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by workers and freedom of movement. The practice was in a state of decline during the nineteenth century and was a form of bondage only in exceptional cases. Alan Knight, "Mexican Peonage: What Was It and Why Was It?" pp. 45-50.

25. [p.57]  William Christy (1791-1865) served as quartermaster under General William Henry Harrison in the War of 1812, distinguished himself in battle against Tecumseh's Indians at Fort Meigs, and received a commission as a second lieutenant in the infantry. He also served in the Battle of New Orleans, after which he settled in Louisiana. In 1820 he assisted in equipping the expedition headed by James Long and attempted to raise an army in Tampico in conjunction with that campaign. Along with John Austin and Benjamin R. Milam, he was imprisoned in Mexico City in 1821. Upon his return to New Orleans, Christy practiced law beginning in 1823. He became chairman and treasurer of a New Orleans committee to aid Texas in September, 1835; in early 1836 he was acquitted of charges related to aiding the Tampico Expedition of José Antonio Mexía, which had taken place in November of 1835. Vertical Files, Revised Handbook.

26. [p.57]  Caldwell had helped draft resolutions of support for the Texas cause at an earlier New Orleans meeting of October 13, 1835. Jenkins, Papers, vol. 2, pp. 115-17.

27. [p.58]  Probably Jesse Bledsoe (1776-1836), a lawyer and politician who moved to Texas in 1835 and died in Nacogcoches on June 25, 1836. Vertical Files, Revised Handbook.

28. [p.58]  Most likely Samuel Ellis, not the Richard Ellis whom Gray later met as the president of the Texas Convention of March 1836. Samuel Ellis served as secretary to Robert Triplett, general agent of Texas, in New Orleans during the summer of 1836. Binkley, Official Correspondence, vol. 2, p. 736.

29. [p.58]  Austin described the meeting as "enthusiastic in the extreme." Stephen F. Austin to Thomas J. Rusk, January 7, 1836, Jenkins, Papers, vol. 3, p. 435.


1. [p.61]  Although the town was burned by the forces of Mexican General José de Urrea on April 22, 1836, it recovered to remain an important trade center and county seat. Its population for the next twenty-five years ranged from 3,000 to 5,000. It declined as a result of the deterioration of the river trade and the absence of rail transportation. Webb, Handbook, vol. 1, p. 207.

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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