Thoughts on the proposed annexation of Texas to the United States Page: 4 of 55
This book is part of the collection entitled: From Republic to State: Debates and Documents Relating to the Annexation of Texas, 1836-1856 and was provided to The Portal to Texas History by the UNT Libraries.
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4 ON THE PROPOSED
nary frame of mind. In calmness, temper, and an entire devotion
to the great principles of free government, can it alone be
investigated. He who seeks to consider it, should put away, if
possible, every sectional or local prejudice, look only to the great
interests of liberty and Union, and endue himself with that general
and catholic spirit which makes the difference between a statesman
and a party politician.
" Liberty and Union !"--We have been taught to consider them
inseparable and identical. The interests of peace, the tie of
brotherhood, a joint inheritance in some of the greatest names
that the world has ever pronounced, mutual trials and mutual
triumphs, no less than the mere material interests of commerce,
bind together in one dear and common country, the great people,
sown broadcast by the hand of the Almighty, from the St. John's
to the Gulf of Mexico.
In the spirit, then, of liberty and union, let us approach this
great problem, and receive our solution, not on the authority of
any man nor any set of men-not from any party, political or religious,
but from those principles of our government which speak
to us daily in our own history and the history of the race.
Texas is a district of country lying to the south-west of the
United States, between the 2tth and 34th of North latitude,
bounded on the eas4 and south-east by the Gulf of Mexico, and
on the south and west by Mexico. Its western boundary, as we
shall have occasion hereafter to see, is still unsettled. As an independent
State it now claims to extend to the Rio Norte or Rio
Grande, also known as the Rio Bravo. As a province of Mexico,
its limits were much more confined. What is here said refers to
the boundaries claimed by Texas herself. Its area is about 380
thousand square miles, in other words, equal to one-seventh of
the-whole surface of the present Union. A level tract of land
from twenty to seventy miles in width, extends from the Sabine to
the Rio Grande or Rio Bravo, along the entire sea-coast of the
country. 'I'his district, immediately on the sea, is hot, low and
unhealthy, but is described as one of great fertility, and eminently
fit for all the peculiar productions of the southern States, cotton,
sugar and tobacco. Receding from the level tract, the ground
varies from prairies to an undulating surface, and then becomes
hilly. In the upper country the climate is much colder, and the
northern grains are said to thrive. It possesses mines of.coal and
iron, and vast forests of live oak. But the only population of
any consequence at present is to be found in the district near the
sea. The country is well watered by several large streams,
navigable from fifty to two, three or four hundred miles in the interior.
The population is very variously estimated from 80,000
* This brief description of the country is condensed from various works on
Texas, most of which are far from unfavorable to the country. The following
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Sedgwick, Theodore. Thoughts on the proposed annexation of Texas to the United States, book, January 1, 1844; New-York. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth2387/m1/4/: accessed July 29, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .