The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 68, July 1964 - April, 1965 Page: 221
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Belgium's Relations With Texas and the United States
pressures which were to effect any Belgian commitments with
Texas all combine to form a unique history of European reaction
and response to American expansionism. An examination of the
forces behind the international diplomacy of the era illustrates
the role Europe played in the eventual destiny of Texas and the
United States a generation after the Monroe Doctrine.
By early 1837, Texas realized that its overtures to the United
States for annexation into the Union were at least to be delayed.
Realizing that its future depended on an extended international
view point and policy, Texas turned toward Europe. Two polit-
ically influential Texans conceived a plan to make their young
country a commercial power in the world with the help of Euro-
pean treaties and monetary assistance.' Mirabeau Lamar and
James Hamilton believed many European states might be at-
tracted by Texas' farm products and especially by its cotton output.
Those in control of Texan diplomacy understood, however, that
any large loan would first necessitate diplomatic recognition of
their republic and probably commercial agreements with those
European states.' The internal situation of Texas made it more
and more imperative to commission diplomatic agents who would
search out potential allies on the other side of the ocean. In June,
1837, that idea received the necessary approval of the Texas con-
gress, which immediately commissioned J. Pinckney Henderson
as an agent to Great Britain and France."
For two years, until August, 1839, Belgium remained outside
the sphere of Texan efforts completely. The Belgian ambassadors
in London and Paris noted the flurry of activity by Henderson
to solicit recognition, commercial treaties, and financial aid, but
the Belgian government made no official moves.' The energetic
King of the Belgians, Leopold I, decided, however, to investigate
4Schmitz, Texan Statecraft, 1836-1845, pp. 49, 86-92.
IChase, Negociations de la Republique du Texas en Europe, 1837-1845, pp. 17-18.
'George P. Garrison (ed.), Diplomatic Correspondence of the Republic of Texas
(3 vols.; Washington, 1908-1911; Annual Reports of the American Historical Asso-
ciation for the Years 1907 and 1908), III, 8o8.
'Sylvain Van de Weyer to King Leopold, December 29, 1837, Papiers Sylvain
Van de Weyer (Archives Generales du Royaume, Belgique), Vol. 1o8; Count Le
Hon to Count de Theux, April 17, 1838, Negociations avec le Texas, 21x8 (Archives
du Ministere des Affaires Etrangeres, Belgique), 4.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 68, July 1964 - April, 1965, periodical, 1965; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101198/m1/261/: accessed October 16, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.