Nov 18 2014

Overview

During the Mexican administration of Texas (1821-1836), a road connected the settlement of Gonzales in the DeWitt Colony to the seat of Mexican government in San Antonio de Bejar, sixty miles to the West. Approximately 22 miles east of San Antonio, the road crossed a waterway called the Cibolo. The track of the San Antonio/Gonzales Road and the Cibolo Crossing are described in field notes of land grants and illustrated in early Texas maps.1 

Now commonly referred to as Cibolo Creek, Mexico’s cartographers called this stream the Rio Cibolo, while Republic of Texas immigrants commonly called it the “Sea Willow” or “C-willow.” From its origins near present day Boerne, to its junction with the San Antonio River in Karnes County, the Cibolo etched its course through the countryside forming the northern and eastern boundaries of modern Bexar County. Steep bluffs along its course allowed for few natural fords.

Cibolo Crossing

The Gonzales Road incorporated one such natural ford in its track through the Francisco Herrera Land Grant 2 on the west bank and the Erastus Smith Land Grant 3 on the east bank of the Cibolo. The ford is sequestered within a bowl-shaped depression surrounded by flat prairie creating a protected campsite.4 The change in elevation from the prairie to the ford is approximately 90 feet. 

Context

Descriptions of the Cibolo Crossing appear in the letters and diaries of participants of the Texas Revolution (1835-1836). It is described as a rendezvous and marshalling point for early settlers and troops. A pantheon of characters associated with the Siege of Bejar and the massacre at the Alamo crossed the Cibolo at this ford.