worth received the mortifying intelligence, that he had been superceded in rank, by an arrangement announced from the war department.

Sharing fully in the opinion which General Taylor manifestly entertained at that period, that no serious hostile demonstrations would be attempted for some time by the Mexicans, General Worth deemed it due to himself as an officer, to demonstrate his sensibility to such an arrangement as had been ordered.  He therefore addressed the following letter to Gen. Taylor.

Headquarters, 1st brigade, Army of Occupation, April 2d, 1846.

GENERAL: The bearer of your dispatches has left, and I cannot permit a moment to pass before pressing upon your kind consideration the hope that you will be pleased immediately to relieve me from a command which you had the confidence to confer and in which with all the ardour of my nature, and to the best of my abilities I have sought to serve you and the country. If there is any form or manner in which out of authority I can serve you, it is hardly necessary to say with what alacrity I shall be always at your command.  At the earliest moment when you feel assured that no conflict is at hand or in prospective, I shall be much gratified by being allowed to retire and NOT BEFORE.  I remain, General. Very truly yours, W.J. WORTH, Brigadier General.

After reaching Point Isabel, General Worth addressed the following letter to Gen. Taylor:

Point Isabel.  Brazos Santiago.  13th of April, 1846

GENERAL: Major Munroe has advised me of your communication of yesterday.  I have been detained here by stress of weather and shall be probably for several days.  I need not say that my services are entirely at your command at any time, place or moment.  I remain, General, with highest respect, your obedient servant, W.J. WORTH, Brigadier General.  To Brig. Gen. TAYLOR, commanding, &c.

To which Gen. Taylor responded on the 14th of April, as follows:

Headquarters, Army of Occupation, Camp near Matamoros, April 14th, 1846.

GENERAL: Your esteemed letter of yesterday’s date was duly received, and I sincerely thank you for the offer of your services.  Had we been attacked as there was a decided probability that such would be the case from the other side, I would gladly avail myself of them, as I know your head, heart, and hand would have been with us even to the death, if necessary, in such a contingency.  General Ampudia had just reached Matamoros with a small reinforcement of cavalry, assumed the command, and at once ordered all Americans in the city to leave for Victoria, one hundred and fifty miles in the interior, in twenty-four hours; and the next day notified me to leave for the east bank of the Nueces, also in twenty-four hours.  In case of my not doing so war would be the result.  I informed him that I had been ordered by my goevenmnt to take and occupy a position on the left of the Rio Grande, which I had done and from which I could not recede, except by orders from the same quarter that brought me here.  The movement in question, it was expected by my government, would have been a peaceful one, and that he was fully at liberty to make it otherwise at any moment he might see fit to do so; in which case he would be responsible for all the consequences resulting from the same; since which I have heard nothing further from him, and I imagine I will not, except in the way of protests, remonstrances, &c-at any rate until my communication can go to the city of Mexico, be acted on there, and the measures to be pursued growing out  of it received at Matamoros, not any thing stronger than paper bulletins will be received by us.  At the same time I must be, if possibly fully prepared, at all times to meet any even or occurrences which may arise.  Under this state of things, I could not ask you to return.  The weather here since you left has been wretched, and from present appearances will continue so for some time, which has made us all quite miserable.  I presume it was no better at Point Isabel; if so you must have had anything but a comfortable time of it there.  We have heard nothing certain as regards the fate of Cross.  Wishing that matters at Washington may be so arranged as to do away the necessity of your returning from the service, I remain with respect and esteem your obedient servant,


To Gen. Worth, U. S. army, Point Isabel.

This correspondence closes by General Worth’s letter in answer to Gen. Taylor, date April 16th.

       Point Isabel, 2 o’clock P.M.
        April 16th, 1846

General:  I am this moment in receipt of your kind and obliging favor of the 14th, and shall, in half an hour, embark with a heart lessened in some degree of its oppressive burden.  I congratulate you on the turn of events.  The enemy has now tired his gun, and will surrender the boundary as submissively as he professed the determination to resist.-Your duties will be those of pacification; the more agreeable, because more conformable to the policy of our government.  Would to God I could go better assured of the fate of Cross.  I strongly incline to the belief that Canales’ people, acting on the suggestions of Carabajal, may have laid a snare for him, in the hope that it might provoke you to commence hostilities.  Recollect what I reported to you of the language which the letter addressed to me after his parting with you at Point Isabel.  It is possible I may go to Washington as you advise.

Wishing you all success and honor, I remain, General, very truly yours.      


To General Taylor,

General Worth repaired to Washington.  The day after his arrival information was received that hostilities had commenced on the Rio Grande.-His letter and that of General Jones show that he was as prompt now as he had ever been, in a service of thirty-three years to repair to his country’s standard-which sentiment was understood and appreciated by the president of the United States.

Gen. W. writes as follows to the adjutant general:

    Washington city, May 9th, 1846.
      6 o’clock, P. M.

SIR:  Reliable information which I have this moment received from the head quarters of the army in front of Matamoros, makes it not only a duty, but accords with my inclination to request permission to withdraw my resignation, and that I be ordered or permitted forthwith to return to, and take command of the troops from which I was separated on the 7th of April, by order NO. 42, Army of Occupation.  I am, sire, with high respect, &c., &c

W. J. WORTH, Brigadier General.

To Gen. Jones, Adjutant General.
Adjutant General’s Office

   Washington, May 9th, 1846.

General:  I have submitted to the secretary of war your letter of this afternoon’s date, in which for reasons stated, you request that your resignation recently tendered, may be recalled, and you may be ordered or permitted forthwith to return to, and take command of the troops from which you were separated on the 7th of April, by order No. 42, Army of Occupation.

The motives which prompt this course on your part are fully appreciated; and I am directed to say that your request is complied with.  You will therefore repair without delay to General Taylor’s head quarters, and report to him accordingly.  I am, very respectfully, your ob’t serv’t,

       B. JONES, Adjutant General.

To Brevet Brigadier Gen. W. J. WORTH,
  U.S. Army, Washington, D. C.

