“I know it,” replied Smith
‘What would you advise?’
“Resign in favor of Buckner
,” was the prompt answer.
It was a bitter pill, but Smith
swallowed it. He wrote out his resignation, leaving Buckner
commander-in-chief of the department.
Another disappointment followed.
The spectacular Buckner
never raised a hand.
He even failed to press the negotiation for the alliance which Shelby
wanted to make with Maximilian
The Missouri general then proceeded to act for himself.
He recognized his command, and out of the government stores equipped 1,000 picked men with new uniforms, guns, pistols, swords, ammunition, wagons, provisions, horses, mules, tents and as many cannon —fine Napoleons—as they could take on their march.
On their way through Texas
to the Rio Grande
found many strong bodies of armed robbers terrorizing the country.
They occasionally halted, or turned aside, to meet these desperadoes, and in a short time killed and dispersed the most dangerous of them.
there was a Confederate sub-treasury with over $300,000 in gold
's troopers galloped into the city after midnight, just in time to find a gang of robbers battering down the treasury doors and helping themselves to the treasure.
The fight that ensued was hot and merciless.
The Confederates gave no quarter.
They shot down the bandits in the treasury vault, in the corridors, and in the streets.
Then, by torchlight, they picked up the scattered gold, even taking it from the pockets of the dead.
Early the next morning the State
authorities were invited to count the money.
It was found to be all right, and as it belonged to the Confederate government, and Shelby
was in command of the only existing body of recognized Confederates, he was urged by the officials to take all he might need for his little army's support.
He flatly refused, and resumed his march.
At San Antonio
the general and his men rested a few days.
The town overflowed with luxuries from every market, imported into Mexico
by the French
and exchanged for cotton.
Brandy and champagne were the daily beverages of rough fellows who had never before drank anything better than corn whiskey.
On the way to San Antonio
, and after reaching that place, Shelby
was joined by such gallant Confederates as Ex-Governor Polk
, Generals Kirby Smith
, Governors Reynolds
and General Parsons
, Commodore Maury
, and a lot of colonels, congressmen and soldiers.