Thoughts on the proposed annexation of Texas to the United States Page: 9 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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ANNEXATION OF TEXAS.
seventh of the territory of the Union to Spain and Mexico, is certainly
an hypothesis that does no little credit to the vigor of the
imagination that suggested it-to the imagination, for nothing
that approaches the dignity of a fact can be found to support
Mr. Walker commences this portion of his argument by asserting
that the treaty of 1819 declares, as respects Texas, that
" we cede it to his Catholic sorereignty." With proper deference,
the treaty says no such thing. The 2d and 3d articles in the treaty
are as follows, (Elliott's Diplomatic Code, vol. i. p. 417.)
" 2. His Catholic majesty cedes to the United States, in full properly
and sovereignty, all the territories which belong to him, situated
to the eastward of the Jississippi, known by the name of East
and West Florida.
" 3. The two high contracting parties agree to cede and renounce
all their rights, claims, and pretensions, to the territories described
by the said line, (i. e. the boundary formed by the Sabine, Red
River and Arkansas) that is to say: the United States hereby cede
to his Catholic majesty, and renounce for ever all their rights,
claims and prelensions to the territories lying west and south of
the above described line, (i. e. Texas;) and in like manner his
Catholic majesty cedes to the said United States, all his rights,
claims and pretensions to any territories east and north of the said
line; (i. e. Louisiana;) and for himself, his heirs, and successors,
renounces all claim to the said territories for ever."
It is perfectly evident that here is no cession by the United
States of Texas-the difference between the cession of Florida in
sovereignty, and the renunciation of all rights, claims and pretensions
made by both parties, and on both sides of the line, is too
evident to require any remark. It is a common case of a mutual
Besides this misquotation of the treaty of 1819, Mr. Walker's
argument consists mainly, if not exclusively of citations from Jefferson,
Madison, Pinckney and others, containing declarations
that Louisiana, as ceded in 1803, comprised Texas: not an iota of
new evidence is introduced. This species of reasoning is evidently
of the most fallacious character.
It is quite a novelty to prove a disputed fact by the mere assertions
of our own diplomatic agents-it is calling one's own
attorney to the stand, and asking him for his view of the case,
Equally extraordinary is the endeavor to prove the ownership of
Texas by showing that France, when surrendering Louisiana to
us, declared that it included Texas.
The true history of the matter is this: Louisiana was ceded to
us in 1803, but what Louisiana was, remained still to be determined.
Neither the treaty of St. Ildefonso of the 1st October, 1800,
by which the province was ceded by Spain to France, nor our
treaty with France, of 1803, shed any light whatever on the question.
Neither defined Louisiana by any boundaries whatever. The
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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/m1/9/: accessed July 22, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .