and if my letter gets through Mexico safe it may reach you. The surrender of Brownsville was one of the most cowardly and scandalous affairs which has happened in any country. Without seeing the enemy, and forty-eight hours before be came to Brownsville, the general set fire to the and a large quantity of cotton and other property, both public and private, was destroyed, and the general and his troops fled in terror and dismay to find a safe place, and burning all the cotton they could on the way, which was perfectly safe and could have been sent back to any point they chose.
With the force at Brownsville, under brave and determined officers, the whole Yankee force could have been killed and captured, for 200 who had been saved from drowning in the attempt to land at the mouth of the Brazos River got on shore, having lost their arms, horses, and baggage, and remained shivering and wet all night, and could have been captured by 100 armed men and their expedition entirely broken up; and the same thing could have been done at Point Isabel, where a small force was landed, and the people of Brownsville and the lower Rio Grande might have saved their property, which has been stolen and destroyed by thieving Yankees and Mexicans without any sort of movement on our part to prevent them.
The whole movement of seeding fire to the town and burning of cotton and goods was no doubt intended to cover up the stealing of Russell and company of cotton, &c., for he (Russell) was actually, as declared by Attrill, an Englishman, who lad a large quantity of articles on hand which Hart would not purchase, and which Russell bought in this place after the Yankee had possession of Brownsville. This was told by Attrill to Mr. S. A. Belden, one of Major Hart's agents. This, together with large amounts for purchases made by Russell and General Bee, in Brownsville, made up the large indebtedness to Attrill and Lacoste, and which Russell got $10,000 for signing the papers. After this Attrill and Lacoste sold out to the house of Milmo & Co., at Monterey. Milmo is the son-in-law of Vidauri, Governor of New Leon, and he at once embargoed all the cotton going into or passing through it and the $15,000,000 in charge of Boykin and Thayer, not a bale of cotton belonging to our Government, nor under any circumstances should the money have gone there at all. The money was safe here in Matamoras, and in an hour could have been placed in Brownsville, where there was an abundance of transportation belonging to the Government, and it would have been in San Antonio, tex., before it got half way to Monterey.
You would naturally inquire how the money came to take that route through a foreign country, more than 200 miles farther from its destination than by way of Brownsville. The answer is, Major Russell, the quartermaster, recommended it to go that way; what reason he had for doing so he knows best. The gentleman in charge of the money never called on me, though they were some time here, and the money deposited with the house of Milmo & Co. instead of in the custom-house in Brownsville. I certainly think they must have been trying how they could get rid of it. I have been trying to give you the true version of the Brownsville stampede and the cause of the money and cotton being stopped in New Leon, as I feel confident the whole truth may never be know in Richmond to the President and his Cabinet there, and I wish it to be seen, as it will be felt, that no military man ought to be instructed with any duty of