DescriptionMoseley Baker Autograph Document Signed. One page, 6.75" x 4.5", San Felipe [de Austin, Texas]; March 29, 1836. A receipt, signed by Baker, for "one hundred and thirty" yards "Domestic, for the Company stationed here." The cost of the purchase was $48.75, and may be for fabric for soldiers' uniforms.
Moseley Baker (1802-1848), pioneer Texas legislator and soldier, was born in Norfolk, Virginia. After living for a time in Alabama, where he practiced law, founded and edited the Montgomery Advertiser, and served in the state legislature from Montgomery County, served as speaker of the House. It is not clear when he moved to Texas, but reports have him living in San Felipe de Austin as early as 1833. As a leading advocate of Texas independence from Mexico, Baker claimed to have made the first speech in favor of disunion. Baker participated in the Battle of Gonzales and at engagements connected with the siege of Bexar in December 1835. In 1836, he was elected captain of Company D, First Regiment of Texan Volunteers, the largest company in Sam Houston's army. After Houston's retreat into East Texas after the disasters at the Alamo and Goliad, Baker refused to abandon the line of the Brazos River. For several days his company, on detached duty, guarded the ford at San Felipe, where most of his men resided, thus preventing Santa Anna's army from turning Houston's left flank and forcing his retreat toward the San Jacinto River. On March 29, 1836, the day that he signed this receipt, Baker burned San Felipe to prevent its capture by the enemy. Baker rejoined the main army in April 1836, commanding Company D of the First Regiment of Texas Volunteers at the Battle of San Jacinto, where he was slightly wounded. After Texas achieved independence, Baker served in the First Legislature of Texas, during which time he drew up charges of impeachment against his long-time adversary, President Sam Houston, which failed. From the Robert E. Davis Collection.
Condition: The document has the usual folds and is fine condition. With filing docket on verso.
Nathaniel Townsend (1804-1864), a merchant and Republic of Texas diplomat, was born in Oneida County, New York. Because of his ill health his parents sent him in 1828 to Natchez, Mississippi, to join his brother. In 1834, on one of his trips from Mississippi to St. Louis, Townsend met Stephen F. Austin and became interested in Texas. After an exploratory trip, he moved his family to San Felipe de Austin, where he set up a general store. His business was burned when the Mexican army passed through in March 1836, though it is not clear if this tragedy occurred before or after this receipt was signed. On April 2, 1837, Townsend was named consul at New Orleans for the Republic of Texas by President Sam Houston, serving in that position until September 1838. He moved to Austin in 1839, when the town was selected as the national capital, and built a store there around 1841.
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