Gen. Worth throughout evinced no disposition to avoid duty, but anxious, to have a question settled that was almost creating a mutiny in the camp-he repaired to Washington determined not to be the cause of dissension in the face of the enemy, believing too, as lie had good cause, “that nothing stronger would occur than paper bulletins,” as expressed by General Taylor.  But when the first rumor of a collision reached.  Washington city, Gen. Worth sacrificing everything, disregarding that so depressing to a soldier’s spirit, withdrew his resignation, repaired instantly to the camp on the Rio Grande, where he now is, in line, ready to lead our armies to Mexico, which he is abundantly able to do, combining the rare qualities of diplomatist (appreciating and understanding the peculiar features of our government,) with that of a soldier-well tried in many an open field, and bearing upon his body marks of the enemy which will live with the history of those glorious achievements, ever commanding the admiration of the America people as well as the consideration and respect of the world.  [VRD]

NNR 70.320July 18, 1846  intrigues to restore Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna to power in Mexico

INTRIGUES.  There have been various speculations as to certain movements said to be on foot for the restoration of Santa Anna to power in Mexico.  It has been intimated also that our government had something to do with the project in question, and that upon Santa Anna’s return to the administration in Mexico a peace would be negotiated between that republic and the United States on the basis of the cession of the Californias to this country.  The Union refers to this subject, and says:

“we deem it our duty to state in the most positive terms. That our government has no sort of connextion with any scheme of Santa Anna for the revolution of Mexico, or for any sort of purpose.  Some three months ago some adventurer was in Washington who wished to obtain their countenance and aid in some scheme or other connected with Santa Anna.  They declined all sort of connextion, co-operation, or participation in any effort for the purpose.  The government of this country declines all such intrigues or bargains.  They have made war openly in the face of the world.  They mean to prosecute it with all their vigor.  They mean to force Mexico to do us justice at the point of the sword.  This, then, is their design-this is their plan; and it is worthy of a bold, high-minded, and energetic people.  [VRD]

NNR 70.323 July 25, 1846 war for a "piece" of Mexico


Diplomatic terms.  The Tribune says-“We notice that all the officials, in speaking of the Mexican war, contend that it is to be carried on to ‘conquer peace with Mexico.  Why not “own the corn, and say, to conquer a piece of Mexico.”

The venerable Pickle Pickleby says-“Read your bible Jabez, study the laws of Moses, and don’t repeal any of ‘em; mind the ten commandments tu, and the ‘lventh likewise, and don’t sell the birthright of the Yankee nation for a mess of potash; and the day may kum when you will be a minister of a penitentiary or a secretary of negation.”-St. Louis Reveille.

The president has recognized Henrich Wilhelm Kuhtmann, as Consul of Hanover, for the port of Charleston, in the state of South Carolina.  [VRD]

NNR 70.324 July 25, 1846 energetic measures by the administration to carry on the war, posture of affairs
70.324 Gen. Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna about to embark for Mexico


A Board of Naval Officers assembled at the city of Washington, on the 21st inst., conformably to order from the navy department.  The following members attended, viz:-Commodores Charles Stewart, Jacob Jones, Charles Morris, L. Warrington, John Downes. Jesse Wilkinson, Thos. Ap. C. Jones, Wm. B. Shubrick, Chas.  W. Morgan, Lawrence Kearney, F. A. Parker Daniel Turner, M. C. Perry, Joseph Smith; Captain G. W. Storor, Isaac McKeever, Charles S. McCauley, E.A.F. Lavallette, S. H. Stringham, Isaac Mayo, Samuel L. Breese.

The Intelligencer of the 23d, after mentioning the attendance of each of the officers named, adds-“It has been reported, and generally believed, that the object for which this Board has been convened is to deliberate on the best mode of attacking and capturing, by a naval force, the Mexican fortress of San Juan de Ulloa.  We understand, however, that that subject has not, but other matters have been brought before this board, during the two days that it has sat.  Nor, from what we hear, do we think that it will be.”

This takes us all aback.  Even conjecture is at fault. 

The “Union” of the 22d, says, all the officers summoned by the secretary of the navy to attend the board on the occasion, were in attendance on the 21st , except Captain Lavellette, who is supposed to be on his way from Memphis to attend the board.  The twenty officers named above, in full uniform, waited upon the president, at his mansion, on Tuesday.  The Union also says-“The rumor which connects them with the castle of San Juan d’Ulloa, or any thing else connected with Mexican hostilities, is pure fiction.”

Gulf squadron.  There were off Vera Cruz when the British steamer Clyde left there on the 6th of July, the frigates Cumberland 50 guns, Raritan 50, Potomac 50; corvette John Adams 20 guns, brig Somers 10 guns; steamers Mississippi 8 guns.  Princeton 7 guns.  Capt. Simmons of the Clyde reports seeing six other U. S. vessels of war off the harbor as lie came out.

The British squadron there consisted of the steamer Vesuvius, a ship of 50 guns, another steamer and a brig.  The Vesuvius, it is said, was going to Tampico to take on board specie which the U. S. brig St. Mary’s, block adding there, had refused to permit the British mail steamers to receive.  The captain of the steamer is represented as avowing his intention to demand an explanation of the captain of the St. Mary’s.

The port of Alvarado is blockaded.  The Mexicans have all kinds of stories in relation to the attack of the St. Mary’s upon Tampico.  They have also a rumor that Commodore Conner was to attack the castle off Vera Cruz, &c., on the 10th July.

The British sloop-of-war Rose arrived at Brazo Santingo on the 9th inst. Tampico, and the U. S. schr. Flirt arrived there on the 11th from the same port.  [VRD]

NNR 70.323-324 July 25, 1846 gathering of a board of naval officers, denial that it dealt with an attack on San Juan de Ulloa


There are sufficient evidences that the administration are exerting their utmost energies for carrying on the war against Mexico in every direction, with a view to insure its termination as speedily as it can be effected.  The expedition against Santa Fe, under Col. Kearney, has started from Fort Leavenworth, and are, by this date, far upon their route.  That against Northern California under Gen. Wool, is also concentrating as the several detachments wend their way to the west.  The light and flat bottom boats to enable Gen. Taylor to ascend the Rio del Norte, are at length reaching him, and the wagons and teams to enable him to move from the river towards the interior of Mexico, will no doubt soon be on.

In the meantime, the Mexican ports on the gulf are stricktly blockaded by the American squadron.  Tampico has been attacked.  Nothing enters Vera Cruz with out being overhauled by our vessels, which keep just out of gun shot from the castle of St. Juan d’Ulloa.-That government determined that an attack should be made upon the castle, we have no doubt.  It was found to be too formidable for our present squadron in the gulf to attempt it.  We judge from the active preparations which are said to be now making at the several navy yards for fitting out all the heavy line of battle ships, that the navy officers which have been summoned to Washington and are now in session there, are occupied in discussing what forces are required, and what disposition shall be made of the forces that can e commanded for the purpose of reducing the castle.

