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wood and prairie.  It is prettier than the west side of the river.  Groce's is prettily situated.  Houses numerous, but small, and much crowded.  I slept on the floor with Badgett and Kimble.

Had the misfortune to lose one of my pistols today.  It must have broken loose from the belt.

Saturday, March 19, 1836

Remained at Groce's all day.  Nothing yet done with the loan.  Dr. Southerland arrived, and reported Zavala sick at Walker's.  Several gentlemen arrived here today, among them Capt. Morehouse,[25]  of the company of Lancers, lately arrived from New York.  He said that Capt. Stanley, whom I had seen showing off at Washington, did not belong to the Lancers, but is an Englishman, who had gone there to endeavor to get the command of them conferred on him by the government.

President Burnett, Secretary Rusk, and Attorney General Thomas are here, having arrived during the night.  Pyle and Ikin left here in the afternoon, for the bay.  Pyle is disgusted, and urged me to go with him, saying he disliked to leave me in such company.

A Mr. Green, from Florida, arrived last night, and has obtained a brigadier general's command and authority to raise men and provisions, etc., in the United States, on the faith of the government.[26]

Sunday, March 20, 1836

This morning Messrs. Zavalla, Ruis and Navarro arrived.  The cabinet are now all here, except Hardiman.

The servant of the late lamented Travis, Joe, a black boy of about twenty-one or twenty-two years of age, is now here.  He was in the Alamo when the fatal attack was made.  He is the only male, of all who were in the fort, who escaped death,[27]  and he, according to his own account, escaped narrowly.  I heard him interrogated in presence of the cabinet and others.  He related the affair with much modesty, apparent candor, and remarkably distinctly for one of his class.  The following is, as near as I can recollect, the substance of it:

The garrison was much exhausted by incessant watching and hard labor.  They had all worked until a late hour on Saturday night, and when the attack was made, sentinels and all were asleep, except one man, Capt. -----, who gave the alarm.  There were three picket guards without the fort, but they, too, it is supposed, were asleep, and were run upon and bayonetted, for they gave no alarm.  Joe was sleeping in the room with his master when the alarm was given.  Travis sprang up, seized his rifle and sword, and called to Joe to follow him.  Joe took his gun and followed.  Travis ran across the Alamo and mounted the wall,


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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