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    [John S. "Rip" Ford]. Contemporary Copy of Captain John Martin's Autograph Letter Signed to "Rip" Ford. One page, 8" x 9", "On board J. B. Ranchero Opposite La Bolsa," February 4, 1860. Captain Martin informs Texas Ranger Rip Ford that hostile Mexicans attacked his vessel, the J. B. Ranchero, while floating upstream on the Rio Grande at La Bolsa Bend. As the captain prepared to journey downstream toward Brownsville (100 miles away) laden with valuable cargo, he asks Ford for protection. In full:

    "An attack was made on the Boat today from the Mexican Shore, and anticipating another attack on my way to Brownsville from the Mexican side of the River, I respectfully request that you will afford me all of the protection in your power, as there is property (The estimated value of which is supposed to be some two hundred thousand dollars) now on board of the Boat."

    After being defeated by a force of Texas Rangers and U.S. regulars under the command of Major Samuel P. Heintzelman in December 1859, Juan Cortina and his men retreated south of the Rio Grande. Their next move was this attack on the steamboat J. B. Ranchero at La Bolsa Bend, just below Rio Grande City. Ford and his Rangers obliged Captain Martin's request by crossing the river into Mexico, sending Cortina further south. Thus, the steamboat, owned by Mifflin Kenedy and Richard King, safely made its journey to Brownsville. Rip Ford's contemporary copy is on lined, light-blue paper with smoothed folds; minor soiling. Written at the top of is "(Copy)." Docketed on verso.

    ‡ The owner placed a late bid on this unreserved lot and repurchased it, subject to applicable commission.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    September, 2013
    21st Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 2
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 506

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