This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
He returned in 1821 and settled near San Antonio, where he married a Mexican widow, Guadalupe Ruiz Durán, in 1822. The couple had four children, three of whom, all daughters, survived to adulthood. In the fall of 1825 Smith and five other men settled on the claim of James Kerr, the surveyor for the new colony of Green DeWitt, about one mile west of the site of present Gonzales. Slide One of the first to join the Texas Republican Army in Gonzalez, his contributions as a spy, scout, and solider would influence the Battle of Concepcion, the renowned Grass Fight, and the Battle of San Jacinto. He would also be the man who General Houston trusted to confirm the fall of the Alamo. Smith has been acclaimed as both the ³eyes and ears´ of the Texas Army. Unfortunately, for the man that proved to be two of Texas¶s most vital organs, her eyes and ears, he was both going blind and deaf. Hence, history remembers Erastus by the name of ³Deaf Smith´ Slide
During his first few years in Texas, Smith·s knowledge of the Anglo, Hispanic culture and the land that Texas possessed became immense. His well known scouting abilities caused the Texas Republic to greatly desire his service. This was because many of the men serving in the Texas Army were Americans that had no experience or understanding of Texas·s terrain. Although he was reluctant at first to choose sides and wished to remain neutral, he was quickly recruited into the Texas Army. lthough his loyalties were apparently divided at the outbreak of the Texas
Revolution, when a Mexican sentry refused to allow him to enter San Antonio to visit his family, Smith joined Stephen F. Austin's army, which was then besieging the town.
One of the first well known heroic stories of Smith was during the siege of San Antonio. The Texas Army was becoming weary and tired of waiting for their chance to take San Antonio³so tired of waiting for a battle that their numbers began to dwindle away. One group of scouts had been sent out to find the location of Mexican General Ugartachea. Unsuccessful, they returned back to the siege leaving Deaf Smith behind. A few hours later, Deaf Smith returned with news that he believed he might have spotted Ugartachea with a group or guards bringing funds for the Mexican Army. ´Ugartachea!µ was shouted throughout the camp. Although the party Smith spotted was really a group of soldiers sent out by General Cos to collect grass for his horses, Deaf Smiths report is what sparked the legendary Grass Fight. November 26, 1835,This battle would be one of the first leading to Texas·s occupation of San Antonio and the Alamo.
On November 26 Erastus (Deaf) Smithqv rode into the Texas camp in mid-morning with information that Mexican cavalry with pack animals were approaching San Antonio. Texas soldiers wondered if the column might be carrying pay for the Mexican army. Burleson ordered James Bowie and forty cavalry to delay the Mexicans' progress. A hundred Texas infantry under William H. Jack followed Bowie to seize the supply train. The two cavalry forces of about equal size began to skirmish west of town and soon fought on foot from ravines near Alazan Creek. Cos sent about fifty infantry with an artillery piece to help oppose the Texan attack. The Texas infantry broke out of a crossfire from the two Mexican units and pushed them back. Mexican troops counterattacked four times until Texas reinforcements underJames Swisher caused them to pull back into the town. Texas losses included four wounded, while Mexican losses numbered three dead and fourteen wounded, mostly among the cavalry. When the Texans brought in forty captured pack animals they discovered their prizes carried only grass to feed army animals.
however. JUAN MARTÍN DE) at almost the same moment that Benjamin R. and I wish you would let me manage things in my own way. that it is very fatiguing on a horse to catch him. who considered him "`the Bravest of the Brave' in the cause of Texas. After allowing him to choose a group of trustworthy men." Houston reported to Thomas Jefferson Rusk. to try and spot the enemy. Smith was the discoverer and reporter of many of the most important events in the Texas Revolution³such as his conformation of the fall of the AlamoAfter regaining his health. "If living. Travis. Slide Although all of Smith·s major missions are recorded. Although his accounts were not always correct. we rarely get a glimpse of what an average day in Deaf Smith·s position would have been like. came to Houston greatly fatigued after one of his missions and asked to have a word with him. with the help of a young man. whom Governor Henry Smithqv called "well known to the army for his vigilance and meritorious acts." Smith carried Travis's letter from the Alamo on February 15." remained with the army despite his severe wounds. Houston warned Smith however that. By doing this. Smith was sent. if he did not do this speedily. If a man meets two of the enemy. Although he might have been the greatest spy in all of Texas. and is not allowed to kill either. Milam was killed at its door. they reported a large number of the enemy marching in their direction. along with all his reports. completed their mission and returned in time to take the field with Houston and the rest of the Texas Republican Army. Smith is reported to have been hurt by the boy after he had allowed him to make a fool of himself and stated that he should never assist him again. Smith would return with "the truth and all important news. One such occasion happened while Houston and the army were camped at the Brazos bottom. Houston sent him to remove and burn Vince's Bridge. this was not the only misinterpretation made by Deaf Smith. The spy stated "General. Smith and his men. to Smiths embarrassment. Sam Houston dispatched Smith and Henry Karnes back to San Antonio to learn the status of the Alamo garrison. Smith served as a messenger for William B. Smith. the other gets off so far. but in the future. Slide most famously remembered for being a heroic soldier at the Battle of San Jacinto. 1836. he would block any further aid from reaching Santa Anna at the same time as removing the enemy·s only means of escape.December 8 he was wounded on top of the Veramendi Palace (see VERAMENDI. One report that he gave to Houston. On their return. however. you are very kind to these Mexicans. gives us some insight. by the time he takes one and ties him. I like kindness. the field would be crimson before his return." Smith returned with Susanna W. being a man of few words that usually never complained. but you are too kind³you won't allow me to kill any of them. Dickinson. the supposed Mexican army was reported to be a large number of Santa Anna·s cattle. "as his services as a spy cannot well be dispensed with. On March 13 Gen. Soon. . the battle would be over. or in other words. however. It is said that Smith. and Angelina E. to do what he believed necessary." Houston politely told him to avoid cruelness." Slide However. his disabilities sometime rendered his reports faulty.
where he died at the home of Randal Jones on November 30. more brave. Is no more!!! A man. Soon thereafter he resigned from ranger service and moved to Richmond. This Texas soldier. 1931. defeated a band of Mexicans at Laredo. 1837. 1837. but his fame and his family. Sam Houston wrote to Anna Raguet (see IRION. and spy was buried in the Episcopal Churchyard were a grave marker reads ´Deaf Smith. His soul is with God.µ Slide On hearing of his death. and honest never. R. paid for by the Forty-first Legislature. .). ANNA W. "My Friend Deaf Smith. Deaf Smith County is named in his honor. the Texas Spy. was unveiled at his grave in Richmond on January 25. scout. and my stay in darkest hour. lived. must command the care of His Country!" A monument in Smith's honor.Slide He resigned his commission in the army but raised and commanded a company of Texas Rangersqvthat on February 17.