The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 25, July 1921 - April, 1922 Page: 21
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Annexation of Texas and the Mississippi Democrats 21
servile horde cry, 'Vive le roi,'--but his election spells ruin for
Radical in the extreme were the Southern Reformer and the
Jeffersonian. The former journal declared the rejection of the
treaty "an audacious outrage upon the rights of a free people.
The South indignantly calls upon the foul traitors who
have despised and vilified her authority to resign their seats."
The action of South Carolina in threatening disunion was con-
doned by the Jeffersonian: for the existence of such threats "our
northern taskmasters must shoulder the responsibility." "Our
Federal Union-it must be preserved; if it must be sacrificed,
let the fair fields of the South be the theatre, where the last strug-
gle shall be made."9
The question may naturally be asked, What evidence is there
that such arguments as were urged by the public prints of the
state and by such men as Huston and Quitman for immediate an-
nexation were decisive in influencing to any marked degree public
sentiment? In other words, were those voters who turned the
scale in favor of Polk and Dallas influenced by the danger to south-
ern institutions rather than by any other issue of the campaign?
So far as reflecting voters are concerned it would seem that the
very vehemence with which Democratic journals and the more
radical advocates of annexation depicted the dire consequences that
would ensue in the event of Clay's election would cause their ar-
guments to be dismissed as mere campaign gusto. On the other
hand it is not difficult to believe that in the mind of many a voter
the question would naturally arise, "Suppose after all a real dan-
ger does confront the South ?" Few would stop to think that the
election of Polk did not necessarily imply the immediate annex-
ation of Texas, and a ballot cast for the Democratic nominees
would register a protest against the unholy designs of England
"Holly Springs Guard. Apr. 3, May 15, 29, July 10, 1844; Jan. 15, 22,
Mch. 19, 1845. Cf. Smith, Annexation of Texas, 307: "Clay appeared
cold, timid, and anti-Southern compared with Polk."
"Jeffersonian, Aug. 1, 15, 1844; Mch. 1, 1845. The Radical Democrat,
Oxford Observer, Yazoo Democrat, and Ripley Advertiser all urged that
annexation would strengthen the political power of the slaveholding
states; this was the first great desideratum, while the usual train of
advantages were set forth which it was held would accrue in consequence
of incorporating Texas within the Union. Radical Democrat, July 27,
Aug. 10, 27, 1844; Oxford Observer, Aug. 10, 1844; Yazoo Democrat,
Nov. 12, 1844; Dec. 10, 1845; Ripley Advertiser, Feb. 22, 1845.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 25, July 1921 - April, 1922, periodical, 1922; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101082/m1/27/: accessed September 23, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.