Chapter Sixteen ~ Notes
1. Guzmán is the person referred to (see note 5, Chapter XV). Samuel Maverick, one of the Bexar prisoners, also complained bitterly of his stinginess as the fort's quartermaster. In a letter addressed to José Maria de Bocanegra, the Mexican foreign minister, he demanded Guzmán's removal, accusing him of stealing funds allotted for the upkeep of the Texas prisoners. Maverick wrote: "Half the time we receive the refuse parts of the poorest beeves - all the better & fleshy portions being taken off to be eaten or sold by Guzmán himself." Maverick gave the letter to Waddy Thompson, but the U.S. minister in Mexico City did not deliver it to Bocanegra, no doubt fearing that it might delay Maverick's release. Green, ed., Samuel Maverick, Texan, 212-222.
2. Piloncillo: a cake of sugar.
3. Johann G. Andreas Voss was a San Antonio merchant.
4. The mayor de la plaza was Isidro Pombo.
5. In 1838 France dispatched a fleet to blockade the mouth of Veracruz harbor in response to riots that had resulted in the destruction of the property of French citizens living in Mexico. When France's demands for payment of claims damages went unheeded by the Mexican government, Admiral Charles Baudin opened fire on the fortress and briefly seized control of the port city. The French claimants included a baker, and the episode soon became known as the Pastry War. Delpar, ed., Encyclopedia of Latin America, 456.
6. In 1786 David Wolcot (1738-1819), writing under the pseudonym Peter Pindar, published the first canto of his poem The Lousiad, a contemporary satire based on a widely publicized incident involving George III. The British monarch had reportedly found a louse on his plate at dinner, and was so determined to rid the palace of vermin that he ordered all household servants in the palace to shave their heads. Fifty-one servants complied with the policy; one refused to do so and was dismissed.
7. George Combe was a Scottish philosopher whose book, The Constitution of Man, helped to popularize phrenology, a quack science that enjoyed enormous success in Europe and the United States in the mid-nineteenth century. The practice was based upon the belief that character and personality traits determined the size and shape of the skull. By measuring the cranium and feeling for unusual bumps, trained phrenologists offered prompt psychological profiles to customers, thereby giving rise to the phrase "having one's head examined." John Davies, Phrenology: Fad and Science, A 19th Century American Crusade.
8. In an effort to mediate the growing rift between Texas colonists and Mexican leaders, Stephen F. Austin traveled to Mexico City in 1833. Suspected of sedition, he was arrested in Saltillo as he was making his way back to Texas and returned to the capital, where he was imprisoned for eleven months. Eugene C. Barker, The Life of Stephen F. Austin, Chapter 14, passim.
9. Cuartelero: an orderly who cleans the barracks room. Green's reference to Lyons as cuartelero ocho - the inmate responsible for cleaning jail number eight - would seem to be an error. During the time Green spent at Perote, the Texans occupied cells numbered nine, ten, and eleven. Since Lyons and Green were both quartered in number eleven, Green may have intended to refer to Lyons as cuartelero onze.
10. A coin formerly in use in the Spanish territories of North America, equal in value to half a real, or six U.S. cents.
11. Green is quoting not Ovid but Juvenal. "Indeed a rare bird on this earth, as rare as is a black swan." The Satires of Juvenal, Book II, Satire 6, line 165.
12. Cameron had attracted the attention of Mexican authorities long before he led the escape at the Hacienda del Salado. Although he had drawn a white bean, his marauding activities in the