The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 72, July 1968 - April, 1969

Southwestern Historical Quarterly

ed and understanding treatment of Bartlett. Whereas Faulk empha-
sizes Bartlett's administrative ineptitude, Hine points out his scien-
tific and artistic contributions. These books can be profitably read
in tandem.
University of Oklahoma WALTER RUNDELL, JR.
Origins of the War With Mexico: The Polk-Stockton Intrigue. By
Glenn W. Price. Austin (University of Texas Press), 1967. Pp.
x+-189. Illustrations, map, bibliography, index. $5.00.
Origins of the War With Mexico: Polk-Stockton Intrigue is based
primarily on what the author holds to be authenticated manuscripts,
correspondence, and published documents and diaries. The book deals
in particular with the abortive efforts of Commodore Robert F. Stock-
ton, a wealthy politician-businessman who doted on naval service
interlarded with political scheming on an international level, and
his co-conspirators in 1845 to foment a war with Mexico over the
Texas issue and to secure for the United States a sizeable chunk of
Mexican-owned real estate, particularly California.
Glenn W. Price, who painstakingly reconstructs and documents
events in this new study, appears to establish beyond a reasonable
doubt that President James K. Polk was in collusion with Stockton
in the Texas intrigue. That Polk "contrived" the Mexican War of
1846-1848 to accomplish what Stockton failed to do has been sus-
pected by some historians, hinted by a few, but glossed over, ignored,
or denied by still others. Price's work should place these estimations
of the event in proper perspective. The volume fills a gap in the
literature and is a contribution toward a more precise interpretation
of facts, events, and near-happenings that led to and finally precipi-
tated the war with Mexico. President Polk comes off badly, for here
we see a seemingly mediocre President, whose tarnished reputation
had been refurbished somewhat through gentle treatment of gracious
historans of recent years, caught with his feet of clay showing; thus,
his standing in history is impugned anew.
The author has tried to carry out faithfully his declared inten-
tion of searching out information to throw a pitiless light on a series
of occurrences that for long had seemed a mite "queer." When
Price takes issue with other historians, the reader needs to be aware
that this book examines in some detail an episode in United States
history that has received but passing mention when writers have sur-

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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 72, July 1968 - April, 1969. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth117146/. Accessed August 29, 2014.