The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 13, July 1909 - April, 1910 Page: 17
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The Navy of the bRepublic of Texas.
ment had made a contract in Europe for the purchase of several
vessels of war, and that she had actually procured an armed steam
ship from a commercial house in England, with a view of making
a descent upon the coast of Texas, and of cutting off our com-
merce with foreign nations; and during the prevalence of that
opinion, the executive would have been violating the evident inm-
tention and spirit of the act of congress, instead of carrying it
into effect, had he caused the seamen already in the service to be
disbanded, and the vessels to be laid up in ordinary. Other events,
also, occurred about the same time, and conspired with these con-
siderations to dissuade me from dismantling a navy which had
been equipped at a great expense, and which was manned and
officered in a style of gallantry and efficiency inferior to. none
other of similar magnitude. Yucatan and Tabasco, lately forming
a part of the confederate states of Mexico, wearied of the oppres-
sions that followed the overthrow of the federal system in that
republic, seceded from the central government, and uniting to-
gether pronounced their determination to be free. Similarity of
circumstances and design naturally creates a sympathy of feeling,
and would prompt this government to regard with peculiar in-
terest the efforts of the citizens of the southern provinces to do
precisely what we had so recently accomplished. But considera-
tions of a higher character suggested the propriety of making a
demonstration of our naval power on the coast of the new republic.
It was expected to ascertain from the authorities established there
in what relation this government should regard them, and whether
their secession from Mexico would terminate their belligerent con-
dition towards Texas. . . . It was considered advisable to
communicate to the authorities our friendly dispositions, and to
convey them with such a palpable exhibition of our power as would
render them efficacious and permanent; and I am gratified to re-
mark that these professions were readily and kindly received, and
cordially reciprocated by the new government.
Under these various circumstances, I have considered it my
duty to keep the Navy at sea for a short period. But I was con-
strained by a sense of justice and regard to the sacred faith of
the country to abstain from making captures of Mexican property,
while our accredited agents were engaged in Mexico in a nego-
tiation for peace with that Government. The naval equipments
of a country, and especially of this country, are essentially dif-
ferent to the facility of organization from the military power.
Competent officers and soldiers to constitute an army, may at any
time be selected from the body of the population, but seamen and
efficient naval officers are not to be found among a rural people,
they belong to. the clement on which thev serve, and are nurture'l
only on the ocean waves. To have disbanded the accomplished
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Texas State Historical Association. The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 13, July 1909 - April, 1910, periodical, 1910; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101051/m1/25/: accessed June 27, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.