The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 63, July 1959 - April, 1960 Page: 224
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
net and General Antonio L6pez de Santa Anna after the defeat of
the Mexican Army at San Jacinto. The first, or the treaty of
Velasco, provided that hostilities between Mexico and Texas would
cease, and the Mexican forces would withdraw beyond the Rio
Grande. In the second, or secret agreement, Texas agreed to re-
lease Santa Anna on condition that he use his influence to secure
Mexico's recognition of Texas' independence. Santa Anna thereby
acknowledged the Rio Grande as the southern boundary of Texas.9
After the winning of independence from Mexico at the battle
of San Jacinto, the Congress of the Republic of Texas on Decem-
ber 19, 1836, asserted that its southwestern boundary was located
in the center of the principal stream of the Rio Grande.10
The Texas Boundary Act of December 19, 1836, radically
changed numerous generally accepted political boundaries in the
southwest. By claiming the Rio Grande as the southwestern
boundary, Texas asserted de facto jurisdiction over a portion of
the lands formerly embraced within the limits of New Mexico,
Chihuahua, Coahuila, and Tamaulipas. Texas thus asserted its
controversial claim to the ancient Mexican settlements lying east
of the river in the Upper Rio Grande Valley, some of which had
been in existence more than a century prior to the founding of
Mexico refused to recognize the Texas claim to the disputed
area on the grounds that the secret agreement of Velasco had been
extracted from Santa Anna under duress. This boundary contro-
versy was destined to be settled only by force of arms.
A state constitution for Texas was accepted by the United States
Congress on December 29, 1845, although authority was not trans-
ferred from the Republic to the state until February 19, 1846.
Unlike her sister states, Texas reserved all of the unappropriated
public domain located within her boundaries as defined on De-
cember 19, 1836.11 Mexico continued to oppose Texas' claim to
the lands lying south and west of the Nueces River after the state
*Treaty of Velasco, May 14, 1836, Public Agreement, in Henderson Yoakum,
History of Texas from Its First Settlement in x685 to Its Annexation to the United
States in x846 (2 vols.; New York, 1855), II, 526-527; Treaty of Velasco, May 14,
1836, Secret Agreement, ibid., 528.
10oH. P. N. Gammel (comp.), The Laws of Texas (1o vols.; Austin, 1898), I, 1193.
llUnited States Statutes at Large (Boston, 1851), IX, lo8.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 63, July 1959 - April, 1960, periodical, 1960; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101186/m1/288/: accessed April 28, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.