Page:Mexico as it was and as it is.djvu/393

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of the United States would protect her in the event of a hostile foot being set upon her shores. She would secure the integrity of this Continent, and free her people from the dangers that menace them from abroad, whenever a minister is obliged to dun her for her debts, or threaten her with the "last argument" known to diplomats and nations.[1]

A favorite mode of raising loans in Mexico, for the benefit of the Government, has been that of granting permits to merchants (chiefly English, men,) to introduce cotton twist into the Republic. This is a prohibited article;—prohibited for the purpose of cherishing the manufacturing establishments of the country. That these have progressed to a very considerable extent, and have entirely outstripped the production of the cotton planters of Mexico, will be seen by the annexed Table, which I have obtained from the most authentic sources.


No. of factories in each department. Spindles
in erection.
In Mexico, 12 30,156 30,156
 " Puebla, 21 35,672 12,240 47,912
 " Vera Cruz, 7 17,860 5,200 23,060
 " Guadalajara, 5 11,312 6,500 17,812
 " Queretaro, 2 7,620 7,620
 " Durango, 4 7,620 7,620
 " Guanajuato, 1 1,200 1,200
 " Sonora, 1 1,000 1,000
53 107,340 23,940 131,280
  1. I did not design alluding in this work, to the Texans or to the Santa Fé expeditions: but I cannot let this occasion pass without bearing testimony to the kind hearts and generous disposition of the Mexicans, in regard to the prisoners of that ill-starred adventure. It is true, that several persons connected with it were travellers and merchants only, utterly ignorant of the purposes of the rest; but I believe there is now no doubt that the great body of the troops entertained the idea of revolutionizing the department of New Mexico. Yet these men were neither court-marshalled nor executed. They were forced to undergo a long and fatiguing march to the Capital, and some of them were, in Mexico, Puebla and Perote. chained and treated with indignity by the officers of the Government. But I have heard them all speak in terms of the most heartfelt gratitude of the continual sympathy expressed for them by the citizens. The Mexicans visited them; sent them food and raiment; interceded for them, and used every effort to mitigate their sufferings. The officers were allowed many privileges by their keepers, and finally, the whole of them were released, after having sworn not to take up arms against Mexico. Notwithstanding this oath, several of them had scarcely landed in Texas before they were again in hostile array against the Government that freed them, and although some were once more seized upon the Mexican territory, I learn that their lives have been spared, and that they will probably be again released.
    I must be permitted, in this note, to mention the brave Colonel Cooke, (a native of Virginia, who commanded a division of the expedition,) as one of those rare heroes, whose chivalry reminds us of the days of romance. At the battle of San Jacinto, it is said, that he saved the life of Santa Anna by interposing himself between the infuriated troops and the captured General, when be was brought into Houston's camp. I have been told that Santa Anna remembered his name, as soon as he learned that a person called Cooke was in the Santa Fé expedition, and resolved to release him if he proved to be his preserver. On Cooke's arrival at Mexico, the President sent for and questioned him closely as to the facts, but Cooke steadily denied his identity. When reproved by his friends, he exclaimed, that he would avail himself of no such advantage gained merely by honorable war, and that he had resolved to share the fate of his companions, be it what it might Together they had been captured, together they would undergo the sufferings of imprisonment, and together they would be released, or die. He kept his promise till the last, and on the 12th of June, 1843, marched at the head of his little band to the review at which Santa Anna, in person, released them.