The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 6, July 1902 - April, 1903 Page: 26
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26 Texas .Historical Association Quarterly.
turer, who ingratiated himself into the favor of the Spanish offi-
cials and won a Spanish bride. Others have declared vaguely that
it resulted in the laying out of the Old Presidio Road, which
became later the great highway between Texas and Mexico.
Neither class of writers has come near the truth. The real signifi-
cance of the expedition is that it determined the ownership of
Texas. The Spanish established, by the fact of actual possession,
their title to the lands east of the Rio Grande. The entrada of
Captain Ramon was followed by others till a line of missions and
presidios was established extending from the lands of the Ays and
Adays to the Rio Grande; and the western limit of Louisiana was
fixed at the Sabine. But for the menace of Saint-Denis's presence
to arouse the slow and indifferent Mexican government to action,
it is probable that the movement to occupy Texas would not have
come till much later. The French might have continued unre-
sisted their westward advance to the Neches and the Sabine, and
farther even to the Brazos and the Colorado. Texas would have
become French instead of Spanish; and, if we may venture to
speculate upon what might have happened, the whole course of his-
tory in the Southwest would have been changed. When later the
vast territory of Louisiana was transferred by France to the United
States, Texas, or a considerable part of it, would have been
included. There would have been, alas ! no Texas Revolution, and
no Mexican war. The conflict between Anglo-Saxon and Spaniard
in the Southwest would have been avoided, or would have taken an
entirely different form; and the acquisition of California would
have been indefinitely delayed. In this view the Saint-Denis expe-
dition becomes of great importance. A mere trading enterprise,
sent out as an experiment by Governor Cadillac in conformance to
the commercial policy of Antoine Crozat, is dignified into a nota-
ble historical movement, a determining factor not only in the his-
tory of Texas, but also in the course of our larger national growth.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 6, July 1902 - April, 1903, periodical, 1903; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101028/m1/30/: accessed January 20, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.