Thoughts on the proposed annexation of Texas to the United States Page: 8 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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8 ON THE PROPOSED
may properly be considered here. It belongs to her history, and
though it has no particular bearing upon the merits of the question,
still as it appeals to popular sympathy, it is proper that it
should be correctly understood.
Did Texas ever form a portion of the territory of the United
States 1 And are we now merely re-acquiring what was once our
own, or making a fresh addition to our dominions l
On the 24th of April, 1838, Mr. Preston, of South Carolina,
submitted to the Senate a resolution declaring " that the true
boundary of the United States, under the treaty of Louisiana, extended
on the south-west to the Rio Norte," and this position has
been recently assumed by other writers.
The Hon. Mr. Walker, Senator of the United States, from Mississippi,
in a letter recently published, addressed by him to the
people of Carroll county, Kentucky, has also asserted that Texas
formed an original part of that territory of Louisiana, which we
purchased from France in 1803.
This pamphlet is one which I shall have frequent occasion to
notice, for it presents, in a condensed form, all the arguments in
favor of this measure, and I desire it to be understood that in
whatever I say in regard to it, I do not intend to depart from
that respect due to Mr. Walker's standing and to his official
He insists that by the treaty of February 22d, 1819, with Spain,
which settled our present boundary on the south-west of the Republic,
and which was confirmed by the treaty of February 12th,
1828, with Mexico, we surrendered to Spain, and subsequently to
Mexico, a large portion of Louisiana Proper, which belonged to
us by virtue of the treaty of cession made with France in 1803.
The treaty of 1819 was concluded by Adams, and ratified in 1S21
by Monroe. That of 1828 was made by Mr. Poinsett, and ratified
by Jackson in 1832.*
That portion so surrendered he now alleges to be Texas, which
he habitually terms " all our own."
This assumption that our government has voluntarily surrendered
a portion of its unquestionable territory to the extent of nearly
four hundred thousand square miles, that the surrender was made
not twenty-five years since to the decrepit monarchy of Spain,
and confirmed just fifteen years ago by a fresh cession to the
feeble Republic of Mexico; this assumption so offensive to a just
national pride, so disgraceful to all the statesmen engaged in the
work, proceeds from a gentleman high in office, under that government
which he represents so ignorant of its rights, or so incapable
to enforce them.
Had the surrender been made fifty years ago, when our limits
were uncertain, and the value of the country doubtful, it might
be a very possible thing, but to suppose that in 1819 and in 1828,
Adams, Monroe, and Jackson, united in the surrender of one
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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/m1/8/: accessed March 20, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .