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PROVISIONAL GOVERNMENT.

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and Texas solemnly protested against the change of government, for which act they were driven by military force from office, and imprisoned. The people of Texas protested against it, as they had a right to do, for which they have been declared rebels by the government of Mexico.

« However necessary, then, the basis established by the decree of the 3d of October, may be to prevent civil wars and anarchy in other parts of Mexico, it is attempted to be effected by force and unconstitutional means. However beneficial it may be to some parts of Mexico, it would be ruinous to Texas. This view presents the whole subject to the people. If they submit to a forcible and unconstitutional destruction of the social compact, which they have sworn to support, they violate their oaths. If they submit to be tamely destroyed, they disregard their duty to themselves, and violate the first law which God stamped upon the heart of man, civilized or savage ; which is the law of the right of self-preservation.

“ The decree of the 3d of October, therefore, if carried into effect, evidently leaves no remedy for Texas but resistance, secession from Mexico, and a direct resort to natural rights.”

The members of the Consultation, after sundry acts calculated to meet the exigencies of the times, organized a provisional government, which consisted of a governor, lieutenant-governor, and general council. The council was composed of one member from each district represented in the Consultation. The provisional government went into operation on the 14th of November, and was to continue in force till the following March. It was made thus temporary, in order to await the action and co-operation of the other states, should they make an effort to restore the constitution of the country, and its legitimate political system.

In organization of the provisional government, Henry Smith I was chosen governor, James W. Robinson, lieutenant-governor,

and General Samuel Houston, commander-in-chief.

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protect the lives, liberty, its legitimate powers are Hose happiness it was inunty for their inestimable trument in the hands of ien the federal republican they have sworn to support, ince, and the whole nature of ...ly changed, without their concrie republic, composed of sover. lot central military despotism, in corded but that of the army and the Lidl enemies of civil liberty, the ever

and the usual instruments of tyrants : pirit of the constitution has departed, mod. Suso far lost by those in power, that even the

dom is removed, and the forms themselves of thesontinued; and so far from their petitions and

arded, the agents who bear them are I mercenary armies sent forth to force em at the point of the bayonet:

CHAPTER IV.

Rumours of Invasion—Want of Preparation by the Texans Convention of the

People--Intelligence of the Advance of the Mexican Army-Declaration of Independence - Constitution in conformity to it-General Houston's Orders Lorenzo de Zavala, the Refugee-Advance of the Mexican Army-Urea marches on Goliad-Santa Anna marches on San Antonio-Colonel Travis in the Alamo -Besieged by General Siesma-Arrival of Santa Anna and Fall of the Alamo-Surrender of Colonel Fannin at Goliad-Massacre of the Prisoners after Capitulation-Policy of General Houston-Battle of San Jacinto-Complete VictoryCapture of Santa Anna—Texan Independence established.

DURING the winter, owing to the remoteness of the capital, and the variance of the two countries, the Texans had but little information respecting the intentions of Mexico. Frequent rumours, however, came, that Santa Anna contemplated an invasion. It was even said, that he was on his march, and alarm and preparation to meet him followed the annunciation. But, as the accounts proved unfounded, a sense of security and indifference lulled them to sleep, and in consequence, nearly all their forces were disbanded, when the Texans were startled by the intelligence that Santa Anna, at the head of ten thousand men, the choicest of his troops, had already entered the country, with the declared intention, if he found resistance, to spare neither age nor sex, but to make the country an utter desolation.

This intelligence, with that of the siege of San Antonio de Bexar, reached Washington on the 2d of March. A convention of the people was in session at that place, to provide for the exigencies of the time, as the period of the provisional government was about to expire, and decree the independence of the country

DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE. if it were deemed expedient. Convinced now, that nothing was to be expected from a change in the political system of Mexico, and preferring death to a state of slavery, the delegates, in full view of the terrible struggle that was before them, resolved to dissolve all connexion with Mexico whatever, and published to the world the following charter of freedom, upon the same day on which they learned the advance of the Mexican chief, and the siege of San Antonio de Bexar.

Unanimous Declaration of Independence, by the delegates of the

people of Texas, in general convention, at the town of Washington, on the 2d day of March, 1836.

« When a government has ceased to protect the lives, liberty, and property of the people, from whom its legitimate powers are derived, and for the advancement of whose happiness it was instituted; and, so far from being a guaranty for their inestimable and inalienable rights, becomes an instrument in the hands of evil rulers for their oppression: When the federal republican constitution of their country, which they have sworn to support, no longer has a substantial existence, and the whole nature of their government has been forcibly changed, without their consent, from a restrictive federative republic, composed of sovereign states, to a consolidated central military despotism, in which every interest is disregarded but that of the army and the priesthood—both the eternal enemies of civil liberty, the everready minions of power, and the usual instruments of tyrants : When, long after the spirit of the constitution has departed, mod. eration is at length so far lost by those in power, that even the semblance of freedom is removed, and the forms themselves of the constitution discontinued; and so far from their petitions and remonstrances being regarded, the agents who bear them are thrown into dungeons, and mercenary armies sent forth to force a new government upon them at the point of the bayonet :

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