Page:A page of American history (1905).djvu/10

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But while the United States could not and would not interfere in the matter officially, it has been stated by those who were at the time in a position to know, that all possible aid and encouragement, short of actual and direct official aid, was given them in this their hour of need. How much or how little truth there is in this statement is not for me to say at this time, whatever I may discover and make public at a later date. Suffice it now to say that in the year 1847 a well drilled, well armed and perfectly uniformed force of nine hundred and thirty-eight men disembarked at the then port of Sisal, from sailing vessels hailing from New Orleans, and were at once ordered to Merida, where they went into barracks on the site of what is now the Suburban Police Station, at Santiago Square. From there they went, as ordered, to the front, and most of them to their death, for I am told that of the nine hundred and thirty-eight that disembarked at Sisal, only eleven lived to reach the United States.

From now on I shall quote the statements of active participants on both sides of the struggle, statements made to me personally and noted down with great care. Two of the survivors of the Americans, Edward Pinkus and Michael Foster, were yet living in Merida during my remembrance. Of these two, one, Pinkus, has since died and the other, Foster, still lives but with impaired mind, Fortunately, before the one had died and the other had lost his intelligence, I had improved a favorable opportunity and had obtained from them statements as given below.

Edward Pinkus was born, he told me, in Warsaw in 1820; he came to America at an early age and in due time became a full American citizen and an enthusiastic admirer of our American institutions. He was with General Scott throughout the Mexican war. After peace was concluded he returned to the United States, where he lived until summoned by his old officer. Col. White, of the Southern