Go to Page | Index | Contents 397     | Biblio. | Page- | Page+

Invasion Excitement

invasion failed to materialize, the business of organizing an expedition in Texas was directed toward another point -- Santa Fé. The Fifth Congress contented itself with the enactment of several measures for frontier protection, but declined to make provision for taking a census of the population. The majority of the House Committee on the State of the Republic to which had been referred a bill providing for the taking of a census (none having been taken in the past) declared "it would be very impolitic, at present, to pass the bill. . . . because it would, in their opinion, be a useless expense for little or no profit; in fact they are of opinion," declared their report, "that much greater injury to the public interest would result from the measure than advantage."[67]  Their report refrained from "stating . . . the reasons which operate" in reaching their conclusion, but we "will leave that to be stated verbally when the subject comes before the House," they said. A minority report was also filed, declaring that "it is proper and politic that the census should be taken."

It is a well-established fact that many counties, possessed of great wealth and numerous inhabitants, stand in the councils of the nation with no more influence or voice, than districts with a sparse population and little wealth. No one, at this time of the world, will deny that representation and taxation are and should be synonymous; that the majority should govern, and that, in a free government, men should be allowed to impose their own taxes, and adopt the laws by which their liberties and lives are to be protected. If a minority have an equal voice in the Congress of the country, are not the rights which a republican government guaranties to her citizens violated? . . . Your Committee [meaning the minority members] cannot be influenced by the feelings which a majority express, that if the census is taken, Texas will prove that she is but small in population, and too weak to be admitted among the nations of the earth; that if the census is taken, the United States and foreign powers will discover that the estimates of the number of our inhabitants have been false and unfounded.[68]

Among many western members of Congress, there was considerable

Victoria), July 31, 1841; Mary A. Maverick to Agatha S. Adams, San Antonio de Béjar, Feb. 21, 1841, in Green, Samuel A. Maverick: Texan, pp. 138-140.

67. Report of the Majority of the Committee on the State of the Republic . . . William Menefee, Chairman, in Texas Congress, Journals of the House of Representatives, Fifth Congress, Appendix, pp. 320-321.

68. "Counter Report of a Minority of the Committee on the State of the Republic . . . [signed:] James S. Mayfield [and] Thomas B. Huling," ibid., Appendix, pp. 321-322.

Go to Page | Index | Contents 397     | Biblio. | Page- | Page+

AFTER SAN JACINTO: The Texas-Mexican Frontier, 1836-1841
Joseph Milton Nance, 1963