Juan Seguín to Captain Pratt, March 26, 1837
Seguín faced many difficulties as commander of Bexar, including a lack of manpower and supplies. In March 1837, he was forced to abandon the city for a time and try to regroup near Gonzales. In this letter, he orders a Captain Platt to scour the countryside for horses to keep his men mounted. This move put Seguín in another bind, for it alienated his fellow Tejanos, many of whom depended on their horses for their livelihood. The "Manchaca" referred to is probably Jos Antonio Menchaca, a prominent Tejano army officer who fought under Seguín at San Jacinto.
The letter below is Sam Houston's copy of Seguín's original letter. The copy was made by John William Smith, also known as El Colorado, the last messenger from the Alamo and the first Texan mayor of San Antonio.
Camp Houston March 26th 1837
You are ordered to proceed with the detach-
ment of this corps under your command to
the ranches below and about Bexar and collect
and press for the Public service and use of this
Regt. all the horses and mules you can find
without excepting any, except those belonging
to members of this corps. You will give receipts
to their owners for all you so press which
receipt of yours shall be redeem'd by my
own so soon as presented.
Capt. Manchaca accompanies you and is
subject to your order altho as he is acquainted
with the Country and Language you may find
it eligeable [sic] to consult with him on such
points as may be necessary to carry into
due effect the object of your mission.
You will permit no individual what-
ever under your command to separate from
the detachment and you will not remain
in Bexar more than 24 hours.
Should the Alcalde of Bexar deliver to
Juan Seguín to Captain Pratt, March 26, 1837, A.J. Houston Collection, Archives and Information Services Division, Texas State Library and Archives Commission.