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CI. VII.]

TEXAS AND NEW MEXICO BOUNDARY.

479

1850.

wide spread and sincerely expressed, course pursued by Colonel Monroe in and the honors heaped upon his memo- New Mexico. The letter of Mr. Webry demonstrated that, whatever differ- ster is clear and to the point, and while ence of political sentiment may exist it disclaims all interference on the part among us, no one doubted that General of the United States in matters out of Taylor was an honest, patriotic lover of the province of the executive, it still his country, and one who would have asserts, in the plainest terms, the dedischarged the duties of his lofty station termination of the president to sustain with sincere and earnest zeal and unim- the laws and rights of New Mexico as peachable integrity.

well as Texas, until the matter be setMillard Fillmore, on the 10th of July, tled by action of Congress. A brief addressed a brief but touching message paragraph of this letter may not into both Houses of Congress, formally aptly be here quoted: “In one of his announcing the aflictive dispensation last communications to Congress,—that which had raised him to the presidential of the 17th of June last,—the late

chair, and recommending suit- president repeated the declaration that

able honors to be paid to the he had no power to decide the question distinguished dead. Mr. Fillmore took of boundary, and no desire to interfere the required oath the same day; the with it; and that the authority to settle funeral was celebrated on the 13th; that question resided elsewhere. The Mr. W. R. King was chosen president object of the executive government has pro tempore of the Senate; and the cab- been, as I believe, and as I am authorinet having resigned, others were im-ized to say it certainly now is, to secure mediately appointed in their places, the peace of the country; to maintain, Daniel Webster being secretary of as far as practicable, the state of things state ;* and thus, without disturbance as it existed at the date of the treaty; or difficulty, the new president was as and to uphold and preserve

the rights firmly seated as if he had been placed of the respective parties as they were in his high office directly by the popu- under the solemn guarantee of the Jar vote.

treaty, until the highly interesting quesOn the 6th of August, the presidenttion of boundary should be finally setcommunicated to the House a message tled by competent authority.

This respecting the boundary question be treaty, which is now a supreme law of tween Texas and New Mexico. He the land, declares, as before stated, that also sent in a copy of Mr. Webster's the inhabitants shall be maintained and reply, on the 5th, to Governor Bell's protected in the free enjoyment letter, in which he complained of the of their liberty and property,

and secured in the free exercise of their * Thomas Corwin was appointed secretary of the religion. It will, of course, bo the treasury; C. M. Conrad, secretary of war; W. A president's duty to see that this law is Graham, secretary of the navy; Alexander H. H. Stuart, secretary of the interior; N. K. Hall, post sustained, and the protection which it master-general; and J. J. Crittenden, attorney-general. I guarantees made effectual—and this is

1850.

the plain and open path of executive respect to that interminable, unceasing duty, in which he proposes to tread.” source of contention—the slavery ques

During the month of August, the tion. But we are sorry to say, that the various measures of compromise con strife did not cease then; and, so far as tained in the "omnibus bill” were car men could penetrate the veil of the furied, separately, through Congress, and ture, was not likely to cease for many received in September the approbation long years to come. “The complex, cumof President Fillmore.* Early in Au- / bersome, expensive, annoying, and inef gust, the boundary between Texas and fective bill,” as Senator Benton desigNew Mexico was finally settled upon, nates the fugitive slave law of 1850, Texas to receive $10,000,000 in consid- gave satisfaction to neither party. The eration of relinquishment of her claims north was irritated and vexed with the against the United States. On the 13th, mode pursued in the recovery of fugi the bill to admit California as a state tive slaves, and with the odiousness of passed the Senate by a vote of thirty- the whole matter, as it was now prefour to eighteen; on the 15th, a bill sented before their eyes; the south, on was passed to establish a territorial | the other hand, was chagrined and exgovernment for New Mexico; and on asperated to find that the difficulty of the 18th of September, a fugitive slave getting back their slaves was rather inbill, and a bill for the suppression of creased than otherwise by this new act. the slave trade in the District of Co- and that disturbances were sure to fol lumbia, also passed the Senate by large low, and the law sure to become odious, majorities. By the constitution of Cali- and, consequently, next to impossible fornia, slavery was prohibited in that to be executed.* In fact, without claim state; in New Mexico and Utah, the ing any special sagacity, we may assert, question was left open for future de- that, on this subject, our country was cision. Messrs. W. M. Gwinn and J. as yet, hardly within reach of the be C. Fremont, Senators elect from Cali- ginning of the end. fornia, immediately thereafter appeared The other acts of the session were and took their seats in the great coun not of material moment to be placed cil of the nation.

