The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 62, July 1958 - April, 1959 Page: 166
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
federal aid in the furtherance of this grandiose aim. The plan
was echoed at every southern railroad convention.
If the southwestern railroad represented both local and
sectional aspirations, the whole question of the Mexican boun-
dary and the railroad was also directly related to the national
interest. For at that time, the southern route along the thirty-
second parallel had been pronounced by the topographical engi-
neers as the only practical route across the continent. Hence, it
was the only way of supplying and defending not only the South-
west, but the riches of California as well.
Thus the Mexican boundary controversy had important mean-
ing for the destiny of the North, the South, and the West; for
Texas, the South as a section, and for the whole United States.
To follow the twists and turns of the diplomatic maneuvers is to
notice the ways in which a federal decision both influenced and
was influenced by the "Manifest Destiny" of the factions involved.
On February 2, 1848, Nicholas P. Trist put signature to his
masterpiece, the treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, and thus brought
an end to the war with Mexico. The section of the treaty which
described the boundary between the two republics was Article
V. It had undergone the most extensive revisions as both coun-
tries argued over the exact extent of the territory to be ceded by
Mexico to the United States. With the transfer of such a vast
domain, including California, New Mexico, and part of Texas,
a difference in minutes of latitude might almost have seemed
irrelevant, except that a number of localities of strategic impor-
tance were located near the boundaries. The port of San Diego
lay somewhere near the southern extreme of upper California,
and it was important to the United States to insure that it would
be north of the proposed border. An outlet to the Gulf of Cali-
fornia was also desirable in order to prevent a possible recurrence
on the Colorado River of a deposit dispute of the kind that had
occurred on the Mississippi. "The town called Paso" must remain
Mexican since it was the northern outpost of the state of Chi-
huahua which would not consent to any treaty that ceded one
foot of its soil. Finally, behind all the deliberations lay the desire
on the part of the United States government to acquire, for
purposes of a transcontinental railroad, the southwestern route
that General Stephen W. Kearny's topographical officer, Lieu-
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 62, July 1958 - April, 1959, periodical, 1959; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101173/m1/208/: accessed July 21, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.