The squadron in the Pacific have no doubt, by this time, taken possession of some of the principal Mexican ports on that ocean.

The expedition fitting out at New York under Col. Stevenson, designed to reach the coast of California by the way of Cape Horn, will be on their voyage in the course of a few days, with a force which the Mexican ports will be unprepared to resist in that direction.

Meantime, Yucatan, her most valuable southern province, has declared independence, and is exempted from American assault. 

Reports from Cuba, state that Santa Anna and Almonte were to embark from thence in the English mail steamer of the 10th inst. For Vera Cruz, with the intention of attempting another revolution in Mexico.  Whether Com. Conner will permit those Mexicans to enter Mexico, is the question.  It is confidently asserted that Santa Anna goes home with avowed design of defending Mexico from the invasion of the United States forces, and expects the revolution to turn upon his admitted energy and capacity for meeting emergencies – Almonte we all know, is the inveterate opponent of the United States’ measures against Mexico.  Already the western provinces of Mexico have pronounced against Paredes and in favor of Santa Anna.

Whether Paredes has ventured to leave the capital, with a view of taking command of the army opposed to Gen. Taylor, is doubtful.  He could hardly do so, with any hope of retaining the supremacy.  The moment he leads his army and adherents out of the vicinity of the city of Mexico, some one will step in and supercede him there.

From the provinces further north, we have indications of an attempt to separate from Mexico altogether, and erect a republic of their own, - that is, taking a lesson from the recent history of Texas, partisans are colleaguing with a view of treading in her footsteps.  It is quite possible that Col. Kearney and Gen. Wool will, on arrival at their destinations, find the country under the flag of the “republic of California.”  There are Americans(including Mormons) enough on the road to settle all dispute.  Upon the whole, Mexico is certainly at this moment rather in a predicament.   [VRD]

NNR 70.325 July 25, 1846 European powers indisposed to take part in the war
70.325 Mexican movements
70.325 rumors of the departure of Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna from Cuba for Mexico

It is now pretty obvious that neither England or France will adventure a quarrel with the United States in behalf of Mexico.  It is quite likely indeed, from what appears in the British Journals, that the capitalists who are interested in Mexican stocks and Mexican mines, rather incline to the notion, that their best chance for obtaining their interest, or for increasing the value of their investments, is to allow the United States to become proprietors of the provinces for the sake of insuring the existence of a government, and of the safety of property, neither of which at present exists, nor seems fairly to be promised under Mexican rule.

Some enquires have been made at home meantime, as to the ultimate views of our administration, as to the conquest of Mexico, as to the acquisition of how much more territory south, and where the boundaries of them from the Del Norte.  The Nueces as a boundary, is already forgotten.

The English steamer Clyde, arrived at Havana on the 6th inst. From Tampico, Vera Cruz, with dates from Tampico to 2d July, Vera Cruz to 22d, and Mexico city to the 19th June.  Dates direct from Vera Cruz via Havana, are to the 30th June, and from Mexico to the 28th, at which time congress was still in session, and deliberating on a declaration of war.

One brigade of the Army of reserve had marched to the aid of the army of the north.  The remaining body of reserve would remain in the capital till the arrival of Gen. Bravo, so that the forces previously announced as having collected at Monterey, have been very much overrated.  From the Castle of Perote, a large number of mounted guns and ammunition, had been sent to the defence of the city of Mexico.

Paredes had ordered the formation of a battalion of militia to be ordered, and two squadrons of cavalry in the city of Mexico – and every effort is making to increase the ranks of the army.

We have bud from various directions, {unreadable} that Santa Anna and Almonte were to leave Havana for Vera Cruz, - first it was said they were to leave on the 6th, then on the 10th, and now we have it postponed to the 12th.  The revolution in favor of Santa Anna has extended to all the cities from Acapulco to Mazatlan, embracing the departments on the Pacific, which are now in arms against Paredes, with the exception of Oajaca and La Puebla, two southern departments which remain neutral.

Santa Anna has written a letter of condolence to Gen. Vega and his fellow prisoners, which is copied in the Vera Cruz papers.  It breathes no friendly sentiment towards the United States.

Vera Cruz itself has been almost evacuated, the merchants retiring to Jalapa and Orizaba, with their property.

Two Mexican steamers were at Havana on the 5th inst., with no one on board but ship keepers.  [VRD]

NNR 70.325 July 25, 1846 items from the Rio Grande


There has been a succession of gales at Brazos, and in the gulf, - many vessels wrecked.

The steamer Potomac, was wrecked about six miles from the pass of St. Louis.  She was on board Captain Lamesdon’s junior company, - all saved, - steamer a total loss; cargo damaged.

The schr. Lavina, wrecked, - her crew saved by the Flirt.

July 3d. The revenue cutters Woodbury, Forward, and Van Buren, with a large fleet of merchantmen were outside the bar at Brazos, waiting to be taken in. 

Walker, the distinguished Texan ranger, is said to have declined the captaincy of the U.S. mounted riflemen, to which he had been appointed.

July 26th.  An affray between two Texan mounted men in camp, resulted in the death of one of them named Walker.

Lieut. Kingsbury and Dr. Russell, of the army, arrived at New Orleans on the 3d inst, in the Galveston.  [VRD]

NNR 70.325 July 25, 1846 report on supplying materials for transportation to the Army


The “Union” of the 17th, has an article written for the purpose of proving that there has been no fault in the department in relation to furnishing the army on the frontier with requisite material for transportation.  Certain it is, as the article says, “Some complaints have been made.”  The editor of the Union “undertakes to say that there is no foundation” for these complaints, having called at the quartermaster’s office that day to enquire, and become fully satisfied, by personal examination

The editor of the Union says – “We shall not enumerate all the various sources of supply,” but “among the letters which he has received is one from Col. Thomas F. Hunt, from New Orleans, July 4. – He “reports that he purchased steamers Undine, for $13,000; Troy, $6,000; J.E. Roberts, $9,000, the 13th June; the Brownville, for $9,000, the 15th June; steam schooner James Cage, for $18,000, on the 19th; Hatchee Eagle, the 1st July, for $5,000.  All have been dispatched to the Rio Grande except the last – she detained for repairs deemed necessary. Undine and James Cage have been coppered and otherwise repaired.  The Cage is a good seaboat, and suited for lightering vessels at sea, &c.  The Undine sent temporarily to La Baca.  Has chartered steamers Big Hatchee, the Warren, the Exchange, and the W.A. Mercer, which have also departed for Brazos Santiago.  [VRD]

NNR 70.325 July 25, 1846 gales off Brazos, numerous shipwrecks
70.325 letter from Henry Whiting on the delivery of supplies to the Army in Texas

Extract of a latter from Capt. John Sanders, the officer appointed by General Taylor to purchase or charter boats, dated July 2, 1846, at Pittsburg:

“Advises he had purchased five light draught steamers for the Rio Grande, as follows: Whiteville, the Corvette, Rough and Ready, Colonel Cross, and the Major Brown – total cost $60,000.  These are all splendid boats of their class.”

