The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 35, July 1931 - April, 1932 Page: 244
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
recede any but that which had been ceded to her, because to do this
only did she obligate herself." And the United States obtained
only what Spain receded to France.
The result of the investigation, which extended over more than
three years, was a report of a million words, four large volumes.
Pichardo divided the report into four parts. Part I is devoted to
proof that all of the continent of North America belonged to Spain
by right of discovery and that France consequently had no just
title to the portion of the Mississippi Valley that it claimed.
Part II describes Louisiana and identifies it with the territory
explored by De Soto and Coronado west of the Mississippi-which,
of course, he concludes belonged to Spain. Part III is designed
to show that the king of Spain acquiesced in the French occupation
of the Mississippi Valley and the north coast of the Gulf of Mexico
solely "to avoid wars and shedding of human blood." Nevertheless,
he did acquiesce; therefore the boundaries of the acknowledged
French occupation are established. Part IV refutes objections to
the boundaries which Pichardo's studies led him to set up. Only
Part I and the first half of Part II are included in this volume.
Fundamentally Spain's title to America according to Pichardo,
rested on the Columbian discovery and the Pope's Bull dividing
all the new lands between Spain and Portugal. Even lack of occu-
pation by Spain-which he does not admit-could not invalidate
this title. Therefore neither France nor any other nation had a
just right to thrust its colonies into the territory. The task of
Part I is to prove that Spain was no laggard in exploring and
settling the southern and western parts of North America.
Pichardo cites, and quotes extensively from, narratives of French,
English, and Spanish explorers, but especially from the Spanish.
His work is therefore a veritable library of exploration, briefed
to suit his argument. From the point of view of the general
student it may be regretted that the plan did not extend to a com-
pilation of the complete narratives, but, an editor who runs his
extracts to 2,500 printed pages can hardly be accused of undue
In the burdensome labor of translation--some of it from very
intricate and technical Spanish-Professor Hackett was assisted
by two of his graduate students, Miss Charmion Clair Shelby and
Miss Mary Ruth Splawn. The editing is his own valuable con-
tribution to the work. It leaves nothing to be desired, and may
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 35, July 1931 - April, 1932, periodical, 1932; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101092/m1/248/: accessed June 23, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.