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had taken the road in his best military pants, without leggings.  About one-half a mile further on we came to another branch of the same watercourse, within steep, narrow banks.  Our young Mexican friend ran on with us in his wet clothes, to show us across that, and on the way very obligingly instructed me in the Spanish vocabulary, as far as there was time to make enquiries.  The second stream presented greater difficulties than the first.  We stripped our horses and carried our saddles and baggage across on a log, which was felled across the stream a short distance from the road.  The difficulty then was to get our horses over.  We attempted to drive them, but they bolted, and were with difficulty caught and brought back.  The Mexican then stript and mounted Dr. H.'s mare, which he swam across; the others were then driven in and followed, but Capt Sherman's mare went too low down the stream, and striking a steep bank, among drift wood, was near drowning before she could be got over.  The obliging alacrity of the young Mexican in serving us, and the exposure that he underwent, called for our commendation and liberal reward, with which he seemed much gratified.

The delay in crossing these streams prevented our reaching Sims' until 11 o'clock.  We found the house kept by a Mexican named Antonio Rios, a native of Nacogdoches, who spoke the English language well, and gave his name as Rivers, but his Gipsey-like visage betrayed his origins.  He is a smart, obliging fellow, who has rented the place of Sims, a rude house of two rooms and an open passage: the common style.[27]  Here we found a company of eleven men from Tennessee, going to join the army.  Having to wait for them to be served, and to rest our horses, we did not leave Rios' until 2 o'clock, designing to reach the Widow Anderson's, twelve miles.  We did not reach the widow's until dark, and then found the house to consist of one small room, and no food of any kind for the horses.  We got a good supper of the coarse kind usually found on the road, but no sugar for the coffee.

Soon after our arrival a foot traveller, a young man from Georgia, who is going to join a volunteer company from that State now in Texas, came in and partook of our supper.  He left Nacogdoches about the time we did, and has kept up with us, generally sleeping and eating with us.  His baggage consists of a surtout coat and saddle bags.  These we occasionally relieved him of by carrying for him.  He stops for nothing, but pushes right ahead, through rain, mud and watercourses.  Today he swam the stream that our horses waded.  He did not know the ford that the Mexican showed us.  He will make a fine soldier if he lives to reach the army.  (Fare and lodging at Larrison's, 75 cents; dinner and horse feed at Rios', 75 cents; paid the Mexican 50 cents.).  We gave the only spare bed the widow had to the foot passenger, who complained of a little fever, and we all slept on the floor.  Our poor horses were tied in the woods.
 


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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