Extract of a letter to Gen. Jesup.  Galveston, June 29, 1846.

GENERAL: I left New Orleans in the Alabama the evening of the 19th; she had supplies for Robin’s Ferry.  These were landed at Galveston, and transportation at once provided for them up the Trinity.  Fortunately the waters are high, and it is probable they will get up.  The price of freight was high, but the best bargain the means of the place admitted was made by Lieut. Kingsbury, with my approbation.  No time was to be lost.  A few days later, and the river would have been impracticable.”

We anchored off Brazos the evening of the 24th; wind was strong the next morning; and the sea high, still the Monmouth came out to us.  But she could receive only the mail, which was transferred with much difficulty and some peril.  Towards night our anchor gave way, and we stood off.  The next morning early we were back again, but the sea was higher than ever.  The day before about twenty sail were at anchor outside, (a large number within where Harney was sunk.)  They had all stood off, excepting two square-rigged, having volunteers on board, which had left New Orleans two days before us.  The wind continuing violent until the morning of the 27th, we came in here to recruit our water, volunteers, (about 300) with more than fifty passengers, having reduced our supply too low.  Some of the companies had also got out of provisions.  We hope to start again to-morrow evening with better luck.  The Alabama is a first rate boat.  None other could have been unusually stormy it is said.

Very Respectfully, I am general, your obedient servant,  HENRY WHITING.

General THOS. S. JESUP,  Quartermaster General, U.S. Army, Washington city, D.C.

The above are the exhibits of the Union, in proof that no fault is attributable to the department, at Washington, if the army under General Taylor is unable to move for want of material for transportation.

General Taylor defeated the Mexican army on the 9th of May.  Upwards of two months have elapsed, and his army is not yet provided with the means of moving to dislodge them from the first position they took up after their defeat.  The officer dispatched by General Talor reports to him on 2d July, that he has just then purchased at Pittsburg five light draught steamboats, &c.  [VRD]

NNR 70.325 Jul7 25, 1846 route to the interior of Mexico


A letter from F. M. Dimond, U. S. Consul at Vera Cruz, dated Washington, 13th July, 1846, furnishes an extract from a communication of G. T. Pell, of New York, giving memorandae from his note book, kept during a journey from Zacatecas, one of the principal mining districts of Mexico, to Matamoros, by way of Saltillo and Monterey, with a wagon heavily laden with specie, seven mules in harness, and abundant relays.  They traveled from eight to fourteen leagues per day.  A Spanish league is 2 ½ miles.  He represents the road as presenting no serious difficulties for wagons or heavy artillery.-His distances are.


Matamoros to Guadalupe (village)

Guadalupe to El Rancho Nuevo

El Rancho Nuevo to Reinoza (town)

Camargo lies four leagues from this last rancho, but the nearest road turns off here entering the road from Camargo at the rancho of Los Calabezas, gaining about 4 leagues.

Los Puertecitos to Las Trancas, by the nearest road

Las Trancas to Las Aldamas (rancho)

Las Aldamas to La Manteca (rancho)

La Manteca to El Capudero (rancho)

El Capudero to Caideretro (town)

Caideretro to Montery

Monterey to La Rinconada (hacienda)

La Rinconada Saltillo

The Spanish league, about 2 ½ miles, makes the distance           302 miles.

From Matamoro to Monterey   247     “

From Camargo to Monterey    120     “

“The distance through the Canada, or mountain defile, from Monterey to the nearest outskirts of the plain above, Is fourteen leagues.  On the farther side of the plain, upon the declivity of a hill, stands the city of Satillo.  Within the pass the mountains at times approach rather near, at others recede perhaps a mile and a half from the road, which winds over bold hills.  Towards Monterey the mountains approach more closely, and a stream issues from the gorge which irrigates the beautiful gardens of the weather inhabitants, running off below the town, where it is drawn to fertilize the little paicifes of the Indians flowing round and about their mud or bamboo huts, watering the banana, the orange, the pomegranate, the aguacate, cherimoya, and other fruits and vegetables of the tropics, which these poor people carry for sale on donkies to Saltillo, which, being situated on the lofty plains of the table land, only produces the fruits of the north-the apple, pear, quince, and apricot-with their corresponding vegetables.  I trust these poor people will not be molested; for neither to them, nor to lurge classes many grades above them, are to be attributed the maladministration of a government in which, being really a military despotism, they have no more share than the seris of Russia.

I am certainly not a little surprised at so great a stress being laid upon the difficulties for troops on a march through Mexico in the rainy season.  An erroneous idea has crept into the public mind that during this period rain falls almost constantly, rendering the roads deep and impassable.  The rainy commences in June, with showers at long intervals, and does not fairly set in until the middle of sometimes the later part of July, varying from one year to another in the quantity which falls as much as happens with us from summer to summer.  I have even known a year in which there was not sufficient rain to produce the slightest sprig of grass, causing the loss of hundreds of thousands of animals on the great haciendas in rearing them.  When the rains are most copious, they do not generally begin until 12 or 1 o’clock; dark clouds rising rapidly over the heavens, giving sudden and plentiful showers, in most instances passing away early, and leaving a bright sunset and a fine morning.

On two occasions I performed a journey of near 400 leagues over the great mountain ranges of the Cordillera, through which flow many considerable streams, to Culiacan, near the Pacific, during unusually wet seasons, without having in a single instance been caught in the rain.  It was accomplished by rising before day light, and arriving at the stopping place for the night before the rain began to fall.  Water, at other times, very scarce in certain localities, was found every where, good pasture abounded, and the air was cool; the great heat always abating when the periodical rains set in.-There was exemption, too, from dust; nor did I find, except in rare instances, that the roads were heavy.

