The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 10, July 1906 - April, 1907 Page: 64
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Texas Historical Association Quarterly.
Such an event would cause that power to unite with Great Britain
in the conquest of Louisiana and the Floridas. The Americans
would overrun New Mexico and thence extend far into Mexico it-
self.' Adet, believed, however, that France should acquire Louis-
iana, and in furtherance of his opinion sent Gen. Victor Collot,
then in America, on a military reconnaissance of the Mississippi
Valley. Collot made a thorough examination of such of its im-
portant topographical features as could be determined from a jour-
ney down the Ohio and the Mississippi, and his conclusions were
published some three decades later."
The French officer reported that the Spaniards had attempted
to close lower Louisiana to the Americans and had opened the upper
portion, in the mistaken belief that they would thus shut them off
from Santa F6. HIe suggested what Pike afterward demonstrated,
that the way of approach to New Mexico by the Missouri and its
tributaries, or by the Arkansas, was comparatively easy.3 Collot
likewise believed that the Mississippi would prove of no avail as
a barrier, if different nations possessed its opposite banks. One
nation only must dominate the whole valley. This opinion he after-
ward modified, when Louisiana passed into the control of the
United States.' The French general emphasized the friendship
which France now professed for Spain by suggesting to the Span-
ish minister a plan of defense for the entire Mississippi Valley.6
While Collot was on this tour his attention was attracted by
events in the West and in Canada, which abundantly justified the
preparation of his plan. In October, 1795, the Duke of Port-
land sent to Lieutenant-Governor Simcoe of Canada a proposal for
the invasion of Louisiana in case of hostilities with Spain, and
advised him to sound western opinion upon this subject, but with-
out compromising either his government or that of the United
States." Simcoe apparently set to work to carry out his secret in-
structions, for while Collot was on his way down the Ohio, he
1American Historical Review, X 268; Report of the American Histori-
cal Association, 1903, Vol. II, 988.
2Victor Collot, A Journey in North America, etc. (Paris, 1826).
Collott, Journey, II 35, 36, 230-245.
5American Historical Review, X 272, 577-582; Report of the American
Historical Association, 1908, II 1015.
8American Historical Review, X 273, 274, 575, 576.
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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/m1/72/: accessed March 29, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.