The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 18, July 1914 - April, 1915 Page: 18
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The Southwestern Historical Quarterly
THE GROWTH OF INTEREST DURING THE VAN BUREN AND TYLER
During Van Buren's administration no official action toward the
acquisition of California was attempted. The straitened condition
of the treasury precluded any idea of purchase, even had Mexico
manifested a willingness to sell; while the strained relations exist-
ing between the two nations throughout the greater part of this
period served as an equally effective barrier.1 Nevertheless the af-
fairs of the distant Mexican province were more than once brought
to the attention of the United States and interest in its resources
and ultimate destiny grew with every passing year.
Rebellion of 1836.-The first of these local events to attract
attention was the revolution begun in the fall of 1836 by several
of the prominent native Californians against the Mexican governor,
Nicolas GutiBrrez. Without great difficulty the leaders2 in this
movement accomplished their purpose, and after shipping GutiBr-
rez back to Mexico, placed one of their own number, Juan B.
Alvarado, in the governor's chairs
The success of this rebellion against Mexican authority was
significant for two reasons. In the first place it was made pos-
sible largely through the aid furnished by a company of foreigners,
1Powhatan Ellis, the American charge d'affaires to Mexico, had de-
manded his passports in December, 1836, following Mexico's failure to
adjust the claims of American citizens, and for three years the United
States was without a representative at Mexico (Reeves, Diplomacy under
Tyler and Poll, etc., 76). The chief source of difficulty between the two
nations were the recognition of Texan independence by the United States
on the one hand; -and the long continued refusal of Mexico to settle the
American claims on the other.
'The leaders in this revolution were Juan B. Alvarado, inspector of the
Monterey custom house, holder of certain civil offices and a man of great
popularity; Jose Castro, governor of California preceding Gutierrez; and
Mariano G. Vallejo, who, though taking no active part, lent the weight
of his powerful influence to the other leaders. Bancroft, XX, 445-447,
aThe authorities for the revolution of 1836 are numerous. The forego-
ing account has been taken chiefly from Bancroft, XX, 445-578; Franklin
Tuthill, The History of California, 141-145; and various works of less
importance. Full citation of all authorities on the subject are given in
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 18, July 1914 - April, 1915, periodical, 1915; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101064/m1/24/: accessed April 28, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.