I can easily understand how gentlemen acquainted mostly with the neighborhood of the city of Mexico, and the great road from thence to Guanajuato, through what is called the bajio, should fall into this mistake.  No inconsiderable swamps or lakes.  But I have seen nothing like this elsewhere.  From Camargo to Monterey, although there are intervals of level ground, yet for most yet for the most part the road runs over easy hills, and I cannot believe an army would meet with any obstacle of importance-the only difficulty being the passage of the river.  San Juan, which is but a small stream, and can oppose nothing insurmountable if the troop carry any provision for such an emergency.  If the rains do not prove very heavy, it will be found fordable, as I passed it without detention with a loaded wagon.”  [VRD]

NNR 70.325-326 July 25, 1846 want of discipline among the volunteer


WANT OF DISCIPLINE.-The public journals from the vicinity or routes taken by the volunteers, bring to us, we are sorry to say, innumerable proofs of the lack of discipline and the prevalence not only of insubordination, but also of disgraceful rowdyism, amongst the volunteers.  That graceless and lawless spirits, being the most difficult to control, join the ranks and carry with them their lawless propensities, is a matter of course.  It is almost impossible to prevent the occurrence of such. incidents, where such men “most do congregate,” as are referred to in numerous paragraphs like the following:

Camp Washington.-We are glad to lean there is a prospect of one or two regiments of the volunteers getting off this week.  The sooner they are removed the better.  A state of things has existed  at the camp for the last few days which is highly disgraceful to all concerned.  On Sunday a spirit of insubordination (aided by the spirit of alcohol) existed which no friend of law and order desired to be repeated.  The troops had been paid during the morning, two months’ wages in advance, and there appreared to be no lack of means bout the camp whereby they could spend their money.    [Cin. Atlas.

We are sorry to note a riotous and rowdy disposition manifested by the citizen soldiery volunteered into service.  The corps at Louisville have had several rows of disgraceful character, in which knives, pistols, and other southern chivalries were put in requisition.  Mr. Marshall, late a M. C. came very near loosing his life in attempting to prevent one of these outrages upon the citizens.  [Ex. Paper.

The Louisville Journal of June 29 says-“There was another disgraceful row between some of the volunteers and citizens about dusk last evening, on Green street.  We learn that a man named Davis was so seriously beaten by the volunteers that his life is despaired of.  The police were promptly on the spot, and the citizens gathered in large numbers, highly incensed at the volunteers.  Pierce Butler esq., and Colonel Mc Kee addressed the crowd, after which they dispersed.  One of the volunteers, the principal actor in the scene, was put in jail.”  [VRD]

NNR 70.326 July 25, 1846 Report on the tendering of Pennsylvania for service in Mexico

Pennsylvania volunteers. - Adj. Gen. Petrikin, of the state of Pennsylvania, in a communication to the Pennsylvanian says that "the whole number of companies tendering exactly, according to the regulations of the president of the United States, as transmitted by the secretary of war to Gov. Shunk, is 82, giving an aggregate of 6,437 officers and men, or 1,717 more than required to fill up the regiments.   To this add the two Fayette county battalions, (1,000,) and the aggregate is increased to 2,717, about 500 more than the gallant Taylor achieved his brilliant victories with.  The number of informal officers would swell the aggregate to, I think, some 10 or 12,000.  The offers received and filled, have all been made in good faith and calm deliberation.  The officers and men, composing the companies, have had fill time to reflect, and did not act from feverish impulse, or under the influence of a fit, or fits, or patriotic delirium.  The have been governed by cool, calm, deliberate, and exalted patriotism, and, if called into actual service, who doubts but they will exalt the glory and honor of the country in their most devoted love?"

Philadelphia city and county furnish 27 companies, numbering all told officers and men, 2,284, or within 96 of three regiments, but wanting 3 companies to complete 3 regiments, ~10 companies forming a regiment.  This day, July 11th, closes the receipt of tenders of services.  I know of three more companies, whose muster rolls have been placed in the hands of the proper officers, but have not yet reached the adjutant generals office, at this place.

Later. - The adjutant general of the Pennsylvania militia states, officially, "that, instead of six regiments, ninety full companies, a number of sufficient to constitute nine regiments regularly organized in accordance with the regulations adopted by the president, have tendered their services as volunteers for Mexico."  This fact has been communicated to the president, further orders from whom are awaited by Gov. Shunk.  [RCG]

NNR 70.326 July 25, 1846 Third regiment of Ohio volunteers reach New Orleans

Ohio Volunteers. - The 3d regiment of volunteers from Ohio reached N. Orleans on the 10th inst.  [RCG]

NNR 70.326 July 25, 1846 deaths in the Baltimore battalion

The Baltimore Volunteers. -Deaths.- Robert Beacham, a private in Capt. Piper's company; died on the passage to Brassos; Richard Belt, a private of Capt. Kenley's company, was drowned of the passage; - Cole, a private of Capt. Stewats company, was sun struck on the passage, and as the ship came to anchor.  They were all buried with military honors.[RCG]

NNR 70.326 July 25, 1846 complaint about the appointment of political partisans to militia positions

Brigadier Gen. Thomas Marshall., recently appointed to command the Kentucky volunteers, is not Thomas F. Marshall, late a member of congress.  A Kentucky paper says:

"Gen. Marshall. -- Thomas Marshall, of Lewis co., Ky., lately appointed brigadier general of a company raised in Mason county.  He did not succeed in being elected captain, and was chosen lieutenant, that being in the opinion of his fellow volunteers, as high as he ought to be.  This company, we understand, was not received, and a regiment was formed of that and other companies in like situation, and he was chosen to command a battalion.  Col. Clarkson and himself were dispatched to Washington to induce the president to accept the regiment.  The president received them kindly, and with fair words at the White house, but the troops were not received into the service.  Clarkson returned home, leaving Marshall behind.  He secured a brigadier's commission for himself.  We understand that Colonel Clarkson has since been appointed paymaster general, but whether through the instrumentality of Marshall of not we know not."

Brigadier Gen. Hamer. -- The Cincinnati Gazette says: --"The appointment of Thomas L. Hamer, of Ohio, to be brigadier general of the volunteers, slumps the editor of the Ohio State Journal -- he has scarcely credulity enough to believe the report.  He says: "It will cause a hearty laugh all over the state.  Why Hamer himself laughed at the mere idea of being elected to the command of one of the Ohio regiments, in view of the fact that he is entirely destitute of military experience, even in the peace service!  If they wanted speeches made, he said he was the man; but as to commanding a regiment that was out of the question!  If such an appointment has really been made, Ohio will give up that Mr. Polk is the master military genius of the age."  We do not know how it may be with the Ohio brigadier general, but we venture to say that he can scarcely be less ignorant of military matters than General [!!] Shields, of Illinois.  He may be able to discuss a "hasty plate of soup," as witty editors phrase it, but as for any other portion of Gen Scott's system of tactics, he is as completely at fault as the most ignorant militia captains of the Sucker state.  The thing is absolutely ridiculous, and we shall be deceived in Judge --stop, General--Shields, if he does not send back his declension of the commission as fast as the mail can carry it."

