The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 57, July 1953 - April, 1954 Page: 83
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The Monetary History of the Republic of Texas
funds to operate the government but faced a public debt estimated
at $1,250,000,a which amount represented the cost of the War
of Independence and the expenses of the provisional government.
The first general appropriation bill of Congress carried $150,000
for civil purposes alone, but because of the failure of the govern-
ment's agents to sell only a small amount of land scrip or to
negotiate a loan in the United States, the officers of the govern-
ment went without their salaries for the first year.
Evidence of payment, however, was made in the nature of
audited vouchers dated at Columbia and drawn on the treasurer
of the Republic of Texas.b As the government of Texas was
without funds with which to pay these drafts, it became necessary
to issue treasury notes; thus the government became its own
The first issue of notes, dated at the city of Houston and drawn
on the treasurer of the Republic of Texas, was authorized by the
Act of June 9, 1837, and were io per cent interest notes, payable
in twelve months from date, of which $514,510, in denomina-
tions from $5.00 to $1oo.oo, had been issued by January 15, 1838.
The notes were type-set and were called Star Money because of
a five-pointed star printed in the center of the notes. They were
signed by Secretary of the Treasury Henry Smith and by Pres-
ident Houston. Houston, however, because he was suffering from
a wound received at the battle of San Jacinto, sought to be re-
lieved from so much writing; therefore, Congress passed a joint
resolution on October 23, authorizing William G. Cooke to sign
the notes for him. Practically all of the notes with Houston's
signature are in the handwriting of Cooke.e
A second issue of to per cent interest notes inscribed "The
Government of Texas, Promises to pay to the Bearer, at the
aOf this amount there was due for loans, $100,000; on account of the navy,
$112,000; to the army, $412,000; for supplies, $450,000; and for civil and contingent
expenses, $118,000. The remaining $60,000 was not itemized in the estimate of
public debt, dated August 26, 1836.-Eugene C. Baker, The Finances of the Texas
Revolution (Boston, 1904; reprinted from Political Science Quarterly, XIX, 4), 639.
bThe report of the secretary of treasury made on November 30, 1837, shows that
up to November 17 the audited claims amounted to $1,126,808.44, made up as
follows: military, $903,720.85; civil, $142,902.59; naval, $56,850.65; and contingent,
$23,334.35.-William M. Gouge, The Fiscal History of Texas (Philadelphia, 1852), 73.
cWilliam A. Philpott, Jr., "Paper Money of the Republic of Texas," The
Numismatist, XLII, 725.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 57, July 1953 - April, 1954, periodical, 1954; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101152/m1/101/: accessed June 22, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.