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The Tecar Prisoners of Mier drawing the Fatal Beans. Drawing the white beans signified exemption-drawing the black, cleath! Soon after the lottery, the doomed were separated from the others, and, about dark, executed. They fell bravely, with their latest breath calling down the vengeance of Heaven upon their murderers; and exclaiming that for the glory of their country they had fought, and for her glory they were willing to die!" NARRATIVE

OF THE

MIER EXPEDITION

WITH A HISTORY OF THE SURVIVORS WHO WERE IMPRISONED IN THE

CASTLE OF PEROTE, IN MEXICO

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The Texas Revolution was a remarkable exhibition of American character, For nine years a population of twenty thousand of our people successfully contended against a nation of eight millions. It was a bloody struggle, marked by many thrilling episodes, illustrating the coolest bravery in peril, and the manliest fortitude in adversity.

The history of the Mier Expedition well exhibits the character of those heroic people, as given by Thomas J. Green, one of the Texan officers, who subsequently published his journal of its events, and from which this article is derived.

In the year 1842, the Mexicans having twice invaded Texas, marking their course by the usual atrocities of that half-savage people, President Houston, in September, issued a proclamation calling for volunteers to “ rendezvous at Bexar, pursue the enemy into Mexico, and chastise him for his insolence and wrongs.” By November, some twelve hundred Texans assembled at Bexar, and were placed under the command of General Somerville. Through various causes this force was dwindled down to a few hundred men, with which Somerville after much delay marched to the Rio Grande, the Mexican forces under General Woll retreating before them. Then Somerville abandoned all the objects of the campaign, alleging that “ he thought it imprudent to remain longer, as the enemy might concentrate.He started for home, accompanied by his staff and a few over two hundred men, leaving behind three hundred and four of his Texan companions in arms, who, having come to fight, determined to be gratified at all hazards.

This little band elected Colonel William S. Fisher commander, and descended the Rio Grande, part in barges and part on land. Colonel Thomas J. Green held the office of commander of the flotilla and right wing of the forces. On the 21st of December, they arrived in the vicinity of Mier, next to Matamoras, the most important town on the Rio Grande. As the place was then destitute of troops for its defense, they marched into it without molestation. According to the customs of war, and which, moreover, their own destitute condition warranted, they made requisition upon the alcalde for various stores of provisions, clothing, arms, etc. acceded to, upon which the troops retired from the place, carrying with

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them to their camp below the city the alcalde, as a hostage for the performance of the agreement. Under various pretexts its fulfillment was delayed until on the 25th, when news came that seven hundred Mexicans, with two field-pieces, commanded by Ampudia and Canales, had arrived on the opposite or right bank of the river. The Texans crossed over to give them battle, upon which they retreated into Mier.

Two of the most efficient of the Texan spies unfortunately had been made prisoners. One of these was the afterward much noted Captain Samuel H. Walker. On being interrogated by Ampudia as to the numbers and intentions of the Texans, with the threat of death if he told falsely, Walker replied, “that his life was in the general's hands, but that it was neither their habit nor nationality to lie ;--that the force of the Texans was about three hundred men." "They surely have not the audacity to pursue and attack me in town," rejoined Ampudia. "Yes, general," said Walker, "you need not have any doubts on that point; they will pursue and attack

.!! The Texans continued in pursuit of the flying Mexicans, when night closed in upon them, just as they had reached the outskirts of Mier. The night being dark and drizzling with rain, the men were ordered to sit and protect their rifles from the damp until the general position of the enemy could be learned. This was done, when, after some little skirmishing, the Mexican outposts were carried, and the Texans fought their way by degrees in the direction of the military square, making openings through the adobe walls of the houses by crowbars. All night long the battle was kept up, and many a Mexican fell before the unerring rifle of those frontiermen. When day dawned they were in the very heart of the city, with the loss of only one man killed and two wounded, having beaten all opposition, and being strongly posted in some adobe houses.

