96 Texas Historical Association Quarterly.
ENDURING LAWS OF THE REPUBLIC OF TEXAS. I.
C. W. RAINES.
The intermingling of two distinct races on the soil of Texas,
with diverse customs and traditions of law, resulted in the mastery
of one, but with a blended system of jurisprudence. The two acts
cited further along, and forming, in fact, the subject of this paper,
well illustrate the spirit of the times when men's minds, just break-
ing loose from the moorings of a barbaric past, were looking for-
ward to something liberal and ennobling in law-making. And
passed as they were amid the throes of a life and death struggle
for existence, they reflect more honor on the Republic than the,
splendid campaigns of Bexar and San Jacinto. "Peace hath her
victories no less renowned than war." "There were giants in those
days," and bold, far-seeing statesmen, too, to legislate for humanity
in all times to come, with the enemy at the gates.
Texas was warring with hostile Indians in the interior and men-
aced with a Mexican invasion in the west, when Mirabeau B.
Lamar entered upon his duties as president. His message to the
Congress, breathing a spirit of defiance to all the enemies of the,
Republic, with words of cheer to his countrymen, touching all sub-
jects of public interest, calm and statesmanlike in tone, embraced
in its scope an earnest recommendation to provide a system of
Among other things, the president says: "But it would be su-
perfluous to offer to this honorable Congress any extended argument
to enforce the practical importance of this subject. I feel fully as-
sured that it will in the liberal spirit of improvement that pervades
the social world, lose not the present auspicious opportunity to
provide for literary institutions, with an influence commensurate
with our future destinies. * * * Our young Republic has been
framed by a Spartan spirit. Let it progress and ripen into Roman
firmness and Athenian gracefulness and wisdom. * * * The
present is a propitious moment to lay the foundation of a great
moral and intellectual edifice which will in after ages be hailed
Texas State Historical Association. The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 1, July 1897 - April, 1898. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101009/. Accessed May 27, 2015.