Lawyer and soldier. He grew up in South Carolina and Alabama, studied law privately, and was admitted to the bar before he turned 20. Migrating to Texas in the early 1830s, he became active in the movement agitating for independence from Mexico. In 1835 he led a small band of Texans in open revolt; in early 1836 Mexican forces besieged his little command inside the Alamo fortress. The Alamo fell on March 6, 1836, and all its defenders, including Travis, were killed. DS, in Spanish, signed 'W. Barret Travis, Lt. Col. Comdt,' one page, 7.75 x 6.5, February 23, 1836. Travis receives supplies to withstand the Mexican Army siege at the Alamo. Translated, in full, 'I received from the citizen Ignacio Perez 30 calves for the consumption of this garrison that will be paid for in the form of four hundred thirteen pesos by the provisional government of Texas as soon as it has the money.' Boldly signed at the conclusion of the receipt by Travis. Below Travis' signature, Ignacio Perez writes, in Spanish, 'I will willingly give to commander Travis the quantity (of calves) and will be reimbursed by the aforementioned sum by September of the year 1836.' In fine condition, with a light overall shade of toning to page, with a couple heavier spots, bisecting folds, some light pooling of ink to Perez's portion of page and a nice bold Travis signature. After losing San Antonio to the Texans during the Siege of Bexar, Mexican General Santa Anna determined to retake this key location and at the same time impress upon the Texans the futility of further resistance to Mexican rule. With these goals, the vanguard of Santa Anna's army arrived in San Antonio about 23 February 1836. Some 145 Texans in the area took refuge in the fortified grounds of an old mission known as the Alamo, under the joint command of William B. Travis (for the regular army) and Jim Bowie (for the volunteers). Over the following two weeks, the Mexican forces continually strengthened to over 2000 troops. During the same period, a few reinforcements for the Texans answered Travis' famous Appeal for Aid and managed to penetrate enemy lines and enter the Alamo grounds, bringing the total strength of the defenders to about 189 men. After periodic bombardment, the siege ended on the morning of 6 March when the Mexicans storm the Alamo fortress. During the battle, all of the Texan defenders were killed. Several non-combatants were spared, including Susanna Dickenson, the wife of one of the defenders, Susanna's baby, and a servant of Travis. Partly to reinforce his goal of terrorizing colonists in Texas, Santa Anna released this small party to inform Texans of the fate of the defenders. Travis is rare in all forms, and very few have ever surfaced at auction. COA John Reznikoff/PSA/DNA and RRAuction COA.
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