French spanish conflict/war
French and Spanish Conflict/War: In December 1718 war was declared by France, under the regent duke of Orleans, against Spain. The news reached the French colony of Louisiana in the spring of the next year, when hostilities to a limited extent were carried on between the French and Spanish settlements in Texas. The French government had anticipated this, by sending out the previous year some recruits for the stations and settlements. One hundred and forty-eight had been apportioned to Natchitoches, which, before then, had but a small guard. On the receipt of the news of the declaration of war the French immediately proceeded with such force as they could raise at Natchitoches, under the command of La Harpe and St. Denis; and driving before them the Spaniards at Adaes, Orquizaco, Aes, and Nacogdoches, pursued them to the post of Bexar. In the meantime the marquis de Aguayo governor-general of New Estremadura and the New Philippines, offered his services and purse to the viceroy to repel the French. He collected a mounted force of five hundred men, and set out on his march; but the French had retreated and when he arrived at Adaes they were safely in their quarters at Natchitoches. De Aguayo brought with him the parties composing three of the missions that had retreated before the French which He reestablished—namely Orquizaco, Adaes, and Aes —leaving a force at the garrison of Nuestra Senora del Pilar, seven leagues from Natchitoches, for their protection. The marquis then returned to San Antonio, and Captain Don Ramon, his second in command, to the presidio of the Rio Grande. De Aguayo engaged in the improvement of San Antonio, and laid down plans for durable missions. In the meantime, the viceroy Valero appointed Don Martin d'Alarconne, knight of the order of St. Jago, governor of Texas. He entered upon his duties in 1718. The missionaries complained to him after the return of De Aguayo that there were not sufficient troops; and that the government ofTexas was in every way badly provided. Alarconne with a view to mend matters demanded one hundred and seventy-five additional soldiers together with money and implements. It seems that it was during this war and after the return of the French expedition to Bexar that La Harpe was relieved by St. Denis from the command of the post of Natchitoches and sent into the interior of Texas—not so much, perhaps, for the purpose of establishing commercial relations with the Spaniards, as the building up of new settlements, and stirring up the Indians against the Spaniards. La Harpe took post among the Nassonites and sent a polite message to D'Alarconne. He received a reply from the marquis stating his willingness to be on good terms with the French of Louisiana but expressing his surprise that La Harpe should be at the Nassonite village as that territory depended upon New Mexico. La Harpe rejoined urging the claims of the French to the territory by reason of previous discovery and possession. Nothing further was done by D'Alarconne in defending the Spanish claim; but his demand for more men, money, and implements, being refused, he resigned his office and retired.