The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 47, July 1943 - April, 1944 Page: 189
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but mischief in the Kansas-Nebraska bill; and his forecast of
the results of secession,was singularly accurate. When disrup-
tion came, he sat in the governor's office like an aged lion whose
physical powers no longer matched his mental fire. His sense
of political realism told him that the evil day could, at most,
be delayed, not avoided; but, driven by an emotional impulse
in which were strangely mixed devotion to the Union, Manifest
Destiny, penchant for intrigue and visions of political aggran-
dizement, he conceived a grand scheme for the conquest of
Mexico and the avoidance of the War Between the States. The
documents are in Volume VIII; the interpretation is in Webb's
The Texas Rangers.
He had toyed with the idea, if not the hope, of the presidency
in 1860, to preserve the Union by defeating sectionalism; it
was too late. The Union was gone, but Sam Houston resolutely
resisted the inevitable, until he was deposed from the governor-
ship. His eldest son entered the Confederate service, and in
his last public appearance, four months before his death, the
old General could say: "The success of the Southern cause .. .
will be my fondest, best wish" (VIII, 328), not that he approved
secession or its high priests, but that he loved Texas. His last
letter was, appropriately enough, to an editor "to relieve them
[the newspapers] from their painful apprehensions" that Hous-
ton would be a candidate for the governorship in 1863. "A
man of three score years and ten, as I am," he wrote, "ought,
at least, to be exempt from the charge of ambition, even if he
should be charged with having loved his country too well"
(VIII, 346). Before the election day, Houston was in his grave
The notes in these four volumes are deftly and skillfully
done, and they contain a vast amount of biographical and sta-
tistical information. We learn, for example, that William F.
Weeks was the first shorthand reporter in Texas and that he
reported a Houston speech as early as 1845; that Houston's
estate was appraised at $89,288.00 and that his twelve negroes
were worth $10,530.00; and that the editors found only in the
Tri-Weekly Telegraph a contemporary tribute to Houston at
the time of his death.
The index is comprehensive and intelligently done. To a large
degree it obviates the difficulties of locating documents which
appear out of chronological sequence.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 47, July 1943 - April, 1944, periodical, 1944; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth146054/m1/207/: accessed March 22, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.