men, that two among them could not have been found who would not have preferred the most cruel death to signing, as the representatives of their government, the late infamous armistice acknowledging Texas a "DEPARTMENT OF MEXICO." And though overwhelming public opinion in Texas has driven President Houston to disavow any such authority on the part of his commissioners, yet it is perfectly clear that this commission was created by him and sent into Mexico, based upon the propositions which "the lawyer Robinson" bore from Santa Anna, and no other.*
Yet these are the men of whom President Houston  caused a part to be murdered, and others to starve, by violently withholding from them the bread which the representatives of their countrymen liberally voted them, while he, in open violation of the Constitution, dipped his hand into the public chest, and furnished his commissioners means to go to Mexico to acknowledge that we were no longer a sovereign nation, but "the Department of Texas." (See Appendix No. VI.)
On the 25th of March, 1844, precisely one year from the date of the bloody black-bean lottery, the following sixteen of our Mier prisoners made their escape from Perote, out of the same cell from which we escaped on the 2d of July previously: A. B. Laforge, Cyrus K. Gleason, John Johnson, Edward Kean, Richard Kean, Wiley Jones, William Moore, T. Smith, E. D. Wright, Francis Arthur, John Toops, William T. Runyan, John Tanney, William H. Frensley, Stephen Goodman, and William Wynn. The first-named nine succeeded in reaching Texas, and the remaining seven were recaptured and carried back to prison.
An account of this escape is the best commentary upon the character of our people. Their daring is only equalled by their never-tiring perseverance, and their capability to overcome the most appalling emergency.
From the time of our escape in July, the officers were constantly upon the qui vive. They would a  dozen times per day enter the cells of our men, and examine the walls with the most minute care, not thinking it possible that there could be any other mode of escape. In this they were much mistaken. During that terrible malady of hard work and starvation which swept off so many of our men, the governor granted the survivors permission to cover their pavement floor with heavy boards, being softer to sleep upon than stones.6 They then conceived the plan of sinking a perpendicular shaft through the pavement of their
* Vide Correspondence upon this subject between Santa Anna, his minister of War and Marine, Tornel, and the Honourable Mr. Doyle, the British minister in Mexico. Appendix No. III.