The Ohio State Journal enumerates the names of eight of ten persons appointed as assistant quartermaster and assistant commissaries in that state, and says "they are all bitter partizans, whose only merit is that they are partisans." It adds that "the war department sent a request to Gov. Bartly and Gen. Woll, to recommend suitable persons for these posts, and we learn that not a single individual recommended by either of them has been appointed from this state." Of course it was not expected that the would be, the members of congress, as in the case of Illinois, parceled out the spoils to suit themselves.[RCG]

NNR 70.326 July 25, 1846 complaints about the rejection by Gov. Thomas Ford of Illinois of some volunteers

Gov. Ford, of Illinois, and the Clark county volunteers. -- At a meeting of the citizens of Clark county, Ill., held at the court house in Marshall, on the 6th day of July, 1846, Lames Whitlock was chosen president, and R.M. Newport and Stephen Archer vice presidents; T.R. Young and R.L. Dulaney secretaries.  The object of the meeting was explained by the president, a committee appointed to report a preamble and resolutions, expressive of the sense for this meeting, in regard to the conduct of Thomas Ford, governor of this state, in his wanton rejection of the company of volunteers who had enrolled themselves under Captain Wm. B. Archer, in pursuance of the general orders for volunteers of said Thomas Ford, as commander in chief of the militia of Illinois, under date, Springfield, May 25th, 1846.  During the absence of the committee, speeches were made by U. Manly, W.P. Bennet, R.B. McCowen, esqrs.; and Rev. R.M. Newport.  The committee reported the following preamble and resolutions, which were adopted by acclamation.

Whereas, Thomas Ford, governor of the state of Illinois, (in pursuance of a requisition from the secretary of war of the United States, for the calling out three regiments of infantry in this state,) as commander in chief of the militia of this state, issued his 'general orders,' bearing date May 25th, 1846, commanding all majors and brigadier generals, &c.; and in case there was no military organization, then all the sheriffs to call the militia together "en masse," and enroll volunteers for the service and having stated in said orders that if more than thirty companies with their proper complement of officers should be companies as first offered their services.  And the sheriff of Clark country, on the 5th day of June, 1846, having (in obedience to said others) called the militia of said county together at Marshall, at which time and a full company of eighty privates and the proper complement of officers, enrolled themselves; and the said sheriff was dispatched as a special messenger to the governor, with the return of the said sheriff, to his excellency, informing him that a company was organized, with the names of the officers, which return was by the said sheriff on the 9th day of June 1846, delivered into the state department about noon; and W.B. Fondy, the then acting governor at Springfield, returned by said sheriff, an answer in writing to Wm. B. Archer, the captain of said company, accepting the company and saying "that upon the return of the governor, from St. Louis, he would be directed as to the time and place of rendezvous." Said company being the 27th on the list of the companies published in the Missouri Republican a letter of order "for the information of the Illinois volunteers," dated June 11th, 1846, setting forth a list of the companies received, in which list among others, he specifies one company from Clarke county, closing his said letter or order with the following sentence:--"The companies above named may expect to receive marching orders in the course of the next week."

The volunteers in this county, relying on the integrity of the said Thomas Ford, as expressed in his "general orders" in the reception of the company by acting Governor Fondy and in said Ford's letter or order published in the Missouri Republican, proceeded to equip themselves and friends in an expense of nearly one thousand dollars, and being fully ready for service--and relying upon the above assurances, so strong that no one but the most indurated offender could avoid --at noon, on the 21st day of June, took up the line of march for Alton, and arriving at the place of rendezvous on the morning of the 26th, marching a distance of one hundred and fifty miles in four and a  half days, and upon reporting themselves to the inspecting officer, they were politely met with the "special plea" of "You have received no marching orders." Ford was then waited on by Captain Archer, and informed of the arrival of his company, to which Gov. Ford replied (among other things) "that he had sent on the 17th of June, orders to Capt. Archer no to march." which orders have not to this time reached our post office; and we are fully of the belief that the governor committed a slight mistake in this statement.  The governor, then, instead of adhering to his truly made orders, too two days' time to hunt an excuse to reject the company; and after failing to find, either in his own or in the brain of any of his driveling privates, even a plausible reason, he could only answer "he had done wrong," but utterly refused to correct that wrong and rejected the company.[RCG]

NNR 70.326-327 July 25, 1846 relief to families of volunteers

Relief of the families of the volunteers. -- When the St. Louis Legion was about to leave for the south, a meeting of citizens was held at the court house, at which resolutions were adopted, and committees appointed, to raise the means necessary to provide subsistence for the families of such volunteers as were compelled to leave them unprovided for.  Each company was requested to furnish a list of those requiring aid, and it was done.  Since the fever for volunteering for that service has passed away, the committee, or at least a portion of them, appear to have lost all interest in the subject, and, with but few exceptions, have taken no measures to provide the destitute with the means of living.  On Monday night last, a meeting of the committee was to be held at the court house, but we learn that only three or four were present. 

The public are certainly not aware of the destitute condition of the wives and families of several volunteers, or they would not be guilty of this inattention.  We have satisfactory information that there are several women, some with a number of children, who are really in necessitous circumstances.  They are industrious and hard working, but their own labor is not sufficient to pay house rent, and provide other necessaries for their families.  They do not ask or expect much, but the little that was promised when their husbands left, should be made up for them immediately.  We have heard of several families who, with all the labor and saving of the mothers, have yet been a tax on the liverality of a few individuals.  This state of things ought not to exist.  A few hundred dollars which might be raised in a single day, in this community, judiciously applied in paying rent, or providing other absolute necessaries would make these families happy, and place them beyond want, until their protectors return.  The service which they are rendering to their county, should secure from their fellow citizens this much, at least; and if the committee appointed at the former meeting are unwilling to act, another meeting should be called, and a new committee appointed.  That the wants of some of the families have become distressingly pressing we know and some action should be immediately taken. [St. Louis Rep. July 8.]

