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Mexican Commander Requests Armistice

only awaiting an opportunity to rise against the government, and, therefore, dared not enter into any formal arrangement in respect to trade relations and an armistice which might embarrass him with the Centralist authority.[24]

The Texan commissioners were requested by Carrasco and Arista to make their written communications "as mild and conciliating as the nature of things would permit," and were assured that their letters would be transmitted to Mexico City. Carrasco flatly told them that "it would be impossible openly and publicly to concede" to their propositions, "but that whilst a secret negotiation might take place in which all our propositions and plans might be carried out," they reported, "Still . . . the answer which appeared to the world, and more especially that which would be sent to government authorities at Mexico, should contain a flat and positive refusal of all our propositions." The high authorities in Mexico wished to appear "most inverterately opposed to any thing like conciliation with Texas," and the reception of any Texan agent, no matter in what capacity he might go, would be considered a high crime in the eyes of the government. Reported Van Ness and Morris,

Gen. Arista, or rather his agent Col. Carrasco, was anxious to conciliate, and to accede to our propositions, but at the same time wishes to hoodwink his government. He therefore privately entered into an agreement with us, and publicly disclosed his utter refusal to comply with our propositions. The truth is, the whole Mexican country is in a perfect ferment, and on the eve of a great revolution.

Arista is still doubtful as to the probable result of this impending revolution, and with a fair prospect of the Presidential chair on one side, should he adhere to the Central cause, and the absolute certainty of his being elevated to the highest station in the nation should he espouse the Federal cause, and in case of their success. In this state of affairs Arista is halting, as to his decision, he is privately conciliating the Citizens, all of whom with but few exceptions belong to the Federal party, and inducing among them the belief that he inclines to their side, whilst all his public acts which he knows must reach to Government, would declare him the most uncompromising, and devoted Central. Hence arises the unmitigated abuse of Texas and the Texans, which daily emanates from all the newspapers.[25]

24. Cf. John W. Bradley to J. G. Chalmers, San Antonio, Aug. 3, 1841, in Domestic Correspondence (Texas), 1836-1846, ms.

25. C. Van Ness and John D. Morris to Samuel A. Roberts, San Antonio, Sept. 30, 1841, in Smither (ed.), Journals of the Sixth Congress of the Republic of Texas, III, 258.

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