The Texas Presidencies : Presidential Leadership in the Republic of Texas, 1836-1845 Page: 38
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Texas also set out to define its border with the United States. The United States
recognized Texas independence in 1837 but did not recognize a particular boundary.
Although annexation appeared imminent and the 1819 treaty with Spain had defined the
border of Texas when it still remained a colonial possession, the young nation could not
afford any misunderstandings. Irion emphasized the importance of th issue to Texas
Minister to the United States Memucan Hunt in a letter dated March 21, 1838. The
secretary wrote that the boundary issue had become a veiy important question as he
instructed his agent to take all necessary actions to secure a boundary arrangement.42
Negotiations over the boundary between the United States and Texas began in 1838,
eventually marking the border exactly as specified by the 1819 treaty but only on the
northeastern boundary along the Sabine and Red rivers.43
Texas had not yet extended its boundary beyond the Rio Grande, but nevertheless
Memucan Hunt became intrigued by the prospect while in the United States, as his
American counterparts expressed their interests in California. Hunt saw that the United
States had designs on California and, on his own authority, in 1838 attempted to claim
territory to the Pacific Ocean. He wrote Robert A. Irion, the Texas secretary of state, and
reported the desires of the United States eventually to acquire the port city of San
Francisco. Hunt feared that the American Secretary of State, John Forsyth, would
attempt to use the boundary negotiations to goad Texas into relinquishing its right to
41 Irion to Memucan Hunt, March 21,1838, Irion Family Papers.
43 Houston, Williams and Barker, eds.. Writings of Sam Houston II, 237.
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Bridges, Kenneth William. The Texas Presidencies : Presidential Leadership in the Republic of Texas, 1836-1845, thesis, May 1998; Denton, Texas. (https://digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc278112/m1/42/: accessed October 18, 2019), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, https://digital.library.unt.edu; .