under the charge of Captain Castro,  who had hurried us along at full gallop to the general's quarters, to prevent the populace from offering insults. Thence followed our men slowly and solemnly up one street and down another, to give the brutal populace full opportunity to gaze at, and heap upon them dirty epithets, in which their language is so copious. Among the populace were a large number of negroes who absconded from Texas: these were among the foremost in their abusive epithets, and our men, without the power of punishing such insolence, would gnash their teeth in rage. At night a grand ball was given in honor of General Ampudia and officers, and we were turned over in charge of a new officer, who, to secure us the better for the night, conducted us to a lodging in an unfurnished room in the common prison. Here we were locked up without fire, bedding, or any article of furniture. This we presumed was done by order of the general; and it was so much at variance both with our former treatment and his gratuitous promises to us, that, after much persuasion, I obtained from the officer of the guard pen, ink, and paper, and addressed him a note, which was forthwith delivered, in which note we abused his Mexican perfidy and falsehood in the broadest terms. To our astonishment, in about one hour the doors of our prison were thrown open, and were conducted to our former quarters by the general's aid-de-camp. We have reason to believe this was the more promptly done through the intercession of General Romola  de la Vega and Captain Castro. Next morning General Ampudia, after apologizing for our treatment the night before, informed us that we must prepare for immediate march to the city of Mexico. He also informed us that Colonel Fisher and myself should be sent in advance of our men, as hostages for their good conduct. We replied, that if we were denied the privilege of accompanying our men, which we most preferred, we would cheerfully go in their advance to Mexico, to endeavour to do them all possible service. We also desired a day to make preparations and write letters to the United States and Texas, which was granted. After our letters were written, they were submitted to his inspection, which he in the most gentlemanly manner declined, and endorsed a free passport upon them.
Matamoras is the only American-built town we saw in Mexico. It has many frame houses with shingled roofs, and is built of as combustible materials as most Southern towns in the United States. It is situated about half a mile from the Rio Grande, and thirty from its mouth, contains a population of about ten thousand, and is the most defenceless city in Mexico.6