The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 106, July 2002 - April, 2003 Page: 206
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
since it resembled ideas of popular representation that Hidalgo had pre-
viously enunciated. Toledo's formulation was more ideologically consis-
tent, however, than the deceased caudillo's conception. Unlike Hidalgo,
Toledo directly championed the idea of a republic.27
Though little is known of the conversations between Guti6rrez and
Toledo during the winter of 1811-1812, it is clear that both men dis-
cussed ideas for the invasion of Spanish territory. One can not help but
wonder whether Toledo withheld certain information from his new ally.
Apparently unknown to Gutierrez, Toledo carried a revolutionary com-
mission from Spain appointing him as general charged with liberating
the Interior Provinces of Northern Mexico. This document, signed by sev-
eral American delegates to the Cortes, was issued on July 14, 181 1-just
as Toledo sailed for America. In effect, Toledo believed he had license to
become a caudillo in the heart of Gutidrrez's native region.28
On February 12, 1812, Gutierrez anxiously began his sea voyage from
Philadelphia to New Orleans, intending to organize a military campaign
on the Louisiana-Texas frontier. Toledo meanwhile stayed behind in the
East to consider an invasion of his native Cuba. Arriving at New Orleans
on March 23, Gutierrez almost immediately met William Shaler, U.S. spe-
cial agent, through the good offices of Governor Claiborne. Shaler had
recently come to the city from a diplomatic post in Cuba, where he had
been involved in anti-Spanish activities. His official instructions were to
establish amicable relations with Mexican revolutionaries, thereby creat-
ing a foundation for commercial and political ties between the United
States and a potentially independent Mexico. Realizing the necessity of
Mexican support of his initiatives, Shaler determined from the outset to
guide Gutierrez in a manner consistent with U.S. interests. As the special
agent explained to Monroe: "I shall proceed with him [Gutierrez], and
William Shaler described himself to President James Madison as some-
"7 Toledo, Mixicanos; Hamill, Hzdalgo Revolt, 187.
2' The commission is found m a Spanish colonial report ofJune 30, 1815 (A. G. de I. Sevilla, In-
diferente Gral. de Nueva Espafia, 136-7-9). See Transcripts from the Ayer Collection, Newberry Li-
brary, Chicago (Center for American History, University of Texas, Austin, cited hereafter as CAH).
For a discussion of the document's authenticity, see Antonio Riva Palacio L6pez, Phegos de la diplo-
macia znsurgente (Mexico: LIII Legislatura, Senado de la Reptiblica, 1987), xlv-xlvi.
." Shaler to Monroe, Mar. 23, 1812 (quotation), U S. State Department, Special Agents, vol. 2,
folio 2o, June 8, 181o-Mar. 5, 1815, microfilm (National Archives) (cited hereafter as Special
Agents MSS); Roy F. Nichols, "Wilham Shaler: New England Apostle of Rational Liberty," New Eng-
land Quarterly, 9 (Mar, 1936), 71-87. A critique of Nichols's article is offered m Richard W.
Gronet, "The United States and the Invasion of Texas, 1810-1814," The Amencas, 25 (Jan., 1969),
281-306. See also Harris Gaylord Warren, The Sword Was Their Passport A Hzstory of American Fdz-
bustenng in the Mexican Revolution (Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 1943), 20-21;
IsaacJoshn Cox, "Monroe and the Early Mexican Revolutionary Agents," Annual Report of the Ame,-
ican HistoricalAssoczation for the Year 1z91 (2 vols, Washington, D C Government Printing Office,
1913), I, 199-215.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 106, July 2002 - April, 2003, periodical, 2003; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101223/m1/258/: accessed June 27, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.