The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 18, July 1914 - April, 1915 Page: 21
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Early Sentiment for Annexation of California
books upon California's resources and political condition tended
to attract the attention of the outside world;15 and, finally, the
coming of John A. Sutter in 1839 and the establishment of his
fort at New Helvetia, the present site of the capital of the State,
saved the period under discussion from being by any means barren
of results for the American interests.
Neither should the reflexive influence of the events in Texas
be omitted in this connection. We have already mentioned the
revolution in 1836 and the reports that California was preparing
to follow the steps of her sister province. The American mind,
especially in the west, had never a high conception of the Mexican
people; the ease with which Texas won her independence and the
senseless atrocities of the Mexican soldiers had served to increase
this feeling to a considerable extent; and restless spirits were
already advocating a re-enactment of the scenes of Texas in
California. Immigration, however, had not furnished sufficient
Americans for carrying out such a program, but it was freely
prophesied that these would shortly come.
"To such men as the Back-settlers distance is of little moment,"
wrote Alexander Forbes in 1838,
and they are already acquainted with the route. The north
American tide of population must roll on southward, and over-
whelm not only California but other more important states. This
latter event, however, is in the womb of time; but the invasion
of California by American settlers is daily talked of; and if
Santa Anna had prevailed against Texas a portion of its inhab-
itants sufficient to overrun California would now have been its
The Graham affair.-So common had become these rumors by
1840 that in April of that year nearly a hundred" English and
1"The most representative books of this period were Dana's Two Years
before the Mast, and Alexander Forbes's California: A history of Upper
and Lower California (London. Smith, Elder and Company. 1839).
For a review of this latter work and the interest it aroused see Niles'
Register, LVIII, 70. Numerous other books were written by travelers
who visited California during this period, but as they were not published
until later no mention is made of them in this place.
0Forbes, History of California, 152.
"Larkin to Secretary of State, April 20, 1844-one hundred arrested;
fifty sent in irons to San Blas, thence overland to Tepic. Larkin, Official
Correspondence, Pt. II, No. 6.
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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/m1/27/: accessed November 19, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.