NNR 70.327 July 25, 1846 Mormons enlist in the expedition against California

From the Mormon camp.-- The Hancock (Illinois) Eagle of the 10th instant, notices the arrival there of Mr. S. Chamberlain, who left the most distant camp of the Mormons at Council Bluffs on the 26th ult. and on his route passed the whole line of Mormon emigrants.  He says that the advance company of the Mormons, with whom were the Twelve, had a train of one thousand wagons, and were encamped on the east back of the Missouri river, in the neighborhood of the Council Bluffs.  They were employed in the construction of boats, for the purpose of crossing the river.

The second company had encamped temporarily at station No. 2--which had been christened Mount Pisgah.  They mustered about three thousand strong, and were recruiting their cattle preparatory to a fresh start.  A third company had halted for a similar purpose at Garden Grove, on the head waters of Grand river, where they have put in about 2,000 acres of corn for the benefit of the people in general.  Between Garden Grove and the Mississippi river, Mr. Chamberlain counted over one thousand wagons en route to join the main bodies in advance.

The whole number of teams attached to the Mormon expedition is about three thousand seven hundred, and it is estimated that each team will average at least three person, and perhaps four.  The whole number of souls now on the road may be set down in round numbers at twelve thousand.  From two to three thousand have disappeared from Nauvoo in various directions.  Many have left for Council Bluffs by the way of the Mississippi and Missouri rivers--other have dispersed to party unknown; and about eight hundred of less still remain in Illinois.  This comprises the entire Mormon population that once flourished in Hancock county.  In their palmy  days they probably numbered between fifteen and sixteen thousand souls, most of whom are now scattered upon the prairies, bound for the Pacific slope of the American continent. 

Mr. Chamberlain reports that previously to his leaving, four United States military officers had arrived at Mount Pisgah camp, for the purpose of enlisting five hundred Mormons for the Santa Fe campaign.  They were referred to headquarters at Council Bluffs, for which place they immediately set out.  It was supposed that the force would be enrolled without delay.  If so, it will furnish Col. Kearney with a regiment of well disciplined soldiers who are already prepared to march.

Mr. Chamberlain represents the health of the traveling Mormons as good, considering the exposures to which they have been subjected.  They are carrying on a small trade in provisions with the settlers in the country, with whom they mingle on the most friendly terms.  [RCG]

NNR 70.327 July 25, 1846 arrival of the Georgia regiment of volunteers at Mobile

Georgia Volunteers. -- The Mobile Register of the 6th July says:--Three companies of the Georgia regiment, under command of Major Williams, arrived there on the 5th, and were quartered at the office of the Independent Press.  They consist of

The Georgia Light Infantry, Capt. A. Nelson;
Tensas Rangers, Capt. Nelson;
The Sumpter Volunteers, Capt. J.A.S. Turner.
On the 6th steamers Amaranth, Lowndes, and Eurea, arrived with the remainder of the regiment, under the command of Col. Jackson, viz.
The Macon Guards, Capt. Homes;
The Columbus Guards, Capt. Davis;
The Richmond Blues, Capt. Dill;
The Jasper Greens, Capt. McNair;
The Crawford Guards, Capt. Jones;
The Fannin Avengers, Capt. Sargent;
The Canton Volunteers, Capt. Grambling.

NNR 70.327 July 25, 1846 expedition to Santa Fe

Expedition against Santa Fe.--The St. Louis New Era of the 4th instant says: "The steamer Archer arrived in this city yesterday. She left Leavenworth on Wednesday last. Col. Kearney left the fort on Monday, and the last companies, (those of Weightman and Fischer,) left on Tuesday.  [RCG]

NNR 70.327 July 25, 1846 objects of the expedition to California

Expedition to the Pacific. -- The objects of the expedition which is fitted out from New York, may be guessed at from the letter of the secretary of war to Col. Stevenson.

A young man who went out in the stow ship, Lexington, the pioneer of the squadron, write to the editor of the Baltimore Republican: "The company consists of one hundred and twelve as one, healthy young men as ever filled the ranks of our army, who are in the best spirits imaginable.  The shit is loaded entirely with arms and ammunition for the company alone.  We have 20 guns of the largest caliber for a fortification.  We are first to land at Monterey, in California, and our profess after I will at every opportunity keep you advised of.  The ship will necessarily touch at all the naval rendezvous on our way, the news of each of which I will send you.  We go fully prepared to lick the enemy of our country--build forts or cities, and under the firm and unwavering Tompkins, we fell confident of the success in everything that will be given us to do."  [RCG]

NNR 70.327 July 25, 1846 progress of the expedition against Santa Fe

Captain Weightman was still sick, but getting better; Lieut. Simpson and ten or twelve volunteers remained to escort Major Clark and Capt. Weightman when they should be ready to follow the army.  A large quantity of provision were still piled up at Leavenworth.  [RCG]

NNR 70.327 July 25, 1846 Gen. John Ellis Wool and movement on San Antonio

An officer had been dispatched to Washington to muster them into the service.--From this point it is supposed the central column of the army, under Gen. Wool, will take up the line of march for San Antonio.  The mounted men of the Kentucky volunteers, and probably the volunteers from Illinois, will take this direction--but of the course of the latter, we have no positive information.  [RCG]

NNR 70.336 July 25, 1846 Britain proffers mediation between the United States and Mexico

The proffered mediation of Great Britain

Together with the project of a treaty for the settlement of the Oregon question, which arrived from England in June, our readers will recollect it was at first announced, was also an offer of the British government to mediate for a restoration of peace between the United States and Mexico.  The official organ at Washington, however, in a day of two so far contradicted the account, as to induce the belief that no such overture had been made.  Somewhat to our astonishment we find in the speech delivered by Mr. Peel, in parliament on resigning the premiership, the fact stated by him, that such and offer had been directed by the British government to be made to the American government.  The Washington Union however repeats the assertion, that no such proposition has yet been submitted to our government.  [RCG]

NNR 70.336 July 25, 1846 movement of troops toward Texas

Movements of troops-- Companies B. and E. of the 2nd infantry, leave this morning, on the Hohn Owen for Toledo, en route for Pt. Isabel, Texas.  Officers, accompany the command: Lieut. Col. Riley, commanding Lt. Camby, Adj.; surgeons Tripler and Murray; Company E.--Lieuts. Davidson and Granger; Company B-- Capt. Anderson and Lt. Schureman.  Detachments of twelve men each, from Company C, are to be posted at Sault St. Marie and Copper Harbor. [RCG]

NNR 70.366 July 25, 1846 THE ARMY OF OCCUPATION.

