The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 10, July 1906 - April, 1907 Page: 46
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Texas Historical Association Quarterly.
ander Spanish domination, it was not then the duty of France
to liberate it. An attempt to revolutionize and take possession
of Louisiana alone, offered a prospect of immediate success and a
safe point of departure for future incursions into Mexico and
neighboring Spanish territory.'
To influence the Brissot faction in behalf of revolutionizing
Louisiana, there appeared in Paris in 1792 and early in the fol-
lowing year, a series of memoirs describing that province and its
population, and its possible future relations both to France and the
United States. Prominent among these papers was a proposal by
George Rogers Clark,2 doubly resentful because of the rejection by
the State of Virginia of his last application in behalf of his just
claims. He represented the spirit of the West as aroused to fury
against Spain because -of the closure of the Mississippi, and
scarcely less hostile towards the Union because of fancied indiffer-
ence or actual neglect. Clark's proposal was backed by his son-
in-law, James O'Fallon, through whose instrumentality it reached
Thomas Paine at Paris. The latter was then a recently naturalized
French citizen, enjoying the confidence of Brissot, Lebrun, and
others of their associates. With these the offer of Clark, in view
of his former reputation and supposed popularity, was evidently of
weight in strengthening their determination to confine their pres-
ent effort to Louisiana.
Both before and after Clark many others3 presented papers of
similar tenor. Among these authors we may mention Gilbert Im-
lay, Revolutionary soldier, traveler, and writer; Stephen Sayre, a
Princeton graduate who successively became banker and sheriff in
London, and, after his failure in that city, an attach of Franklin
.and of Arthur Lee; Pierre Lyonnet, a French Creole, formerly a
resident of New Orleans; Beaupoils, a French officer who had for-
merly served in Poland; and Joel Barlow, American poet and diplo-
mat, who, like Paine, had recently become a French citizen.
Most of these proposals have in view the immediate revolution-
izing of Louisiana alone, although Sayre and Beaupoils4 include
'American Historical Review, III 653-656; Report of the American His-
-torical Association, 1896, 1, 945-946
'Report of the American Historical Association, 1908, II, 199,-note.
For these plans, cf. American Historical Review, III, 491-510; 659, 660.
.Ibid., III 661, 662.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 10, July 1906 - April, 1907, periodical, 1907; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101040/m1/54/: accessed September 20, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.