Stephen F. Austin to Unknown, 08-30-1824

Summary: Austin's journal of campaign against Karankawas, August 30-September 7, 1824.

Aug. 30 [1824] Started from Town on the Expedition agst. the Karankaways slept at the middle Bernard

31—joind the men at A. Jacksons, and mustered and inspected them—62 including officers, spent the day in preparing provisions—

Sept. 1—divided the men into two divisions, one composed of Capn Christmans company marched with me down the west side of the River—the other composed of Robinson's and Rawls were marched down the East side through the Bay Prairie and under the command of Rawls

2—I encampd at Dixons camp and sent spies down to the mouth of the River in the night, heard from Rawls on the opposite side at the Bluff below Jinings camp and ordered him to join me at Rawls Camp on Sweet Creek the next night.

3—Went to the mouth of River with 2 men and met the spies— no signs of Indians left a letter for Capn Jones at Hawkins Grave proceeded to Rawls Camp on Sweet and at sun down Chrisman and Rawls with two companies came up—the spies which I sent from Dixons camp to examine Bayou Trespalacious returned— no sign

Sept. 4—Marchd 8 miles W. N. W. to the Wiesachatta, the main fork of Bayou Trespalacious, a bold running stream of good water—formed a spy compy of 6 men B. Sims Commander and dispatched them about 12 o'clock, a head of a west course—rain about 2 o'clock at 4 marched and at dusk arrived at an old Karankaway encampment on a handsome running creek which run S. W. The spies continued on down it in the night.

Sepr 5—found at this encampment the bones of two men which had been cut up and boiled—buryed them—and called the Creek, Cannibal Creek. About 10 O'clock spies returned, and reported no sign—two miles below our camp the tide set up—water brackish— 5 miles below the stream widend to 1 mile very salt high banks— Genl course a little east of South, about 14 miles to the Bay—this Creek leads about oposite the ford at R. Kuykendalls—at 3 o'clock dispatched the spies ahead at 3 marched very good crossing 1/2 mile below the camp—8 miles a little north of west came to a large branch bed about 20 yards wide tide water quite brackish tho, drinkable—sent spies down to hunt a crossing-—

Sep. 6—-Spies returned creek becomes wider and salt below no crossing—supposed it to be the Chickalete, dispatched spies up to hunt a crossing—8 miles up a little north of west crossed the Creek a small tho handsome running branch of good water—country on this creek very brushy, and generally poor land—between it and Cannibal poor wet boggy prairie with Islands of brush and small oaks— nooned the crossing of this creek and named it Chapparo from the quantity of Brush on it—dispatched spies and marched at 3 o'clock west at Sun down struck a large creek about 25 yards wide 5 feet deep clear good fresh water, tide, supposed to be the Navidad and encamped—distance 10 miles from Chapparo over very rich high prairie—fine stock country—at 12 at night dispatched spies down this Creek to examine its mouth

Sept. 7—at day light dispatched spies up and down the creek to examine for a crossing place deer very plenty—found a fine spring near the camp—no sign of Indians—at 2 o'clock spies returned from mouth of the creek and reported no sign of Indians—the stream we were incamped on proved to be the navidad which united with the La Baca or chickalete 8 miles below, 300 yds. wide at forks left hand fork the largest brackish at forks and 3 miles above—heavy body of timber in forks—timber on the east side generally narrow— Prairie—bluffs at two places above the forks and at the forks timber, 100 yd. on East side 950 on west—16 miles, from month timber ceases on both sides—Average width from forks to mouth 300 yds. banks at forks 30 feet—near the mouth 15 feet—a large lake about 10 miles above the mouth on the east side—3 miles in circumference salt—rich black prairie all the way down low bottom prairie on the River 1/2 to 1 mile wide—no crossing below for horses—