Galvez Crossings On The Pecos River
GÁLVEZ CROSSINGS ON THE PECOS RIVER. The early names of two crossings on the Pecos River, Paso de Matías and Paso de Gálvez, bespeak a 1770 Apache campaign led by Bernardo de Gálvez from Chihuahua. Gálvez, who is most familiar to Texans as the Spanish viceroy for whom Galveston Bay was named, had assumed the post of Chihuahua military commandant the previous month at age twenty-four. Guided by a Spaniard who had escaped Apache captivity, Gálvez's force of 135 soldiers and 50 Opata Indian auxiliaries crossed the Rio Grande at the abandoned Presidio del Norte (present-day Ojinaga, Chihuahua) on October 21, 1770. Thence, it directed its course across the usually dry country toward the Pecos in an icy downpour. Arriving at the Pecos on November 1, the soldiers found that the Indian encampment from which their guide had escaped had been moved. Their provisions were waterlogged and spoiled.