on record here; various appropriations In this wise, so far as legislation was concerned, the bitter strife over the * Early in 1851, no little excitement was created by Wilmot proviso came to a pause; and

the rescue at Boston of a fugitive slave, arrested in agr

cordance with the law recently passed. A mob of perit was hoped, by all true lovers of their

sons, mainly colored, rushed into the room where the country, that discord would now end in alleged fugitive was in custody of the officers, and car.

ried him off. Soon after which it was understood he

had reached Canada. Intelligence of this affair was tele* Mr. Benton points out the fact that the southern graphed to Washington, and the president, on the 18th Senators considered the test question to be upon the of February, issued a proclamation, announcing his de. admission of California as a state into the Union. He termination to enforce the laws promptly and thoroughalso gives the protest which ten members signed and ly. He also the next day sent a message to the Senate wished to have entered on the Journal, together with on the same subject, in which the whole matter was bis remarks upon it, its final rejection, etc.

fully discussed

CH. VII.]

FILIBUSTERISM AND CUBA.

481

1850.

were made; the vessels offered by Mr. tempted to be carried out, so as to inHenry Grinnell, of New York, to be corporate Cuba into the possessions of sent in search of Sir John Franklin, the United States. Spain, on her part, were accepted and attached to the ever jealous of her powerful neighbor, navy; the rank and file of the army has exercised great rigor in endeavoring were increased; etc. It was not till the to maintain her authority intact, and to 30th of September, 1850, after a ses- prevent the "filibustering” schemes and sion of over three hundred days, that plots of those who have been ready, Congress adjourned. We may note, in past years, to do all in their power that this was the longest session of the to wrest this fertile island from Spain. national legislature which had been Some notice of the piratical expeditions held since the organization of the gov- against Cuba, in 1850 and 1851, seems ernment.

to be necessary in this part of our The results of the seventh census, narrative. We shall give the facts as taken this year, were substantially as succinctly as possible.

follows. Total white popula An impression having got abroad

tion, 19,557,271; free colored, that the Cubans themselves were ready 429,710; slaves, 3,204,093. The popu- for revolt, efforts began to be made, in lation of the free states was, 13,434,559. 1849, to get materials for an expedition The free population of the slave states thither, from the ports of the United was, 6,412,151; showing a decrease of States.

General Taylor, at that time 778,568 since 1840; whilst the free president, issued a proclamation, on the states had in the same period increased 11th of August, in the following terms: 3,779,933, i.e., rather more than half “There is reason to believe, that an the ertire population of the slave armed expedition is about to be fitted states. The grand total of the popu- out in the United States with an intenlation of the United States, in 1850, tion to invade the Island of Cuba, or was 23,191,074. In the new appor some of the provinces of Mexico. The tionment of Representatives, the free best information which the executive states gained one, making their number has been able to obtain, points to the a hundred and forty-three; and the Island of Cuba as the object of this exslave states lost one, reducing their pedition. It is the duty of this gov. number to ninety.

ernment to observe the faith of treaties, The position of the beautiful Island and to prevent any aggression by our of Cuba, and its contiguity to the United citizens upon the territories of friendly States, have naturally caused it to be nations. I have, therefore, thought it looked

upon
with no ordinary interest necessary

and
proper to issue this

procby our countrymen; and partly from lamation, to warn all citizens of the good motives, and partly from the rest United States, who shall connect themlessness and cupidity of a large num- selves with an enterprise so grossly in ber of Americans, manifold plans and violation of our laws and our treaty schemes have been talked of, and at obligations, that they will thereby sub

