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B. QUITMAN's REconnoissancE AT CHAPULTEPEC–GALLANT-
G. Speecil of John A. QUITMAN, of Mississippi, on THE
Visits Washington.—Plan for the Occupation of Mexico.—Opposition to Southern Expansion the Motive for the Peace.—Applies for his Brevet.—His Opinion of the Regular Army.—Quitman and the Vice-presidency.—Gen. Butler.—Presentation of a Sword.—Nominated for Governor.—Election.—Inaugural.—Political Movements in Mississippi.-Union of Partics.—Judge Sharkcy.—Conventions. —The Adjustment or Omnibus Bill.—President Taylor.—Sccret Call upon the President.—Ilis Inflexibility.—Civil War imminent. —Vicws of Gov. Quitman.—Gov. Scabrook.-Position of South Carolina. —Gen. Henderson, of Texas. –Letter to Hon. John J. M“Rae.—Convenes the Legislature. —His Message.—Action of that Body.
ON his arrival at Washington Gen. Quitman urged upon the President and scoretary of war the permancnt military occupation of Mexico, and showed that it might be held without expense to the United States, and with but temporary opposition from the Mexican people.
“How shALL WE occupy MEXICO 2
“To occupy the whole country in detail would be liable to several objections.
“It would require a great increase of force and much expense.
“Such occupation would be likely to offend and irritate the people, and thus provoke hostilities which might be avoided. “It would demoralize the army, and, by dispersing it, render impracticable those regulations necessary for its subordination and good j. “For the same reasons it would endanger the safety of the smaller detachments. “I am of opinion that we should occupy only a limit. cd number of positions in the vital parts of the country, to be selected principally with a yiew to revenue, consulting at the same time the security of the posts, which hole the preservation of communication between em. “The most palpable sources of revenue are, “Duties on imports. “Imposts on the assaying, coining, and export of the precious metals. “Direct taxes. “To realizo to tho fullest oxtent tho first, wo should occupy positions commanding the internal trade of the great sea-ports. The city of Mexico bears this relation to Vera Cruz; San Luis Potosi to Tampico; Orizaba and Tehuacan to Alvarado. These cities should be held, and an open communication preserved to their respective ports. “To command the revenue from the mines, the cities of Zacatecas, Guanaxuato, and Quoretaro should be occupied. “Zacatecas, San Luis Potosi, Zula, and Tampico, constituting a military line, would require 8000 men, distributed as follows: “Zacatecas and San Luis, 2500 each; Zula and Tampico, 1000 each; and 1000 movable. “Guanaxuato and Queretaro, on line in communication with Mexico, 2500 each. “Mexico, Puebla, Perote, Jalapa, Puente National, and Wera Cruz, 13,000, distributed as follows: “Mexico, 5000; Puebla, 2500; Perote, 800; Jalapa, 1200; Puente National, 500; Vera Cruz, 1000; movable, 2000. Total, 13,000. “Orizaba and Tehuacan, 2000.
“The whole number of troops required under this disposition of the forces would be 28,000 men.
“The occupation of a line from Zacatecas to Tampico would render it unnecessary to hold Monterey and Saltillo, or to keep open the communication between those points and the Rio Grande.
“The above estimate docs not include any forces required for the IRio Grande or Pacific frontier.”
These views were plausible, popular, and demonstrative; but two causes operated to defeat their adoption. First, the jealousy of Southern expansion common to all parties in the non-slavcholding states—a jealousy the most absurd on the part of a manufacturing and commercial people. Secondly, it had become apparent that the acquisition of territory would be followed by a demand for the exclusion of slavery therefrom ; and although it was obvious that, in the course of events, a contest upon that demand was inevitable, and that it should be met at once, nevertheless, many Southern statesmon concluded that it “was better to bear the ills we have than fly to those we know not of.” This jealousy and these apprehensions, encouraged by the constitutional timidity of President Polk, who was then cherishing the hope of a re-election, soon brought the war to a close, and we surrendered a conquest more glorious, more available for great national purposes, and more important to the commerce of the world than any that has been won since the days of imperial Rome.
Quitman had gone to Washington with expanded vicws, which are farther revealed in the extracts that follow from a letter to his former aid, Lieut. Lovell:
“Upon opening my budget to the President he im
mediately condemned the whole course of Gen. Scott
in refusing to give me a full division, so long as I was
on duty with him, and promised me for the future it
should be corrected. He Not so far as to say that I 2