Anglo-Mexican Relations in Texas
Digital History ID 542
A Member of the Tejano Elite
In this selection, a member of the Tejano elite favors Anglo-American immigration into Texas.
What shall we say of the law of April 6, 1830? It absolutely prohibits immigrants from North America coming into Texas, but there are not enough troops to enforce it; so the result is that desirable immigrants are kept out because they will not violate the law, while the undesirable, having nothing to lose, come in freely. The industrious, honest North American settlers have made great improvements in the past seven or eight years. They have raised cotton and cane and erected gins and sawmills. Their industry has made them comfortable and independent, while the Mexican settlements, depending on the pay of the soldiers among them for money, have lagged far behind. Among the Mexican settlements even the miserable manufacture of blankets, hats and shoes has never been established, and we must buy them either from foreigners or from the interior, 200 or 300 leagues distant. We have had a loom in Bexar for two years, but the inhabitants of Goliad and Nacogdoches know nothing of this ingenious machine, nor even how to make a sombrero.
The advantages of liberal North American immigration are innumerable: (1) The colonists would afford a source of supply for the native inhabitants. (2) They would protect the interior from Indian invasions. (3) They would develop roads and commerce to New Orleans and New Mexico. (4) Moreover, the ideas of government held by North Americans are in general better adapted to those of the Mexicans than are the ideas of European immigrants.
Source: Translated in Eugene C. Barker, "Native Latin American Contributions to the Colonization and Independence of Texas," Southwestern Historical Quarterly, 46, no. 3 (January 1943): 328- 29.
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