Imagens das páginas

eastern side thereof, which are in the actual occupancy of Mexican forces, or Mexican settlements over which the republic of Texas did not exercise jurisdiction at the period of annexation, or shorily before that event. It is expected that, in selecting the establishment for your troops, you will approach as near the boundary line, the Rio Grande, as prudence will dictate. With this view, the President desires that your position, for a part of your forces at least, should be west of the river Nueces.

You are directed to ascertain and communicate to this department the number of Mexican troops now at Matamoras, and the other Mexican posts along the border, their position, the condition of them, and particularly the measures taken or contemplated to increase or strengthen them. If you should have any reason to believe that the government of Mexico is concentrating forces on the boundaries of the two countries, you will not only act with reference to such a state of things, but give the earliest information to this departinent. Very respectfully, &c.,


Secretary of War. Brig. Gen. Z. TAYLOR,

Commanding the army of occupation in Texas.

WAR DEPARTMENT, Adjutant General's Office, Washington, August 6, 1845. GENERAL: Pursuant to the instructions of the Secretary of War, the 7th regiment of infantry has been ordered to join the army under your command in Texas, and the three companies of the 2d dragoons at Fort Washita are also under orders to proceed to Austin without delay, with instructions to report to you on their arrival.

Although a state of war with Mexico, or an invasion of Texas by her forces, may not take place, it is nevertheless deemed proper and necessary that your force should be fully equal to meet, with the certainty of success, any crisis which may arise in Texas, and which would require you, by force of arms, to carry out the instructions of the government.

I am instructed by the Secretary of War to request you to learn from the authorities of Texas what. auxiliary forces, volunteers, &c., could be placed at your disposal in case any additional troops may be needed; and how soon they would be able to take the field upon any emergency. I am also instructed to say, that for such procedure on your part the requisite authority is now conferred. A copy of a communication addressed to the Texan authorities touching the subject, by the State Department, is herewith transmitted for your information.

Such auxiliary volunteer force from Texas, when events, not now revealed, may justify their employment, will be organized and mustered under your orders, and be received into the service of the United States when actụally required in the field to repel invasion, actual or menaced, and not before. In organizing these forces, you will of course follow the regulations prescribed in cases when detachments of militia from the States and Territories are called into the service of the United States. It should be understood that, as yet, no provision exists by law for the payment of such forces, but appropriations for that purpose will doubtless be made by Congress. They will be furnished with rations while in actual service, as the other troops under your command. The amount and description of the force to be mustered into the service of the United States is left to your determination, and, of course, to be regulated by circumstances.

In view of further precautionary measures, I am instructed by the Secretary of War to learn from you, at the earliest date, what other force and munitions (judging from any information you may possess as to the future exigencies of the public service) you deem it necessary to be sent to Texas; that is to say, what additional troops, designating the arms of the service; what supply and description of ordnance and ordnance stores, small arms, &c.

It is deemed expedient to establish in Texas one or more depots of ordnance and other supplies, for which purpose you will please report the proper points to be occupied. Orders have already been issued to send 10,000 muskets and 1,000 rifles into Texas. They will be shipped for Galveston, subject to your orders on their arrival, as to the proper place of deposite, which of course should be with reference to convenience and accessibility in case they be required for the public use. Should these arms be put into the hands of the volunteers and auxiliary troops, you will please observe all needful precaution, so tbat they be returned to the United States on the discharge of the troops from the public service.

Officers of the corps of engineers, topographical engineers, and ordnance, have been ordered to Texas, with instructions to report to you without delay.

General order," "No. 37, dated the 5th instant, was forwarded to you by the last mail. I am, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant, •


Adjutant General. Brig. Gen. Z. TAYLOR,

Commanding U. S. forces in Texas, bay of Aransas.


Washington, August 23, 1845. SIR: The information hitherto received as to the intentions of Mexico and the measures she may adopt, does not enable the administration here to give you more explicit inst:uctions in regard to your movements than those which have been already forwarded to you. There is reason to believe that Mexico is making efforts to assemble a large army on the frontier of Texas, for the purpose of entering its territory and holding forcible possession of it.

Of their movements your are doubtless advised, and we trust have taken, or early will take, prompt and efficient steps to meet and repel any such hostile incursion. Should Mexico assemble a large body of troops on the Rio Grande, and cross it with a considerable force, such a movement must be regarded as an invasion of the United States and the commencement of hostilities. . You will, of course, use all the authority which has been or may be given you to meet such a state of things. Texas must be protected from hostile invasion, and for that purpose you will of course employ to the utmost extent all the means you possess or can command.

