Tuesday, February 1, 2011

150-Years-Ago -- TEXAS GONE OUT!

Gov. Sam Houston refused to take the
oath of office to the Confederacy after
Texas seceded from the Union
(Library of Congress)
 By Mike Jones
   Texas became the seventh Southern state to assume its sovereign independent status when delegates to the Texas state secession convention passed an ordinance of secession from the United States on February 1, 1861. The passing margin of the vote was 166 to 8. The convention delegates cited the federal government's misuse of power against the Southern people. Texas resumed its status an an independent republic, which it had been between 1836 to 1845 when it first joined what was then a voluntary union of sovereign independent united states. The people of Texas ratified the convention's action on February 23, 1861 and the ordinance became effective as of March 2, 1861, which was the 25th anniversary of the Texas Declaration of Independence from Mexico.
   Texas then became the seventh state to join the newly formed Confederate States of America. Governor Sam Houston refused to recognize the authority of the convention, but accepted the decision of the voters to approve secession. However he declined to take the oath of allegiance to the Confederacy and he was removed from office by the convention. Lt. Gov. Edward Clark succeeded Houston and did take the oath. Ironically Houston's son, Sam Houston Jr., served in the Confederate army as a member of the 2nd Texas Infantry. Houston Jr. served faithfully in the army and was severely wounded at the Battle of Shiloh.
Brig. Gen. Ben McCulloch
(Library of Congress)
   The Committee of Public Safety completed the new Texas revolution by securing the surrender of federal troops and property in Texas. Commissioners negotiated with Gen. David E. Twiggs, commander of U.S. troops in the state, for the surrender without success. Former Texas Ranger Ben McCulloch assembled a force of Texans, many who were members of the Knights of the Golden Circle, in San Antonio and took Twiggs into custody on February 16, 1861. Twiggs, a native of Georgia with southern sympathies, agreed to surrender his troops and federal property to the state. The U.S. soldiers were allowed to retain their sidearms and exit the state with honor.
   Twiggs soon was dismissed from the U.S. Army and became a Confederate general in command of the troops forming at New Orleans. Twiggs died July  15, 1862 at age 72. McCulloch went on to become a Confederate general and was killed in action at the Battle of Elk Horn Tavern, Arkansas on March 7, 1862. Sam Houston died in 1863,
Two Confederate soldiers, with the one at
right holding a Ben McCulloch colt revolver.
(Library of Congress)


Charles said...

Could you give me a citation for the Library of Congress photo showing the two soldiers, one of whom is armed with a fluted cylinder colt model 1860 Army revolver? I'd like to get a high resolution version of it. Thanks. Charlie

Michael Jones said...

This link should get you to it.