AnnexationUnit 6: Ch. 12, Sect. 4 • Title: Texas Becomes A State • Main Idea: Efforts for Texas annexation were given a boost by the changing political atmosphere in the United States. • Key Terms: manifest destiny, joint resolution • Key People: Mary Maverick, James K. Polk, Henry Clay, Anson Jones
Freedoms and Slavery in the Republic of Texas • The establishment of the Republic of Texas was based on freedoms most Texans had when they lived in the United States. This meant that they would not live under a dictatorship (political) and their civil liberties (civil/religious) like speech, religion, press, and assembly would be protected under a constitution. • Slavery was legalized, and free slaves had to get an act of Congress to remain legal in Texas.
The Texas Question • Throughout the years of the Republic, most Texans still wanted Texas to join the U.S.A. • By Houston’s second term, the “Texas Question” became an important issue in American politics. • Some Americans were against annexing Texas because it would benefit slave owners and might cause war with Mexico.
Annexation Treaty of 1844 • By April 1844, the U.S.A. and Texas signed a treaty that would make Texas a territory of the U.S.A. Texas would also give all its public lands in exchange for the U.S.A. to pay all its debts. • Most Texans were surprised when the U.S. Senate rejected the treaty by a vote of 35 to 16. • Most senators opposed it because Texas would enter the U.S. as a slave state and give the South an advantage in the Senate (i.e. South > North).
Polk Wins the U.S. Election • In the U.S. presidential election of 1844, James K. Polk of the Democratic Party narrowly defeated Henry Clay from the Whig Party. • Polk heavily favored annexation of Texas. • Polk and most Americans believed the U.S.A. was destined to expand from the Atlantic coast to the Pacific coast—manifest destiny.
How did Texas become a State? (3 steps) • First, the U.S. Congress proposed that Texas be annexed by joint resolution, a resolution passed by both houses of Congress that has the force of law and a simple majority of each house (instead of two-thirds majority vote required by the Senate to approve a treaty). • Congress passed this on February 28, 1845. • The joint resolution provided for immediate statehood, bypassing the time Texas would be a territory.
Mexico Offers Recognition • France and Great Britain preferred Texas stay an independent nation, rather than joining the U.S.A. • They tried to convince Mexico to recognize Texas so the annexation wouldn’t happen. • In May 1845, Mexico offered to recognize Texas on 1 condition – Texas must reject annexation by the USA. • Texas rejected the proposal and voted to approve annexation by the U.S.A.
How did Texas become a State? (3 steps) • Second, Anson Jones, president of Texas in 1844, called a special session of the Texas Congress to consider and vote for annexation. • The Texas congress approved annexation on October 13, 1845. • They also wrote a new state constitution. • Third, on December 29, 1845, U.S. President Polk signed the resolution that made Texas a state.
“The Republic of Texas is No More!” • On February 19, 1846, Anson Jones, the last president of the Republic, turned the government over to J. Pinckney Henderson, the first governor of the state of Texas. • The Lone Star flag was lowered, and the Stars and Stripes flag was raised. • Texas ceremonially became the 28th state in the United States of America. Anson Jones
Democratic Political Party • By 1850s, political parties had become organized. • The Democratic Party, strong in the South, represented farmers and laborers (small business owners). • Very popular • The party of Southern favorite, former U.S. president Andrew Jackson • Later split into 2 groups: Northern and Southern Democrats
Whig & Republican Political Parties • The Whig Party represented banking and large business (or commercial) interests, and few Texans supported it because it opposed expanding slavery to new territories and annexation of Texas. • The Republican Party was anti-slavery and therefore had no support in Texas nor the South.
American “Know Nothing” Political Party • Some Texans joined the American Party, or Know-Nothings, whose members tried to keep new immigrants and Catholics from voting or holding public office. • Supported slavery • Secretive politically…”I Know Nothing!” • Nativism—favoring interests of native-born American citizens
No Voice in Politics • Women had no rights to vote or participate in politics • Slaves and Native Americans had no rights • Free African Americans were denied the right to vote and join political parties • Filed petitions to remain free • Went to court to protect their freedoms
Federal Aid for Reservations • To stop the conflicts b/w settlers and Native Americans, the U.S. government placed many Natives on reservations—unsuccessful, Natives… • Not given enough land to survive • Refused to move onto reservations • Many settlers opposed reservation system b/c many raids were made by Natives living on reservations