Note 1. Howard County, Mo., Circuit Court Book 2, p. 511.
Note 2. Howard County, Mo., Circuit Court Book 2, p. 531.
Note 3. Indictment, July 1824, State v. William Becknell, Cooper County, Mo., Circuit Court Case Files, Box 3, Folder 16 (Microfilm C36911), Missouri State Archives. The indictment is also noted in Cooper County, Mo., Circuit Court Book 2, p. 233.
Note 4. State v. William Becknell, Cooper County, Mo., Circuit Court Case Files, Box 3, Folder 16 (Microfilm C36911), Missouri State Archives.
Note 5. Mary Becknell to Abiel Leonard, May 28, 1826, Abiel Leonard Papers (C1013), The State Historical Society of Missouri Manuscript Collection.
Note 6. Henry E. Dever and James Bradley, execs. v. William Becknell, Howard County, Mo., Circuit Court Book 3, pp. 258, 310, 366-67. No case file has been found, and the order book entries show only that the case was filed by the February 1826 court term, and the plaintiffs were awarded their costs in March 1827.
Note 7. Alphonso Wetmore to Congressman John Scott, Aug. 19, 1824, Petition of Sundry Inhabitants of the State of Missouri, upon the Subject of a Communication Between the Said State and the Internal Provinces of Mexico with a Letter from Alphonso Wetmore Upon the Same Subject, February 14, 1825, 18th Cong., 2d Sess., Washington: Gales & Seaton, printer (1825) (republished in Augustus Storrs and Alphonso Wetmore, Santa Fe Trail, First Reports: 1825, Houston: Stagecoach Press (1960)).
Note 8. William Becknell to Gov. Bartolomé Baca, Oct. 29, 1824, William G. Ritch Collection, Huntington Library, San Marino, Calif. William Ritch (1830-1904) was territorial secretary of New Mexico from 1873 to 1885, appointed acting territorial governor in 1875, and elected the first president of the New Mexico Historical Society in 1880. The transcription of the letter is reproduced from the website of the New Mexico Office of State Historian (www.newmexicohistory.org).
Note 9. “Latest from New Mexico,” Missouri Intelligencer, Franklin, Mo. (June 11, 1825), p. 3.
Note 10. Harold L. James, “The Santa Fe Trail,” Seventeenth Field Conference, Socorro, New Mexico: New Mexico Geological Society (1966) (available online at nmgs.nmt.edu).
Note 11. George C. Sibley to Owen Simpson, May 1, 1825, published in Kate L. Gregg, ed., The Road to Santa Fe, Albuquerque, N. Mex.: University of New Mexico Press (1952), pp. 214-17.
Note 12. Archibald Gamble to (probably) George Sibley, July 16, 1825, Lindenwood College Collection, Missouri History Museum.
Note 13. Joseph Davis Diary (C1096), Vol. 2, Sept. 30, 1825-Oct. 25, 1825, The State Historical Society of Missouri Manuscript Collection, pp. 6-28. The diary was published in Kate L. Gregg, The Road to Santa Fe, Albuquerque, N. Mex.: University of New Mexico Press (1952). Becknell’s work for the Santa Fe Road Commission is also mentioned in various records of Benjamin Reeves. See Larry M. Beachum, William Becknell: Father of the Santa Fe Trade, El Paso, Tex.: Texas Western Press (1982), pp. 45-47. The documents cited by Beachum are no longer found in the materials referenced. See Abiel Leonard Papers (C1013), Folders 57, 58, 59, 64, The State Historical Society of Missouri Manuscript Collection.