The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 19, July 1915 - April, 1916 Page: 34
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The Southwestern Historical Quarterly
sovereign act of a sovereign State; that the government of the
State during the period when the question of the right to secede
was being decided by war was as much the government of the
State as that State had had before the crisis; and that the war,
while deciding the question of secession, had not decided that the
State could repudiate contracts made with her own citizens for
food, clothing, and medicines. This was a contest between Texas
and her own citizens, and, in case there had been fraud or illegal
practice, the State had recourse to her own courts. But her rep-
resentatives should not set up a plea of illegality on the part of
the de facto government which made the contract.
The same "organized political body," exercising the sovereign
power of the State, which required the indorsement of these bonds
by the governor, also passed the laws authorizing the disposal of
them without such indorsement. She cannot, like the chameleon,
assume the color of the object to which she adheres, and ask this
court to involve itself in the contradictory positions, that she is
a State in the Union and never out of it, and yet not a State at
all for four years, during which she acted and claims to be "an
organized political body," exercising all the powers and functions
of an independent sovereign State. Whether a State de facto or
de jure she is estopped in denying her own identity in disputes
with her own citizens.
The Justice refused to follow the court in declaring that for some
purposes the de facto government of Texas was legal and its acts
valid, and, for other purposes, illegal and void.
In the case of Hardenberg, he insisted that the purchase of the
bonds was bona fide and for a full consideration. He said that
the argument of the court, in granting a judgment in favor of
Texas, was as follows:
these bonds, though payable to the bearer, are redeemable four-
teen years from date. The government has exercised her privilege
of paying the interest for a term without redeeming the principal,
which gives an additional value to the bonds. Ergo, the bonds
are dishonored. Ergo, the former owner has a right to resume
the possession of them, and reclaim them from a bona fide owner
by a decree of a court of equity.
Aside from the fact that the Justice here held his brethren up
to rather severe ridicule, the statement was unimportant, since it
did not reveal a full comprehension of the issues involved. On
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 19, July 1915 - April, 1916, periodical, 1916; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101067/m1/42/: accessed December 16, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.