William Corner.

San Antonio de Bexar; a guide and history online

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and declared that there exists no other superior decree that might act in the
favor either of the settlers or the " five towns of the Missions," he accordingly-
issues an ordinance requesting the neighbors and those who may wish to con-
tri1)ute to the taking of the water, to enlist themselves forthwith, contributing
every one any and " necessary utensils," and the Baron promises that the
partition of the lands " will be made with the due equit}- of chance." He insists
that the person who may take charge of the work must possess intelligence and
experience ; the election of the Acequiero to be decided by a plurality of votes
among the shareholders. The Acequiero elected shall be entitled to an extra
portion or suerte of land, but he shall furnish two additional men. The Gov-
ernor then makes in his decree, numerous suggestions concerning the construction
of the ditch, as to its protection from cattle by the planting of nopal trees
(prickly pears) or other thorny bushes, and saj-s that the water gates must have
stone and mortar foundations and suggests other sensible precautions concerning
the width, depth and general completeness of the work to be done. He is very
thorough, but withal indulgent, and he says that all the persons engaged in the
construction may suggest any opinion that may contribute to the convenience
and benefit of all, so that everything (he loves peace — this good Governor) may
move smoothly and peaceably, for the end, he says, " of the respectable laws of
his Catholic Majesty, is to avoid in his dominions all kinds of discords amongst
his subjects." And in order that this important decree may be made known and
promptly executed, " I have ordered its publication, after holding High Mass, at
the beating of the drum at the door of the Court House, as customary."

In the meanwhile, we may surmise that things went along smoothly for
a while, for nothing more is heard of the Upper Labor Ditch and its construction
until Ji:ly l


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Online LibraryWilliam CornerSan Antonio de Bexar; a guide and history → online text (page 8 of 22)