“In less than an hour," says Green, "after daylight opened upon us, their artillery was silenced and deserted, and the enemy had recourse to the house-tops, from whence they ventured to pour down upon the houses we occupied volleys of musketry. In the many thousand cartridges discharged at us, an occasional one would take effect, and we had some valuable men killed and several wounded. In this situation, some of our best rifles and surest shots were brought into play, and they not permitted to fire except with dead rest and sure aim. This explains why 'a large majority of their killed and wounded were shot in the head and breast, the only part exposed in firing at us. However, to obtain a better position for some of our picked riflemen, holes were made in the roofs of the houses we occupied, through which they ascended, and in that position we soon cleared all the houses within reach. Thus the battle continued until 12 m., and it was perfectly clear, from the manner in which their fire had slackened in every quarter, that they were badly crippled. One movement more on our part was necessary to complete the victory, and that was by commanding the public square, their stronghold.

About this time, a column of the enemy charged down a street upon the north of the building we occupied. Colonel Fisher, being at that point, threw himself, with some twenty men, suddenly into the street, and received their fire, which severely wounded several of his men, cutting off also the ball of his right thumb. They effectually returned their fire, when the party fled. Up to this time, for the last six hours, the artillery nearest us had been silenced, and no one of the enemy dared approach it. It had already, as we were afterward told, proved the death of fifty-five out of their sixty choice artillery company. To get it out of our reach, they had recourse to throwing a lasso over it from behind a corner, and dragging it off. Just about this time, they were blowing a charge in different directions. The writer was in the upper end of the buildings nearest the square, when he received information that Colonel Fisher was wounded : hastening to where he was, he found him vomiting from the effects of his wound. At this juncture, in the midst of victory, we date our misfortunes.

Dr. Sinnickson, one of the eight men who had been taken prisoners over the Alcantra, baving been brought to General Ampudia's headquarters, was put upon his examination as to our force, etc.;-it, however, corroborated Walker's statement. In General Ampudia's staff

, as surgeon-general, was Dr. Humphries, a Scotchman by birth, formerly surgeon in the Texan army, The surgeon-general knew Dr. Sinnickson in Brazoria, and as soon as he communicated the fact to the Mexican officers, the cunning Canales and Carasco suggested, as a last alternative, that their old deception of a white flag should be tried upon us. At this time, so badly were they whipped, that we were told by Walker, Lusk, and other prisoners, tied at Ampudia’s headquarters, that the officers' horses were saddled, and held each by the bridle, and that the gate of the churchyard upon the Matamoras road was opened, and every preparation was being made for flight, when Dr. Sinnickson was started to us with a white flag. Walker and others, who had been prisonors since the day previous, had witnessed the battle from where they were oonfined, knew the enemy was badly beaten, and knew their condition too well for either of them to be sent in to us. Dr. Sinnickson, having just been taken prisoner, and knowing but little of the condition of the enemy, had no chance to communicate with the other prisoners, and on this account, as well as from his being surgeon in our army, he was selected to bring in the flag to us. At the time he started with it, the other prisoners believed it was for the purpose of asking terms from us, nor were they undeceived in this particular until they saw a portion of our men marching into the public square to lay down their arms.

Dr. Sinnickson was ordered by General Ampudia to say to the Texan commander " that he had one thousand seven hundred regular troops in the city, and eight hundred fresh troops near by from Monterey, which would be up in a few minutes; that it was useless for him to contend longer against such odds, and that, if he would surrender his forces, they should be treated with all the honors and considerations of prisoners of war; and that our men should not be sent to Mexico, but kept upon the frontier until an exchange or pacification was effected ;-and that, if these terms were not acceded to, we should be allowed no quarter."

Some few moments elapsed between Dr. Sinnickson's first communication with Colonel Fisher, and the astounding information which was communicated to our men, that it was a demand for us to surrender, for up to this time a general impression prevailed that they were asking terms of us. When this information was communicated to our men, it was promptly met

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