The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 24, July 1920 - April, 1921 Page: 16
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The Southwestern Historical Quarterly
absolving him from the responsibility of rendering sustenance to
Texas, was a relief for him, even though he was to maintain a
During the summer of 1849 the movement to secure a civil gov-
ernment in New Mexico was renewed, and in September, in answer
to a call issued by Lieutenant-Colonel Benjamin L. Beall, who was
acting governor in the absence of Colonel Washington, a convention
met at Santa Fe to draw up a new petition to Congress. Beall
made this call as a result of a series of resolutions drawn up on
August 22, and presented to him by a group of Americans,"6 and
on September 10, each of the seven counties of New Mexico"5
named delegates who were to meet on September 24. A consid-
erable faction of the population, led by the military officers, was
in favor of establishing a state government, but to this the civil
officials were opposed, and here the influence of the instructions
from the War Department was felt. The advocates of state gov-
ernment feared that the raising of the question at this time might
bring a recognition of the Texan claims, and in order to decrease
the probability of a forced connection with that state they were
willing to postpone action.s
This convention, therefore, declared itself in favor of a terri-
torial, rather than a state form of government, drew up a terri-
torial code of laws, and elected Hugh N. Smith, a Texan, as dele-
gate to Congress, with instructions to secure some sort of Congres-
sional action. The members voted that the division of counties
should not be changed except by action of their own legislature.
But their definition of the boundaries of the territory is signifi-
cant. A resolution was passed instructing the delegate to Con-
gress to define the territory as bounded on the north by the Indian
"Accounts of these proceedings were copied from the Santa Fe Repub-
lican by Baird, and enclosed with Baird to Miller, October 20, 1849;
in Santa F+ Papers, Texas State Library.
'1By a decree issued July 17, 1844, the department of New Mexico had
been divided into the counties of Bernalillo, Rio Arriba, San Miguel,
Santa Ana, Santa Fe, Taos, and Valencia, all of which included territory
on both sides of the Rio Grande. Sen. Ex. Doe. 41, 30th Cong., 1st sess.
(Ser. no. 505), p. 478; also Bancroft, History of Arizona and New
Mexico, 311-312. In the Bancroft Collectio~, University of California,
is a "Map of New Mexico vith Pueblos as noted by Calhoun, 1850."
which shows the boundaries of these counties as conceived by James S.
Calhoun, the United States Indian agent in New Mexico.
"Calhoun to Brown, Iovenmber 2, 1849, in Abel (editor), Official Cor-
respondence of James S. Calhoun, 70.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 24, July 1920 - April, 1921, periodical, 1921; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101078/m1/22/: accessed August 21, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.