it best to have them loaded, and told the general I would understand his order to give me this latitude, the men being ordered not to fire except to resist an attempt to disarm them.
On the evening of the 15th, having what seemed to be reliable information that the troops of Texas, acting under the authority of the State commissioners, would during the night enter the town and take possession of the storehouses, I ordered that the guard at the quartermaster's store should make no resistance to any organized force, but should report its presence to the quartermaster. I directed further that on the approach of troops, or the occurrence of any unusual excitement in the town, it should be warned to be ready for any emergency. I would have preferred to have left the depot in charge of the quartermaster's watchman, as with these orders the guard would only be acting in that capacity; but the general thought it advisable to have the guard as security against individual depredations.
Soon after 4 o'clock of the morning of the 16th I was notified that there was some excitement in town, and on repairing to my office, adjoining the quarters of Company I, First Infantry, I heard the corporal of the guard report to the officer of the day that in consequence of t demand by a large force that he should surrender he had withdrawn his guard from the depot.
In a very short time the building used as an arsenal was taken possession of, and companies of armed men occupied the steeds near where our companies were quarter, and in front, of the commissary building. A thousand to twelve hundred men are reliably said to have been in the town at the time. Things remained in this state, without any noise or disturbance of any kind, till some time after daylight, when, supposing the Texas commissioners were conferring with the general, to whom I had reported these occurrences, I returned to my quarters for a short time. In a few mints a note addressed to the commander of the Department of Texas, from the Texan commissioners, was brought to me through a misunderstanding, which I delivered to Major Nichols, assistant adjutant-general, and I notified the commissioners that the general, and I notified the commissioners that the general would be in his office after breakfast.
I had ordered that our men should not leave their quarters, but should be prepared to resist any attempt to take their arms; and between 9 and 10 o'clock, wishing to relieve them from this constraint, and to avoid any chance of accidental collision, I proposed to move the command into camp at a convenient distance from town. The commissioners objected to this arrangement, unless I would assure them that I would not move from the camp except to leave Texas by the coast. I told them I would give no such assurance without the consent of the general commanding, as I might be otherwise ordered. After some discussion of the feasibility of the plan of the troops going out by Indianola and up the Mississippi, with the approbation of General twiggs, who was present, I gave the assurance asked for, and immediately issued the necessary order for the companies to go into camp. The headquarters of the post and Eighth Infantry and band of the Eighth remain in town.
As required by the colonel commanding the department the reports of Major Smith and Captain King are submitted herewith. [Nos. 5 and 6.]
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Lieutenant-Colonel Eighth Infantry, Commanding.
Headquarters Department of Texas, San Antonio, Tex.