An order has been this day issued for sending one thousand more men into Texas to join those under your command. When the existing orders are carried into effect, you will have with you a force of four thousand men of the regular army. We are not enabled to judge what auxiliary force can, upon an emergency,

be brought together from Texas, and as a precautionary measure you are authorized to accept volunteers from the States of Louisiana and Alabama, and even from Mississippi, Tennessee, and Kentucky. Should Mexico declare war, or commence hostilities by crossing the Rio Grande with a considerable force, you are instructed to lose no time in giving information to the authorities of each or any of the above mentioned States as to the number of volunteers you may want from them respectively. Should you require troops froin any of these States, it would be important to have them with the least possible delay. It is not doubted that at least two regiments from New Orleans and one from Mobile could be obtained and expeditiously brought into the field. You will cause it to be known at these places what number and description of troops you desire to receive from them in the contemplated emergency. The authorities of these States will be apprized that you are authorized to receive volunteers from them, and you may calculate that they will promptly join you when it is made known that their services are required. Arms, ammunition, and camp equipage for the auxiliary troops that you may require, will be sent forward subject to your orders. You will so dispose of them as to be most available in case they should be needed, at the same time with a due regard to their safety and preservation. Orders have been issued to the naval force on the gulf of Mexico to co-operate with you. You will, as far as practicable, hold communication with the commanders of our national vessels in your vicinity, and avail yourself of any assistance that can be derived from their co-operation. The Lexington is ordered into service as a transport ship, and will sail in a few days from New York with a detachment of United States troops for Corpus Christi. She will be employed as the exigency of the public service may require. In order to keep up a proper communication between the army in Texas and the United States, the On-ka-hy-e, the Harney, and the Dolphin will be put into service, as soon as they can be made ready, as despatch vessels to convey intelligence, supplies, &c. You will avail

You will avail yourself of

these vessels, and all other proper means, to keep the government
here advised of your operations, and of the state of things in Texas
and Mexico.
I have the honor to be, with great respect, yours,


Secretary of War.
General Z. TAYLOR.

[ocr errors]

(Sent to the quartermaster at New Orleans.]


Washington, August 25, 1845. Sir: General Taylor, to whom has been committed the command of the army of occupation in Texas, is authorized to draw any auxiliary force he way need from Texas. If such aid should be wanted, it is not doubted that the patriotic citizens of that State will rally to his assistance with alacrity, in sufficient numbers to enable him, in conjunction with United States troops, to repel the invasion of Texas by Mexico, should it be attempted. Though our information as to the force Mexico may bring into the field for such a purpose is not very accurate, yet there is reason to apprehend that it is more numerous than that under the command of General Taylor; and may, perhaps, exceed his effective force when augmented with the auxiliary aid he may derive from Texas. Besides, he may need additional troops to a greater number, and sooner than they can be furnished him from that State. Should he need assistance from your State, he is directed to signify to you the number and description of troops he may deem necessary to receive as volunteers into service. Relying upon the zealand public spirit of the gallant militia of Alabaina, Mississippi, and Louisiana, the governmert here do not doubt that he will be promptly furnished with such and so many as he may express a desire to have mustered into the service of the United States; and it has the most perfect reliance upon your countenance and co-operation in organizing and sending into Texas such a valunteer force from your State as he may desire. It is necessarily left to his judgment to designate the number. It is proper to observe, that the emergency rendering such assistance from the militia of your State necessary, does not appear to have been foreseen by Congress, and consequently no appropriation was made for paying them; but it is not to be doubted that such a provision will be promptly made when Congress shall again assemble. In order to be paid, the State troops must be mustered into service. In organizing companies and regiments for that purpose, the number of officers must be proportioned to that of the privates. Enclosed I send you, from the Adjutant General, a statement of the number and rank of officers for each company of men, as well as the regimental and staff officers, should a regiment of volunteers be called for. From the

known patriotism and military ardor of the militia of your State, it is presumed that volunteers to the number that may be required will readily tender their services to their country in the contemplated emergency. Should_aid from your State be required by the commanding general in Texas, it will be of the utmost importance that the troops should be sent into thať State without delay. This consideration will render it proper that they should come from such part of the State as can most promptly furnish them. I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Secretary of War. His Excellency BENJAMIN FITZPATRICK,

Governor of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, Alabama. His Excellency A. G. BROWN,

Governor of Mississippi, Jackson, Mississippi. His Excellency ALEXANDER Mouton,

Governor of Louisiana, New Orleans, Louisiana.

Letters were also addressed on the 28th of the same month, to the governors of Tennessee and Kentucky, on the same subject, and in the same words as the above.


Washington, August 26, 1845. GENERAL: I am instructed by the Secretary of War to say, it is very desirable that you should keep the department informed of the state of the service on the Texan frontiers, and the situation of the army under your command, by every opportunity which may offer. Official information, at short intervals, is now the more necessary, as the country is filled with rumors of the movement of Mexican troops in direction of your head-quarters, as also of matters in relation to our own service. But, however exaggerated these reports may be, we cannot, for want of official tidings, undertake to correct what we have good reason to believe not to be

You are requested, therefore, to write, if but a single line, by almost every vessel which may sail from near your head-quarters for New Orleans.

Your last letter, received August 11th, is dated from Aransas Bay, July 28th, and to-night's mail brings letters and papers of the 19th from New Orleans, with news from Aransas Bay, and the mouth of the Rio Grande, of August 12th.

I send you general orders No. 41, of yesterday's date, giving you more troops, which I hope you will not need before their arrival. I am, general, with great respect, your obedient servant,

R. JONES, Adgt. General. General TAYLOR,

Commanding, &c., the army of occupation.


« AnteriorContinuar »