The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 24, July 1920 - April, 1921 Page: 29
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Question of Texan Jurisdiction in New Mexico, 1848-50 29
nary circumstances, these instructions would have caused no
trouble, but owing to the fact that the Texas government was at
the time attempting to organize the region, the move for a state
government in New Mexico meant a direct conflict with the Texan
claims. But he did not hesitate long. Just three days after the
meeting was held to formulate the petition to him, he issued a
proclamation naming May 15 as the date for the desired consti-
tutional convention. to
None of his actions in connection with the question seemed
destined to receive the full approval of the various departments of
the government, however, for before the summer was over his
course was questioned from three different causes, by as many
different parties. His order of March 12, enjoining non-inter-
ference on the part of the commanders under him, brought a reso-
lution from the House of Representatives, asking the President
for an explanation. In reply, the Secretary of War referred the
members to the letters of instructions written by both himself and
his predecessor to the commanding officer at Santa F6.11 A short
time afterward, the Senate took up the matter from another angle,
and demanded of the President, information concerning the orders
which had authorized Colonel Munroe to oppose or prevent the
exercise of Texan jurisdiction over the Santa F3 region. Aside
from Munroe's mistake of December 28, which had by this time
been corrected by the order of March 12, this was a deliberate dis-
regard for the actual happenings. President Taylor answered that
no such orders had been given, and submitted to the Senate the
correspondence in connection with Van Horne's inquiry of Sep-
tember 23. lIe then brought up the question of the activity of
Neighbors in the New Mexico region, and stated that although
he had "no power to decide the question of boundary, and no
desire to interfere with it," he believed that the territory in ques-
tion was actually acquired by the United States from Mexico, and
had since been held by the United States. For this reason, it
was his opinion that it "ought so to remain until the question of
boundary shall have been determined by some competent author-
ity.''"2 And he had stated earlier what he deemed this compe-
tent authority to be. This meant another step in the adminis-
IoSen. Ex. Doe. 60, Part II, 31st Cong., 1st sess. (Ser. no. 561), p. 2.
"1House Ex. Doec. 65, 31st Cong., 1st sess. (Ser. no. 577), p. 1.
"'1en. Ex. Doe. 56, 31st Cong., 1st seas. (Ser. no. 561), p. 1.
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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/m1/35/: accessed December 11, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.