VOL. III.-61

ject themselves to the heavy penalties the invaders, and Lopez, after a bloody denounced against them by our acts of skirmish, burning the governor's house, Congress; and will forfeit their claim seizing some bags of specie, re-embarkto the protection of their country. No ed in the steamer, Creole. His men such persons must expect the interfer- insisted on being carried to Key West, ence of this government, in any form, where, just as they arrived, the Spanish in their behalf, no matter to what ex war steamer Pizarro, overtook them. tremities they may be reduced in con- The Spanish commander demanded the sequence of their conduct. An enter- restoration of the stolen money, and prise to invade the territories of a the persons of the invaders, but did friendly nation, set on foot and prose- not obtain either from the American cuted within the limits of the United authorities; on his return he took from States, is, in the highest degree, crim- the Island of Contoy, on the coast of inal, as tending to endanger the peace Yucatan, (which was Lopez's place of and compromit the honor of this na- rendezvous) a hundred men, and cartion; and, therefore, I exhort all good ried them to Cuba. The naval force citizens, as they regard our national which had been dispatched by the presreputation, as they respect their own ident, unfortunately arrived too late to laws and the laws of nations, as they prevent Lopez's invasion; and the Spanvalue the blessings of peace and the ish governor-general was strongly mindwelfare of their country, to discounte- ed to put them all to death as pirates. rance and prevent, by all lawful means, Lopez immediately began to plot any such enterprise; and I call upon afresh, and found many to encourage every officer of this government, civil him in his schemes against Cuba. Geneor military, to use all efforts in his pow- ral Quitman and others were indicted er to arrest, for trial or punishment, at New Orleans, in July, by the grand every such offender against the laws jury, as concerned in setting on foot an providing for the performance of our unlawful expedition, and the general sacred obligations to friendly powers.” was arrested, on the 3d of February,

Preparations, however, for the expe- 1851, on this charge; he was not, howdition went on, and a military organi- ever, convicted, although by many, bezation was effected at New Orleans, lieved to be guilty. At a later date, under a Cuban leader, named Narcisso in April, J. O. Sullivan, Captain Rog

Lopez. About the middle of ers of the Cleopatra, and others, were

May, the filibusters set out, un arrested at New York, and the vessel der the guise of emigrants, in vessels | which they had procured was seized by bound for Chagres. Lopez and his com- the authorities. On the 25th of April, pany, about six hundred in number, President Fillmore issued his proclamalanded at Cardenas on the 18tŁ of May, tion, in which he expressed the where he issued a bombastic proclama-conviction, that the expedition tion, but met with no encouragement. ugainst Cuba was instigated “chiefly On the contrary, the people rose against by foreigners, who dare to make our

1850.

1851.

483

1851

Co. VII.]

UNION MEETINGS HELD. shores the scene of their guilty and shot. Lopez having advanced irland hostile preparations against a friendly about ten miles, was attacked at Las power, and who seek by falsehood and Posas by eight hundred Spanish troops misrepresentation to seduce our citizens, under General Enna. A sanguinary especially the young and inconsiderate, contest ensued, in which numbers of into their wicked schemes.” And he the enemy were killed, with severe loss goes on to say, that, “ whereas such ex on his own side. Lopez retreated topeditions can only be regarded as ad- wards the mountains, followed ventures for plunder and robbery, and by the Spaniards in force; and must meet the condemnation of the ere bong his men were made prisoners, civilized world, while they are deroga- he was hunted by bloodhounds, and, tory to the character of our country, in carried to Havana a prisoner, was garviolation of the laws of nations, and roted as a malefactor, on the 26th of expressly prohibited by our own;" he August. The Spanish av chorities did exhorts all good citizens, and all honest not proceed to extremities with the men, to discountenance and frown upon other prisoners; about a hundred were every effort of the kind, as a blot upon sent to Spain; and in 1852, on the inour good name, and as certain to result tercession of our government, they were in loss and disgrace.

released and allowed to return to the The restless Cuban leader, favored United States.* by circumstances, escaped the watch During the month of November, fulness of the government, and on the large public meetings were held in va3d of August, sailed from New Orleans rious parts of the country to give exin the steamer Pampero. His present pression to the attachment of the

peocompany numbered more than four ple to the Union, and also to throw the hundred men. On the 11th, he arrived weight of all conservative citizens in off the coast of Cuba, in sight of Ha- favor of the measures of compromise vana, and turning westwardly, he ad adopted by Congress. Philadelphia, vanced a few miles beyond Bahia Hon- Boston, Cincinnati, Nashville, and other da, where the steamer ran aground on cities and towns, witnessed the efforts a coral reef. Lopez debarked on the of patriotic lovers of their country to Island of Playtas with all his troops, | induce the peopie to hold fast by the and advanced inland with three hun Union at all hazards; and letters from dred men.

Colonel Crittenden, his Clay, Webster, Cass, Poinsett, and othchief officer, was left with the remain-ers, were published in favor of the same der, and, preparing to join Lopez, was great end. On the other hand, in vaattacked by a large force and routed. rious parts of the south, the spirit of With difficulty, he escaped to the coast, disunion was rife; and such men as and putting out to sea in boats, he and his party of some fifty men, were taken * During Mr. Polk's administration, an offer was on the 15th, carried into Havana, con

made to purchase the Island of Cuba from Spain, for

$100,000,000; but that government refused to enter. demned to die, and on the 16th, were tain any proposition on the subjects

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