     We have nothing new from the army since our last - The apparatus for transportation either by water or land had not reached Gen. Taylor when the last intelligence have left him.  The flotilla was arriving however at the mouth of the Rio Grande.  The army was impatient at so long a delay.  The twelve month volunteers were expected, - those from Baltimore had arrived.  The three and the six months volunteers were dissatisfied at the prospect of being discharged without having a fight.  The troops were enjoying a fair share of health, and musquetoes had just made their appearance.

LATER. - Since placing the above in type, Brassos Santiago dates to the 11th and Galveston to the 13 th have reached us, by the arrival at New Orleans on the 16 th of the steamer New York, bringing as passengers, Col. McIntosh and son, Lieuts. Bibb, Power, and Lowe, and twenty discharged soldiers.  Col. McIntosh has nearly recovered of the wounds received in the late battle.

Company H, 4th U.S. artillery, under Maj. Harvey, arrived at Santiago on the 6th, in 24 days from Hampton roads.

The American Flag, late The Republic of Rio Grande, and The Reveille, rival newspapers already issued by American printers at Matamoros, are received as late as the 8th.  The latter has dropped its Spanish and is now American on both sides.  They contain vivid accounts of the jollification on the national anniversary, particularly by the Louisiana volunteers, amongst whom are no less than thirty practical printers.  Major Ogden pronounced the address.  General Taylor reviewed the Louisiana brigade.  Capt. Head's company gave a splendid dinner. Gens. Desha, Lamar, and Burleson, Col. Kinney and others were guests.  General Taylor dropped in on "the boys" - drank wine with them and passed on to others.

One unpleasant casualty occured.  The steamer Aid, passing over the rope stretched across the river for the use of the ferry boats, so expanded it, that the post to which it was secured broke, and killed Corporal J.J. Mervin, of Graham's company, East Rapides, Louisiana volunteers, and severely wounded Lieut. Scully.

Ten boats had at length reached Matamoros, adapted to the nabigation.

The 7th regiment of infantry left Matamoros on the 6th for Camargo; three of the companies embarked on board the steamer Big Hatchie, the rest took up their line of march by way of Reynosa.

Of the volunteers, the Andrew Jackson regiment, Col. Marks, and the Washington regiment, Col. Watson, were the first to be sent forward, toward Camargo, but the papers of the 8 th inst., do not represent that they had actually moved.

The American Flag says that General Taylor announced to the two regiments above named, on the 4 th , that in a few days he would have boats to transport them to Camargo, whence "he would put them directly in motion for Monterey, and that if he failed to accomodate them with a fight with the Mexicans before the summer had passed away, it would not be his fault." One long, loud, and enthusiastic burst of applause testified the joy of the volunteers.

Gen. Henderson, of Texas, was recovering from a severe attack of illness from which he had suffered. - Col. Lewis P. Cook had also been very ill, and it was at one time reported that  he was dead.  He was convalescent at last accounts.  The general health of the army is represented as good, a few cases of dysentery and camp fever alone occurring.

A MONSTER GUN, surpassing Capt. Stockton's famous "Peace Maker" in weight, by some 5000 lbs. was cast recently at Algiers Foundry, South Boston. - The quantity of metal fused, was 46,000 lbs; eight Chaldrons of coal consumed in the process; when finished, its weight will be 25,000lbs.  Length, 10 feet; diameter at the base ring, 39 inches; length of chamber, 13 inches; diameter of chamber, 9 inches; length of bore, 9 feet 1 inch; diameter of bore, 12 inches. - Weight of round shot which it will carry, 230 lbs; weight of shell, 180 lbs.  Range of shot or shell, 3 1/2 miles, - being 1/4 of a mile greater than the recorded performance of the largest and latest invented mortar in England, and 1/2 a mile beyond the reach of any gun in the castle of San Juan de Ulloa, at Vera Cruz.  The cost of this immense instrument for harbor defence will not exceed $1700, or one-sixth the cost of the wrought iron gun procured in England by Capt. Stockton.  It is said to be designed for Fort George, Boston Harbor. [GLP]

NNR 70.336 July 25, 1846 ammuntion prepared at the Saint Louis arsenal

Ammunition -- We understand from a source that may be relied upon, that since the commencement of the present hostilities with Mexico, there has been prepared and shipped from the arsenal, at this place, one hundred and seventy tons of fixed ammunition.    Between one and two hundred persons, chiefly boys, are daily employed in the laboratory at the arsenal in the preparation of cartridge, &c.  Yesterday about forty tons were shipped; a part to Col. Kearney, and the other portion to the south.  The Arsenal at this place with all its conveniences and appliances, for the repairing of arms, manufacturing carriages for cannon, baggage wagons, &c., &c,. under the supervision of the indefatigable commander, Capt. Bell, we believe to be one of the most useful and valuable possessions belonging to the U. States, connected with the service.  When all that has been furnished from this quarter during the present difficulties is known, the public will be able to estimate its worth, and we hope the U. States government will be prepared to give it that essential facility so much needed, a good landing from the river. -- St. Louis Rep.  [RCG]

NNR 70.336 July 25, 1846 French papers urge necessity of French interference in the war

The Epoque, the recognized organ of M. Guizot, minister for foreign affairs, has also had a very long and carefully written article on the pending dispute between the great republics of North America.--This article points out the necessity of France and England interfering in the matter, in order to bring about a reconciliation, and to protect Mexico.  It alleges that France has interests sufficiently vast in Mexico to warrant such interference.  The correspondent of the Liverpool Times, in reference to this article, says: "Considering the connection between this journal and M. Guizot, I am inclined to attach some importance to this lucebration. as showing that if France has not interfered in the business, she assuredly will do so.  Indeed, for my party, I entertain not the slightest doubt that the French government will be prepared, if necessary, to give effectual protection to Mexico against her great neighbors; for I remember that in the course of the present session, M. Guizot declared from the tribune on two occasions that it was of vast importance to France that the United States should not seize Mexico, nor the English race absorb the Spanish; and as he is not a man of talk without weighing the force and calculating the consequences of his expressions, I take it fro granted that his declarations indicated the policy the French government had determined on pursuing.  I have made statements to this effect before, but they can scarcely be too often repeated, as I fear that too many of your readers run away with the notion that because Mr. Polk declared in his message that he would not admit any interference of European governments in the affairs of the American continent, European governments would timidly refrain from interference."  [RCG]

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