Who do you think should manage Ferriday water?|
Story Archives: John Quitman returns to Natchez after revolution, but his name lives in Texas
- 2013 - 300 articles
- 2012 - 856 articles
- 2011 - 635 articles
- December 2011 - 46 articles
- November 2011 - 61 articles
- October 2011 - 52 articles
- September 2011 - 49 articles
- August 2011 - 56 articles
- July 2011 - 51 articles
- June 2011 - 73 articles
- May 2011 - 47 articles
- April 2011 - 45 articles
- March 2011 - 53 articles
- March 31st, 2011 (Thursday) - 2 articles
- March 30th, 2011 (Wednesday) - 9 articles
- March 24th, 2011 (Thursday) - 2 articles
- March 23rd, 2011 (Wednesday) - 8 articles
- March 18th, 2011 (Friday) - 1 articles
- March 16th, 2011 (Wednesday) - 7 articles
- March 10th, 2011 (Thursday) - 4 articles
- March 9th, 2011 (Wednesday) - 8 articles
- March 3rd, 2011 (Thursday) - 3 articles
- March 2nd, 2011 (Wednesday) - 9 articles
- February 2011 - 57 articles
- January 2011 - 45 articles
- 2010 - 1276 articles
- 2009 - 1591 articles
- 2008 - 1763 articles
|John Quitman returns to Natchez after revolution, but his name lives in Texas|
(23rd & final in a series)
On Friday, May 27, 1836, Natchez militia Capt. John Quitman and his servant, a man Quitman referred to as "faithful Harry," arrived home in Natchez after spending two months in Texas assisting the rebels in their war of independence from Mexico.
Quitman's wife, Eliza, and children were overjoyed to see him as he relaxed in the confines of his beloved home, Monmouth.
In his diary, the 37-year-old attorney and former governor of Mississippi recorded that he regretted "I had not been able to do more, but grateful to Providence for permitting me to do as much as I did for a suffering people, and for vouchsafing me health, and safety, and a cheerful spirit meanwhile."
Not long after leaving the battlefield of San Jacinto just south of present day Houston, Texas, where the Texas army decisively defeated Gen. Santa Anna and the Mexican army, he spent a few days in Galveston Bay with family acquaintances before arranging passage home by sea for his Natchez troops who were ready to go. A handful remained with the Texas army and briefly followed the retreat of the Mexican army back to its homeland across the Rio Grande. Quitman and Harry, both on horseback, rode home through Louisiana over the Opelousas Trail.
Before he left, Texas Gen. Sam Houston offered Quitman a commission as second-in-command of the army, but the captain longed for Monmouth and his family and turned it down. Quitman biographer Robert May wrote that Quitman's decision eliminated his "eligibility for 4,605 free acres under Texas' headright system..." However, May reports that Quitman purchased 20,000 acres of land from fleeing Spanish settlers at 15 cents an acre. Quitman and others were betting that the U.S. would annex Texas in the months ahead although annexation remained a few years away.
"The gallant officer," wrote 19th Century historian John F.H. Claiborne, who had known Quitman, "had no opportunity, during the campaign, to appear on the field of battle. But there is no doubt that his march into Nacogdoches, and the support he gave the few determined men there assembled, deterred the rancheros and the Indians from the hostilities they mediated, and thus prevented the massacre of hundreds of defenseless families, flying before Santa Anna. It is appalling to dwell on the horrors that would have ensued had those unhappy fugitives been attacked while seeking to cross the angry flood of the Trinity, or on the long march thence to the Sabine.
"Between those retreating families and their foes -- then believed to be in ambush at no great distance -- in the face of a thousand alarming rumors, each enough to try the firmest nerves, he placed himself and his devoted band, and, one and all, resolved to die, not for fame, but in an obscure and hopeless struggle, to gain time for the fugitives."
(FOR FULL STORY SUBSCRIBE TO THE SENTINEL'S E-EDITION!)
|Frank Morris Murder Series|