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command, except three who escaped badly wounded; loss, eight officers, one hundred and nine men.  See newspaper statements.

Had long conversation with A. J. Yates about Texas.  Says he thinks Galveston Bay will become the principal commercial depot of Texas.  A company of New York capitalists have purchased a league of land on the island, including Lafitte's old fort, on which they design building the city of Galveston.[ 3]  He thinks it the only port on the bay for foreign shipping.  Spoke also of the country on the San Antonio; mostly settled by Spaniards.  Some old missionary stations have spacious and substantial buildings.  Thinks they may be bought low.  But little wood in the country, and no rain.  But all the lands on the river are irrigated from the river with ease.  The river flows rapidly but smoothly.  A waterfall, sufficient for any machinery, may be got in every 100 yards.  The climate dry and very delightful.

Sunday, January 10, 1836

Fine day.  Wrote to T. Green and to Mrs. Gary.  Did not get letters into the office until 12 o'clock.  Went then to hear Mr. Clapp, a Unitarian, who has a large church, and a very full congregation.  He is said to be much of an orator.  He had nearly closed when I went in.  The attention of his audience was fixed.  What I heard was well expressed, but there appeared too much effort for effect.  Went thence to the Presbyterian Church (Parker's), a new and very beautiful edifice, somewhat like that in Fredricksburg, but finished with more splendor and taste.  A fine steeple, large organ, seats cushioned with crimson moreen, lighted in a unique manner.  A section of a sphere projects from the ceiling, in which is fixed numerous lamps, lighted from above.  These shed, as it were, but one ray, diffusing a strong light over all the church.  The only other lights are two lamps on the pulpit, and several small ones in remote parts under the galleries.  I did not see it lighted, but the effect must be good.

Dined with J. H. Caldwell.  The company consisted of Mr. Finn, the actor, Mr. Elliot, the husband of Celeste, Miss Copeland, an actress, Mr. -----, secretary of the gas works, Mr. -----, editor of -----, Shakespeare and myself.  The lady well behaved, Finn and the editor sensible, intelligent and agreeable; the secretary an old Hogg; the husband of Celeste, a rowdy, and, by his own account, a bully.  Boasted of having beat Count D'Arcy in the theater in London for having taken liberties with Celeste on the stage; also flogged Lord Somebody-else.  After dinner walked out to the gas works; a noble establishment, built out in the marsh, beyond the hospital.  The use of gas becoming general in the city.

H. F. Thornton arrived this evening.  He has been sick at Woodville, Miss.  Has done nothing in lands.  Talks of going to Texas with me.

Had a long conversation tonight with Hotchkiss.  He was a student at West


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The Diary of William Fairfax Gray, from Virginia to Texas, 1835-1837
Copyright 1997 William P. Clements Center for Southwest Studies
Southern Methodist University, Dallas, Texas