Today in History:

29 Series II Volume I- Serial 114 - Prisoners of War


We do not know to what extent that element prevails with General Twiggs, but we are of opinion that General Twiggs will not permit it to interfere with what he believes to be due to himself. He spoke, during the interview, of his feeble health; of his having received an offer from Georgia for a command in that State, and of his having refused it on the ground of ill health. He referred to the great expenditure of the army, exclusive of the pay of the troops; said it is more than a million and a half, and inquired where Texas could obtain means to meet that outlay, which she would lose by seceding. These and other remarks on the question by him forced a somewhat unwilling conviction on the minds of the undersigned that he was decidedly averse to the secession of Texas. He mentioned the omission of Captain Ross to do full justice to Sergeant Spangler, and the omission of Governor Houston to give credit to Major Van Dorn for his success in the Comanche fight, and remarked that these were indications of the temper of Texas toward the officers and men of the army. The conclusion we have arrived at is this: that we must obtain possession of that which now belongs to Texas of right, by force, or such a display of force as will compel a compliance with our demands, and that without an hour's unnecessary delay. In all these movements, celerity, secrecy, and strength should be our motto.

if there are any men to spare on or near the Colorado we think it would be well for them, in as large numbers and as speedily as possible, to move toward the city to support, if necessary, Colonel McCulloch's movements. Whatever is to be done up North it is well should be done speedily. You had better inquire of Messrs. Hall and Hude, of the Legislature, the condition of Forts Bliss and Quitman, as the men and munitions in those forts could be moved without delay to New Mexico, giving to the Federal Government at Washington a large body of troops to hold that country against the Southernhus build up a free State to injure and annoy us in the not very remote future. By referring to the inclosed order* you will perceive General Twiggs is preparing for a move.

We are decidedly of the opinion, for the reasons set forth with reference to New Mexico, that it will be unwise to permit a single company of U. S. troops to march from any portion of Texas into New Mexico. If the officers are determined to carry them to aid Lincoln's government let them go by the way of the coast, or we can disband them, if we so decide. We repeat it, we must not let a single company from Fort Bliss to Fort Brown leave the State by the Kansas, New Mexico, or any other route save the coast.

The captain commanding the ordnance department at this point is not friendly to our cause. He is said to be in possession of about $40,000 for the construction of the U. S. arsenal. What do you suggest respecting his being compelled to deliver it up, if in his possession, and what course do you suggest in the premises? We would like to have any suggestions or instructions you may consider necessary. We have would adhere to them if circumstances demanded it - if in our power, if not, we will do what the emergencies of the hour demand, doing what we believe to be our duty and leaving the consequences to God.

In haste, we remain yours, &c.,





*See circular of February 4, Series I, Vol. I, p. 587.