The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 10, July 1906 - April, 1907 Page: 72
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Texas H-istorical Association Quarterly.
Before this time the restoration of peace in Europe had led King
Charles, on October 15, 1802, to sign the order for the delivery of
the province to Napoleon, and nothing stood in the way of the
colonial empire of the latter but the insurrection of the blacks in
Santo Domingo. Despite this interruption to his plans he pro-
ceeded, through his Minister of the Marine, to give instructions
to Victor, the designated captain-general of Louisiana. In these
instructions he makes the significant claim that the western bound-
ary of Louisiana was 'the Rio Bravo as far as the 30th parallel,
and that beyond that point the boundary was wholly undecided.'
After the Santo Domingo revolt had delayed the moment of
taking possession of Louisiana, the prospect of a speedy rupture
with England,. coupled with the necessities of his ever needy mili-
tary chest, turned the dream of an American dependency stretch-
ing to the Pacific and opening a new pathway to the Orient,2 into
a bargain and sale. To the surprise of the American commission-
ers, Napoleon suddenly proffered them the whole of Louisiana.
After a few weeks of hesitation and bargaining, the Corsican's
hardly acquired possession, with its uncertain limits, passed into
the keeping of the young Republic of the West.
Diplomatic struggles, growing directly or indirectly out of the
Louisiana Purchase, were to affect our foreign relations for the
next half century, and our government was not even to enter into
possession of its disputed limits without a serious diplomatic dis-
pute between Madison and Casa Yrujo, the Spanish minister at
Washington. In considering the consequences to Spain of the un-
toward transfer, the latter did not apprehend any worse result than
clandestine trading by the Americans within the Mexican prov-
inces. This practice could be checked, if not absolutely controlled,
by Spain, as long as she possessed the power of making reprisals
from the Floridas. Louisiana in the hands of Spain had been a
constant bill of expense, with no military advantage to offset, for
it was too extended and too weakly garrisoned to prove an effective
bulwark to New Mexico and the interior provinces. On the other
'Adams, History of the United States, II 6. For a full discussion of
the real significance of these instructions upon the territorial status of
Texas, cf. article by Prof. J. R. Ficklen, in Publications of the Southern
Historical Association, V 383.
'Cf. Baudry des Lozibres, Voyages a la Louisiane, 227.
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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/m1/80/: accessed April 27, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.