DescriptionJose Cassiano, Two Autograph Letters Signed, each letter is one and one quarter page in length, with address cover on integral sheet, 7.75" x 9.75", San Antonio, dated Dec. 15 & 16, 1844; letters are individually addressed to Dr. & Mrs. Jesus de la Garza. Contents regarding business matters and apologizes for his current financial difficulties. In part: "I am very sorry to say that I am one who does the least business in this City, the reason being that I have lost thousands of pesos by the Bank of New Orleans, and other major sums lost in these past three years; and until now have not been able to raise the money necessary to provide the sundries that you require..." The letter to Mrs. De la Garza covers the same subject and goes into detail regarding the goods he hopes to bring back from New Orleans for her. Both letters are evenly toned, with bold ink and in fine condition.
Jose Cassiano (1791-1862) was born in Italy and arrived in New Orleans in 1816. He became a successful merchant and property owner, and made frequent business trips to Texas. Sometime in the 1820s he moved to San Antonio, where he opened a store and eventually acquired extensive property in San Antonio and landholdings throughout South Texas. In December of 1835, during the siege of Bexar, both his home and the goods in his store were turned over to the revolutionary army. He is credited with sending messages to William B. Travis regarding Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna's movement just prior to the Alamo. His strong financial support of the revolutionary cause would be recognized by Thomas J. Rusk when as secretary of war, Rusk issued instructions that Cassiano be permitted to travel freely between Texas and the United States. (Handbook of Texas) Cassiano was also involved in land speculation, acquiring part of the lower Menchaca grant from Vicente Micheli. During the year this letter was written, 1844, Cassiano attempted to consolidate land in El Rincon and establish a town called Capote, but was unable to attract people and eventually the deal fell through. (Los Mesteños) From the Taking of Texas Collection.
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