The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 17, July 1913 - April, 1914 Page: 18
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The Southwestern Historical Quarterly
Fortunately for Spain her frontier officers possessed greater
knowledge of her rights in the disputed territory and a greater
determination to secure them, although they did not always work
harmoniously to that end. When, in October, 1802, Governor
Manuel de Salcedo received from his home government the order
to transfer the province of Louisiana to the French representa-
tive, he immediately discovered many dubious points in his instruc-
tions, upon which he sought more explicit information. Among
these was the indefiniteness of the article in the Treaty of San
Ildefonso regarding limits which led him to emphasize the neces-
sity for fixing the boundary between Louisiana and the Interior
Provinces, so as to avoid any further trouble. There should be no
difficulty in doing this, if they took advantage of the rivers which
abounded in that region. In his view it was especially important
to fix the limits in Upper Louisiana, where the English were at-
tempting to approach the Interior Provinces by way of the Mis-
souri. The home authorities agreed with him in the necessity for
promptness in this measure and appointed him and the Marqu6s
de Casa Calvo, who possessed considerable knowledge of the country
based on personal observation, as commissioners to carry on a
joint survey with the French. Jos6 Martinez was associated with
them as chief engineer. Shortly afterwards the joint commission-
ers requested Nimecio Salcedo to give them all the information he
possessed in regard to the limits of Texas with the neighboring
A few days before the transfer of Louisiana to the United States,
Governor Manuel Salcedo submitted some "observations" in which
he emphasized the rights of Spain, based upon the establishment at
A daes, and claimed that the French had remained at Natchitoches
only because of Spanish sufferance. He stated that the French
fort, situated upon the right bank of the Red ("Colorado") was
taken as the starting point in running the line between the two
claimants and that this line was to be drawn due south to the
sea and north to the Red, which was to continue as the limit to its
source. Later the French were permitted to remove their fort still
further to the westward, and the "Bayou del laurel" from its con-
fluence with the Red to its source was made the boundary; thence
28Robertson, Nos. 4874 and 4896. Mississippi Archives. Casa Calvo and
Manuel de Salcedo to Nimeeio de Salcedo, July 8, 1803. Archivo General
de Indias, Papeles procedentes de la Isla de Cuba, Legajo 185.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 17, July 1913 - April, 1914, periodical, 1914; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101061/m1/22/: accessed March 29, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.