The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 24, July 1920 - April, 1921 Page: 1
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VoL. XVT JULY, 1920 No. 1
The publication committee and the editors disclaim responsibility for views expressed by
contributors to THE QUARTERLY
THE QUESTION OF TEXAN JURISDICTION IN NEW
MEXICO UNDER THE UNITED STATES, 1848-1850
WILLIAM CAMPBELL BINKLEY
Practically every student of American history has heard of the
boundary controversy between Texas and New Mexico because of
its connection with the famous Compromise of 1850. Most of
the general histories of the United States mention the question
and its final adjustment, and it has even been intimated that had
not President Taylor died at the time he did a civil war would
have been precipitated in 1850 as a result of this issue alone. These
accounts, however, emphasize only the national phase of the sub-
ject, while the local activities of the parties interested in the con-
troversy have been left in the background. This is unfortunate,
inasmuch as these local activities played a part in shaping the
national phase of the question.
During her short life as an independent republic, Texas claimed
the Rio Grande from mouth to source as her western boundary,
and even seriously considered the possibility of extending her
jurisdiction to include the valuable bay of San Francisco. But the
boundary actually claimed meant a direct encroachment upon the
territory of the neighboring Mexican states. Since the northern
part of the territory thus claimed had long been under the juris-
diction of New Mexico, and even included the capital of that prov-
ince, the people of the region naturally resented any attempted
encroachments. As a result, the first Texan efforts at occupation
'The fullest accounts are McMaster, History of the People of the United
States, VIII, 40-41, and Schouler, History of the United States of Amer-
ica, V, 180-184.
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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/m1/7/?rotate=90: accessed February 22, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.