The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 27, July 1923 - April, 1924 Page: 23
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The Negotiation of the Gadsden Treaty
ment, Santa Anna asserted that the government of the United
States, "with knife in hand, was attempting to cut another piece
from the body it had just mutilated"; and that "an American
division was already treading upon the State of Chihuahua." He
then proceeded to describe the diplomatic conferences in detail.
Although in the first account Santa Anna had said that Gadsden
made proposals regarding "Baja California, part of Chihuahua
and Sonora," in the later version he added Sinaloa and part of
Durango. He remarked here, also, that Gadsden's threat to the
effect that his government would resort to force in case Mexico
should persist in refusing to part with territory, was made at a
moment when the envoy was angry because of the pertinacity with
which the Mexican negotiators supported their contentions.20
It will be noted that, according to this view, Gadsden is accused
of bluster and intimidation and the government of the United
States is charged (1) with the occupation of the territory in dis-
pute prior to Santa Anna's decision to sell it, and (2) with the
concentration of troops on the Rio Grande for the purpose of in-
timidating Mexico into a territorial cession. The accusation
against Gadsden, as will appear from the foregoing analysis of
his correspondence, is essentially true. The first charge preferred
against the United States, however, is false. Reference has been
made elsewhere21 to the fact that, in the spring of 1853, Marcy
notified the Mexican government that the United States had no
idea of departing from the status quo principle usually observed
in such disputes. It has been seen, also, that the region in ques-
tion had not been occupied before Governor Lane's removal from
office; that Governor Meriwether was instructed not to take any
steps toward occupying the territory, even if upon his arrival he
should find Mexican troops on the ground; and that General Gar-
land, who superseded General Sumner as commander of the forces
20I have published a translation of Santa Anna's statements in The
Southwestern Historical Quarterly, XXIV (January, 1921), 235ff.
This version of the Gadsden Treaty has been accepted by the leading
historians of Mexico. See, for instance, Vicente Riva Palacio, Mxico a
travel de los Siglos, IV, 812, 916; Niceto de Zamacois, Historia de Mejico,
XIII, 663, 916; Francisco de Paula de Arrangois y Berzhbai, Mexico
desde 1808 hasta 1867, II, 334; Ignacio Alvarez, Estudios sobre la His-
toria de Mexico, VI, 75-76.
21See "The Boundary of New Mexico and the Gadsden Treaty," in The
Hispanic American Historical Review, IV (Nov., 1921), 732.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 27, July 1923 - April, 1924, periodical, 1924; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101086/m1/29/: accessed April 28, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.