The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 14, July 1910 - April, 1911

The Last IHoe of the Confederacy.

THE LAST HOPE OF THE CONFEDERACY-JOHN TYLER
TO THE GOVERNOR AND AUTHORITIES OF TEXAS
WITH AN INTRODUCTION BY CHARLES W. RAMSDELL
In the last days of the summer of 1863 Major John Tyler, son
of an ex-President of the United States, and at that time an aid
on the staff of General Sterling Price, C. S. A., was making the
slow and toilsome journey from his headquarters at Arkadelphia,
Arkansas, to Austin, Texas. This had been a disastrous summer
for the Confederacy. At Gettysburg General Lee had been thrust
back and put a second time upon the defensive in Virginia; Vicks-
burg had been lost, the Mississippi had been seized by the Federals
and the Trans-Mississippi Department cut off from Richmond. In
the Trans-Mississippi Department itself, the whole of Missouri,
nearly of Arkansas, and the most important part of Louisiana were
in the hands of the Union forces. Texas alone was untouched by
the enemy. In this desperate situation men's eyes again and again
turned anxiously to Europe for some indications of the promised
intervention in behalf of "King Cotton" that would secure them
independence. This intervention once so confidently expected had
for a brief time seemed at hand when, in the latter part of 1862,
Napoleon III had addressed notes to England and Russia suggest-
ing friendly joint offers of mediation in the American conflict;
and even when this opportunity had come to nothing through the
hesitation of England and Russia and the positive refusal of Lin-
coln and Seward to entertain the suggestion, confidence was still
high in the good intentions of the French emperor. But months
passed on, the inexorable enemy pushed his lines farther and far-
ther into Confederate territory, and Napoleon III, now busied with
Mexico, remained inactive as to mediation, though still protesting
his good will.
Some time after Major Tyler arrived at Austin he presented a
lengthy memorial to "His Excellency the Governor, the Governor-
elect, and the Authorities of the State of Texas." The essential
part of that memorial is printed below. It is an appeal for Texas
to take the initiative in demanding protection of France upon the

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Texas State Historical Association. The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 14, July 1910 - April, 1911. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101054/. Accessed July 22, 2014.